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Museums and the Web

An annual conference exploring the social, cultural, design, technological, economic, and organizational issues of culture, science and heritage on-line.

Anne Frank House

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Anne Frank House


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The Anne Frank House continually strives to serve its public and reach more audiences. Not only to bring Anne Frank’s story to the attention of people all over the world but to encourage them to reflect on the dangers of antisemitism, racism and discrimination and the importance of freedom, equal rights and democracy.

The Anne Frank House developed its first website in 1997. This site was completely renewed in 2004.  Since then online developments in new media have been embraced by the Anne Frank House as a way of reaching the public from all over the world.

The Anne Frank Guide, an educational webguide , now in 20 cultures has been available for the younger visitor since 2005.

The first  form of a community website – The Anne Frank Tree, has attracted visitors from all over the world since 2006. On this website visitors can leave a virtual leaf in the tree. Since its launch almost half a million leaves have been left on the tree; many coming from visitors to the museum itself.

In 2010 the Anne Frank House celebrated its 50th anniversary as a museum and a totally redesigned website was launched, including a new portal, the Secret Annex Online and the Anne Frank Timeline. Online social media sites  such as Facebook and YouTube have also been integrated into the website reaching  yet more diverse audiences worldwide. 

Preparations are now in progress in 2011 for a mobile application to be used in conjunction with the new online exhibition Anne Frank’s Amsterdam and the travelling exhibition about Anne Frank which is on view all over the world.

Target Groups

An online poll about usability looking at behavior, goals, needs and motivation of the most important target groups (the John Falk model) identified users of the website as wanting to learn for identity related reasons.

One type of identified visitors to the site is a visitor with an experience seeking facilitator mentality, those who want to get the best out of their visit by thoroughly preparing it and being able to tell their friends of their experiences. Therefore, the website offers the information to be able to plan a visit from beginning to end, from buying the tickets on line to purchasing a copy of the diary in the book shop and after returning home to be able to re-visit The Secret Annex Online