Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Christmas Carol: crowdsourcing analysis of the mss.

Christmas tree being cut down at Cherry Plain, New York, for President Roosevelt and Governor Lehman, December 1934. 57L275REF. Image courtesy of the New York State Archives.

A little while ago, the New York Times worked with the Morgan Library and Museum, which owns the original manuscript copy of Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, to digitize the manuscript and invited its readers to identify the changes Dickens made while writing and revising it. Over 100 Times readers rose to the challenge, and their findings are featured today. The most interesting finding concerns Tiny Tim's name . . . .

Lots of repositories have manuscripts or records that would lend themselves to this sort of crowdsourcing analysis. However, right now we should probably focus on our families and friends. Whatever you're celebrating or not celebrating, I hope that you're with people you love and that you're having a great time.

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