Friday, January 26, 2007

CONSER Standard Record: Delayed Implementation

All, here is the summary I promised of the the CONSER standard record discussion at the CONSER at large meeting:

1) Implementation will not be phased-in, all elements will be implemented together.
2) There was general agreement that the implementation date of February 1st should be delayed to await JSC comment before implementing.
3) The JSC is expected to provide its comments at or before its April
2007 meeting or perhaps sooner.

Summary of the discussion:
There was consensus that phased implementation of the CONSER standard record would not work, especially if one of the outcomes is that some members implement the full standard earlier than the rest of CONSER without being able to contribute the records to the CONSER database. If there is a possibility of getting feedback from the JSC sooner, within the next month or so, institutions considering early implementation were willing to delay implementation until March or early April at the latest. There was general agreement to a temporary delay in implementation, though not all felt as comfortable with a delay until after the April JSC meeting if the JSC couldn't discuss CONSER recommendations sooner.

PCC chair Mechael Charbonneau described the November PoCo meeting where the CONSER standard working group was asked to work with LC JSC representative Barbara Tillett and other CPSO staff to develop LCRI's and address any compatibility issues with AACR2 and RDA. In the process of developing documentation and drafting LCRIs in December, three issues were identified as still needing comment from the JSC before they could be considered "early implementation" of RDA. The recommendations for translations and language editions, other title information, and treatment of parallel titles are the issues that await JSC comment.
Les Hawkins (LC CONSER coordinator) said that during the comment period on the standard, concerns were raised that PCC seemed to be working outside the established consultative process for AACR2 and RDA in developing the standard. This is the reason he feels that the JSC should be allowed to comment before CONSER implements the record. What the PCC intends to do with the feedback it receives from the JSC needs to be clear also. CONSER will take as good advice the comments it receives, make adjustments, and do some fine-tuning, but will proceed with its implementation after consulting with the JSC.

Jim Stickman (University of Washington) made a statement that probably represented the feelings of many others at the meeting. While he agreed that consultation with the JSC and working within the parameters of the current rule-making environment is an important objective for the PCC, the goal of not losing the momentum of the CONSER standard record is also important. Jim's institution invested a great deal of staff time and expense working on its development; implementation of the standard is looked at by his administration as an important additional tool for attacking cataloging backlogs. If there are major, unforeseen issues resulting from consultation with the JSC, perhaps the May operations meeting could be used as a fall back to resolve any technical details that need further work. However, implementation can't continue to be delayed, it is preferable to implement the standard as soon as possible after receiving JSC's comments.

Judy Kuhagen (LC, CPSO) said that agenda for the JSC February telephone conference call already contains two important items and that there is no guarantee that there will be time for discussing the remaining recommendations of the CONSER record. It will be necessary to work through the ALA's JSC representative, PCC's channel for working with the JSC, to ask that discussion of the remaining issues be added to the JSC agenda for February.

Diane Boehr (NLM) described the translation recommendation as one that the CONSER standard working group has already identified as something that requires additional work before implementation. A separate rule revision resulting from the CONSER standard recommendation on series treatment will be submitted to CC:DA as soon as possible. This recommendation was somehow omitted from the recommendations in appendix M of the access level final report in July.

OCLC reported that it has already made the necessary validation changes necessary for implementing the CONSER record with encoding level blank (4 is no longer valid for CONSER serial records) and fill characters have been validated for fixed fields conference publication (008/29), frequency (008/18), and regularity (008/19). Within the next few weeks, existing encoding level 4 records will be converted to encoding level blank.

The CPSO website will be the temporary home of the LCRIs related to the CONSER record until the next available publishing cycle of Catalogers Desktop. All of the LCRIs related to the standard have been drafted, but only those relating to the earlier proposed "first phase" of implementation are posted. Judy Kuhagen agreed to work with CPSO staff to post the remaining LCRIs to the CPSO site for comment.

Action: Mechael will consult with the PCC steering committee and PoCo to affirm the change from a phased implementation to a delayed implementation.

Action: Mechael will post an official announcement of the delay to the CONSER email list, and other PCC email lists.

Action: Wording for the change in implementation date will be drafted and sent to the CPSO webmaster to indicate that there has been a change in implementation.

Action: Les will summarize the outcome of the meeting and post it to the CONSER email list.

Action: The PCC will request that the ALA representative to JSC forward PCC's request that discussion of the CONSER standard recommendations be added to the February JSC meeting.

Question: What are other people saying?

Hi, here are comments from other listservs

Question: How do you feel about the CONSER Standard Record?

Hi, several of you are having problems getting your postings to take. Sorry about that! I'll try to keep monitoring the UC CONSER Funnel list & make sure that everything you say gets posted also to this blog.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Help wanted!

I hope UC serials catalogers have looked at the draft documentation for the CONSER standard record: I am currently in the process of writing the training materials that need to align with this documentation, so I really need your help! (As a cataloger myself, I've already encountered potential issues with maintenance of records, a big part of our CONSER Funnel work.) The "official" statement on the CPSO Web page is for comments to go to the chairs of the original Working Group, but let's use this blog to share thoughts with each other first, cataloger to cataloger.

One important note: ignore the instructions re: phased implementation, some elements to be implemented Feb. 1, 2007 and the others on indefinite hold. THIS IS NO LONGER TRUE. It was agreed at the ALA CONSER At Large meeting on Jan. 21 to delay implementation altogether until outstanding issues have been resolved, with the hopes that this delay will be of relatively short duration.

Please, please, please -- let us all share our cataloging questions, concerns, problems!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

ALA Midwinter 2007: Two audio files

Hi, I have posted two audio files from ALA Midwinter:

(1) CONSER at Large (MP3, 71 MB)
(2) Continuing Resources Interest Group (MP3, 46 MB)

Warning: Did not have time to edit the files; they are just the raw sound. Also: regrettably, the second file does not include Steve Shadle's SCCTP update presentation on the CONSER standard record. For some reason, the recorder stopped just before his presentation.

To download the audio files: Right click on the link and choose "save target as." You will need to re-type the file extension as ".mp3" since the Blogging software apparently assumes all files are ".htm".


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Delsey: CONSER Standard Record & RDA

An analysis of the proposed CONSER standard record vis a vis RDA has been mounted on the JSC Web site.
PDF file:
Working documents page:
Nathalie Schulz
Secretary, JSC

Announcement: CONSER Standard Record: Comments due Jan 29

Draft documentation related to the CONSER standard record is available at the following site:
Comments on the drafts are due by January 29, 2007. More information about submitting comments is given at the end of this message (the remainder of this message is the Introduction to the CONSER standard record as given in the documentation on the site).
= = = = = = =
The Policy Committee of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) has endorsed the recommendations of the final reports submitted by the Access Level Record for Serials Working Group and the Working Group on Authentication Codes and Encoding Levels for Serials and Integrating Resources.
The implementation of the CONSER standard record will occur in two stages. The date for the first stage has been set for February 1, 2007. Implemented at that time will be changes from AACR2 supported by policy decisions recorded in the drafts of Library of Congress Rule Interpretations posted on this site; also implemented then will be a change in LC/PCC policy to supply conflict-breaking uniform titles in only some situations.
(The second stage of the implementation is scheduled for May or June of 2007.)
The goal is to provide in an effective and timely manner a record that consistently ensures identification of and access to a serial title. To that end, the Working Group defined the set of required elements needed in every CONSER standard record. All other elements are optional, but not precluded, and can be added as needed based on cataloger's judgment.
The new CONSER documentation posted on this site supports the CONSER standard record. The new and revised LCRIs support the policy decisions allowing different practices from those in AACR2 rules.
The deadline for comments on the draft versions of the CONSER documentation and of the LCRIs is January 29, 2007. Send comments on the CONSER documentation to Diane Boehr ( and Regina Reynolds (; send comments on the LCRIs to These comments should relate to the clarity of the wording of the documents, not to decisions related to the adoption of the CONSER standard record.

Judith A. Kuhagen
Senior Descriptive Cataloging Policy Specialist Cataloging Policy & Support Office Library of Congress Washington, D.C. 20540-4305
202-707-6629 (fax)