From Radical Reference Wiki
A librarian since 2981, and at NyLink since 1989, Pinsley brings years of experience to her view on the policy proposal, including currently supervising NyLink's OCLC support team. She lays out four issues of concern:
1] the policy allows for the "original cataloging" institution, as cited in the 040 $a field, to be free of any restrictions imposed by the policy. but during the early uploads into what would become WorldCat, that field was changed to DLC (Loc), so it is impossible for members to determine of the current WorldCat record came from them (for older materials). even for newer records, Pinsley's experience suggests that it is difficult for member libraries to sort out their original contributions from non - and, she wonders, what use would such a subset be for? She also notes how few records originate with OCLC, which raises a double-standards issue: why shouldn't OCLC be restricted in their use of non-OCLC originated records the way they want to restrict others.
2] The requirement that a "proposal for use" form be filed - "reasonable use" is a vague term, leaving the door open for OCLC to restrict uses deemed "disruptive technology." - this would inhibit innovartion. there is no appeal process for OCLC decisions regarding proposals that are denied. members should have input regarding use of the records which they (collectively) have created.
3] concern that effective date of Feb 2009 conflicts with current OCLC subscriptions which run until June 30, 2009. this concern (as I understand it, which is limited) seems to be negated by the current rescheduling of the rollout for the later quarters of 2009. probably not a coincidence?
4] last, but far from least - many WorldCat records are "public documents" - especially LoC and other national libraries, but also state libraries and public universities, which are taxpayer funded, created and shared records as a public good, and all morally and at least some legally would be public domain. Since much is made of the original cataloging entry in ther 040 $a field, and many records originate with a CiP record from Loc, would not "ownership" of such records revert back to the public? (That's my own spin on the point that Pinsley makes)
Pinsley concludes by recalling a similar situation in 2004, in which concerns over z39.50 raiding were ultimately addressed not by proprietary restrictions, but rather by the opposite strategy of increasing the utility of the cooperative by creating open WorldCat, aka Worldcat.org - which would seem to have had a very positive effect.
back to RR-NYC salon:OCLC