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PCCLIST  March 2012

PCCLIST March 2012

Subject:

Re: Undifferentiated personal names: call for community discussion

From:

"Adam L. Schiff" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Program for Cooperative Cataloging <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 29 Mar 2012 19:16:25 -0700

Content-Type:

TEXT/PLAIN

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TEXT/PLAIN (65 lines)

I too welcome this discussion and commend PoCo and John and Philip for 
moving it along.

I like the idea of allowing the inclusion of subfield $0 with the 
authority record control number in bibliographic fields as a way to help 
with machine processing of these records.  For example, when we send our 
records off to our authority vendor, the presence of the $0 in fields 
where a non-unique name is being used would allow the vendor to send back 
the correct authority record to us.  It would also allow correct flips to 
bibliographic records later on if the heading gets changed.  Including the 
$0 might also simplify the process of controlling the headings in OCLC, so 
that the software knows exactly which NAR to link to.

There is no discussion about another significant problem with our current 
use of undifferentiated personal names.  In the case where the names 
normalize to the same thing, but are not actually the same because of 
different diacritics, current practice is that the first person 
established gets to be the 100 authorized access point.  But in 
bibliographical records, we are supposed to give the heading with the 
correct diacritics for the particular person.  That is all good UNTIL the 
records are sent off for authority control, at which point the vendor most 
likely matches against the undifferentiated authority and replaces the 100 
field with the form found in the name authority.  Not good.  Unless we 
keep careful track of these and go back in and edit them after vendor 
processing (or unless the vendor has a procedure in place to not flip such 
headings to the 100 form), we are mucking up our data.  The same thing 
could happen in local systems after the undifferentiated authority record 
has been loaded in the local system: if automated flips are turned on in 
the ILS, one could have the 100 with the correct diacritics flipped to the 
name with a different set of diacritics (or none) that is really a 
different person.

As an example of what I've been talking about above, see NAR n  80147573. 
There are three different people whose name normalizes to Nguyen, An.  Two 
use different diacritics and one does not use diacritics.  n  85195039 has 
five people on it and four different names if you use diacritics as a way 
of distinguishing them.

As Stephen Hearn suggested, it might be good to have a wider discussion of 
undifferentiation.  Must this be limited to personal names?  Isn't the 
heading for an ongoing conference really an undifferentiated corporate 
body name?  In RDA we will create separate authority records for each 
conference.  Might there not be situations where the cataloger does not 
have enough information to use to differentiate a corporate body, family, 
or geographic place or jurisdiction through the use of separate access 
points?  For corporate bodies, my mind immediately goes to names for 
ships.  I can envision cases where there is no way to differentiate 
between ships with the same name, yet the cataloger does know that there 
are multiple entities rather than a single one.  So although RDA like 
AACR2 only refers to undifferentiated personal names, I think we should 
discuss whether the principle could be expanded for other types of 
entities.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Adam L. Schiff
Principal Cataloger
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA 98195-2900
(206) 543-8409
(206) 685-8782 fax
[log in to unmask]
http://faculty.washington.edu/~aschiff
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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