Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Re: [RDA-L] Suggested RDA improvements

I am going through "Report and Recommendations of the U.S. RDA Test Coordinating Committee. Executive Summary"
http://www.loc.gov/bibliographic-future/rda/rda-execsummary-public-13june11.pdf at some length. This is one of the first places I have seen where the users were asked what they thought:
"Record Use
In a survey of library users, most (85%) spoke favorably of the RDA record. They particularly liked the record's clarity and completeness, the elimination of abbreviations and of Latin terminology, and the  abandonment of the rule of three and increased number of access points."
The report goes on to talk about the lack of the GMDs and the poor terminology in the 336-8 fields. But, while people may like the "elimination" of the abbreviations and Latin terminology, I wonder if these users understood that they are *not* being eliminated and that searchers will *always* be seeing cataloging abbreviations and Latin terminology in catalog records even after/if RDA is implemented? Concerning the elimination of the rule of three, it appears to be linked in the users' minds to an *increased* number of access points. I wonder if these users understand that the current rule actually demands "fewer" access points and that if RDA is implemented, the number of access points could either go up or down? Or,  in my opinion, the number of access points will become unpredictable. I would think these concerns need to be made clear to users in any survey.

Finally, I wonder exactly what the users liked about the records' "clarity and completeness"?

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