Basic metadata describing PARADISEC's collection can be freely and easily searched through OLAC, , ANDS, or the LINGUIST LIST gateway.

Access to the collection and catalogue records is available here:

Access to data in the PARADISEC repository is available to those who have signed an access form. A nominal fee may be charged for files delivered on CD/DVD. Completed forms should be posted or faxed to PARADISEC (Sydney).

PARADISEC has been funded by the Universities of Sydney, Melbourne, New England, ANU the Australian Research Council and Grangenet.

View a glossary of acronyms used on this site.


To report broken links or for comments on this webpage, email PARADISEC.

Please note that the PARADISEC website has been redesigned.

The new website can be found at

Information for Depositors

PARADISEC is a service that runs on grants and donations. The main repository is stored with Australian government funding but day to day administration and digitisation is unfunded and relies on paid work and your donations. If you can build a donation to PARADISEC into your funding applications that will ensure we can keep this service going.

The PARADISEC catalogue contains detailed information about the data stored in the collection. This metadata includes a subset that conforms to the Open Languages Archives Community and Dublin Core metadata sets.

Depositors are asked to enter their metadata directly into PARADISEC's online catalogue. On application, depositors will be issued with a username and password with access to their collections. Any depositors without ongoing access to the Internet, may be able to enter their metadata into a spreadsheet for import into the catalogue. A fee may be applicable for processing metadata provided in a spreadsheet. Please contact us for more information.

In PARADISEC's terms there are collections, items, and files. Items contain files and there can be no duplicate item names. Related files can have the same name, for example an .eaf file would have the same name as the media item and both are stored inside an item, e.g. ITEM EG1-Fred has the file 'Fred20150108' so its name then is EG1-Fred-Fred20150108.wav and its transcript is EG1-Fred-Fred20150108.eaf. The description is at the level of EG1-Fred. You don't need to list filenames in the metadata, only item names and the files need to be named correctly so they are associated when uploaded.

We currently have no provision for depositors to upload their own files. Typically digital files can be sent on any suitable media, including USB sticks, hard disks or DVDs.

Filenaming conventions

Part of the management of any collection is the use of good filenaming conventions. See our recommended filenaming practices here. Each item deposited (e.g. each tape) should have a unique identifier. Don't use delimiters (like hyphens or spaces) within a filename. Hyphens are reserved characters for our archiving purposes, so ideal names are strings of alphanumerics limited to less than 10 characters if possible (there is an absolute limit on item names of 30 characters).

We assign a name to the collection, usually the depositor's initials and then a digit, e.g. 'XP1'. Each recording has your number, e.g. 071, which, together with the collection id forms the persistent identifier for the archival object (e.g. the tape), XP1-071. Each file generated by the process has a derivative name (typically of the form A.wav). The whole filename is then XP1-071-A.wav. This is the persistent filename that you will find on the password-protected archive.

The list below gives an indication of fields in the PARADISEC catalogue. If any of the following categories applies to the whole collection they need only be stated once, noting that they apply globally. Items marked with an asterisk (*) are repeatable so that multiple responses can be given.

cassette length


Running time of the cassette

Country in which the recording was made

data type*

Choose from one of the following:

lexicon / instrumental music / language description / primary text / song



the last date on which the item was created (e.g. the last recording date). Use YYY-MM-DD format.



Name of the dialect represented




Name of the deposited item


language as in source


Language name as used by the depositor


language code*


Ethnologue language code


language standard*


Ethnologue language name


language subject*


The language that is the subject of the item


language content*


The language used in the item




Type of media (e.g. brand name, tape kind)




Narrative information about the content of the data


number of cassettes


Which of the consortium universities does the material originate from




Any notes about the orthography that are required to understand the metadata




Are there any parts of the data that should receive priority in the digitisation queue? This could be on the basis of particularly valuable performances or particularly poorly maintained tapes


region/ village


Region or village where the recording was made


isCopyOf / isCopiedBy / requires / isRequiredBy / hasPart / isPartOf / hasVersion / isVersionOf / replaces / isReplacedBy / hasTranscript / transcribes



Access conditions specific to this item


Role *   


(please use one of the following identifiers for the role of participants and creators) 


annotator / artist / author / compiler / consultant / data_inputter / depositor / developer / editor / illustrator / interviewer / participant / performer / photographer / recorder / researcher / respondent / speaker / signer / singer / sponsor / transcriber / translator

  e.g.    depositor     Ngaria, Wayang

            speaker       Blog

rtor time


Running time of reel to reel tapes 




Stereo / mono




Is the tape transcribed and if so can you include a transcript?


video length

Running time of video


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