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BIBFRAME  February 2017

BIBFRAME February 2017

Subject:

BIBFRAME will fail

From:

Jeff Edmunds <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Bibliographic Framework Transition Initiative Forum <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 1 Feb 2017 10:45:19 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

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Parts/Attachments

text/plain (19 lines)

All,

Next month I'll be giving a presentation entitled "Life after MARC?: The Future of Discovery." One of the central theses of the talk is that, unlike MARC, BIBFRAME will never be widely adopted. I would be very curious to hear arguments countering my key points:

1) Unlike its stature in the Age of MARC, the Library of Congress lacks the authority to impose its standards or practices on the bibliographic metadata ecosystem. LC is no longer the chief source of bibliographic metadata, and the influence on the ecosystem of the bibliographic metadata it generates is minimal. The most likely allies of LC in moving BIBFRAME forward--large academic or public libraries with experienced cataloging staff--are shifting resources AWAY from cataloging and into other areas (digital humanities, assessment, student engagement, open access, etc.).

2) The technical infrastructure of current ILS, discovery, next-generation, etc. platforms does not support BIBFRAME and there is no market incentive to change. Open-source, collaborative ventures like FOILO must necessarily base much of their development around current and legacy MARC data, not largely hypothetical data models like BIBFRAME. 

3) BIBFRAME in a production environment is wildly impractical: the BIBFLOW Project, although it officially ended in 2016, has issued no substantive final report of which I am aware. Does one exist?

4) BIBFRAME is highly conceptual, top-heavy, and too complicated to be understood and effectively implemented by most libraries (cf. the failure of many librarties to adopt RDA over AACR2). The people talking about BIBFRAME (various PCC committees, etc.) are not creating BIBFRAME-compliant metadata; they are merely talking about it.

5) Discovery of library (and archival, etc.) materials no longer runs primarily on bibliographic metadata; it runs on megadata, which I define as a complicated mess of metadata, full text, and big data (including personalization data). As a result, there is less need for, and appreciation of, quality metadata.

Counterarguments are welcome, either on- or off-list.

Thank you, 

Jeff

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