OCLC's origins and reputation were built upon creating and managing cataloging data, but according to Taylor Surface, OCLC's director of Content Management Services, "WDDA extends our mission beyond the bibliographic to the actual document itself." Despite the great trend toward online information, Surface points out that "There's a dearth of solutions that are geared toward preserving digital content." Previous limited projects, Surface explains, have inspired OCLC's grander effort, "OCLC is building on other projects that look at the issues surrounding the preservation of electronic content in a digital depository library setting.
WDDA will incorporate previous standards and best practices for digital preservation.
The unique contribution of the WDDA project will be, in Surface's words, "preservation metadata." These are tools and formats that will ensure the future accessibility of data, regardless of the advance of technology.
Finally, WDDA will provide for ongoing user accessibility.
WDDA's initial clientele will be OCLC's primary constituency of libraries, but Surface explains that WDDA will seek additional markets, "The service will have applicability to non-library clients.