FRBR, RDA, and thefuture of cataloging LIS 551 Dorothea Salo
Agenda•Quiz recap•A little review •And the same-or-different game!•FRBR •The model •Group 1 entities •Groups 2 and 3 entities•RDA •Context and history •Notable changes from AACR2
Review•What is MARC? What was it designed to do?•What is AACR2? What does it govern?•What is ISBD(G)? What does it govern? How does it ﬁt with MARC?•What are we doing with MARC records today that we weren’t doing with catalog cards in the 1960s?
From what you read...•What difﬁculties is the library community ﬁnding in the MARC/AACR2/ISBD(G) way of doing things?•What solutions are they recommending?
Problems•Print-book-centricity •It isn’t just “the digital” that MARC/AACR2/ISBD(G) has problems with. Music has been a thorn in the side for ages. •General confusion of content vs. carrier. •Should we really try to create the One Standard (set) That Rules Them All to begin with? That’s not where the rest of the world is going.•Patron perception of OPACs •especially conditioned by Google!•Internationalization of cataloging •Latin abbreviations? English free text? Really? •What’s preventing us from having records that are useful cross-linguistically?•Too much praxis, not enough theory. •Edge-case-based cataloging-code development led to myriad “special rules.”
Given that...•... what do YOU think the future has in store for MARC/AACR2/ISBD(G)?•What does this mean for the existing recordbase?•What does this mean for catalogers? Other librarians? Librarianship generally?
I don’t know the answers.These are the same questions librarianship is currently asking itself.
I expect you to understand:•AACR2:RDA::MARC:BIBFRAME•(older standard and redesign effort)•We’re not redesigning ISBD(G). Why not, do you think?
FRBR•Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records •“Requirements” is a term of art in software development, meaning “a detailed, actionable speciﬁcation of what a piece of software needs to do.” •So FRBR developers were really asking themselves, “what do bib records need to accomplish?” Just like Panizzi, Cutter, and Lubetsky! •Unlike Panizzi et al, FRBR developers started with actual user research, not just their assumptions about what users did. Also, an awareness of the competition (Google!).
Review: bibliographic objectives, per Cutter•Find a book if you know its author/title/subject. •“Known item” search. (Svenonius: “ﬁnding objective”) •Access point: Hook chosen for indexing records, permitting searches.•Find every book the library has with a given author/title/subject. •Svenonius: “collocation objective” •COLLOCATION: Put like things together, along a given axis of “likeness.” (Fiction vs. non-ﬁction?) •THIS is the organizing principle aimed at browsers.•Be sure you have the book you were looking for.
FRBR user tasks•FIND: an information package meeting a user’s criteria •... whether by searching or browsing •so this includes the collocation principle•IDENTIFY: that an information package in hand is the exact one sought•SELECT: an information package based on content/carrier needs •so, a video or a journal article or an online map... whatever•OBTAIN: the package through the most expedient means
Same or different?(If in doubt, ask yourself: do I want to see these as separate search results? should they have separate records in the catalog?)
So, what does a catalogrecord actually represent?What SHOULD it represent?
matter as long as it’s in good condition of and not missing pages. FRBR calls thisn. FRBR Group 1 entities: a “manifestation.” solving the “same or different” problemœuf,Web des
matter as long as it’s in good condition First, a word about the model A continues to monitor the application of and not missing pages. FRBR calls thisBR and promotes its use and evolution. a “manifestation.” IFLA Cataloguing Section’s Working up on FRBR, chaired by Patrick LeBœuf, an active online discussion list and a Web at http://www.ifla.org/VII/s13/ rbr/wgfrbr.htm. The Web site includessentations, training tools, a hotlinked iography, and much more. •“Entity-relationship diagram” 2ure is available in PDF format on the Web at: http://www.loc.gov/cds/FRBR.html (Revised February 2004) •How relational database design is represented •So already we have a more current record format than MARC! •We will use FRBR Group 1 as our example for database day. Learn this diagram!
Item•Perhaps the easiest to understand: the individual thing you’re holding in your hand. •so “copy 1” and “copy 2” of the same book are two different items. •What do bookstores think of this level? Do they use it? •Why might it be especially important for special collections?•Even this gets weird, though. •Is the web page you’re looking at the same item as the web page sitting on its owner’s web server? I THINK FRBR treats these as the same item... even though with ads, feeds, and on-the-ﬂy includes, “same” is a weird idea here.
Manifestation•An individual publication run. Which may include many copies (items), of course.•Close to the idea of an “edition.”•Again... when does a website become a new manifestation of itself? •How does the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine handle this?
Work•The intellectual output. (Yes, it’s an abstraction; intentionally so.)•Often what patrons mean when they say “I need/want to read...” •Though the next part of the conversation is often about expressions or manifestations based on carrier! E.g. ebook vs. audiobook vs. print book, score vs. recording, etc.
Expression•Last because fuzziest!•The various “realizations” of a Work. •Translations •Adaptations (e.g. book to movie, movie to book, play to opera) •Arrangements (of a musical piece) •Abridgements, bowdlerizations, revisions...•Lots of outstanding questions about when something is an Expression.
Pesky problem: aggregate works•How do you express a book of essays in FRBR? •Each essay is a Work, but... •... the edited collection is a Manifestation? Kind of? But may have Expression variants (e.g. translations)? •FRBR doesn’t let Manifestations contain Works!•Aggregate works come up... a lot. •Aggregate work: an information package containing more than one bibliographically- unrelated work. •Serials! •Music scores! •Websites, for pity’s sake!•Express as relationships? How?
Relationships•FRBR is more than the WEMI hierarchy!•A lot of pixels spilled on how works and expressions relate to each other, and how to represent that to users.•Expansion on MARC idea of “relator codes,” which fell into disrepute because it’s time-consuming to capture. •So, a real question: will we capture these relationships now? Really? Has it suddenly become more cost-effective? What will catalogers stop doing in order to do this?
Group 2 and 3 entities•Group 2: humans •Individual humans •Collectives of humans •Relationships between Group 1 and Group 2 entities: what you’d expect! Authorship, publishing, translating, illustrating, etc. etc.•Group 3: (other kinds of) subjects •Concepts, objects, events, places •Also includes Group 1 and Group 2 entities! (So it’s ﬁne to have a Work about a Person, or a Work about another Work.)
Which WEMI level?•Relate the following Group 2 entities to ONE level of WEMI: •Author •Publisher •Translator •Editor •Author of a foreword •Abridger
Try it out!•Look at the MARC ﬁelds and subﬁelds you understand in the records below. •(For each one, click the “LC Online Catalog” link and then the “MARC tags” tab.) •Establish whether each ﬁeld/subﬁeld pertains to a Work, Expression, Manifestation, or Item. Or a Group 2 or 3 entity. •Is this an aggregate work? What Works or Expressions does it contain (or relate to), and which ﬁelds/subﬁelds pertain to which? •What other Works or Expressions might you want to relate this one to?•http://lccn.loc.gov/78763521•http://lccn.loc.gov/2007028391•http://lccn.loc.gov/96525880
So what will “a FRBRized record” look like?•Will it really be the relational model inherent in FRBR? •So a Work will have a separate record from its Expressions, and so on down the line...•Or do we need “records” at all? •If we have entities, and we slap identiﬁers on them, we can make a series of statements about them without conﬁning them to a speciﬁc “record” or record format. •This is how Resource Description Framework (RDF), the basis for Linked Data, works; we’ll look at it later in the semester. •Sufﬁce to say, catalogers have not warmed to this idea; it turns their world completely inside-out. They want to see RECORDS.
Resource Description and Access•“AACR3” brieﬂy bruited, widely panned•RDA: purported successor to AACR2 •Supposed to free cataloging rules from current inextricable ties to MARC and ISBD(G); rules useful in many metadata contexts, not just cataloging •Supposed to SIMPLIFY a lot of current pilpul •Supposed to allow description of many more kinds of materials •Supposed to help catalog data play more nicely with the larger information world•Controlled by “Joint Steering Committee” •http://www.rda-jsc.org/index.html •ALA, Aussies, Brits, Canadians, LoC (internationalization? really?)
Political context•Programmers driven around the bend by MARC •and being expected to make unprepossessing MARC data work harder and harder•Catalogers feeling beleaguered and insulted •Backdrop: lots of libraries deciding they can’t afford catalogers •Widespread conﬂation of MARC/AACR2/ISBD(G) with bibliographic description generally (“will we even be cataloging [books, understood] any more?”) •Heated rhetoric about “MARC is the core of the library profession!” (see Michael Gorman, Martha Yee) •Lots of arguments about metadata vs. cataloging •Lots of catalogers who can’t or won’t retrain/reskill•With all of this, who actually did the RDA design work? CATALOGERS.
The bomb drops•RDA work began in 2004. •Very much informed by work on FRBR.•Coyle and Hillmann drop a bomb in 2007 •http://www.dlib.org/dlib/january07/coyle/01coyle.html •Criticisms: RDA too wedded to the past, too conservative, not enough input and support from other metadata initiatives... rearranging deck chairs.•RDA development came to a screeching halt.•Eventually, it started up again, and the ﬁrst version was published in 2010. •I can’t show it to you. You have to pay for it. This makes sense how? •(This is a ﬁght between “funding RDA development” and “achieving RDA adoption.” I think it’s a stupid ﬁght, but I also don’t have to ﬁgure out how to fund RDA development.)
Some notable changes in RDA
Buh-bye, Rule of Three•Transcribe ENTIRE statement of responsibility•Added entry for all contributors •Yay! Now we can REALLY ﬁnd all the works by a given author!•Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kansas making catalog cards any more! •Getting rid of the Rule of Three is an acknowledgment that we no longer have the space constraints imposed by catalog cards.
Transcribe it!•Statements of responsibility, as discussed•Edition statements
Stop abbreviating it!•Common (and often unstandardized) English abbreviations, e.g. “ill.”/”illus.”•Common-for-catalogers Latin abbreviations, e.g. “s.l.” •Latin “sine loco” = “without place” •Replace with: “[place of publication not identiﬁed]”•Ow. Invitation to repetitive-stress disorders? •Most cataloging environments have macro capability, at least.•Unsolved problem: internationalization •Not theoretical! Ask someone from Quebec. •Recording stuff as (language-bound) strings creates problems.
Kiss $245h goodbye!•What is $245h (“general material designation”) really? Dumping ground for “this is not a print book.”•MAJOR, hideous content-carrier confusion! •“cartographic materials” “graphic materials” alongside “motion picture” “computer ﬁle” •A CD is a [sound recording], yes, but so is a cassette or an online oral history! •[electronic resource] = ebooks, Playaways, websites, digital-library resources, digital music, e-journals... THIS IS BIZARRE. Patrons don’t think like this! And it confuses computers no end! •Practical upshot: difﬁcult or impossible to do useful things like “show me all the DVDs” in MARC/AACR2 catalogs. BIZARRE.
Content, media, carrier•Splitting GMD into three separate ﬁelds•RDA-in-MARC: 336 (content type), 337 (media type), 338 (carrier type) •Content type: What is this, fundamentally? •Media type: What am I likely to need to mediate my access to this? What’s between me and this information? •Carrier type: What’s this thing living on, physically?•All three ﬁelds connected with controlled vocabularies.•We’ll look at them one at a time.
Alison Hitchens, “Resource Description and Access (RDA) for SystemsStaff” Code4lib North, May 2012
Where we stand now•Experiments •OCLC is leading FRBRization experiments. They discovered that 4/5 of their records didn’t need FRBRization: only one Manifestation per Work. •LoC is leading experimentation with RDA-based cataloging.•Coyle and Hillmann trying to solidify RDA data models, harmonize with models outside librarianship. •“RDA Vocabularies, Process, Outcome, Use” http://www.dlib.org/dlib/ january10/hillmann/01hillmann.html•ILS vendors and catalogers, to each other: “YOU FIRST.” •Catalogers: “Do we have to do this? Whyyyyyyyyyyyyy?”
Something to notice•RDA is (at least in theory) being developed for use outside (as well as inside) a strictly- cataloging context.•So where are archivists in this discussion? Metadata librarians (pace Hillmann and Coyle)? Metadata standards designers?•Why might that be? Is it a problem? Why? •We’ll return to this question when we discuss BIBFRAME.