Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Future of Bibliographic Control

Biblio data providers will be beating a path to the Library of Congress site in the next few days in their collective effort to foresee the future of bibliographic data. The Report is now available for review and certainly the commercial providers, who did not participate in the development of the report, will be anxious to know what the library community sees in their crystal ball.

Here is a sample from their executive summary:

The Working Group envisions a future for bibliographic control that will be collaborative, decentralized, international in scope, and Web-based. The realization of this future will occur in cooperation with the private sector and with the active collaboration of library users. Data will be gathered from multiple sources; change will happen quickly; and bibliographic control will be dynamic, not static.

The Report is based on the key premise that the community is at a critical juncture in the evolution of bibliographic control and information access/provision. It is time to take stock of past practices, to look at today’s trends, and to project a future path consistent with the goals of bibliographic control: to facilitate discovery, management, identification, and access of and to library materials and other information products. Libraries must work in the most efficient and cooperative manner to minimize where possible the costs of bibliographic control, but both the Library of Congress and library administrators generally must recognize that they need to identify and allocate (or, as appropriate, reallocate) sufficient funding if they are serious about attaining the goals of improved and expanded bibliographic

The report also states that they want the report to generate a wider discussion - a "call to action" that will lead to more specific plans and recommendations.

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