Dear Phil,

I wanted to take a moment to affirm everything Owen wrote to you and respond to your additional inquiries.  Owen's assessment about the Direct approach accurately identifies the pitfalls.  The Abstraction Layer - the BIBFRAME Authority, basically - gives you that local resource which you can then link to another controlled source, such as LC/NAF, VIAF, DBPedia, etc.  In part, the Abstraction Layer construct is actually an effort to enable you to promote, in the eyes of your patrons, your local resource and, by extension, your institution as an authoritative source for information about that Person, Concept, etc.  This works best when your BIBFRAME Authority resources, which link to other resources, are identified with HTTP URIs, which we strongly recommend.  In this way, they become very powerful access points for your patrons for a given Person, Corporation, Concept, etc.  It is not expected that there would be a separate BIFBRAME Authority in your collection, for example, for duplicate entities.  That is, I would expect there to be one BIBFRAME Authority in your collection for each Person, Corporation, etc.  (That's glossing over a few things that will necessitate multiples but should generally hold as true.)

There will need to be some form of to-be-determined maintenance mechanism to ensure the "authoritative" labels are kept current, but I can also envision a future where additional information is reproduced locally (for indexing or display purposes), such as occupations, biographical sketches, dates, and much more that you could display for your patron who is, after all, looking for information about the thing for which you have a URI.  How much of this additional information is reproduced locally becomes a local decision.  The Abstraction Layer enables this in a way the Direct approach doesn't, which, in addition to some significant dependencies, potentially sends the user away to another system.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Bibliographic Framework Transition Initiative Forum
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Philip Schreur
> Sent: Thursday, May 16, 2013 11:24 AM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [BIBFRAME] BIBFRAME Authority - Local domain URIs
> Owen,
> Thanks so much, exactly what I needed to get my brain moving.  We have
> indeed used this Cambridge model for some linked data experiments here
> and in some ways the BIBFRAME abstraction layer is a brilliant solution
> to repetitive links needing to be added in each individual resource
> description.  I think what was tripping me up was calling these
> Authorities (as others have mentioned on different threads), I expect
> much more from an authority.  In terms of our catalog, we have many
> uncontrolled, unlinked headings.  In conversion to BIBFRAME, these
> headings become "authorities" but they serve the same representative
> function.  If we create a standard authority in the LC NAF, we would
> clean up our local BIBFRAME authorities as we would our local headings
> in our current model.
> I have to remind myself that BIBFRAME is meant to be a communication
> format.  When I look at our current model of resource description I
> find it unsupportable even for traditional library materials.  When I
> consider trying to take advantage of the nearly infinite number of
> resources available, the situation becomes even more untenable.  But
> this is not the question BIBFRAME is trying to answer ....
> Philip
> On 5/16/2013 3:55 AM, Owen Stephens wrote:
> > The way I read this was that if you created a BIBFRAME Work you would
> also create BIBFRAME Authorities as necessary to describe the resource.
> I think BIBFRAME is just describing something that is in line with
> usual practices in the Linked Data space here. To take an existing
> Library example from the University of Cambridge Linked Data set
> ( in Turtle:
> >
> >
> > @prefix rdf:<>  .
> > @prefix dct:<>  .
> > @prefix rdfs:<>  .
> > @prefix foaf:<>  .
> > @prefix owl:<>  .
> >
> > <>  dct:title
> "Unpopular essays on technological progress" ;
> >
> >
> dct:creator<
> > 4a9d8827a9bb988a5bdeb>  ;
> >
> >
> <
> 988a5bdeb>  rdfs:label "Rescher, Nicholas" ;
> >
> rdf:type foaf:Person ;
> >
> foaf:name "Rescher, Nicholas" ;
> >
> owl:sameAs<>  .
> >
> > Even though a VIAF identifier exists for Nicholas Rescher the
> University of Cambridge still creates a local entity for Nicholas
> Rescher. It then goes on to state that this entity is the same as the
> VIAF identity
> >
> > As I say - I believe this to be standard practice in the linked data
> space, although I'm not sure there is anything explicit to stop you re-
> writing the above as:
> >
> > @prefix rdf:<>  .
> > @prefix dct:<>  .
> > @prefix rdfs:<>  .
> > @prefix foaf:<>  .
> > @prefix owl:<>  .
> >
> > <>  dct:title
> "Unpopular essays on technological progress" ;
> >
> > dct:creator<>  ;
> >
> > The BIBFRAME Authority document refers to this latter approach as
> 'direct'. Using this latter approach has disadvantages. I don't have a
> local entity to make my own statements about it, and I don't have any
> local values to fall back on if there is a problem accessing VIAF at
> any time. As Karen pointed out, there maybe other technological
> solutions to the latter problem, but repeating some minimal data
> elements to offer some robustness is not unusual.
> >
> > I believe the approach taken by Cambridge did, in some cases, lead to
> duplication of entities (although I can't find any examples) - these
> occurred where the form of (for example) the author name in one record
> was inconsistent with the form use in another record referencing the
> same author. I think this is inevitable on converting records from MARC.
> I suspect three stages to making bringing together multiple statements
> that in face represent the same entity:
> >
> > 1) some matching when converting the records and creating BIBFRAME
> > data in the first place
> > 2) matching to external sources from BIBFRAME data and finding
> > disparate entities in your data that match to the same external
> entity
> > 3) manual matching as and when issues are noticed
> >
> > I imagine 2 and 3 are ongoing processes. I think I wouldn't expect 2
> and 3 to lead to the deletion of any created entity, but rather to the
> creation of new statements of equivalence between them. The better (1)
> works then the less duplication there will be, but it's never going to
> perfect.
> >
> > Owen
> >
> > Owen Stephens
> > Owen Stephens Consulting
> > Web:
> > Email: [log in to unmask]
> > Telephone: 0121 288 6936
> >
> > On 15 May 2013, at 18:51, Philip Schreur<[log in to unmask]>
> wrote:
> >
> >> 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
> >>
> >> --
> >> Philip E. Schreur
> >> Head, Metadata Department
> >> Stanford University
> >> 650-723-2454
> >> 650-725-1120 (fax)
> --
> Philip E. Schreur
> Head, Metadata Department
> Stanford University
> 650-723-2454
> 650-725-1120 (fax)