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Re: [ARSCLIST] Cataloging Sound Recordings
- To: ARSCLIST@xxxxxxxxxxxx
- Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Cataloging Sound Recordings
- From: Thom Pease <thompease@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon, 25 Apr 2005 22:05:31 -0700
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- Comments: To: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <ARSCLIST@loc.gov>, Recipients of ARSCLIST digests <ARSCLIST@sun8.loc.gov>
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A noble thought. In the meantime, we have decades of
unique recordings in the OCLC database, which are
linked to LC authority data. This is useful
information for discovery, once you figure out how to
use it. Researchers of musical scores have many of
the same problems, esp. with manuscripts and early
editions. How have they gotten around it? With RISM,
thematic catalogs, and other indexes that supplement
their library catalogs and First Search.
Libraries that own sound materials could not afford to
re-catalog all these materials, and it is for
libraries (and their patrons) that the OCLC
Bibliographic File is often valuable (WorldCat/First
Search for patrons).
Often times, it isn't MARC or AACR2 or even OCLC
that's failing us...but rather the integrated library
systems that we're using in our local institutions.
Not naming systems here, but there's one that just
won't index uniform titles with main entries
correctly--it just drives librarians crazy. The good
news is that there are many systems out there, so you
just have to pick a good one.
What you're proposing is something similar to what
Wikipedia is about. That might be useful too, but how
could experienced people trust all of the information
in there. Ever is it the conundrum between providing
access and our desire to have authorized control over
names--to have the right name, the right title, etc.
I think the reason this is so is because librarians
value precision in their searches, over sheer number
of results (ala your favorite search engine). I do
think AACR3 will be an improvement, for it does more
to separate the work and instantiations from its
physical manifestation (ala FRBR).
I think improving/influencing LC cataloging
policy--maybe even a redesign of the sound recordings
work format--would be a better use of resources than
trying to build the next database. The problem is the
material that we've already put in the catalog for
decades. For that reason and others, I'd like to
paraphrase a thought from Rob Ray and Chuck Haddix's
March 2005 ARSC pre-conference workshop that shared
catalogs are better than individual databases.
Graduate Student, School of Library and Info. Science
> I have had a chance to look at various library
> sysyems, and I would agree
> wholeheartedly that they were designed to catalog
> paper items (most notably
> books) and that is a totally different entity than
> cataloguing phonorecords!
> Books, for example, don't have (or need) matrix
> numbers, control numbers,
> composer credits...and so on, and so forth. For this
> reason, looking up
> a recording in, for example, your nearest public
> library can be a confusing
> and frustrating task.
> As I noted before, I will send, on request, a
> phonorecord cataloguing
> application I created in MS Access...it's about a
> 250KB file, and needs
> at least Access 98 to open it, and as well is not
> 100% completed...but
> I can send it to interested parties and welcome
> comments on it.
> Also, as I have commented before, I think that ARSC
> might try and define
> a basic core set of fields (in the sense of field
> types and mimimum sizes
> as well as names) for phonorecord cataloguing. Each
> user could, of course,
> augment this core set of fields as he/she/it saw
> fit...but it would at
> least guarantee data interchangibility for the core
> fields, which would in
> turn make it possible to create an "uber-catalog"
> comprising as many
> collections as possible. This could be used to:
> 1) Collect data on as many sound recordings (I'm
> thinking of 78's, but
> others could be included) as possible. This could
> be used as a data
> source on recordings.
> 2) Establish, for researchers and other interested
> parties, a guide to
> which sound recordings still exists and where
> they can be accessed.
> There are all sorts of other possible uses which
> suggest themselves,
> or will if this is discussed!
> I know of at least present or proposed institutional
> collections of
> sound recordings aimed at collecting either all such
> recordings or
> different subsets of them. There were/are other
> collections of data,
> Not standarizing the digital portion of the
> process(es) means at
> the very least these projects may wind up working at
> with no practical means of sharing or comparing
> information on
> Steven C. Barr
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