ALCTS Technical Services Directors of Large
Research Libraries Discussion
June 25, 2004
9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Recorded by Judith Hopkins, University at
For the text of the Round Robin on issues of concern to these institutions, which was distributed via the Big Heads electronic discussion list in the weeks prior to the Orlando meeting, see http://www.acsu.buffalo.edu/~ulcjh/bh62004rr.html
After the introductions the Chair (Arno Kastner, NYU) reported on last nightís
dinner with OCLC senior management.†
Glenn Patton of OCLC will provide a summary report which
Bob Wolven †(
††††††††††† Every 3 years the Big Heads
review their membership based on the ARL criteria index ranking; however Stanford is no longer a
member of ARL. In addition, if recent trends continue, there will soon be 3 Canadian members
according to the current criteria, whose libraries are rarely represented at ALA.†† Should we therefore revise the criteria and/or look at attendance
as a factor?† The Chair asked for volunteers to review these
2 questions, suggesting that we might want to look behind the data that we get from ARL.† Judi Nadler
Bob Wolven (
Among the points that came up at the summit is that access is to the article level rather than journal level.† This led the summit participants to question whether you need a journal or would just a link from the article be sufficient.† Publishers thought that journals had a role for validation of content, browsability for current awareness, etc.† The role of OPACs (Online Public Access Catalogs) in finding journals is more ambiguous, however.† Someone said that about 80% of journal access came from outside of OPACs.† As for their view of print, publishers said there will continue to be print but it is more likely to be print on demand.† How important will volume and issue numbers be in this environment?† If journal titles remain important, how important is it to describe these titles?† More and more of us are looking to others to provide the data but they are looking at us to provide the CONSER records.† There is interest in subject access to journal articles but there are no standards for depth of subjects or on what terminology to use. One hoped-for outcome of the summit was cross-sector contribution to data creation and reuse.† Further exploration on these lines is needed.
Another panel focused on standards. Lots of work is being done on syntax rather than content.† An important question is ďWho owns the data?Ē† More and more data is being put into proprietary systems that donít talk to other systems. Can you get the data out and re-use it?
Karen Calhoun (Cornell) asked about the impact of the summit on CONSER.† Bob Wolven said that there had been about 15 recommendations.† Some were things PCC could deal with, others were concrete but not easy; others were more difficult.†† Some of the things CONSER was looking to do are determining what data is useful in records and where is it being created?† They hope to get a consultant to look at all the data available through the summit.
At this point Les Hawkins, the CONSER Coordinator, was invited to join the table.† He said that CONSER is looking to transform itself from a producer of records to a facilitator of uses of records.† One summit recommendation had been to create an advisory board for CONSER (composed of producers, vendors, etc.)† Another was to have CONSER provide better coverage of electronic databases.†
Judi Nadler (
Arno Kastner (NYU) asked Bob Wolven to speak more on the question of the content of records.† Wolven said there had been a feeling that not all existing data elements were needed. Judi Nadler asked about open URLs; Bob said that the ability to incorporate open URLs in CONSER records had been recommended.† Les Hawkins said that was proving rather complex for various reasons.† It might be possible to have publishers assign title level DOI (Digital Object Identifier), if an appropriate ISSN can be part of that assignment, and use DOI as part of a locally resolvable URL in CONSER records. †
noted that our libraries are all preparing to load data in ERM (Electronic
Resources Management) modules and this may represent a new
opportunity for sharing data and reducing duplicative effort, provided we
can agree on some standards or best practices. † She was interested in more than bibliographic
descriptions and holdings information, such as sharable
licensing information, information about aggregator packages, and so on.† Lee Leighton (
Bob Wolven (Columbia) said one interesting idea that came up was for a shared database that would contain core license terms from different publishers.
Karen Calhoun suggested
that those using ERMs might share their plans in at
the January 2005 Big Heads meeting.† Jeffrey Horrell
wondered if vendors might also be asked to contribute.††† Someone suggested that we might incorporate
vendors input in our reports.†† Bob Wolven
said he would be interested in knowing what topics people were discussing with
vendors as this would give us an idea of what we could get out of the databases
later.† Joyce Ogburn (
asked how people were providing subject access. One approach was to map the LC
class number.† Bob Wolven said
It was suggested that Electronic Resource Management systems be placed on the agenda for the January 2005 Big Heads meeting.† John Riemer asked if ISSN data might be verified and assigned.† Les Hawkins said that CONSER is working with the ISSN Network on ways to provide ISSN data for records that lack it.
Richard Jasper (
Someone from the audience said that NISO (National
Information Standards Organization in the
Housekeeping issues: Arno Kastner announced that Becky Lyons, NLM Acting Chief of Technical Services and Caroline Early, Acting Head of Technical Services for NAL, were representing the National Library of Medicine and the National Agricultural Library respectively at this meeting.
Joan Swanekamp (Yale) noted that vendor-supplied records have been a fixture of bibliographic control for a long time.† Key points for such records are availability, quality, and price.† We canít buy records that donít exist and we wonít buy records that do not help users gain access to the materials they describe.† We have to have records that sustain the relationship between buyer and seller; if the price is too low no-one will make records but if the price is too high, we will not buy the records.
Yaleís experience with digital product suppliers has been
positive. ††Overall, vendors have been
responsive to library needs. †As an
example, she described their experience with the Eighteenth Century Collection
Online (ECCO), an online collection which parallels a microform collection, the
Eighteenth Century Collection. The records lack much subject analysis.† Yale wanted to load records, and add subject
analysis as a later phase.† They saw a similar
pattern with other vendors who provided records: the records had catalog data
they did not need, non-MARC21 tags, some had notes relating to the microform
version.† Yale had the originals but use
of records for the microform versions would make it look as if Yale had the
microform duplicates instead.† They
needed records with 007 and 006 fields, coded correctly.† They needed much interactive work with
vendors to get what they needed.† Yale
worked with Gary Strawn (Northwestern) and Margarreta
Trying to direct vendors towards the PCC website (http://lcweb.loc.gov/catdir/pcc/aggtg2final.html ) where several task forces of the PCC Committee on Automation have provided a model for record content and format seems a better solution than individual negotiations with vendors.
At Yale more than half an FTE of a high level professional
for the past year has been spent working with vendors (ECCO, Evans, and other
smaller vendors) on specifications.† Some
of the smaller ones didnít have records in MARC.††† Judi
Nadler said that at
Arno Kastner said there were opposite instances in which, in response to a request from a single library, a vendor made across the board changes that are not suitable for everyone; joint discussion with vendors is needed.† Bob Wolven said this was an example of weakness in the PCC site: it had standards of what should be included in records but didnít say what should be deleted, e.g., microform notes from records that were being changed to describe electronic resources.† He commented that it is also important to tell vendors which of the things you are requesting that are for your specific needs and that probably would not be useful for other libraries.†
(Cornell) noted that libraries are also suppliers: they are
sometimes asked to provide records for their digital collections. Cornell
makes selected record sets available for download from its Web site, but as
is, since the library lacks the resources to customize them for use at
Catherine Tierney (Stanford) commented that once you get these records into your catalogs you then can't export them to share with others.††† Nancy Gibbs (Duke) said that such a prohibition was in a separate license agreement that Duke had signed but that they crossed it out.† Catherine Tierney said ECCOís license says you canít export the records.
Arno Kastner (NYU) noted that there used to be dialogue with vendors that tried to convince them that the availability of records in OCLC sets was to their advantage, that it would encourage more libraries to purchase the sets. ††Joan Swanekamp said the cost of many of these sets is quite prohibitive. Jeffrey Horrell (Harvard) pointed out that if you own much of the original material you can negotiate.
Judi Nadler (
Phelix Hanible (
Arno Kastner (NYU) said that a survey that Big Heads had done 3 years ago showed that libraries were making quite different use of PCC records.† He wondered how high volume libraries are using them today.†
John Riemer †(UCLA)† said that they are very valuable, providing
access to high quality records, akin to those produced by the Library of
Congress.†† Irene Zimmerman (
Lee Leighton (
asked if staff had been asked to look at PCC records and pass them through more
Irene Zimmerman said
Judi Nadler said
said that NYPL is uses PCC records as they do those from LC, though they have
to do some editing of both because of their local classification system.† Katharine
said that at Cornell, as at
Beacher Wiggins (LC) commented that catalogers are suspicious of some PCC records and that is an attitude that needs to be treated.†† As Catherine Tierney had pointed out, we have so much else to deal with we canít afford to re-inspect PCC records.†
Bob Wolven said that if no more PCC records appeared it
would make little difference to
Catherine Tierney (Stanford) suggested that the Big Heads encourage their staff to create PCC records because that enables us all to do our work better by getting more records through quickly.
John Riemer (UCLA) asked if there is an attempt to recruit more BIBCO libraries.† Both Bob Wolven and Beacher Wiggins said that a campaign to add more wouldnít increase contribution very much.
Judi Nadler (
Karen Calhoun said that Cornell got into the digital collection building business about 10 years ago and now has lots of digital collections. As they built these collections they took a project rather than a programmatic approach.† Because these collections are scattered over their website people have difficulty in discovering what collections Cornell has and what is in them. Now have the objective of creating an integrated technological and methodological framework for making the library's many digital collections more easily and conveniently discoverable.
The first phase (dealing with licensed collections) was completed last summer; it introduced federated searching and reference linking.† They next turned to collections digitized by the library and are investigating 3 issues:
1) The number of delivery platforms they have.† They have 6-7 of them and wonder if they could go to fewer and make better use of those platforms.
(2)† Identification of a set of best practices and standards and assumptions underlying collection development policies.
(3) An appropriate model or models of collection building. They are looking at an OAI repository model (many collections are not harvestable) and also a federated search model. Questions of interoperability have been raised.
Joyce Ogburn (
Cynthia Clark said that NYPL is dealing with similar issues:† They have digitized audio and video files and now have hundreds of thousands of images that have been scanned; they now have to integrate these materials into their catalog.
Beth Picknally Camden said that the
Bob† Wolven said it was less important for
scholars to find one interface for
Judi Nadler said
Joan Swanekamp said that Yale has lots of digital information and is concerned about long-term preservation issues.
Arno Kastner in
his role as Chair acknowledged the 15 years of service that Judith Hopkins
Arno Kastner acknowledged Rick Schulz (Princeton) for the tribute, Robert Milevski
creating the tribute on a handpress in the Princeton University Library, and Scott Husby
creating the presentation folder.
her gratitude and described how her work as Big Heads recorder had grown out of
a personal defect, her inability to remember what she hears.† To compensate for that defect she had started
taking detailed notes as a member of the Big Heads audience and then had shared
them with other attendees.† Big Heads
then asked if they could use the notes as their Minutes.
Judith expressed her gratitude and described how her work as Big Heads recorder had grown out of a personal defect, her inability to remember what she hears.† To compensate for that defect she had started taking detailed notes as a member of the Big Heads audience and then had shared them with other attendees.† Big Heads then asked if they could use the notes as their Minutes.
The meeting was adjourned at