Dear Deborah,

The Coordinating Committee for the US RDA Test understands the discrepancies these actions will cause; the impact was discussed with Glenn Patton and others at OCLC and with the PCC Steering Committee.  Having a test with 26 participating libraries and groups in a production mode (a test mode for all wasn't feasible) obviously affects libraries not involved in the US RDA Test.  Policy documents were posted and shared widely so that non-participants would be aware of the effect on their own processes, records, etc.

Database maintenance is being deferred until there is a decision on implementation.  Otherwise, records would need to be modified again if RDA is not implemented.

I will forward your message to the Coordinating Committee.


-----Original Message-----
From: [log in to unmask] [mailto:[log in to unmask]] 
Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 9:58 AM
To: [log in to unmask]; [log in to unmask]; Kuhagen, Judith
Cc: [log in to unmask]; [log in to unmask]; [log in to unmask]; [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Using existing NARs

Ms. Kuhagen and others:

I haven't seen any discussion about the wisdom of using RDA forms of names in bibliographic records, when there is an already established AACR2 authority record. It seems to me that this would cause tremendous international problems in all existing library databases.

If a record is coded PCC or has ELvl blank/4/I, copy cataloging units would accept this record as is, assuming all authority work to be done, thus creating errors in the catalog. And all libraries in the future, whether or not they personally create RDA records, would likely use RDA records into their databases when created by others, increasing authority discrepancies in their catalogs.

For example, in OCLC #670738890 (coded ELvl blank and 042 PCC), Antoni Gasiorowski, who has an authority record without a date, is instead entered in an unauthorized form with a date, and left uncontrolled as if there is no heading already existing in the authority file. Locally, this would have been accepted by our copy cataloging unit without checking headings, leading to a conflict with our already existing records with the authorized/undated form.

I have always assumed that our primary mission, as cataloging librarians, is to create a coherent, efficient and correct catalog for users to locate information in. If we undermine authority control, as is being done in this RDA test, we are compromising one of cataloging's great strengths, what we point to when asserting that library catalogs are "better than Google" for searching and retrieval.

Deborah Tomaras
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
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