When I send this kind of request, I do it from a work account with a 
work signature, and I include the URL for the online LC Authority file. 
Generally I've gotten good responses.

I have a different question.  In our data security training, we've been 
advised that full birth dates are secure information. I know from 
talking to tech folks that birth dates can be very useful for gathering 
information about a stranger's identity. Given that, should we be more 
circumspect about requesting birth dates in a public file like LCNAF? 
This is one more reason to look for a better, more neutral mechanism for 
distinguishing personal name headings than just adding more personal 


Whitsitt, Kathleen S wrote:
> Hi,
> This kind of touches on an issue I've been wondering about.  I am just
> now learning how to make NARs as a Texas NACO Funnel participant.  I
> have not approached any authors for personal information as yet. I'm
> very hesitant to do so, and don't have a clue as to the best approach.
> Do you just introduce yourself as a PCC cataloger, and explain the need
> for additional personal information in bibliographic databases?  And do
> people understand what any of that means?  Do catalogers usually consult
> with the legal departments of their institutions for policy
> clarifications on requesting personal information from people this way?
> Personally, I would be very wary of anyone calling or emailing me for
> personal information, if I didn't fully understand why it was needed.
> It would be good to hear any guidelines or advise about that.
> Thanks,
> Kathleen Whitsitt
> Authority Control Librarian
> Automated Library Services
> Lone Star College System
> 5000 Research Forest Drive
> The Woodlands, Texas 77381-4356
> 832.813.6785
> 832.813.6614 (fax)
> [log in to unmask]

Stephen Hearn
Authority Control Coordinator/Head, Database Management Section
Technical Services, University Libraries, University of Minnesota
160 Wilson Library
309 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN  55455
Ph: 612-625-2328 / Fax: 612-625-3428