«Part II Submissions by: Judy Anderson Heather S. Miller Bryan Baldus Allen Mullen Deanna Briggs John J. Riemer Diana Brooking Karina Ricker Lloyd ...»
Ability to search and display local records in WorldCat -- (1) I would like the bibliographic o records stored in OCLC’s WorldCat to function as our OPAC (I don’t like the FirstSearch interface), but we need to be able to link into the local circulation record from that database and have the University Library, Room LI-B35i 1400 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12222 PH: 518-442-3629 FX: 518-442-3567 E-MAIL: email@example.com www.albany.edu opportunity for indexing of local fields ; (2) In the 1980’s and 90’s our library used RLIN for cataloging and there is a wonderful advantage to viewing clusters of records.
Commitment to authority systems that function -- What distinguishes us in the o information industry is our understanding of the importance of controlled vocabularies. Now if our ILSs only knew how to use them. This should include the ability to make local modifications that are not lost upon further database clean-up or authority record loads.
Greater use of fixed fields – OCLC has moved in this direction, with the ability to limit o searches in Connexion by format.
Commitment to the descriptive components of the MARC record for electronic o resources -- Even though there appears to be a movement away from the importance of description, the mutable nature of electronic resources makes bibliographic description essential.
The following statements are in response to recent changes in LC and/or national policy or practice:
We are continuing to verify and establish authoritative series headings because academic materials issued in monographic series that we purchase need to be accessible. We are most grateful to the PCC for continuing this important work.
We continue to justify 7xx fields with 5xx fields so that searchers and catalogers understand why they retrieved a record. A classic example of why the 5xx is important is so searchers know why they retrieved Library Journal when they search by American Library Association.
Our reference librarians do not want our 78x fields indexed, nor does our ILS provide a clear method for linking records using the 78x fields. This makes implementing the new standard record for serials less of an advantage for us.
We need shelflist numbers with our class numbers. I’ve not heard about this recently, but hope LC will not follow through with curtailing shelflisting.
Hurrah for continued support of pre-coordinated subject headings! Hurrah for current plans for simplification!
Thanks for the opportunity to contribute to the discussion, Karina Ricker, Serials Cataloger, University Libraries LI-B35i, University at Albany 1400 Washington Ave.
Albany, New York 12222 Phone: 518-442-3629 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 2 From: Rinne, Nathan (ESC) RinneN@district279.org Date: Jul 23, 2007 5:17 PM Subject: Working Group on Future of Bib Cont. letter To: email@example.com Dr. José-Marie Griffiths,
Recently, on the AUTOCAT listserv, Kevin Randall said:
"That is, the cataloging rules don't determine the nature of the situation; the nature of the situation determines the cataloging."
I was hoping that some easy philosophical handle will pop into my mind and help me to get to the bottom of how people are thinking about the future of cataloging. I think this may be it.
In my mind, it seems like more "traditional" people are ready to deal with change though not to the extent that the more "progressive" people are.
More traditional people don't deny the fact that ideally the "nature of the situation [should] determine the cataloging", but they emphasize the importance and primacy of having a core, well-defined, agreed-upon structure - especially bibliographical and authority control. Persons who create information organizational systems realize the hard intellectual work that need to occur here - attempting to take into account the various facts and situations that have happened or could happen in past efforts. In this paradigm, change happens, but slowly, as new situations force re-evaluations of the current intellectual system - in practice, this means that sometimes "cataloging rules DO determine the nature of the situation" - this is part of living in the real world. The idea is that if there is a lack of correspondence between theoretical definitions and what one actually does in practice, at least the definitions are agreed on! Resolving the ambiguities that one encounters on the job - and sometimes they become quite glaring has to wait until official representatives can get together and make the needed changes.
In this view, this is the price that one pays for structure, for organization, in a way, democracy...
The more progressive people, it seems, are more ready to go on faith. Systems often don't work as they were originally intended to. They get old, stale, and corrupt.
Change must necessarily shake the foundations, and things are done "on the fly" and will be made up "as we go" - the "now" is key. Sensing that all things meaningful are happening on the web the progressive librarians encourage all of us to "get our data out into the world" so that we can participate in the great communal mash-up and make a better world. RDA and FRBR are the main new structure to help this occur, although the definitions and ideas found in these systems are incredibly complicated and abstract. In short, the ambiguities that one encounters on the job no longer come primarily from the concrete situations in one's work, but rather in the definitions themselves, which allow a lot of leeway - this fits in well with the hesitancy we feel about being too dogmatic about anything in our uncertain world. This is not to say that there was never any ambiguity in the definitions of ISBD, AACR2, MARC, etc, but with RDA and FRBR, things are taken to new levels. In short, among the progressives where there is still a concern for "authority control" there is a kind of hope that the miracle will occur among the great collective Wiki-wisdom-unconscious that will construct the new universal catalog - which will of course be all things to all people.
How can all of this be resolved? I have no idea. Maybe by spending more time actually trying to listen to and understand what others who seem to be moving in a different direction than you are saying (Karen Calhoun, who I think is pretty well-informed on issues, mentioned this morning on the NGC4LIB list that she had only read one thing from Thomas Mann - I was shocked!). This, however, seems to be difficult, as so much is made up "as we go".
It seems to me that there are dangers on both "sides" of the issue, though I obviously am leaning one way at this time. It seems to me that though radical change is sometimes necessary, it can be taken too far to the point where the old structure can be rendered totally useless, ineffectual, lost... Martha Yee's latest piece which she shared with the AUTOCAT readers seems to me like a mighty prophetic blast. One can only hope that the Library of Congress will heed her warning.
Unlike Martha, I don't think Google and Amazon will take over everything though. I suspect that Google, Amazon, and companies like Reed Elsevier and Thompson-Gale (who at this time has introduced their new "PowerSearch" databases, which in their advertising unashamedly trumpet their role as experts in creating structure and authority control) will.
Maybe if the Library of Congress continually cheapens its own authority control, it will be some of those company's new clients.
How much easier - and better for everyone - it would be if the LC could focus on being the best research library in the world for our public servants - and the others who are fortunate enough to use it in person (and of course, with the web, how much easier it is to share those treasures with everyone)!
With so much certainty surrounding the effectiveness of RDA and FRBR, the LC especially needs to stand strong at this time - standardized cataloging records and the Library of Congress Subject Headings are crucial for our profession to survive and thrive in the future.
Thank you for your time, Nathan Rinne Media Cataloging Technician ISD 279 - Educational Service Center (ESC) 11200 93rd Ave. North Maple Grove, MN. 55369 Work phone: 763-391-7183 1
Submitted by Deirdre A. Routt, Technical Services Manager, Omaha Public Library, 215
South 15 Street, Omaha, Nebraska 68102. Phone: (402) 444-4997. Email:
firstname.lastname@example.org The Omaha Public Library serves the approximately 450,000 residents of Douglas County, Nebraska with 11 locations. In 2006 we circulated 2.8 million items. That year the library’s total holdings were 1.4 million with total FTE staffing of 158.
At the library we are continually examining all of our services and deciding what is important, what is to be kept, reworked, discarded, or introduced. The library catalog is always under close scrutiny. As a technical services manager I consistently strive to demonstrate the value of continuing to customize our bibliographic records and the need to have sufficient personnel to do so.
Our public services include the library catalog and the cataloging behind it. The online catalog may be the way some people first encounter a library. A patron’s impression of and experience with a library catalog are very important. The catalog needs to not only be attractive and easy to use but also to contain the necessary data. To achieve that we always have in mind our potential users, the standards we use for cataloging, and the cost of cataloging materials.
Omaha Public Library tries to be very customer responsive. We strongly encourage customers to request materials for purchase. If a request fits our collection development policy we generally will purchase it. On a nearly daily basis, we receive many materials, in all formats and of all types, most of which have been requested by at least one patron.
Those materials are given the highest priority in the cataloging and processing queue. As a result, we are purchasing, cataloging and processing materials based on customer demand, thereby enhancing our value to the community by meeting their needs.
As a public library our users includes a wide range people. Our main patron is the general public -- this includes not only children, parents and grandparents, but also businesspeople, students, homeless people, genealogists, job seekers, and workers. We also serve county residents, residents of bordering counties, reciprocal borrowers, and visitors. Our patrons may want to do research, be entertained, and use computers. Many come seeking a place with climate controls and some quiet, something familiar or perhaps something new.
The library provides a plethora of materials. The largest portion of our collection is books, ranging from bestsellers and popular materials to general interest and the obscure.
We provide magazines, newspapers, DVDs, CDs, downloadable audiobooks and e-books, government documents, websites, online databases, and other electronic resources. We try to adhere to the established standards and utilize the existing structures, even though at times, these are insufficient for our needs.
DA Routt, Written Testimony to the LC Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control, 12/4/2007 2 As existing structures and standards do not always meet our needs we must modify and work around them. For instance, with DVDs we still use the GMD, [videorecording] – this fails to differentiate them from videocassettes and requires the use of other tools to let patrons know that what is described in the bibliographic record is in fact a DVD. Thus we make use of icons in our OPAC to assist users. It is also difficult for patrons viewing a list of titles to easily determine which DVD title might be a feature film. Therefore, following the example of other libraries, we make use of uniform titles for motion pictures. For example, the DVD of the movie musical Chicago has the uniform title Chicago (Motion picture : 2002), which helps differentiate it from other videos or DVDs that are about the city Chicago.
We also make extensive use of series. Staff and patrons alike use series for adult, juvenile, and young adult fiction and nonfiction titles. Since the Library of Congress ceased creating and maintaining series authority records we have had to rely on other sources to create and maintain the series in our collection. Series are an important access point in public libraries, one that we cannot afford to lose. As the library community has not yet developed a good cooperative means of replacing the Library of Congress’s creation and maintenance of series authorities individual libraries shoulder the burden and cost of creation and maintenance. This is a needless repetition of effort. Libraries need to work out a better means of cooperation that is not so reliant on the Library of Congress which faces the same scrutiny of services as other libraries.
The current cooperative cataloging systems are not sufficiently robust to meet libraries’ needs. The Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) requires a great deal of commitment from an institution in order to participate – time and money for staff training plus the expenses of the instructor. The institution must recognize and support the need to invest staff time in creating and maintaining authority records. In general the PCC appears rather exclusive and demanding to the outsider, particularly to those in public libraries. Another cooperative cataloging system, OCLC is also expensive to support, however, it is more welcoming and requires less initial training (albeit continual upgrading). The quality of OCLC data has not been particularly high of late, with many duplicates and incomplete records.
Most of the Integrated Library Systems (ILS) we currently have do not meet our needs.