Karen Coyle wrote:
> Library authority records are very odd beasts, and that oddity comes
> out in FRAD . The record is NOT about the person, per se. It does
> not include information like birth and death dates, where the person
> lives or lived, what they were famous for...
I disagree, but you do have to look closely for evidence. MARC21 Authority Format does have fields for birth and death dates and relates these to "the entity described in the record".
UNIMARC refers to the referent as the "Primary Entity" like so:
"Primary Entity — The entity, named in the 2-- block of the record, for which the record was created. Data in the 1-- block generally pertain to characteristics of the primary entity."
> The record exists to
> establish a particular string as the form of the name to be used to
> identify that agent (person, persona, corporate body...) in library
> catalogs. Any information that is not needed to establish that
> identity is pretty much ignored.
Even if we have to parsed them out of the established heading, there are sparse but important properties in MARC data that undoubtedly have the "primary entity" as their subject. We should have a way to express the "authority" of these assertions as well.
> Here is the LC authority record for
> 000 00415cz a2200133n 450
> 001 710543
> 005 19930416143026.2
> 008 890307n| acannaab |n aaa
> 010 __ |a n 89613425
> 035 __ |a (DLC)n 89613425
> 040 __ |a DLC |c DLC |d DLC
> 100 10 |a Coyle, Karen
> 670 __ |a nuc89-22212: Her RLIN II processing for UC online catalog
> input, 1984 |b (hdg. on WU rept.: Coyle, Karen; usage: Karen Coyle)
> There is nothing about me except my name and the provenance of that
> information (the first thing that LC cataloged with my name on it). I
> am a real person, yet there is no real person information about me
> (e.g. date of birth, where I went to school, what my profession is)
> because that was not needed to establish a unique heading ("Coyle,
> Karen") that identifies me. (The heading only includes my first and
> last name because I'm the first Karen Coyle in their file. If another
> one writes something, her identifying string will contain a year of
> birth or perhaps a middle name.)
> The purpose of library authority data is very different to the
> purposes of FOAF, not the least being that there is nothing much
> social about library authority data. I see them as being pretty much
> unrelated except that they could be linked to indicate that the same
> person is "spoken of".
>  Functional Requirements for Authority Data
> Unfortunately not available online in English but the translations
> include the diagrams, which explain a lot.
> Karen Coyle
> [log in to unmask] http://kcoyle.net
> ph: 1-510-540-7596
> m: 1-510-435-8234
> skype: kcoylenet