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This e-mail was also posted on the OCLC-CAT list.

This update is a stunning report on the current developments at the LC and
other American research libraries.

Some of the discussions here have erroneously focused on the LC series
authority treatment. This is just a tip of the iceberg. It is clear from
Mr. Mann's update that conscious decisions have been made at the LC, RLG,
and some of the research libraries to simply dissolve what has been known
as a research library. Catalogers and cataloging services, which have been
under attack for a number of years now, will be simply liquidated or
transformed into what is fancifully called now "metadata creation" units in
order to satisfy this blind drive towards Googleization of libraries.

The serial authority control is just a first step in the process of dumping
the entire cataloging structure such as subject headings (Subject Authority
File - SAF together with the LCSH), name authority (Name Authority File -
NAF), and finally MARC record. As I previously noted, the Cornell
University cataloging unit has been flooding OCLC with substandard
bibliographical records with keyword subject local access points polluting
the entire OCLC bibliographical database. EastView and other vendors
supplying broad keyword access points useless for any subject access are
dumping similar records into OCLC.

This state of cataloging reality will not be sustained for much longer
without LC structural involvement. I do not think that other American and
foreign research libraries will be able to maintain all cooperative
cataloging programs without the LC leadership role in them.

The update is available at:

http://guild2910.org/AFSCMEWhatIsGoingOn.pdf

Wojciech Siemaszkiewicz
The New York Public Library
Slavic and Baltic Division
Rm. 216
Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street
New York, NY 10018-2788
tel.: (212) 930-0935
fax: (212) 930-0693
e-mail: [log in to unmask]