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Our system does not separate series searches from 
other title searches.  Over the past week 17% of 
searches were keyword, 48% were author/title and 
subject.  It seems to me we will have to do a 
major re-train of our users to accommodate this 
change.  Anecdotally, I do get requests from the 
people that do work on the reference desk to 
clean up/ change/ add series statements.  Someone is finding them useful.

Penny

At 09:09 AM 24/04/2006, you wrote:

>Well, based on strictly anecdotal evidence here 
>at the University of Washington, yes, the 
>majority of our users are not doing series 
>searches. However, we are a major research 
>library, and we do get users who are trying to 
>find things based on the series. And some series 
>are a bit confusing and collocation by uniform 
>title is a definite help in those situations! (I 
>work on the reference desk as well as catalog.)
>
>One thing that bothers me is--who is the user? 
>The new college freshman walking through the 
>door? The graduate student? The library 
>acquisitions staff? The reference librarian? The 
>cancer researcher? They are all important users 
>of our catalog. If we make our catalogs usable 
>by the freshmen (that is, so they don't have to 
>learn anything about using the library or its 
>resources, so it is as intuitive as shopping 
>online), will that make our catalogs unusable 
>for others who might have more demanding needs? 
>That keyword searching alone cannot meet? We 
>rely not just on the software and the search 
>algorithms--nothing works well without the 
>reliable data underneath. Garbage in, garbage out.
>
>And though Amy is committed to authority control 
>for names and subjects, I am not so sure about 
>LC and others. I am definitely afraid of what will come next.
>
>LC is trying to save money, but at what cost to 
>themselves and to the members of the cooperative 
>cataloging community? And that includes not just 
>PCC members. LC has a special responsibility. 
>And so do PCC members. Other libraries out there 
>rely on us. We all rely mostly on the cataloging 
>of others. The PCC has tried hard to provide 
>continuing education and other means to improve 
>the basic quality of records. So we can accept 
>each other's cataloging without having to muck 
>around with it too much. In the end, that saves 
>us all money. That is what is most disturbing to 
>me, that this unilateral decision on LC's part 
>is a such a hard blow to the cooperative venture.
>
>************
>Diana Brooking             (206) 543-8405
>Cataloging Librarian       (206) 685-8782 fax
>Suzzallo Library           [log in to unmask]
>University of Washington
>Box 352900
>Seattle WA  98195-2900
>
>On Mon, 24 Apr 2006, Amy H Turner wrote:
>
>>As could easily have been predicted, there is a 
>>lot of concern about LC’s recent
>>decision to stop providing authority control 
>>for series. Pat Williams asks whether
>>LC will withdraw from PCC and code its records 
>>as minimal level. IMHO, it would be
>>much better for PCC to follow LC and our 
>>British colleagues in considering series
>>statements to be description rather than controlled access.
>>Though I am committed to authority control for 
>>names and subjects, I believe that
>>controlled access for series is something that 
>>we can give up without the public as
>>a whole ever noticing. As anecdotal evidence, I queried several well-educated
>>library patrons about their use of series tracings, which turned out to
>>be non-existant. A Ph.D. in math asked, 
>>“What’s a series?” I gave the example
>>of Lecture Notes in Mathematics, which he 
>>recognized, but couldn’t imagine using
>>as a search. This, as I said, is anecdotal 
>>evidence, but others of you can gather
>>more of the same.  Or just think of your own 
>>use of the catalog before you became a
>>cataloger, or of how new catalogers have to 
>>learn what a series tracing is, and
>>that it is under authority control.
>>Cataloging policy has grown out of tradition, 
>>without input from users, who are now
>>voting with their mouse clicks for Google-like 
>>access. I believe that authority
>>control can enhance this sort of access, but that it will be a different,
>>streamlined type of authority control, and need not include series.
>>Amy Turner
>>Monographic Cataloger and Authority Control/PCC Coordinator
>>Duke University Libraries, Durham NC
>>
>
>Penny Swanson
>Head, Cataloguing Division
>SFU Library
>8888 University Drive
>Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6
>voice: 604-291-3184
>email: [log in to unmask]