The new effort grows out of a pre-existing partnership between NASA and the Internet Archive, NASA Images, which was originally formed to archive "NASA's image, video and audio collections in a single, searchable resource," according to NASA Images' Website.
NASA is among the federal agencies most actively engaging the public with social media, and the general public will likely desire access to the content it creates online for years to come.
"Have you ever wondered what will happen to all of NASA's tweets, YouTube videos, photos on Flickr, or Facebook discussions?" NASA Images asked in a blog post.
Archiving all of NASA's social content will be no small task, so the agency plans to do so gradually. NASA began the social-networking archive process with 54 Twitter streams that will be updated monthly.
The feeds contain Twitter updates for various NASA projects, research, and other activities, such as feeds for updates about various telescopes and space modules the agency currently has deployed. NASA Images will then begin archiving NASA's entire Website and all subdomains, plus the space agency's activity on YouTube, Facebook, Flickr, Ustream and MySpace.
Archive-It allows organizations to build and preserve collections of digital content. Several other government agencies, including the Library of Congress, the Department of Energy, and the Department of Labor, are also Archive-It customers.