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Oct 31 / Alexandra Sarkozy

Research Data Services: Halloween Edition

It’s Halloween, and we at WSU Research Data Services are getting into the spirit with some RESEARCH DATA NIGHTMARES. We have all hopefully moved beyond storing research data on flash and C:/ drives, but problems of long-term data preservation, access, and reuse regularly rear their monstrous heads.

I’ve selected a few examples to raise awareness about the need to plan for data management, including preservation, not just for federal grants that require it, but for any research involving data collection.

1. The dangers of making data available only on your own website and not in a repository: The Mystery of the Missing Dataset.

2. One in five scientific articles suffers from “reference rot,” according to this December 2014 PLoS article.

3. Professor loses over 100 gigabytes of files during Dropbox sync glitch.

For a consultation with library staff about research data management planning and preservation, contact the Research Data Services group at and

We wish you and your data a happy and safe Halloween!