I see some problems with the MADS examples appearing under the MADS
Introduction at

The first example includes a <name> tag which does not specify a source of
authority (no "authority=...">. Without such a source specified (e.g.,
"naf"), I'm not sure what <authority> would mean. There's no such thing as
a "generally" authorized form. Should we assume the authorizing source is
specified globally in a <madsCollection> tag? Should including a source of
authority be mandated?

The second example specifies <name authority="naf">, but the authority does
not correspond to the NAF heading (NAF says Bach, P. D. Q. is a character,
not a pseudonym, and establishes only "Schickele, Peter"), or follow its
rules (which would not add a name variant ("Pretty D Q") to an authority
for a name/title uniform title). Also, there appears to be one too many
</title> tags. Though I grant that the intent here may be only to
illustrate the form of a MADS record, I find the contradictions between the
example and its cited source problematic. Or does the "authority=naf" apply
only to the element it appears in, and not to anything else in the MADS record?

The third example lacks the closure / in the second <authority> tag.

The remaining examples raise additional questions about the relationship
between MADS data elements and authorizing sources. I share Ruth Bogan's
perspective on this as a library authority control person, but wonder what
purpose these records will actually serve. If they do simply carry an
authorized heading into a record context where everything else (reference
structure, annotation, etc.) can be different, what kind of authority does
the heading still carry? There are authorized headings (e.g., hierarchical
names with omitted elements) which depend for their logic on references on
their own and other authority records. Deprived of their structured
connections with other forms and records, authorized headings have much
less value, and much less "authority."

Alternatively, why not permit multiple authorized and unauthorized forms,
drop the <refs> tag as Bruce suggested, and use the record as a device to
offer the user an expanded searching vocabulary rather than a single
authorized form for a given entity or concept? If something more rigorous
that this is intended, then I think the finished examples (I realize these
are still drafts) need to adhere more closely to their sources.


Stephen Hearn
Authority Control Coordinator
Projects, Data and Sciences Team Leader
University of Minnesota
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