Frequency is a good example of the mess that we have today in  
AACR-type cataloging. There is a way to code frequency as a calculable  
value in the MARC holdings record. That should suffice and there  
should be no need for a note field if the value is provided. But notes  
are "notes" because they are uncontrolled strings created by the  
cataloger. Where other data in the record are either transcribed  
strings or controlled headings, notes are neither. But the notes ARE  
required by the cataloging rules.

This is evidence, to me, of the gap between the cataloging rules and  
the actual practice of creating machine-readable catalog records. AACR  
does not recognize that coded data (e.g. MARC fixed fields) exists.  
Many notes repeat information that could be encoded elsewhere, but  
because the note is what is required by the cataloging rules and also  
displays in the catalog, the tendency has been to provide the note but  
often not to provide the actionable data element. Obviously, it would  
be a mistake to carry forward this practice, and instead the  
actionable data element must be the primary source of data, from which  
user-friendly notes can be derived if needed. That "if needed" part is  
also something we should think about, because in fact in many system  
displays notes are not included, so catalog users rarely see them.  
Because notes have been favored over actionable data, there is a whole  
host of information that is 1) not usable for any automated functions  
and 2) rarely seen by users. Surely this is a waste of cataloger time,  
and a disservice to our users.


Quoting Tim Thompson <[log in to unmask]>:

> Having a bf:Note class makes sense to me. The current approach seems
> exhaustive enough to be cumbersome, but probably not exhaustive enough to
> capture the full range of possibilities in the source data. Not all notes
> come from 5XX fields. Here is a sample marc2bibframe conversion of a record
> for a serial:
> BF:
> Here, bf:frequencyNote maps to the 310 field (Current Publication
> Frequency). Unfortunately, it also maps to the 321 field (Former
> Publication Frequency). This would seem to be a not insignificant loss of
> information. 5XX fields that are distinct in MARC are mapped to generic
> bf:note properties (515, 588). bf:frequency doesn't appear, but maybe it
> was meant to correspond to the 008 fix field for continuing resources,
> which also has a value for frequency (position 18). The need for two
> distinct properties remains unclear.
> In short, a bf:Note class with bf:noteType values might provide greater
> flexibility and preserve more of the original semantics.
> Tim
> --
> Tim A. Thompson
> Metadata Librarian (Spanish/Portuguese Specialty)
> Princeton University Library
> On Tue, Sep 9, 2014 at 5:38 PM, Robert Sanderson <[log in to unmask]>
> wrote:
>> Y'all ready for this? ;) [1]
>> When is a literal property a 'somethingNote' and when is it just a
>> 'something'?
>> I assume (lacking previously mentioned MARC to BibFrame mapping document)
>> that all of the Notes come from 5XX fields, which seems like something that
>> could easily be rationalized along with some of the other properties, again
>> assuming they're not 5XX and hence didn't get the Note moniker.
>> For example, these two look ... well ... identical:
>> frequency: Intervals at which the issues or parts of a serial or the
>> updates to an integrating resource are issued.
>> frequencyNote: Current or former publication frequency of a resource.
>> Current notes are:
>>  copyNote
>>  awardNote
>>  contentsNote
>>  graphicScaleNote
>>  illustrationNote
>>  supplementaryContentNote
>>  dissertationNote
>>  geographicCoverageNote
>>  languageNote
>>  temporalCoverageNote
>>  creditsNote
>>  performerNote
>>  frequencyNote
>>  note (!)
>>  musicMediumNote
>>  findingAidNote
>> And the following seem like they're intended to be "notes" in the more
>> generic sense of added description by a cataloguer or other:
>>  frequency
>>  custodialHistory
>>  immediateAcquisition
>>  notation
>>  responsibilityStatement
>>  providerStatement -- or are "Statements" transcriptions from the
>> Instance?
>>  editionResponsibility
>>  contentAccessibility  (though c.f.
>> Given the discussion regarding assigners of URIs being important, it seems
>> that creators of notes would be also important?  And thus Notes could be
>> their own class, bf:Note, with properties including value, assigner, type
>> and so forth.
>> Rob
>> [1]  Warning: seizure
>> inducing flashing, terrible animation, poppy 90s music, ...
>> --
>> Rob Sanderson
>> Technology Collaboration Facilitator
>> Digital Library Systems and Services
>> Stanford, CA 94305