LISTSERV mailing list manager LISTSERV 16.0

Help for BIBFRAME Archives


BIBFRAME Archives

BIBFRAME Archives


BIBFRAME@LISTSERV.LOC.GOV


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Monospaced Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

BIBFRAME Home

BIBFRAME Home

BIBFRAME  November 2011

BIBFRAME November 2011

Subject:

Re: What the data tells us

From:

Karen Coyle <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Sat, 5 Nov 2011 13:24:03 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (116 lines)

Quoting Roy Tennant <[log in to unmask]>:

> I believe you are missing the point. The evidence is clear -- the vast
> majority of the some 3,000 data elements in MARC go unused except for a
> small percentage of records in terms of the whole. What isn't there cannot
> be indexed or presented in a catalog, no matter how hard you try. In other
> words, which fields were coded is the only relevant information. It is the
> ONLY relevant information when you are discussing how to move forward.

I disagree. (As does the OCLC report, BTW) To some extent the stats on
MARC records reflect the many special interests that MARC tries to
address. I have spent more time on the Moen statistics [1] than the
OCLC ones, although since they were done on the same body of data I
don't see how they could be very different.

In the case of what Moen turned up, the most highly used fields were
ones that systems require (001, 005, 008, 245, 260, 300) -- it's a bit
hard to attribute that to cataloger choice. But for the remainder of
the fields there is no way to know if the field is present in all of
the records that it *should* be, or not.

At least some of the low use fields are ones that serve a small-ish
specialized community. Only 1.3% of the OCLC records have a
Cartographic Mathematical Data (255), but according to the OCLC report
that represents a large portion of the Maps records (p. 23 of OCLC
report). It's harder to make this kind of analysis for fields that can
be used across resource types. For example, 35-47% of the records
(OCLC v. LC-only, respectively, from Moen's stats) have a Geographic
Area code (043). Undoubtedly some records should not have that field,
so is this field a reliable indicator that the resource has geographic
relevance? We have no way of knowing. In addition, as MARC fields are
constantly being added, some fields suffer from not having been
available in the past. (Moen does a comparison of fields used over
time [2], and the OCLC report also looks at this; see below.)

Neither the Moen stats nor the OCLC report really tell us what we need
to know. It's not their fault, however, because we have no way to know
what the cataloger intended to represent, nor if the MARC record is
complete in relation to the resource. My experience with some
specialized libraries (mainly music and maps) was that these
communities are diligent in their coding of very complex data. These,
however, represent only small numbers in a general catalog.

The OCLC report reaches this conclusion:

"That leaves 86 tags that are little used, or not used at all, as
listed in the ?MARC 21 fields little or not used? table (Table 2.14,
p. 32). Of these infrequently occurring fields, 16 are fields that
were introduced between 2001 and 2008. Three of these fields
(highlighted in orange) have no occurrences in WorldCat since OCLC has
no plans to implement them."

This means that there are really 67 fields that seem to be underused.
That is out of 185 tags (not 3000, which would be more like the number
of subfields). That's about 1/3. Having sat in on many MARBI meetings,
however, I am sure that there are communities that would be very upset
if some of these fields were removed (e.g. musical incipits, GPO item
number). Admittedly, some fields were introduced that then turned out
not to be useful. If those can be identified, so much the better.

Basically, there is no way to know a priori what fields *should* be in
a MARC record other than the few that are required. Deciding which
fields can be left behind is going to take more than a statistical
analysis. I agree that we should not carry forward all MARC data just
"because it is there." The analysis, though, is going to be fairly
difficult. Even more difficult will be the analysis of the fixed
fields. I could go on about those at length, but that analysis will be
complicated by the fact that the fixed fields are frequently a
duplicate of data already in the record, and we never should have
expected catalogers to do the same input twice for the same
information -- we should have had a way to accomplish indexing and
display with a single input.

kc
[1] http://www.mcdu.unt.edu/?p=41
[2] http://www.mcdu.unt.edu/?p=47

>
> The one thing you said that I agree with wholeheartedly, is that we should
> know what data is useful to users. Yes. That.
> Roy
>
>
> On 11/4/11 11/4/11 10:41 PM, "J. McRee Elrod" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>> Roy Tennant <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>
>>
>>> "Implications of MARC Tag Usage on Library Metadata Practices"
>>> http://www.oclc.org/research/publications/library/2010/2010-06.pdf
>>
>> This study told us what fields were in records, not whether those
>> fields were utilized in OPACs. MARC has a wealth if information never
>> put to practical use. Which fields were coded is fairly useless
>> information.
>>
>> A study of what fields OPACs actually use might be helpful, but that
>> still does not tell us what fields might be helpful to patrons if they
>> were utilized,'
>>
>>
>> __ __ J. McRee (Mac) Elrod ([log in to unmask])
>> {__ | / Special Libraries Cataloguing HTTP://www.slc.bc.ca/
>> ___} |__ \__________________________________________________________
>>
>



--
Karen Coyle
[log in to unmask] http://kcoyle.net
ph: 1-510-540-7596
m: 1-510-435-8234
skype: kcoylenet

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

Advanced Options


Options

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password


Search Archives

Search Archives


Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe


Archives

November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
July 2011
June 2011

ATOM RSS1 RSS2



LISTSERV.LOC.GOV

CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager