Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) is the archives of the State Government of Victoria. We hold over 100 km of records dating from the 1830s to the present day. Our collection includes records of immigration and shipping, criminal trials and prisons, royal commissions and boards of inquiry, health and welfare, wills and probates and much more. These records hold stories of the key events and decisions that have shaped the State of Victoria and the lives of Victorians.

Open records in the state archives are available to PROV’s Reading Room visitors. But organising a trip to our Reading Rooms is not always practical, and the expectation is that we will digitise and provide online access to as many records as we can.

Currently many historic records are digitised and available on our website, and visitors can request copies of open records not already online. We are launching a new system that will allow us to publish these ad hoc copies straight to our site.

Just because we can publish all copies we make, does that mean we should?

We recognise that some kinds of frequently copied records may not be suitable to publish.

We want to hear your thoughts about online publishing of open public records that contain graphic, distressing or personal information of people both living and deceased.

Your feedback will help us establish guidelines around what we will publish and help us to better understand the needs and expectations of our users.

How to participate

We have put together some scenarios that illustrate these issues. We are asking you to think about these scenarios and respond to the questions posed. We highly recommend you read our background document for further background and clarification of terms (such as the difference between open and closed records) .

Next steps

Your feedback will support guidelines we will develop around publishing public records to the PROV website. We will provide the results and outcomes of this consultation on our website later in the year.

Privacy collection notice

We are not collecting personal information through this survey, unless you choose to contact us for more information.

View our privacy policy on the PROV website.