On 6/10/2015 12:54 PM, Karen Coyle wrote:
> On 6/9/15 6:55 PM, J. McRee Elrod wrote:
>> For example: since along with unit name it tells you what >> equipment is needed, 538 is helpful just after collation (as opposed t >> the redundant new 34X fields), but has a later number; 506 (limitation >> on access) and 540 (limitation on use) should be side by side, but are >> not so numbered.
> This doesn’t seem difficult if the notes are each given a unique name. > In fact, this display is as plausible in MARC as it is in BIBFRAME. > There’s no reason for display to be based on MARC tag order, nor for the > 34x fields to display at all. So the question remains: are there notes > that are now being given the property bf:note that need to have a unique > name? And I also wonder what displays of notes are being used by the BF > early implementers.
An additional concern is to look at it from the viewpoint of the users, who more and more often see a “single search box” that searches at once everything that is available to them through their library: all of the catalogs, article indexes and other resources–including full text. This is what the public says it wants, so libraries should be providing it. Those other records (and full-text results) will easily overwhelm our catalog records.
Already, with one of those “single search box” results, how a particular record will appear is practically impossible to predict because odds are, what the user will see will not be created by a librarian, or follow RDA, or AACR2, or MARC or Bibframe. Even in Worldcat, it has become difficult simply to predict what language the notes of any particular record will be cataloged in, what language/types of headings you will encounter, or if you will encounter anything at all besides simple author/title/publisher. Of course, any tools that libraries create based on linked data will also bring all and sundry types of data together.
In this scenario, order of notes truly becomes academic. In my experience, this is not such a loss because the public spends little time reading bibliographic records and what they do read, they scan and never read thoroughly. The moment something looks interesting, they immediately look at the call number or click on a link and whoosh! Off they go, leaving the catalog to go to the item and they never look back. They return only if the book on the shelf (and the other books around the book they looked for) or the link (and the links they find in the web document) do not give them what they want.
This is understandable. Of course, people want to spend their time with the actual resources and not reading “bibliographical essays” as one old librarian put it (Ernest Richardson). For them, the catalog record has as much meaning as the road sign on the side of the road that says “Albuquerque 70 miles. Take Next Right”. The sign had better be right, but when you drive by, it’s forgotten. Unless it’s seriously wrong.
What is it that people want from a catalog? We can only assume that it has changed radically in the last 20 years and will continue to do so even more radically in the future. That is the real question and can only be discovered through research and studies.
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