I keep bumping my head against "It is anticipated that the BIBFRAME 
Authority ... would be identified with a URI of the domain creating the 
resource." I'm not exactly sure what the implications are here.  Is it 
saying that the first organization (or person) creating a description of 
a resource would be responsible for creating all needed BIBFRAME 
authorities and mint them under its own domain?  If this is the case, is 
it expected that these BIBFRAME authorities would be shareable, that is, 
once created, no one else would need create a BIBFRAME authority for the 
same entity?  One issue I see here is that if BIBFRAME hopes to be 
adopted beyond the library world, there may be many that cannot use the 
model because they do not have a domain.  Also, if these BIBFRAME 
authorities are meant to be created once, how will they be editable by 
others outside the domain?  For instance, I may discover an ORCID ID I 
wish to add.  On the other hand, if each group that wishes to make use 
of the data for the resource needs to have its own version of the 
BIBFRAME authority, the duplication is frightening.

In a practical way, I'm trying to think of this model in application to 
a digital collection we have here of 400K images, documents, etc. called 
REVS (all centered around the automobile).  If we adopted BIBFRAME, I'd 
like to be able to use it to communicate all of our data, not just the 
small percentage that qualifies as traditional library.  Given the size 
of the collection, lower level staff or students will be responsible for 
creation of the metadata (and so the BIBFRAME authorities).  The 
possibility that separate BIBFRAME authorities would be created for the 
same entity is extremely high.  The likelihood that we could afford the 
time to add links to authority files such as VIAF (if the entity existed 
there) is minimal.  In cleaning up a heading in our catalog that was 
previously uncontrolled, it is not unusual to find 4 or 5 variants.  I 
assume in the REVS situation we might have many more BIBFRAME 
authorities then that for the same entity.

And so .... in this model I'm left with a bunch of isolated BIBFRAME 
authorities for the same entity both isolated from each other in our own 
domain and isolated from any larger, more traditional authority file.  
This certainly defeats the purpose of using a URI in terms of linking 
but does it matter if BIBFRAME is only meant for communication?  Is the 
reconciliation a separate problem?

At first glance, I'd prefer pursuing methods of easing the creation (and 
in some cases automated) of more traditional records in a networked 
cluster of authority hubs and following the Direct method.


Philip E. Schreur
Head, Metadata Department
Stanford University
650-725-1120 (fax)