When asking for such information, we explain to the individual the need for the information and that the information will be part of their authority record.
If someone refuses to give us the information or asks us to remove it from the heading and from the record, we do so, but we ask for other useful information instead--middle name, title, etc.
If we can get nothing useful in creating an unique name authority record, we follow the practical path with a consolidated name authority record and move on.
The issue of how much research a cataloger should conduct in establishing a personal name heading is one that regularly comes up in NACO. There are routine sources (including the item in hand) that one can check, perhaps special sources known to an institution or to a specialty, but there is a point at which one simply stops and does what one can with what one has.
Anthony R.D. Franks
Team Leader, Cooperative Cataloging Team
Library of Congress
>>> Stephen Hearn <[log in to unmask]> 8/6/2008 10:02 AM >>>
When I send this kind of request, I do it from a work account with a work signature, and I include the URL for the online LC Authority file. Generally I've gotten good responses.
I have a different question. In our data security training, we've been advised that full birth dates are secure information. I know from talking to tech folks that birth dates can be very useful for gathering information about a stranger's identity. Given that, should we be more circumspect about requesting birth dates in a public file like LCNAF?
This is one more reason to look for a better, more neutral mechanism for distinguishing personal name headings than just adding more personal
Whitsitt, Kathleen S wrote:
> This kind of touches on an issue I've been wondering about. I am just now learning how to make NARs as a Texas NACO Funnel participant. I
> have not approached any authors for personal information as yet. I'm very hesitant to do so, and don't have a clue as to the best approach.
> Do you just introduce yourself as a PCC cataloger, and explain the need for additional personal information in bibliographic databases? And do
> people understand what any of that means? Do catalogers usually consult with the legal departments of their institutions for policy
> clarifications on requesting personal information from people this way? Personally, I would be very wary of anyone calling or emailing me for
> personal information, if I didn't fully understand why it was needed.
> It would be good to hear any guidelines or advise about that.
> Kathleen Whitsitt
> Authority Control Librarian
> Automated Library Services
> Lone Star College System
> 5000 Research Forest Drive
> The Woodlands, Texas 77381-4356
> 832.813.6614 (fax)
> [log in to unmask]
Authority Control Coordinator/Head, Database Management Section
Technical Services, University Libraries, University of Minnesota
160 Wilson Library
309 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Ph: 612-625-2328 / Fax: 612-625-3428