Draft Report from LC Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control

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Today someone asked me about how the new LC report (http://www.loc.gov/bibliographic-future/news/draft-report.html) meshed with participatory library concepts. Much of this is very compatible: user create materials, wider cooperation, distribution of tasks, etc.

However, a central tenant of participatory is the focus on conversation and how artifacts only make sense in the context of someone’ use. Perhaps it is the nature of the beast, but this approach to bibliographic control is in making descriptions of artifacts more standard and more efficient. So it is participatory in process, but not result. What would help is a recognition (perhaps as part of the cohesive philosophy of bibliographic control discussed) that any artifact, and thus it’s description, gains meaning and utility in the context of communities and conversations. Further that these conversations and context often exist BETWEEN records and items.

My question for the committee would be how could bibliographic control incorporate contexts between items or be applied to conversations and non-document like objects? What are your thoughts?

2 responses on “Draft Report from LC Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control

  1. David M Pimentel

    Interesting perspective about a participatory process not yielding a participatory result. (I’ll have to consider that some more.)

    But I think one way to move bibliographic control into a more participatory paradigm is to focus on not only the nature of the relationships between entities, but also who makes (and hence values) particular relationships.

    Authoritative information about basic relationships (e.g., between a work and its creator) will continue to be valued by the vast majority of users, but there are many instances when knowing who established a particular link (e.g., between a work and a concept) could be just as important.

    This is partly about credibility (e.g., I trust when LC establishes a relationship between a work and its creator), but its also about the conversation going on in a particular community.

    Imagine a new NSF report gets released: community X links it to their concept XY, but community Y links the same report to their concept YZ. While both XY and YZ might appear (e.g., as subject headings) in some aggregate record, their differentiation (based on who established the link) is likely to have an important value proposition for me as the user (particularly if I’m ensconced in the conversation of one community and not the other).

  2. ! Procent Podatku

    Imagine a new NSF report gets released: community X links it to their concept XY, but community Y links the same report to their concept YZ. While both XY and YZ might appear (e.g., as subject headings) in some aggregate record, their differentiation (based on who established the link) is likely to have an important value proposition for me as the user (particularly if I’m ensconced in the conversation of one community and not the other).

    That is very good idea 🙂