Dear PCCLIST readers,

 

There has been some discussion, on this list or elsewhere, concerning recording dates.  Earlier this year I got several helpful responses to a post with subject "Format of date of birth in LAC record".  This time I'd like to question how people are recording dates, in particular “as found” versus “as recorded”, in name authority records.

 

It seems to be generally accepted that the ISO 8601 format is what to use when recording a date in field 046 of a name authority record.  But when the source of the date presents that information in a different way, I believe that it is appropriate to record the date as "data found" in field 670. 

 

Accordingly, if in response to a request for information required to create a NAR a correspondent provides a date of birth, the cataloger would record the date in whatever format the correspondent provides it, in field 670.  The year will then be used in field 100d, and the date of birth coded in field 046.  Provided that the cataloger can properly interpret what the correspondent wrote: if not, only the year should be put in 046. Please note: When corresponding in this manner, I ask for the year of birth, not date, and occasionally get the full date in the response.  With an exception in the extremely rare cases in which the year alone is insufficient for disambiguation due to a conflict.

 

I believe that this is how we should proceed, however I'm not sure that RDA 9.3.1.3 Recording Date Associated with Person is clear about this.  Unusually for RDA, no link back to 1.9, the more general instruction about recording dates, is present.  1.9 has a link to 1.8, and 1.8.1 has: When recording numbers expressed as numerals or as words in a transcribed element, transcribe them in the form in which they appear on the source of information. 

 

Sincerely - Ian

 

Ian Fairclough

Cataloging and Metadata Services Librarian

George Mason University

703-993-2938

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