Gary's statistics support my hunch that the impact of the LC series
decision will not be very large in the foreseeable future. At Duke, we plan
to continue series authority control. Our vendor, LTI, provides an option
for verifying untraced series that is very similar to the one Gary
outlined. We have not yet been able to gather data because authority
processing has been suspended due to our implementation of a new ILS.
With this sort of post-cataloging verification, the item is not in hand.
According to present standards, the source of the series statement must be
recorded in the authority record. This summer, I initiated a discussion
about simplifying the standard, eliminating this requirement. This would
greatly facilitate making authority records as part of post-cataloging
verification. Adam, you defended present practice, saying that the
information was sometimes needed to resolve problems. I understand from
Judy Kuhagen, who will be conducting NACO series training here at Duke this
week, that applying the priority order of sources is important "so that the
SARs and the serial collected set records created in different libraries
are in synch (affects where successive entries start and stop for
major/minor title changes)."
However, if present practice continues, I doubt that we will be able to
justify the trip to the stacks needed to create authority records. This
means creating authority records only for series we encounter in the course
of original cataloging. I am sure other libraries also rely on
post-cataloging verification for copy, and are also under production
pressure. The question is, which is less useful, an authority record
lacking information about the source of the series, or no authority record
at all? What if PCC made this information optional?
Re whether PCC will be able to continue the past rate of authority record
creation, our authority structures will not crumble if we only do say, 75%
as many records. We will never control 100% of series, and as we approach
that number, we hit the law of diminishing returns. Many authority records
are for very obscure series and/or simply record the title without
references or qualifier. I don't have the statistical knowledge to do any
analysis of what would be a "good" number of authority records to create.
So, I think I'll just make some more, and hope for the best :-).
Amy H. Turner
Monographic Cataloger & Authority Control Coordinator
Duke University Libraries
Durham, NC 27708-0190
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