Thursday, February 21, 2019

New Updates to MarcEdit

Creator Terry Rees has been investing time and energy into upgrading the already powerful MarcEdit 7 Editor to fit the needs of users better. By working to improve how manual and global updates are carried out, Rees has improved how fast records load, how changes are tracked (undo!), and rewritten the code to make further edits to the program easier. Read more about the changes that have been made here:

As of Feb 18, 2019, Rees has also added a custom report writer that can, “search for specific data, either as a match case or regular expression, and return back a report noting # of times in the file and # of records.” For more about the new tool and an example:

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

New Study Released by ITHAKA S+R on Library Acquisition Patterns

Library Acquisitions Patterns, Report by Katherine Daniel, Joseph J. Esposito and Roger C. Schonfeld.

Researchers at ITHAKA S+R, with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, conducted a study and released a recent report analyzing purchasing tends in two areas at US academic libraries.  One area of the project relied on 2017 data from 124 libraries using Ex Libris’s integrated library system, ALMA, or OCLC’s WorldShare Management Services (WMS).  A second area concentrated on print and e-book purchasing trends of 51 US academic libraries for fiscal years 2014 through 2017.
Two interesting findings from the 2017 report:
-On average, the libraries within the sample spent $3.61 million in 2017 and added 4,750 print books and 345 e-books acquired on a one-time, title-by-title basis
-Ongoing resource expenditures account for three-quarters of total materials expenditures with one-fifth going towards onetime purchases.
Two interesting findings from the 2014 to 2017 trend analysis:
-The average cost of an e-book in the sample rose by 35 percent between 2014 and 2017, while the cost of print books remained stable.
-GOBI and Amazon were the leading vendors of print books in the sample. GOBI was the leading vendor of e-books

With a mission to
broaden access to higher education by reducing costs and improving student outcomes, ITHAKA S+R  is a nonprofit organization that partners with a wide range of organizations in the academic community including foundations, universities, libraries, colleges, scholarly societies, publishers, as well as individual.

Read the full report at DOI:

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Getting to Know TS Librarians: Carol Collins

1. Introduce yourself (name & position). 
Greetings fellow TS-SIS members.  I am Carol Morgan Collins, Head of Technical Services, Joel A. Katz Law Library, University of Tennessee, College of Law.  I began work here as Catalog Librarian in 2001 and was promoted to Head of Technical Services in 2012.

2. Does your job title actually describe what you do? Why/why not?
Yes, but Technical Services work seems to vary among libraries. The functions at Katz include cataloging, serials management and claiming, processing physical items, loading catalog records to provide access to electronic resources, exporting records to the discovery layer, and coordinating campus-wide access with the main library.

3. What are you reading right now?
I am reading Nonviolent Communication a Language of Life by Marshall Rosenberg.  

4. You suddenly have a free day at work, what project would you work on?
If I have a free day at work, I would dig deeper into the history of the University Of Tennessee College Of Law.  Earlier histories are available, but I have uncovered information from digitized collections not incorporated into those versions. I find the biographical facts of early faculty members fascinating.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Counting Online Usage of Networked Electronic Resources (COUNTER) R5 Update effective January 2019

COUNTER, founded in 2002, is a non-profit organization supported globally by a community of library, publisher and vendor members. Members contribute to the development of the Code of Practice (COP) through working groups and outreach. The Code of Practice provides guidance and enables content providers to produce consistent, comparable and credible usage data for their online content. This allows librarians and other interested parties to compare the usage data they receive, and to understand and demonstrate the value of the electronic resources to which they subscribe. In 2014, the organization developed and implemented COUNTER Release 4 (R4) as the Code of Practice for information providers. With the rapid development of technology, this rendition soon became outdated and complex. A working group of librarians, publishers, representative of ERM systems, and other usage service providers came together to meet changing needs and reduce complexity. The aim was to simplify reports, increase consistency and clarify metric types and reports. The group released a new iteration, COUNTER R5, which replaces the former release and becomes mandatory for content providers beginning this month, January 2019. See COUNTER's online guide, The friendly guide to release 5 for librarians and read more at the COUNTER website.   

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Coming to terms with the IFLA LRM

In early December, ALCTS sponsored a webinar entitled The IFLA LRM Model: an introduction presented by Thomas M. Dousa of The University of Chicago Library. The webinar attempted to distill the concepts embodied in the ILFA Library Reference Model for an audience just beginning exploration of the model. Since the revised RDA Toolkit is organized in alignment with IFLA LRM entities, understanding of the model should aid use of the new toolkit.

Dousa explained that the IFLA LRM represents a harmonization of the three conceptual models sometimes referred to as the "FRAMILY", that is FRBR (Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records), FRAD (Functional Requirements for Authority Data), and FRSAD (Functional Requirements for Subject Authority Data).In the training period leading up to the introduction of RDA, many of us spent time wrestling with the FRBR WEMI model and the FRBR user tasks of Find, Identify, Select and Obtain.

The LRM presents an expanded suite of user tasks:
  • Find - bring together information about one of more resources of interest ...
  • Identify - clearly understand the nature of the resources found and distinguish between similar resources
  • Select - determine the suitability of the resources found ...
  • Obtain - access the content of the resource
  • Explore - discover resources using the relationships between them, placing the resources in context
And a consolidated list of entities:

  • Res
  • Work
  • Manifestation
  • Expression 
  • Item
  • Agent
  • Person
  • Collective Agent
  • Nomen
  • Place
  • Time-Span
These entities function in an "is-a" hierarchy, where entities inherit the characteristics of entities further up in the hierarchy. Practically, all entities are subcategories of "res", and "person" and "collective agent" are subcategories of "agent". 

The definition of "work" has been adjusted to read "the intellectual or artistic content of a distinct creation". It should be noted that works are modeled as coming into existence with the creation of an initial expression; there is no work without at least one expression of the work. The definition of "expression" has been adjusted to account for simultaneous creation with a work; the definitions of manifestation and item have also been adjusted. 

Some additional things to keep in mind include the definition of "person" in a way that prohibits the treatment of fictional beings as persons , the concept of "nomen" defined as "an association between an entity and a designation that refers to it", and the idea of a "representative expression" as essential to characterizing a work.

The concept of relationships is central to the LRM. Currently 36 have been declared in the format [Entity A]<Relationship>[Entity B]. Relationships among the various WEMI entities form the core of the model.

How any of this will play out in the daily work of bibliographic description remains to be seen. The RDA Steering Committee has yet to finalize revisions to the RDA Toolkit, but it is my understanding that many cataloging policy decisions will be governed by application profiles.

As a reminder ALCTS webinars are made available at no cost on the ALCTS Youtube channel six months after original presentation.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Getting to Know TS Librarians: Gypsy Moody

1. Introduce yourself (name & position). 
Gypsy Moody - Cataloging Librarian at Belmont University College of Law

2. Does your job title actually describe what you do? Why/why not?
It describes only a small portion of what I actually do.  At this point, my time is spent doing a lot more metadata management and systems work than strict cataloging.  I started in this position over seven years ago, when the law school was founded.  My duties have grown, developed and evolved as the library has established itself and needs have arisen that I was able to fill.  I have learned Qualtrics to run our student satisfaction surveys, tackled a systems migration and configuration to become the Alma Administrator for the Law Library, and manage all aspects of the Law School collections in the Belmont’s Digital Repository.    

3. What are you reading right now?
In my quest to better understand Scholarly Communications, I located the NASIG Core Competencies for Scholarly Communication Librarians and have been trying to find the bottom of the Open Access articles rabbit hole...

4. If you could work in any library (either a type of library or a specific one), what would it be? Why?
I believe being a solo librarian would be a fascinating, challenging and rewarding job.  I have been given the opportunity to work in so many facets of librarianship and I think there would be something very poetic about wrapping it all up with a nice bow as a solo librarian at a small art college or museum. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Library of Congress’ Policy and Standards Division (PSD) announces the cancellation of “multiple” subdivisions

Beginning December 2018, the Library of Congress’ PSD announced the cancellation of “multiple” subdivisions from Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH).
Established LCSH multiple subdivisions are identified by the presence of [square brackets] and followed by “etc.”  The concept allowed catalogers flexibility in creating and maintaining LCSH heading strings as catalogers can “fill in the blank” and substitute any word, phrase, or other information that fits the instruction without seeking PSD approval. Unfortunately, the use of multiple subdivisions, which are not fully authorized, presents obstacles in implementing linked-data projects.  Using multiples to generate free-floating lists under individual headings creates headings without identifiers and heading strings that cannot be machine-validated.
The announcement, which contains the project plan and instructions for catalogers, is found at