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Monday, January 12, 2009


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To be honest, I'm not completely convinced that I convinced myself when I wrote it. Irony there, eh? :)

I guess I was really thinking was along the lines of this (although I'm still up in the air) - a search engine can pull up free-web content automatically, and social networking tools are excellent at quickly sharing information with like-minded individuals, but MARC isn't. You have to create or download a record and then the patrons have to visit an external link to begin with. This might work if people browsed OPAC's like the web but they don't.

The Nietzsche reference was just intended to show that MARC has to do more than simply provide access. It has to be relevant and timely. Otherwise, people go elsewhere for electronic material.

Christine Schwartz

Million, Thanks for the comment and further thoughts on your post. I'm definitely more sanguine about using the MARC format for digital resources--I think it can be adapted if need be.

However, I think we'll move away from MARC eventually. What will replace it and how we get there is one of the most interesting library metadata question right now (interesting to me, at least).


Hence the name of the blog I suspect. :)

I was actually really disappointed that none of my library school classes covered alternative approaches. For example, everything I know about metadata other than MARC basically came from me learning on my own. Even now it's weird not seeing a definitive alternative.

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