Re: OCLC and Michigan State at Impasse Over SkyRiver Cataloging, Resource Sharing Costs

From: MJ Suhonos <mj_at_nyob>
Date: Thu, 4 Mar 2010 20:01:21 -0500
>>> OCLC and Michigan State at Impasse Over SkyRiver Cataloging,
>>> Resource Sharing Costs.
>> I understand this probably incredibly naive, but why don't libraries
>> just dump their records on MARCXML on OAI-PMH servers? Surely, this
>> is a once and for all cost to develop the gateway and a small price
>> to pay for the server? It could by paid for by dropping a single
>> journal subscription...
> Frankly, I don't understand why us librarians don't do this either. I think there is some sort of fear of retaliation from OCLC.

Agreed -- [art of the approach I'm taking is to get our library's entire catalogue into Open Library so I (or anyone else) can convert it into MARCXML and drop it on an open OAI-PMH server somewhere.

Below is copied from a response I sent to the Open Library mailing list earlier today:

I wonder, for example, about libraries who deposit (or already have deposited) their MARC records into the Internet Archive (and thus made accessible to OL) -- couldn't they represent an aggregate hole in the bucket?  What recourse would OCLC take?

TPL, for example, is a net contributor of records to WorldCat due to the huge amount of original cataloguing we do, particularly for multilingual and non-English items, so OCLC would potentially be hurting themselves more than us if they decided to revoke TPL's license.  I would imagine if a few large libraries did similarly, we might see some momentum toward openness.

A follow-on thought: not that we should drag Z39.50 any further into the future than necessary, but I suspect that if OL had an open Z39.50 interface that returned MARC (or at least MARCXML) records, libraries could relatively easily use it as a surrogate for WorldCat.  Just an idea.

Received on Thu Mar 04 2010 - 20:01:51 EST