To become independent, we NACO contributors are supposed to demonstrate that we can consistently create records with errors in access points less than 10% of the time.  Seems like we’re having some slippage.  This should be a wake-up call.

While the errors John and Nancy describe can be exasperating (I’m working on the same reports as John and can attest to this), in most cases they won’t cause entities to be incorrectly identified; they do waste lots of precious time.  When we leave the realm of identities based on matching text strings (machine-matched or eye-resolved) and enter the realm of identities based on uri’s, the kinds of errors we cause and correct are likely to change—this is something I wonder about.  Will we discover, for example, that we have conflated a poet laureate with a particular mouse in someone’s laboratory, with data about one getting linked to the other?

Mary Jane Cuneo
Serials cataloging and NACO
Information and Technical Services
Harvard Library

From: Program for Cooperative Cataloging [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Nancy Sack
Sent: Monday, October 24, 2016 6:25 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Changes to name authorities

Each week I load the newest file of name records that were added, deleted, or changed. In addition to the problems that John has identified, there are many others. Of the 10,000 or so records in each weekly file, I'd say that between 1500 and 2000 have mistakes of some kind. I have time to correct only the most egregious ones.


On 10/24/2016 10:31 AM, John Hostage wrote:
In applying changes to name authorities in our local catalog, I’ve seen a number of strange things.  There have been dates added to access points that didn’t seem to need to be distinguished, even a death date added to a name that had no dates, even though the 670 that was the source of the death date also contained a birth date.

Today I find a name to which a middle name was added.  The only publication that used the middle name in the statement of responsibility seems to have been his dissertation.  There were a couple of dozen works without it.  And no reference was made from the previously established form.

The record also disregarded the DCM guidelines on repeatability in the 3XX fields, but that’s piling on.

John Hostage
Senior Continuing Resources Cataloger
Harvard Library--Information and Technical Services
Langdell Hall 194
Harvard Law School Library
Cambridge, MA 02138
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+(1)(617) 495-3974 (voice)
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Nancy Sack

Cataloging Department

University of Hawaii at Manoa

2550 McCarthy Mall, Honolulu, HI 96822

phone: 808-956-2648

fax: 808-956-5968

e-mail: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>