Re: [RDA-L] When part of 245 comes from outside resource

Posting to RDA-L
Discussion about the RDA rule that drops the brackets when adding statement of responsibility taken from a place other than the chief source of information

On 10/01/2013 17:46, Kevin M Randall wrote:

I can sympathize with the idea to do this, but I wonder if a better path to take would be to just teach ourselves to read records differently. If we’re aware that a record is RDA, then we should be aware that all of the pieces of information in MARC field 245 may not be appear on the same source in the resource described. I doubt that any typical catalog user would understand the difference.

And that fewer would care. There is this very strange RDA “spirit” that the searchers of our catalogs want to know and understand everything they see in them, including everything in the individual records. I haven’t run into such an idea in any of my other fields of endeavor. I worked in grocery stores for many years and nobody wanted to know the details of any of our tools, and few were even interested in reading the labels on the cans. We put up strange signs, had strange jargon, and did all kinds of things to make our jobs easier and for our own purposes. Nobody questioned or seemed to mind.

On computers, there are lots of things the public doesn’t understand. I won’t even discuss the web. Our televisions, DVDs, cellphones, you name it: we are all surrounded by tools with parts we don’t understand at all. I think I understand my hammer and my screwdriver, but maybe not. And yet we can still use these tools adequately enough for our purposes.

The fact is, nobody cares about the vast majority of these little details so long as they can get the tool to work well enough. I personally cannot imagine anyone looking at brackets in a 245$c and thinking: “What in the world does THAT mean??!!” If they want to know that badly, then they can find out.

I am sure when people see these kinds of things they just ignore them, thinking they are there for some good reason, just as when I see one of those little “doors” or “covers”  inside an automobile that I cannot open. Perhaps I am just weird, but I am not driven by an insatiable curiosity to discover what is behind that little cover–to pry it off or read up on it or ask anyone. I realize it must have a purpose and rest content.

With bracketed information in the 245$c, that seeming trifle provides an expert with an immense amount of information that can save catalogers and other librarians a lot of time and pain. Often, a picture truly is worth a thousand words! I think the public can deal with that.