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Update Forum Minutes – LC Bibliographic Framework Transition Initiative

A forum to update the progress of the Library of Congress Bibliographic Framework Transition Initiative was held on January 22nd at the American Library Association Mid-Winter Meeting in Dallas, Texas. There were about 110 people in attendance including folks from the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek, Biblioteca Nacional de EspaƱa, and our own Library and Archives Canada.

In his introductory remarks Beacher Wiggins said that this forum aimed to “learn how the Library of Congress could engage the community in the Bibliographic Framework Transition project and to foster dialogue about community concerns.”

Deanna Marcum, who now heads up the strategic consulting service Ithaka S+R, spoke about the need for a new bibliographic framework a question that has been on her mind for some time. She indicated that two recent reports were catalysts toward this initiative: the first was the final report of the Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control; and, the second was the report from the U.S. RDA Test Coordinating Committee of LC, NAL, and NLM which stated in part that there should be “credible progress toward a replacement for MARC” as one of the recommendations leading to a successful implementation of RDA.

Marcum also asked her then Library of Congress colleagues: “[what would Henriette D. Avram] have done in the age of Google. All agreed that Avram would not have viewed MARC as the final answer, but would have overseen an evolution of MARC to meet contemporary needs.”

Sally McCallum then provided an overview of and a synopsis of responses to initial Transition plan released on October 31, 2011. She noted that “several national libraries abroad had submitted statements of support for the Transition Initiative.”

In her remarks she stated that the Framework would:

… most likely be based on Linked Data principles and use the Resource Description Framework (RDF), a World Wide Web Consortium specification, as its basic data model. The new framework will support many more options for data storage and retrieval than is the case now.

McCallum also looked to the development of RDF ontologies as part of the new bibliographic framework and “stressed the need for community collaboration.”

If you haven’t yet done so one way you can participate in this initiative is by joining the BIBFRAME electronic discussion list.

The minutes for this meeting are now available.

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