RDA (Resource Description and Access) is a new standard for describing library resources, designed to replace AACR2. Library staff, including public services, systems personnel, and catalogers, may have heard mention of RDA but not know much about it or how it will change their daily work. You may have many questions. What is RDA? We'll give a very little bit of history and theoretical background. What is this going to mean for catalogers, ILS managers, and users in the near term? What are the future implications, or, why are we doing this? What are the juicy bits of controversy in cataloger-land? And finally, Do we HAVE to? We'll talk for a while, have some activities that get you thinking, and find out your thoughts on RDA.
Presented at "Captains & Crew Collaborating," the 8th annual paraprofessional conference at J.Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University.
Patricia Dragon, Head, Special Collections Cataloging, Metadata, And Authorities Jennifer Joyner, Metadata Technician Nara Newcomer, Assistant Music Librarian Joyner Library, East Carolina University J.Y. Joyner Library Paraprofessional Conference May 13, 2011 RDA (Resource Description & Access)
Outline <ul><li>RDA background and overview, introduction to FRBR (Nara) </li></ul><ul><li>RDA vs. AACR2 and what it means for catalogers in the short term (Patricia) </li></ul><ul><li>Controversies and discussions surrounding RDA (Jennifer) </li></ul>
RDA Background and Overview, FRBR Introduction <ul><li>What is RDA? </li></ul><ul><li>Why RDA? </li></ul><ul><li>FRBR and RDA </li></ul><ul><li>Practical basics, organization, and terminology </li></ul>
What is RDA?
What is RDA? <ul><li>R esource D escription and A ccess </li></ul><ul><li>Successor to AACR2 </li></ul><ul><li>Based on FRBR: F unctional R equirements for B ibliographic R ecords and FRAD: F unctional R equirements for A uthority D ata </li></ul><ul><li>Content standard, not a display standard – clear line of separation between recording of data and presentation of data </li></ul>
RDA Timeline <ul><li>1997: International Conference on the Principles and Future Development of AACR in Toronto, Canada </li></ul><ul><li>1998: FRBR published by IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations) in 1998 </li></ul><ul><li>2002: Work began on “AACR3” </li></ul><ul><li>2005: Name changed to RDA, to reflect need to closer align with FRBR and international view (removed “Anglo-American”) </li></ul>
RDA Timeline <ul><li>November 2008: full draft of RDA made available </li></ul><ul><li>June 2010: RDA released </li></ul><ul><li>RDA testing by U.S. national libraries and partners: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Through Sept. 30, 2010: training & creation of practice records </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Oct. 1-Dec. 30, 2010: creation of test records </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jan. 1-Mar. 31, 2011: evaluation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>June 2011: decision announced </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>do not implement </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>postpone implementation until certain changes are made </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>implement </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>implement with specific recommended changes/policy decisions for US libraries </li></ul></ul></ul>
Why RDA ???
WHY RDA? <ul><li>Better suited to the digital environment </li></ul><ul><li>More accepting of data from other sources – efficiencies by accepting machine-captured data </li></ul><ul><li>More machine actionable – data recorded in a way machines can use more easily. </li></ul><ul><li>Improve discoverability of materials because it is based on FRBR </li></ul>
FRBR – what problem does it solve? <ul><li>The book? </li></ul><ul><li>The movie? </li></ul><ul><li>A particular edition? </li></ul><ul><li>A particular language? </li></ul><ul><li>The copy you checked out last month? </li></ul>I want Moby Dick
FRBR <ul><li>F unctional R equirements for B ibliographic R ecords </li></ul><ul><li>Group 1 entities: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>work, expression, manifestation, item </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Group 2 entities: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>person, corporate body </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Group 3 entities: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>concept, object, event, place </li></ul></ul><ul><li>User tasks: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>find, identify, select, obtain </li></ul></ul>
FRBR Group 1 Entities <ul><li>Work : “a distinct intellectual or artistic creation” </li></ul><ul><li>Expression : “the intellectual or artistic realization of a work” </li></ul><ul><li>Manifestation : “the physical embodiment of the expression of a work” </li></ul><ul><li>Item : “a single exemplar of a manifestation” </li></ul><ul><li>The specific attributes of each entity are described further in the full text of FRBR. </li></ul>
FRBR Group 1 Entities: Work <ul><li>“ a distinct intellectual or artistic creation” </li></ul><ul><li>Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte </li></ul><ul><li>Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet </li></ul>
FRBR Group 1 Entities: Expression <ul><li>“ the intellectual or artistic realization of a work” </li></ul><ul><li>Jan. 1984 performance of Die Zauberflöte with Staatskapelle Dresden, Sir Colin Davis, conductor </li></ul><ul><li>Mozart’s complete musical score for Die Zauberflöte </li></ul>
FRBR Group 1 Entities: Manifestation <ul><li>“ the physical embodiment of the expression of a work” </li></ul><ul><li>1984 Philips LP release of the 1984 performance of Die Zauberflöte </li></ul><ul><li>1991 Philips CD release of the 1984 performance of Die Zauberflöte </li></ul><ul><li>1994 Philips CD release of the 1984 performance of Die Zauberflöte </li></ul>
FRBR Group 1 Entities: Item <ul><li>“ a single exemplar of a manifestation” </li></ul><ul><li>ECU’s copy of the 1994 Philips CD release of the 1984 performance of Die Zauberflöte </li></ul><ul><li>Durham County Library’s copy of the 1994 Philips CD release of the 1984 performance of Die Zauberflöte </li></ul>
Work Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” Expression: German translation by Christian Enzenberger Expression : the original English text Manifestation : 2006 Dial Books edition Manifestation: Chronicle Books 2000 edition Item : ECU’s copy Item : Duke’s copy
Your turn! <ul><li>Which group 1 entity is it? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Work: “a distinct intellectual or artistic creation” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Expression : “the intellectual or artistic realization of a work” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Manifestation : “the physical embodiment of the expression of a work” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Item : “a single exemplar of a manifestation” </li></ul></ul>
Work Beethoven’s 5 th Symphony Expression: Zagreb Philharmonic’s 1988 performance Expression : Hugo Ulrich’s arrangement for piano duet Manifestation : C.F. Peters edition Manifestation: Naxos 2008 CD release Item : ECU’s Copy Expression: Chicago Symphony’s 1988 performance Manifestation: HNH international 1997 CD release Item : John Doe’s copy
Practical Basics, Organization, Terminology
Practical Info about RDA <ul><li>RDA Toolkit – envisioned as an online tool </li></ul><ul><li>By subscription </li></ul><ul><li>Print version available </li></ul><ul><li>Also includes AACR2 and LCPS (Library of Congress Policy Statements – the successor to LCRIs) </li></ul><ul><li>www.rdatoolkit.org </li></ul>
RDA Organization <ul><li>AACR2: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Part I: Description. Chapters for format (books, sound recordings, maps, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Part II: Headings, Uniform Titles, and References </li></ul></ul><ul><li>RDA: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Organized according to user tasks – find, identify, select, obtain </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No chapters for formats </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sections 1-4: Recording attributes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sections 5-10: Recording relationships </li></ul></ul>
<ul><li>AACR2 </li></ul><ul><li>RDA </li></ul><ul><li>heading </li></ul><ul><li>see reference </li></ul><ul><li>see also reference </li></ul><ul><li>GMD </li></ul><ul><li>authorized access point </li></ul><ul><li>variant access point </li></ul><ul><li>authorized access point for related entity </li></ul><ul><li>media type + carrier type + content type </li></ul>Terminology Changes: Examples
IN THE SHORT TERM What RDA means for catalogers and the catalog
How are RDA bib records different? AACR2 RDA RDA record from LC Examples for RDA, Books, at http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/RDAtest/rdaexamples.html
How are RDA bib records different? AACR2 RDA RDA record from LC Examples for RDA, Books, at http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/RDAtest/rdaexamples.html
Description conventions <ul><li>Leader/18=i: ISBD conventions </li></ul><ul><li>040 $e=rda: Can search in Connexion dx:rda to find rda records </li></ul>
Relationship designator and added entries <ul><li>100/700 $e: Relationship designator (RDA 220.127.116.11) </li></ul><ul><li>700: Unjustified added entries allowed </li></ul><ul><li>245: Statement of responsibility shortened (RDA 1.3) </li></ul>See http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/RDAtest/rdachoices.html for all the places where cataloger’s judgment is invoked.
Dates <ul><li>Date of publication (even questionable) required (RDA 2.8.6) </li></ul><ul><li>Copyright date a separate data element in RDA (RDA 2.11) </li></ul>
Abbreviations <ul><li>Many abbreviations spelled out (RDA 18.104.22.168) </li></ul><ul><li>Cm is not an abbreviation but a symbol (RDA 22.214.171.124) </li></ul>
New field: 336 <ul><li>336: Content type: The form of communication through which a work is expressed. (RDA 6.9) </li></ul>text two-dimensional moving image notated music performed music computer dataset
New field: 337 <ul><li>337: Media Type: general type of intermediation device required to view, play, run, etc., the content of a resource. (RDA 3.2) </li></ul>unmediated audio computer microform
New field: 338 <ul><li>338: Carrier type: format of the storage medium and housing of a carrier. (RDA 3.3) </li></ul>volume audio disc online resource microfilm reel videodisc
Other changes to bib records <ul><li>Eliminates rule of 3 (RDA 126.96.36.199) </li></ul><ul><li>Eliminates GMD </li></ul><ul><li>Take what you see </li></ul><ul><li>This is not nearly a full list; to see more, go to: </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.rda-jsc.org/docs/5sec7rev.pdf </li></ul>
So do we need to care? <ul><li>You don’t have to adopt RDA. But you do have to deal with RDA records. </li></ul><ul><li>OCLC policy: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not change the rules of a master record. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not input duplicate records according to different rules. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do edit however you wish locally.* </li></ul></ul>*See OCLC policy statement on RDA Cataloging in WorldCat for the U.S. testing period http://www.oclc.org/us/en/rda/policy.htm
Changes in the ILS: the “hybrid environment”* <ul><li>No GMD. Addition of fields 336-338. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Display the new fields? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Turn off display of the GMD? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create a format icon? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Relationship designators </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Display? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Will they cause a new sequence in browse? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Will they prevent linking to authorities? </li></ul></ul>*See PoCo Discussion Paper on RDA implementation alternatives http://www.loc.gov/catdir/pcc/PoCo-RDA-Discussion-Paper040511.pdf
Some changes to authorities <ul><li>Eliminate abbreviations such as “b.” and “d.” in dates </li></ul><ul><li>Eliminate O.T./N.T. for books of the Bible. </li></ul><ul><li>Spell out Department instead of abbreviating Dept. (LC delayed implementation) </li></ul>AACR2 RDA 188.8.131.52 (LC practice) Smith, John, b. 1825 Smith, John, 1825- Smith, John, d. 1859 Smith, John, -1859 AACR2 RDA 184.108.40.206 Bible. O.T. Exodus Bible. Exodus AACR2 RDA 220.127.116.11 North Carolina. Dept. of Revenue North Carolina. Department of Revenue
Are these changes related to the major goals of RDA?: Yes <ul><li>Create machine-friendly data: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Record separate data in separate elements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Re-use data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More data, less text </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plenty of “space” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Impose FRBR structure: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relationship designators=relationships </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Separate content and carrier </li></ul></ul>
And no <ul><li>While RDA offers the possibility of reconceiving the library catalog, mainstream library catalogs with bibliographic data in MARC format are not currently able to exploit the full potential of RDA. </li></ul>
The RDA controversy: What people are saying about RDA
Implementation of RDA <ul><li>Pros </li></ul><ul><li>Will help modernize library catalogs </li></ul><ul><li>Will help change the way we think about library metadata </li></ul><ul><li>Cons </li></ul><ul><li>RDA does nothing new </li></ul><ul><li>Limited by MARC </li></ul><ul><li>Costly </li></ul>
<ul><li>THE ADVANTAGES OF RDA </li></ul>Pros
RDA and the library catalog <ul><li>RDA will help modernize the library catalog </li></ul><ul><li>New features of library catalogs include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Facets to narrow searching </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ranking of results </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More visual results – book covers, table of contents, reviews </li></ul></ul><ul><li>One goal of RDA is to make these tasks easier </li></ul>
The future of library catalogs “ The important question now is: how can the library catalog move from being ‘on the Web’ to being ‘of the Web?’ . . . Rather than creating data that can be entered only into the library catalog, we need to develop a way to create data that can also be shared with the Web.” -Karen Coyle in Understanding the Semantic Web, p. 13
Other places to find FRBRized data <ul><li>OCLC Fiction Finder </li></ul><ul><li>http://fictionfinder.oclc.org/ </li></ul><ul><li>Variations3 Music Project (Indiana University) </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.dlib.indiana.edu/projects/variations3/ </li></ul><ul><li>eXtensible Catalog (University of Rochester) </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.extensiblecatalog.org/ </li></ul>
RDA: A Leap Forward “ Instead I see the potential of RDA elsewhere: in the vocabularies specifically, and not incidentally in the revolution they represent in the way we envision our future in metadata. . . . [I]t’s not what we say, but how we say it, that makes RDA a big leap forward.” -Diane Hillmann From her blog post “What is this change that is RDA?”
<ul><li>THE DISADVANTAGES OF RDA </li></ul>Cons
RDA isn’t different enough “ . . . trying to force FRBR’s 19th century view of information onto our new information universe is like those people long ago who continued to insist, while ignoring all the evidence, that the earth is the center of the universe.” -James Weinheimer From his presentation “RDA: the Wrong Solution for the Wrong Problem”
RDA: Limited by MARC “ Because the tests crammed RDA data into MARC, it really doesn’t operate as a test of RDA itself, or of the usefulness of FRBR. What we’ve ended up with is a vast amount of misunderstanding. . .” -Diane Hillmann From her blog post “Thank you, Code4Lib”
Will RDA kill MARC? “ Will RDA kill MARC? I don’t know, but I hope it will. . . .[T]he conflict between the aspirations of RDA and the limitations of MARC may finally tip the balance in favor of changing data formats despite the inevitable pain and cost.” -Kelley McGrath from her presentation “Will RDA Kill MARC?”
The cost of RDA “ Unfortunately, RDA does not fill the bill since the powers-that-be won't notice anything except the price tag.” -James Weinheimer In a listserv post regarding the decision of officials at a Texas public school system to reduce library cataloging services to two paraprofessionals to manage cataloging for 100 schools
RDA and the future <ul><li>RDA is an unfinished standard </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Placeholders exist in certain chapters of the RDA Toolkit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>RDA Toolkit is designed to be a living document </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The future direction of RDA is unclear </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Still waiting for a decision from U.S. national libraries and the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) </li></ul></ul>
RDA and your library <ul><li>How is your library approaching RDA? </li></ul><ul><li>Does your library plan to implement RDA? </li></ul><ul><li>If so, what is your plan? </li></ul><ul><li>If not, how do you think you’ll handle RDA records? </li></ul><ul><li>And finally, how do YOU feel about RDA? Do you think it will benefit your library and its patrons? </li></ul>
Blogs and lists <ul><li>Karen Coyle’s InFormation: </li></ul><ul><li>http://kcoyle.blogspot.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>Diane Hillmann’s Metadata Matters: </li></ul><ul><li>http://managemetadata.org/blog/ </li></ul><ul><li>James Weinheimer’s First Thus: </li></ul><ul><li>http://catalogingmatters.blogspot.com/ </li></ul>
Blogs and lists <ul><li>RDA Toolkit blog: </li></ul><ul><li>h ttp://www.rdatoolkit.org/blog </li></ul><ul><li>List of cataloging blogs: </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.catalogingfutures.com/catalogingfutures/blogs/ </li></ul><ul><li>RDA-L discussion list: </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.rda-jsc.org/rdadiscuss.html </li></ul>
Bibliography <ul><li>Chapman, A. (2010). The Case of AACR2 Versus RDA. Legal Information Management, 10, p 210-213. </li></ul><ul><li>Chapman explains why AACR2 no longer meets the needs of modern-day information demands, as well as how RDA will help meet these demands. </li></ul><ul><li>Coyle, K. Library Data in a Modern Context. (2010). Library Technology Reports , 46(1), 5-13. Retrieved from EBSCO host . </li></ul><ul><li>Provides a brief history of the library catalog, as well as outlines the areas of change needed for the library catalog in the 21st century. </li></ul><ul><li>Elrod, J. McRee. (2010, February 4). Practical Measures to Cope with RDA Records. Retrieved from http://www.slc.bc.ca/mac/rda_talk.pdf </li></ul><ul><li>A highly practical approach to changes that could be made in the OPAC to accommodate RDA records, although be forewarned that the author does seem to have more energy than most for retrospective conversion and making adjustments to incoming records. </li></ul>
Bibliography <ul><li>IFLA Study Group on the Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records. (1998, 2009). Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records. http://www.ifla.org/en/publications/functional-requirements-for-bibliographic-records </li></ul><ul><li>The full text of the FRBR final report. It's long and detailed, but ultimately the definitive place for information on FRBR. </li></ul><ul><li>Library of Congress (2010). Library of Congress Documentation for the RDA Test. Retrieved from http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/RDAtest/rdatest.html </li></ul><ul><li>The source for everything about the U.S. test, including files of records created during the test. </li></ul><ul><li>McGrath, K. (2011) Will RDA Kill MARC? Retrieved from http://pages.uoregon.edu/kelleym/KM_MWpresentation.pdf </li></ul><ul><li>McGrath, in this presentation from ALA Midwinter 2011, clearly outlines the limitations of MARC. </li></ul>
Bibliography <ul><li>Oliver, C. (2010). Introducing RDA: A guide to the basics. Chicago: ALA. </li></ul><ul><li>Written for practicing catalogers. Has a lot of emphasis on the continuity with and changes from AACR2, and about the transition. </li></ul><ul><li>Tillet, B. "What is FRBR?: A Conceptual Model for the Bibliographic Universe." Library of Congress Cataloging Distribution Service, 2003. http://www.loc.gov/cds/downloads/FRBR.PDF </li></ul><ul><li>An 8 page introduction to the main concepts of FRBR. One of the clearest explanations out there, though it will require careful concentration to read. Remember that the statements about "current" work date from 2003 and don't reflect recent developments especially with RDA. </li></ul>
Bibliography <ul><li>Weinheimer, James. (February 4, 2011). RDA: the wrong solution for the wrong problem [Webinar]. Retrieved May 9, 2011, from http://www.archive.org/details/RdaTheWrongSolutionToTheWrongProblem </li></ul><ul><li>In this webinar, Weinheimer explains why he thinks RDA should not be implemented. </li></ul>
Contact Us <ul><li>Patricia Dragon </li></ul><ul><li>Head, Spec. Collections, Metadata & Authorities </li></ul><ul><li>Joyner Library, East Carolina University </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Nara Newcomer </li></ul><ul><li>Assistant Music Librarian </li></ul><ul><li>Music Library, East Carolina University </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Jennifer Joyner </li></ul><ul><li>Metadata Technician </li></ul><ul><li>Joyner Library, East Carolina University </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>
Hello, and welcome to this session on RDA, Resource Description and Access. I’m Nara Newcomer, Assistant Music Librarian here at ECU and presenting with me are two ECU colleagues: Patricia Dragon, Head of Special Collections Cataloging, Metadata, and Authorities, and Jennifer Joyner, Metadata Technician.
Today’s session is designed as an introduction to and overview of RDA and what it means for libraries in the near future. I’ll give a background and overview of RDA, as well as an introduction to FRBR. Then, Patricia will talk about RDA and how it differs from AACR2 and what those differences mean in the near term. Finally, Jennifer will introduce us to some of the current controversies and discussions surrounding RDA. We’ll make this presentation available on Slideshare via the conference web site, so you don’t have to crazily scribble down all those URLS and other notes. We’d like this to be an interactive session, so we encourage you to raise your hand and ask questions as we go along. Let’s start the interaction right now: how many of you consider yourselves to be at least part-time “catalogers” or familiar with the language of MARC and AACR2?
So, let’s start out with the background and overview of RDA. We’ll consider what RDA is, and why it’s been created. We’ll talk about FRBR, the “Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records” that undergird RDA, and end with some practical basics about RDA.
RDA, Resource Description and Access, is the cataloging code designed as the successor to AACR2. It is based on FRBR and FRAD. Reflecting the ease with which data elements can be rearranged by computers in today’s environment, RDA is a content standard, not a display standard. There is a clear line between the recording of data and the presentation of that data (punctuation, spacing, etc.)
As you can see from this timeline, official work on RDA has been in progress for nearly a decade, with important influences coming even earlier. Work initially began on “AACR3” in 2002, and the name was changed to RDA in 2005 to reflect a closer alignment with FRBR terminology, and to remove “Anglo-American”, thus reflecting the international focus it sought to take.
RDA was released almost a year ago, in June 2010. Since that time, other countries have already implemented RDA. Within the United States, the U.S. National Libraries (LC, NLM, National Agriculture Library) and partner U.S. libraries have been testing RDA. Some of these partner libraries have announced that they will continue cataloging with RDA regardless of the U.S. National Libraries’ decision. Other countries have gone ahead and implemented. Some libraries (Stanford, BYU) who were test partners in the U.S. have stated they will continue to (and are continuing to) catalog with RDA, regardless of the U.S. National Libraries’ decision.
Why RDA? How is it supposed to improve discoverability of materials? RDA is conceived with the digital environment in mind – digital objects are not shoehorned in or added after the fact like they were in AACR2. Rules on punctuation, capitalization, and abbreviation are much more relaxed compared to AACR2. RDA is based on the principle of “take what you see”. This should help cataloging be more efficient by allowing catalogers to accept machine-captured data and data from non-library sources. RDA is designed to be more machine friendly overall. The data is sorted out and recorded in ways that are easy for machines to understand and use, not just for human beings to read. RDA is also supposed to help us create bibliographic records which will be easier for patrons to use because of their grounding in FRBR. FRBR is a very important part of RDA, so we’re going to take several minutes to discuss it in depth.
Reference librarians are familiar with questions like this … if patron comes in asking for a specific title, they’ll conduct a reference interview to figure out what it is the patron actually wants. The thing is, once they’ve figured that out, our current catalogs don’t do a great job of helping find exactly what it is the patron wants.
FRBR is a way of organizing the bibliographic universe which helps us answer questions like this with specificity. We’re going to get into some FRBR terminology now. FRBR recognizes three groups of “entities”. Each of these “entities” is carefully defined in the full text of FRBR and its “attributes” – characteristics – detailed. FRBR is also all about relationships. The different entities are related to each other. For example, a “person” (from the group 2 entities) may create a “work”. FRBR is also all about relationships. For example, a “person”, from the “Group 2 entities” can create a “work”, from the ‘Group 1 entities.” That “work” can be about a “Group 3 entity”, such as a concept. FRBR seeks to define and record all the relationships between entities within the context of the bibliographic record. FRBR also defines 4 user tasks. These are the things our users want to do: find, identify, select, and obtain materials to meet their information needs. We can’t talk about all of FRBR today, so we’ll just focus on the “group 1” entities, which are ….
Work, expression, manifestation, and item. Let’s look at each one in depth, with examples.
Work is defined as “a distinct intellectual or artistic creation”. “Work” is an intellectual concept. It is not something you can physically hold. All the different editions, copies, translations, versions, performances, etc. of Die Zauberflote (Mozart’s opera, also known as “The Magic Flute”) or of Romeo and Juliet are considered the same work.
An expression is “the intellectual or artistic realization of a work” This is still an abstract concept. Today I’ll use musical performances – sound recordings – as an example because I find they are one of the easiest ways to understand the FRBR concept of work, expression, manifestation, and item. So, an example of an expression a particular performance of a musical work, in this case, Die Zauberflote. A different performance would be considered a separate expression of the same work. A particular version of the printed music is also separate expression.
A manifestation is “the physical embodiment of the expression of the work.” On this slide are three separate manifestations of the same expression (the 1984 performance) of the same work (Die Zauberflote). They have different physical formats (LP/CD) or different publication dates. Taking the first example, the 1984 LP release, all the LPs that Philips made belong to the same manifestation. Currently, most of our bibliographic records represent a manifestation – every library who has any one of the many LPs Philips made in 1984 of the Zauberflote performance will be considered to have “the same thing.”
Finally, the item – a single exemplar of a manifestation. Unless it’s a digital object, you can physically hold an item in your hand. Right here I hold an item in my hand, ECU’s copy of the 1994 Philips CD release (manifestation) of the 1984 performance (expression) of Die Zauberflote (work)
Here’s another example of a work/expression/manifestation/item tree, this time for a textual work (a “book”). In just a minute, you’ll have the opportunity to create your own tree of work/expression/manifestation/item.
You handout lists 9 different group 1 entities – that is, each describes a work, expression, manifestation, or item. We’ll work to identify which each is and also put them into a “tree”, showing their relationships. I’ll also need 9 volunteers. [The 9 volunteers will each have a paper with the entity written on it. They, with the help of the attendees, will first sort themselves into work, expression, manifestation, and item. Then, they will create a tree by placing their papers on the board.]
Here’s the solution.
Next, we’ll cover some practical information on you can use and access RDA. RDA is designed as an online tool and is available by subscription to the RDA Toolkit. A print version of RDA is also available, but RDA is really intended as an online tool which will be constantly updated, not a static printed document. The RDA Toolkit also includes the full text of AACR2 and the Library of Congress Policy Statements (LCPS’). For most U.S. catalogers, the LCRIs have been the companion to AACR2. In the same way, the LCPS’ will be the companion to RDA.
RDA is organized differently from AACR2, focusing on the user tasks rather than on specific formats (books, maps, music, etc.)
With the change from AACR2 to RDA come terminology changes. Catalogers and anyone seeking to really understand RDA will need to learn some new vocabulary. Here’ are just a few examples of terms which are, more or less, equivalent between AACR2 and RDA. Note the use of FRBR terms like “entity” and the move away from “card” or print-based terminology. The general material designator – GMD – has been replaced by a combination of 3 new terms. These reflect the vast explosion in formats that we have today and Patricia will be talking about this terminology change in greater depth, as well as other changes between AACR2 and RDA. So at this point, I’ll hand it over to her to talk about those changes.
Thank you , Nara. Now we’re going to talk about some practicalities of what RDA means for catalogers and what it means for the catalog (OPAC). Here we’ll be talking MARC since that’s how everybody’s data is encoded, although RDA is independent of MARC format.
Here you see two records for the same resource, one done according to AACR2 and one according to RDA. There are other optional data points that could have been recorded in each of these, but these each meet the standards for core records. Who can tell us what differences you note between the two records? [Pause and wait for hands]
These are all the differences, boxed. Now we’ll go over the differences one by one, quickly.
Nara mentioned how RDA is concerned with relationships, both WEMI relationships, and relationships between group 1 and group 2 entities. The relationship designator supports this concern with relationships, although it is not required. LC did not use them during the test period, although some institutions did. The second statement of responsibility was not transcribed. Remember these are core records, so the SOR could have been longer. But in a core record only the first statement of responsibility is required; others are optional. This creates a situation which is not allowed under AACR2, namely an unjustified added entry (700). Unjustified added entries are allowable under RDA. Perhaps the relationship designators actually mitigate any possible confusion here. In general, there is more room for catalogers’ judgment in RDA than there is in AACR2. This is of course a double-edged sword. It allows us to accept more metadata from various sources and have it all be “correct” rather than spend time editing data in inconsequential ways. On the other hand, more room for judgment means less standardization, which means different institutions will catalog the same resource different ways.
The double date looks repetitive, but these are two separate RDA elements. The first is the publication date, which is required even when it is questionable. The second is the copyright date, which is required if the publication date is not recorded on the resource.
Latin abbreviations (such as S.l. for sine loque) are replaced by [place of publication not identified]. “ Cm” is not an abbreviation but a metric symbol, hence no period after “cm”.
There are several new required fields in RDA records. Fields 336, 337, and 338 work together, and collectively they basically replace the GMD, which is not used in RDA records. Field 336 is Content type. There is a controlled vocabulary for this field, which is listed at RDA 6.9. The controlled vocabulary includes such terms as you see on the slide (not a complete list).
Field 337 is Media type. The controlled vocabulary includes such terms as you see.
Field 338 is Carrier type. The controlled vocabulary includes such terms as you see. It’s important to note that while each of these fields has a controlled vocabulary, the list is not a closed one. For each of these new fields there is room for “other,” and there is a mechanism to get new terms added to the lists. RDA is specifically designed to be extensible, so that it can accommodate new formats of material not even envisioned yet. This was one of the limitations of AACR2, which was written before the explosion of electronic and online formats that we’ve needed to catalog. AACR2 sometimes requires us to stuff square pegs in round holes when it comes to digital formats.
There are many many other changes to bib records because of RDA. Just a couple more of the big ones: RDA eliminates the rule of 3. The “Rule of 3” in AACR2 said if there are more than 3 entities with the same level of responsibility for a resource, enter the resource under title. RDA says do access points for as many as you want. The GMD is replaced by 336-338 A major principle of RDA is to “Take what you see.” For instance, it is permitted to keep found capitalization. You also transcribe errors (no sic) and provide a variant access point with the title spelled correctly.
Regardless of what the national libraries do, you don’t have to adopt RDA. But if you get records from any source other than yourself you will have to deal with RDA records. Last time I checked there were over 18,000 RDA records in WorldCat. If you are an OCLC library, you probably already have some in your catalog. Vendors, depending on the needs of their customers and where they get their records, may start shipping RDA records. If the national libraries and the PCC adopt RDA in any fashion, it will be increasingly difficult for smaller libraries to swim against the tide.
The addition of RDA records to the catalog creates a hybrid environment. Since pretty much no one has the time to retrospectively convert from one standard to the other, you must make them play nicely together. RDA records are designed to be compatible in a mixed catalog with AACR2 (and AACR1) records. Two of the biggest changes that impact the ILS/OPAC are the switch from GMD to fields 336-338 and the addition of relationship designators. You have to decide whether you’ll display the new fields. Will you turn off display of the GMD for AACR2 records that remain, lest it confuse patrons when some DVDs have the GMD [videorecording] and others don’t? Will you somehow program your system to use these data elements to create a format icon for resources, so that all DVDs, regardless of which rules they’re cataloged under, will have an icon for DVD? You have to decide whether you’ll display the relationship designators. Will they cause a new sequence in browse lists of names? For instance, if someone browses for “Twain, Mark,” will they see the RDA records segregated out: Twain, Mark 500 hits Twain, Mark, author 12 hits And will the addition of $e in the bib records cause a problem linking to authority records? You have to investigate how these data elements behave in your system and get them optimized for your patrons.
While we’re talking about authorities, there are some changes to authorities in RDA as well. You see just a couple of the changes on this slide. Why is this important? Authorities are crucial to browsing. Instances where browsing will be affected will require retrospective conversion. For instance, if someone browses for Exodus, they will find it in two different places in an alphabetical list unless you fix all of them to be the same way. For the U.S. test of RDA, all access points were created “anew” according to RDA, even if the heading already existed in the authority file. This caused much consternation in the cataloging world, but this will not be the case for the future. PCC has stated the preference for one authority file containing both AACR2 and RDA records; Bib records would use the form in the auth file (whether the rules match the bib or not).
So are these changes related to the major goals of RDA that Nara talked about? Well, yes. One of the goals is to create more machine-friendly data. If you split data into separate elements (such as publication date and copyright date), that is more machine-friendly than conflating the two. The more you can re-use data and pass it from machine to machine without human intervention (for example, you can use the capitalization you receive) the more machine-friendly it is. There is more data, and less text designed to be read and parsed by a human (What can a machine do with “b. ca. 1825?” in a date?). Also, in the machine environment, there is plenty of “space” (no need for rule of 3, few abbreviations necessary). I’ve already mentioned how the relationship designators support the FRBR emphasis on relationships. By separating and clearly delineating content and carrier, RDA makes the FRBR arrangement of multiple versions more transparent. Under AACR2, format data had been scattered in several places in the record: the GMD, fixed fields and various note fields. It was hard to make a computer find a widescreen DVD of a movie because there were so many places in the record that the computer had to look to piece together that information.
And yet, some of the changes seem unrelated to the major goals of RDA. Or perhaps they’re just too little. As you might imagine, this contradiction engenders a fair bit of controversy in the cataloging and metadata world. Here I’ll turn things over to Jennifer, who will address this issue.
Thank you, Patricia. If you have been keeping up with the development of RDA, or even if you haven’t, you probably know that there is some controversy surrounding RDA and its implementation. For the next few minutes, I’m going to review some of the arguments leaders in the field are making regarding RDA.
There are advantages and disadvantages to implementing RDA. On the one hand, people believe RDA will help modernize library catalogs. As Patricia mentioned, RDA helps produce machine-friendly data with FRBR structure. Together, these two aspects of RDA will help bring advancements to library catalogs. Secondly, implementing RDA will help change the way we think about library metadata. On the other hand, opponents of RDA argue that it will do nothing new. This is, in part, because it’s limited by MARC. Finally, the cost of RDA is making people question its timing and usefulness.
First, let’s take a look at how RDA will benefit cataloging and the cataloging profession.
Those in favor of RDA implementation believe RDA will help modernize library catalogs. Modernization of catalogs has already started. With the help of discovery tools, library catalogs have become more robust and now offer advanced searching features previously not available. These discovery layers allow better searching features, such as faceted searching, ranking of results, and more visual results. It creates a search experience similar to that of commercial sites such as Amazon.com – book covers, table of contents, and reviews. The problem with these discovery tools is that they don’t work very well with MARC. MARC has been pushed to its limit. One goal of RDA is to make these discovery tools work better.
Despite advancements in library catalogs, there are still changes to be made. For one, the library environment remains separate from the Web. This “separateness” is causing libraries to lose users. As the Web grows, users have fewer reasons to leave the web and enter the library. This point caused Karen Coyle to raise the question “How can the library catalog move from being ‘on the Web’ to being ‘of the web’? Her quote is posted here on this slide. Library catalogs of tomorrow must become part of the web. What is it about the Web that is appealing to users? -The web offers simplified search options. -The user often experiences instant gratification. -If questioning which resource is best, all users have to do is look at the ranked results. Some of this is already being done, but there still is not a seamless experience from the library catalog to the Web. The hope is that RDA will help make this possible in the future.
If you’re interested in seeing what a catalog based on FRBRized data would look like, there are a few examples out there. One resource is OLAC’s model FRBR catalog. Here is a screenshot of the home page, with the URL at the bottom. It’s important to note that this is just a model, and it’s not MARC based. As you can see, you can limit by movie or program, and here on the sidebar, you can limit by version (format, publication date, spoken language, subtitle/caption language
To show you a record, I’m going to limit by genre.
This brings back a record for Dracula. As you can see, it lists the different kind of formats for this title and lists the libraries where that format is available. All of this is based on FRBR data.
There are other places where you can find FRBRized data. OCLC Fiction Finder: -FRBR-based prototype that provides access to bibliographic records for fiction books, eBooks, and audio materials described in WorldCat -Currently offline for updates to the data and user interface Variations3 music project – Indiana University -Digital music library software system -Provides online access to streaming audio and scanned score images, as well as other features eXtensible catalog – University of Rochester -“Open source, user centered, next generation software” for libraries -Interface presents FRBRized, faceted navigation
As you can see, FRBRized data opens doors for the library catalog. Diane Hillmann, in her blog post “What is this change that is RDA” notes that RDA will help advance the thought and philosophy behind library metadata and the library catalog.
While some feel that RDA will advance cataloging, there are some disadvantages to the implementation of RDA.
First, some argue that RDA does not do enough to address librarians’ or patrons’ needs. Jim Weinheimer argues that RDA ignores the real problems facing library catalogs, catalogers, and patrons. He argues that FRBR and RDA aren’t innovative enough to solve our metadata problems and challenges of the 21st century. The world of information has changed, and it’s continuing to change. He argues that catalogers and patrons need help with the growing amount of information; neither librarians or patrons will see true change from the implementation of RDA.
One major problem with RDA is that it’s being used in MARC format. Diane Hillman commented on this in a blog post after presenting at this year’s Code4Lib conference. As she notes, the RDA testing was implemented using MARC. When MARC was created in the 1960s, it was not designed to meet the demands of today. It’s difficult to get machine-actionable data elements out of existing MARC records. Also, MARC doesn’t provide an easy way to show relationships between records or within records. [Will RDA Kill MARC – Kelley McGrath]
Kelley McGrath raised the question – Will RDA kill MARC? – at this year’s ALA midwinter. Here’s a quote from that presentation. With the limitations of MARC, some are hoping that the aspirations of RDA will lead catalogers down a new road and away from MARC. As McGrath notes, however, this will be costly.
One of the biggest arguments against RDA is that the cost of RDA is high. Library budgets are shrinking, and RDA is expensive. RDA training, as well as access to the RDA toolkit, is unaffordable for some libraries. There is no public access to the standard. Those who are unaffiliated with an institution but are active in the cataloging and metadata world will likely not have access to the toolkit because of its high price. There is also another problem created by implementation, and that’s the decrease in productivity. Catalogers will have to be trained, and this will decrease the productivity of those catalogers. Even if this decrease is short-lived, it is not a good time for such a decrease. The future of cataloging is being examined – library budgets are shrinking, and cataloging departments are on the cutting block. In Texas, one school system voted to reduce its cataloging staff to 2 paraprofessionals to manage cataloging for 100 schools. Jim Weinheimer notes that RDA will only make this trend worse. Library administrators will just see the cost when they hear about RDA.
As I noted, the cost of the subscription to the RDA Toolkit is high. And, as we all know, subscriptions that are necessary often go up in price. Here’s the current price list for solo-user annual subscriptions and for site (multi-user) subscriptions.
Finally, it’s important to note that RDA is an unfinished standard. There are placeholders in the subject analysis chapter in the RDA Toolkit, for example. Not only does this make learning difficult, it also makes things difficult for catalogers who lack access to the toolkit. The future direction of RDA is unclear. We are waiting for a decision regarding RDA from U.S. national libraries and the PCC. As Nara mentioned, there are 4 outcomes possible.
We’re now going to open the floor for discussion. We have a few questions to guide our conversation – but please feel free to share your implementation plans, your experiences with RDA, or how you feel about the change that is RDA.
The best way to keep up with RDA and the changes coming to cataloging is to read recently published articles and follow the blogs of librarians “in-the-know.” Karen Coyle is a librarian with over 30 years of experience with digital libraries. She worked for over 20 years at the University of California, most recently for the California Digital Library, and is now a consultant on digital library technology. Diane Hillmann is currently Director of Metadata Initiatives at the Information Institute of Syracuse and Partner at Metadata Management Associates. She is retired from the Cornell University Library, where she was a librarian for 30 years. James Weinheimer is currently the Director of Library and Information Services at the American University of Rome.
RDA-L is an electronic forum for discussion of RDA. It is an initiative of the Joint Steering Committee for Development of RDA (JSC) and is hosted by Library and Archives Canada.