Dear BIBCO participants,


A revised version of the BIBCO Participants’ Manual (BPM), dated Nov. 18, 2021, is now available on the BIBCO website:


This revision incorporates a new policy, approved by the PCC Policy Committee and the PCC Standing Committee on Standards, allowing a BIBCO record to be created based on a reliable surrogate when the cataloger does not have access to the physical item.


Please review the new BPM section F3 (Use of Surrogates) to familiarize yourself with the new policy, which is briefly summarized below:


·         Ideally, a cataloger performs current cataloging for a tangible resource with the piece(s) in hand. However, it is permissible to create a BIBCO record for a tangible resource without having the piece(s) in hand, provided the cataloger has access to a reliable surrogate and follows the instructions in BPM, F3. Use of Surrogates.

·         The surrogate must be a reliable one; examples of surrogates NOT considered acceptable are those that are incomplete, that represent a different edition, etc.

·         Leader/17 (encoding level) has value “blank” (full-level), the same value used for other BIBCO records that are not CIP records.

·         A 588 field “Description based on” note is required, to document the type of surrogate used as the basis for the description.

·         For the 300 field (and 340 field if used), it is acceptable to omit details of the physical description as long as the information is not a core element according to the BIBCO Standard Record (BSR) RDA Metadata Application Profile.

·         If applicable, an 856 field can be provided containing a link to the surrogate used (2nd indicator “1”).

·         If the record is subsequently updated by a cataloger with the item in hand, the 588 “description based on” note is removed and any missing data elements added.

·         The practice is not generally recommended for descriptions of rare materials if those descriptions will include bibliographic details that require examination of the physical object for verification (e.g., signature statements, bibliographic format, illustrative techniques, binding materials).


Existing sections F, J1, and J8 were also slightly revised to accommodate the new policy.


Many thanks are due to the Government Publishing Office (GPO) for suggesting the need for the new policy and for exhibiting sustained patience as we worked to develop the guidelines.


In addition, the revised BPM includes a new section on subject access using FAST (suggested by the Standing Committee on Training) and numerous updates to content that had become out-of-date. A list of the primary revisions is provided below:


·         A2 (BIBCO-specific documentation): expanded list of documentation

·         A3 (hybrid environment instructions): updated to reflect post-RDA-implementation guidelines rather than pre-implementation guidelines

·         B3 (record contribution requirements): updated to clarify record quota applies to full-level members only and to make wording about access points match the BSR

·         B4 (CIP Partnership Program): updated with link to FAQ (replacement for former Appendix C)

·         C (reporting statistics): updated to reflect use of PCC Directory

·         E3 (leader, directory, and variable control fields): replaced screenshot to reflect current BSR

·         E5.3 (authorized access points for works and expressions): updated to reflect current DCM Z1 text

·         E5.5 (subject headings): updated 2nd indicator values to add “7”, removed short paragraph on FAST (now covered by new FAST section 5.5.3), removed genre/form and classification (since these have their own sections in E5.6 and E6)

·         E5.6 (genre/form terms): updated to bring content up-to-date and include OCLC guidance on local terms

·         E5.5.3. (FAST): NEW

·         E6.2.2 (LCC, literary author numbers): updated to reflect discontinuation of literary author number program

·         E6.2.4 (bibliography numbers, LCC): clarified what was meant by alternative numbers and added example

·         E6.3 (Dewey Decimal classification): updated to bring Dewey Decimal Classification section up-to-date

·         6.5 (SuDocs classification system) and Appendix B: updated to correct obsolete references to Government Printing Office (now Government Publishing Office) and bring content up-to-date

·         E72 (authorized access points and authority records for non-Latin materials): updated first paragraph to better reflect PCC Guidelines for Creating Records in Multiple Character Sets

·         E7.4 (Electronic resources in OCLC), F1.1 (OCLC) and I (Modifications to existing BIBCO records): updated to bring OCLC information up-to-date

·         Appendix C (ECIP Cataloging FAQ): deleted

·         Glossary: replaced entry for “Canadian Library Association” with “Canadian Federation of Library Associations”, replaced entry for LCRIs with LC-PCC PSs, replaced entry for “JSC” with “RSC”

·         Throughout: changed the terms “BSR records” and “BSRs” to “BIBCO records” for consistency, corrected obsolete references to former LC divisions (COIN/PSD), deleted obsolete references to discontinued OCLC Enhance program, changed ECIP to CIP, added numerous hyperlinks, corrected or deleted numerous dead links and references to obsolete resources


The revised BPM will be added to Cataloger’s Desktop in its next quarterly update, currently scheduled for February 2022.


Please let me know at [log in to unmask] if you have any questions or if you encounter other content in the BPM that needs correcting.


Best wishes,





Manon Théroux

Cataloging Policy Specialist/BIBCO Coordinator

Policy, Training, and Cooperative Programs Division

Library of Congress