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I agree with Deborah Tomaras (see below) and would like to emphasize that
the test is conducting in a live environment therefore disrupting accepted
rules and procedures. The RDA test should have been conducted in a closed
enivironment with a slected number of catalogers and libraries. The results
should have been reported to a larger community afterward in order to
review problems, comments, etc. Certainly, the fact that a group of people
and unidentified libraries are bent on proceeding with the RDA is rather
disturbing to me.

Wojciech Siemaszkiewicz

While I admittedly don't have the historical experience of Mr. Maxwell (I
was not cataloging when AACR was adopted), I imagine that changes were made
AFTER the system had been adopted, and not during a "testing period", when
its future was in question. I have also read Mr. Hearn's post, suggesting
that compatibility conventions, etc. were in place during the past shift,
and things weren't being done without oversight, or broader knowledge of
the cataloging community of what was being changed (many of us who are not
RDA testers don't fully understand its rules, so don't know the totality of
what is being altered in cataloging practice). Also, 70014s cannot
currently be searched in the authority file, to verify an RDA heading. We
just have to search for the authorized form, and find it that way--which is
time-consuming, and might perhaps result in multiple, different "RDA forms"
of a name appearing on different bibliographic records.

If/when RDA is implemented, THEN the time will come to alter authorities,
if necessary. Although frankly, I don't yet see the value of many of the
proposed authority changes, or how they will make materials more findable
by patrons. I have not seen studies where patrons definitively state a need
for change into specifically RDA ideas of how to make things accessible. If
Antoni Gasiorowski in my original example exists without a birth date in
the 1xx, but with clear identifying information in the 670s, what purpose
does it serve to suddenly insist on constructing his name differently, thus
splitting search recalls?

However, that is neither here nor there. My point throughout this
discussion has been, and remains, that we are doing our patrons and
international catalogers a disservice by willfully ignoring existent
authority records during a TEST PERIOD of an NON-ADOPTED SYSTEM, entering
records that will be largely accepted without oversight by cataloging units
worldwide, and creating authority control problems.

Deborah Tomaras, NACO Coordinator
Librarian II
Western European Languages Team
New York Public Library
Library Services Center
31-11 Thomson Ave.
Long Island City, N.Y. 11101
(917) 229-9561
[log in to unmask]


                                                                                  
                                                                                  
                                                                                  
         Re: Using existing NARs                                                  
                                                                                  
                                                                                  
         Kevin M. Randall                                                         
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                                                              10/29/2010 01:57 PM 
                                                                                  
                                                                                  
                                                                                  
                                                                                  
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Wojciech Siemaszkiewicz wrote:

> If this is a foregone conclusion, why bother with a test?

For exactly the reasons I cited:  "The value in the RDA test will be in
finding out how well the guidelines work, how well the new records play
with
others, what options are better than others, and just overall what would be
the best way to implement RDA."

Having a testing methodology, and a discrete set of records (created by
people trained to participate in the test) to analyze, will likely tell us
a
*lot* more than just having an unknown number of catalogers dive into using
RDA right away.  ("Unknown" being probably any random number between 3 and
30,000...)  There is a lot we don't know about actually preparing for and
using RDA and its resulting records, and finding out those things will help
greatly toward some sort of coordinated implementation down the line.

Kevin M. Randall
Principal Serials Cataloger
Bibliographic Services Dept.
Northwestern University Library
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL  60208-2300
email: [log in to unmask]
phone: (847) 491-2939
fax:   (847) 491-4345