Library of Congress

Program for Cooperative Cataloging

The Library of Congress > Program for Cooperative Cataloging > CONSER > ESTABLISHING A BENCHMARK

Nov. 10, 1998
A proposal by Jean Hirons, Regina Reynolds, and Guenter Franzmeier

I. BACKGROUND
A. WHY IS A BENCHMARK NEEDED?

Libraries throughout the world are turning increasingly to record sharing, copy cataloging and contract cataloging in order to gain bibliographic control of publications at the least cost. However, one of the hindrances to increased record sharing internationally is the use of different cataloging rules and practices. For serials, a critical key to record sharing and compatibility is that different standards must agree on what one serial record covers. At present, a serial that is represented on one ISSN record may be represented on multiple AACR records and varying numbers of record under ISBD(S) and under various cataloging codes. The consequence of these differences is that the date spans and volumes covered under a given serial title might differ greatly according to the cataloging rules used, thus making it impossible to integrate (and sometimes even identify) records for serials cataloged under one set of rules with those cataloged under another. In ISSN rules all serials are entered under key title. However, many cataloging codes, such as AACR2, specify main entry under corporate body or even personal author for at least some serials but not all codes specify the same kind of entry for the same kind of publications. When main entries change, new records are required.

ISBD(S), as we know, is concerned with description alone but does specify "major changes" which call for a new description (0.1.3) as well as minor changes in title proper and statement of responsibility that do not require a new description (7.1.1.6 and 7.1.5.4). One of the most significant challenges for harmonization is the need for agreement among the standards about which changes and to which elements require a new description and which do not. Despite these considerable challenges to be overcome in setting a standard for determining the extent of records and title changes, the benefits to be realized by harmonizing just this one practice would be enormous. While differences in bibliographic description and form of headings can be either massaged or accepted within a catalog, incompatibilites in what is covered on one serial record are nearly insurmountable. Thus, the span of the title to be covered on one serial record is probably the single most significant area to harmonize in order to achieve international record sharing, more effective and easily produced union lists, and, if the key title were used as the benchmark, more extensive use of ISSN by libraries.

The time has never been better to try to harmonize the creation of new records for serials. The major standards (AACR, ISBD(S), and ISSN) as well as some national standards such as the German RAK, are already under review to accommodate serials in electronic formats, giving the serials community a rare opportunity to more fully capitalize on international standards and harmonize practices. Once we recognize the need for a benchmark to harmonize the creation of new serial records under various rules, it becomes clear that the key title, an element of one of the most widely-used international standards for serials--the ISSN--is the obvious choice for such a benchmark. Although the ISSN is widely used througout the world for the identification of serials, the potential of the key title as a unique identifier has not been fully realized. Key titles have been assigned to over 900,000 serials published in 180 countries and in some 150 languages. The entire database of ISSN records, including key titles is accessible via the World Wide Web. We propose that the key title become the determinant of when to create a new record for title changes by limiting the creation of new records to only those cases where ISSN rules (after being harmonized with and incorporated into current standards) would require a new ISSN.

B. CURRENT PRACTICE

AACR, ISBD(S)(S) and ISSN currently use different elements within the record in order to determine that a major change has occurred, as illustrated below.
Comparison of elements & USMARC fields used to determine major changes
Element AACR LCRI ISBD(S) ISSN
Title proper area 1 (245)

uniform title (translations) (130/240)

same area 1 (245) key title (222)
Corporate body main entry (110)
uniform title qualifer (130)
same area 1 (statement of responsibility) (245/$c) key title qualifier for generic titles (222)
Edition statement
 
 
area 2 key title qualifier (???)
Numbering
 
area 3 (362)
 
 
Physical format
 
indicate in uniform title (130/240)
 
indicate in key title qualifier (222)

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One aspect of current practice that needs to be raised is the use of "uniform titles" for serials (AACR 25.5B) which was implemented with AACR2 in 1981. Since many more serials would be entered under title in AACR2, it was felt that some form of unique title would be necessary, but for various reasons the key title was not accepted as fulfilling this role. Therefore, AACR2 catalogers have constructed and supplied uniform titles according to LCRI 25.5B, while ISSN catalogers have added key titles according to the standards set forth in the ISDS Manual. Often the results are the same--causing redundancy--while in other cases the results differ substantially. Because of the redundant situations, most U.S. library systems do not index the key title even though all index the ISSN. Thus, U.S. catalogers have come to consider the key title to be somewhat extraneous.

To further complicate current use of key titles and uniform titles in the U.S. and Canada, a "CONSER exception," (ISDS Manual 3.2.2.3) was added at the time of AACR2 implementation to allow ISSN centers following CONSER practices to use as the key title qualifier for generic titles the form of the body name as it is established by national cataloging practice instead of following the ISSN requirement to use the body name as found on the piece. Thus, the application and use of the key title is not truly international. We propose to eliminate this exception by separating the functions of the key title from those of the uniform title.

However, in working out the examples to illustrate this proposal, Jean Hirons and Regina Reynolds concluded that the treatment of series presents one of the most significant hurdles at least for the U.S. community--to be overcome if the "CONSER exception" is eliminated. The overall problem applies to series which are analyzed, (cataloged as separate monographs with a series added entry) and which consist of a generic term qualified by a corporate body. In cases where corporate body qualifier as taken from the piece does not match the established heading for the corporate body, the key title may not provide sufficient access to the series. This is because, unlike in the case where the series is cataloged as a serial and the corporate body is either the main or an added entry, there is no place in the analytic record other than in the series added entry where the established form of the body responsible for the series can appear predictably. A further explanation of this problem and a possible solution are presented in the section entitled, "Challenges," and in the series example in Appendix B.

II. PROPOSAL: SUGGESTED USE OF KEY TITLE, UNIFORM TITLE AND TITLE PROPER

1. Key title. A key title would be required when creating a catalog record for any serial, regardless of its date or country of publication. If the cataloging agency knew that a key title had already been assigned by an ISSN center, this "official" key title would be used. Otherwise, the cataloger would create a provisional key title according to same the rules used by ISSN centers. These rules, after potential modification for harmonization, would be included in AACR2, ISBD(S), and potentially other cataloging codes. The provisional key title could later be validated by an ISSN agency or from information found later in the ISSN database. The current rules for key title specify use of the title as it appears on the publication plus the addition of a qualifier in the following circumstances:
  • title consists of one word
  • title is generic
  • title is not unique
  • title is issued in multiple formats, editions, languages, etc.
It should be noted that we are proposing that the corporate body qualifier for a generic title would be given as it appears on the piece rather than in its established form. The CONSER exception, as noted above, would be removed. In this way, the key title could be more universally applied, since different countries establish names according to their own rules and languages.

Under this proposal, a new record would be required when a new key title was required. After some hoped-for harmonizations noted by asterisks, this would include:

  • Major change occurs in the title words in the key title
  • Edition statement used as qualifer changes in fact rather than in form
  • Major changes occur to name of corporate body used as generic title qualifier or a new body is responsible (refer to ISBD(S) list of minor changes; see also comments in Appendix B)
  • The physical format changes (i.e., one format is continued by another)
  • The language of the key title changes (i.e., one language is replaced by another)
The key title would have to be used for:
  • Determining when a new record is needed
  • The form used in links to other records
The key title could also be used for:
  • Single citations to the serial (e.g., notes or added entries on other records)
  • Check in/shelf titles, etc.
2. Uniform title. We are proposing that in AACR2 and other codes which use a differentiating type of uniform title for serials, use of the uniform title would be limited to situations in which access under an established heading is needed. These might include:
  • To provide the established form of the name in conjunction with a generic title
  • To provide the title of the original when the serial is a translation
  • Optionally, institutions could use the uniform title to provide access for common titles (other than generic) that are qualified by place, etc. when the key title is not indexed
In other cases, no uniform title would be created. When present, the uniform title would be used for access only and would not be used to determine the need for new records. Thus, libraries using AACR2 would not need to make a new record when the title of the original serial changed but the translation title remained the same (a long-standing problem for serials). Under this proposal, the uniform title would probably be better moved to an added entry position (730) and labeled "uniform title added entry." This would help distinguish records created before rule revision from new records.

It should noted that the necessity for access to the combination of generic title and established form of name which the uniform title now provides might be further investigated by AACR review groups. Prior to AACR2, uniform titles were not used and such access was provided by corporate author/title added entries. And, in Germany, for example, systems retrieval software automatically combines headings from 1XX fields with the title proper and uses control numbers in the 1XX fields and links behind them to combine the heading and all the variants from the name authority file with the title proper. However, added entries for the bodies in the series statement are not given on the record for the analytic and changes in software of commercially-available or local library systems are notoriously difficult to bring about in the U.S.

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3. Title proper. Rules for the title proper would be changed to require that it reflect the most current title of the serial. When minor changes occur, the title proper would be changed and the old form would be added as a variant title added entry (field 246). In this way, the entire description could reflect the latest information (AACR revision is currently considering using most current information in imprint, etc.). Minor changes in the title proper would not affect links, check-in titles (this may be questionnable), or citations since the key title would be used for this purpose.

III. IMPACT ON CURRENT STANDARDS

A. IMPACT ON AACR2/LCRI

1. Serials entered under corporate body main entry. Applying the key title as a benchmark would mean that in some cases a corporate body used as the main entry could change without requiring the creation of a new record (21.3B). This would occur when the title proper is not generic and thus, the key title has not been qualified with the corporate body. The main entry could be changed to reflect the latest name and a 550 note and added entry (710) would be supplied to accommodate the earlier name. Although it might be argued that such a practice would result in the 110 field not really being a "main entry," in fact, it would still serve the function of being the chief entry point for the serial, it would simply not be the determinant of when a new record was made. We feel this approach of retaining the concept of main entry while removing its role as determining when to make a new record for serials would have the benefit of being less disruptive to current practice and less likely to become entangled in debates about the utility of main entry or the need to apply the same principles for the entry of monographs and serials.

Note: Since main entry is limited under AACR2 and many of the titles that are entered under corporate body are annual reports or other titles likely to be generic, the situations when this will occur would not be frequent.

Note: Iowa State University is currently applying this principle, using the uniform title as the benchmark rather than key title, and it seems to be working rather well according to Jim Cole.

2. Serial translations. Since the original title would not be given in the key title, no new record would be created. Instead, an additional uniform title added entry could be added.

3. Serials issued in editions. Currently the edition statement may be used as a uniform title qualifier; however, there is no provision for making a new record if the edition statement changes. If it is determined that such a change signifies a new work and should be considered major (ISBD(S) currently addresses the question of changes to edition statements but ISSN does not), this would be a change for AACR2.

4. Serials whose numbering begins again with the same enumeration. This is a provision carried only in an LCRI (LCRI 12.3G). The rationale is that when the numbering is the same and no distinguishing words, such as "new series" are included, there is no way to distinguish the first volume 1 from the second volume 1. Numbering is not required in ISSN records, therefore, there is no provision for such changes. Since this is not in AACR2, it would seem the best solution would be to remove the LCRI.

5. Corporate body changes. There will need to be agreement on what constitutes a major/minor change for a heading, as well as for a title. A list such as appears in ISBD(S)(S) 7.1.5.4 would be useful.

B. IMPACT ON ISBD(S)

ISBD(S) 0.1.3 would have to be changed to refer to the key title rather than the title proper, statement of responsibility, and edition statement. However, the key title is already incorporated into ISBD(S) and the same elements would be used in the qualifiers, so this would not represent a major change.

C. IMPACT ON ISSN

Harmonization of what constitutes a major title change or otherwise requires a new description would probably require some modification to ISSN rules, but other than that, the impact on the ISSN manual would not be too great. However, the desire of libraries to have "official" key titles for as many serials as possible might put some pressure on ISSN centers. Also, these centers might have to take into account "provisional" key titles when creating new key titles for serials being assigned ISSN. As can be seen from the previously cited chart listing the differences in when various standards require a new record, there are not too many differences in the rules for major and minor title changes currently being used within the ISSN Network and those in other standards. However, to alleviate some of the problems which we anticipate the AACR community might have with using the corporate body name as it appears on the piece as a qualifier, the ISSN Network might need to consider changing current practice to provide a more structured and predictable form of body name for filing and access, such as rearranging the name from highest to lowest in the hierarchy. We recognize, however, that this is problematic for languages where the case of words would be affected.

IV. BENEFITS

  • The creation of new records would be standardized internationally, thus facilitating greater sharing of records
  • The uses and purposes of the key title, uniform title, and title proper would be clearly delineated; the benefits of each would be more fully realized
  • By having a stable title (key title), the title proper could reflect the latest variation, something that reference and acquisitions staff find useful; this could facilitate an overall shift from description based on earliest to description based on latest.
  • AACR rules for entry would not have to be changed; only rules for when to create a new entry (21.2A, 21.2C, 21.3B)
  • Would allow for more descriptive compatibility between successive and latest entry records if all were described from latest
  • We would resolve the problem of translations for the AACR2 serials community

V. CHALLENGES

  • Series: as noted in the introduction, there is a problem in applying this practice to series which are not represented by a bibliographic record but cataloged as monographs with series added entries. In order to keep the practices for series and serials synchronized (since such publications can be cataloged as serials by one library and as monographs with added entries by another) it would seem to be necessary to give the key title as the "established" form of the series on the analytic. However, when the series title is a generic term which is qualified by a corporate body name which differs from the established form of the name, use of the key title as the series added entry will not provide a useful access point, and libraries might need to add an additional access point (generic title plus established heading) in the record for the analytic. This is perhaps the biggest challenge to be overcome. Our proposal for resolving this problem applies to countries using Series Authority Records (SARs). In these countries, the SAR could contain, in addition to the key title which would serve as the benchmark for determining title changes, a series added entry consisting of the generic word qualified by the established form of the body. It is this added entry alone which would appear on the analytic records to provide access to and collocate the series added entries. See proposal and examples in Appendix B below.
  • Single citations on other records (other information would not be stable so key title would be better; however, the key title doesn't really provide a good access point in all cases).
  • Convincing AACR2 catalogers to learn another set of rules in order to be able to construct a key title will also, no doubt, meet with strong opposition, even though the rules for constructing key titles are very similar to those for constructing uniform titles. The rules must be integrated into AACR2.

VI. APPENDICES

A. ISBD(S) List of minor changes to statement of responsibility (7.1.5.4) Changes to the form of name of a corporate body to be considered minor [see below for footnote] include, for example, when linguistically applicable:
  • articles, prepositions and conjunctions substituted, added or deleted;
  • spelling or punctuation changed without affecting meaning;
  • inflection of a word changed, for example, from singular to plural form;
  • order of elements in the name changed.
A new description of the serial is required when the title proper is a generic term and the responsible issuing body changes its name or the serial is issued by a different body. Such changes are considered major changes.

Footnote: In such instances of minor changes to the form of name of the corporate body in conjunction with a title proper which is a generic title, the key title and ISSN are not changed: see ISDS Manual Part 2.

B. Examples {all examples were made up by Hirons and Reynolds}

The following examples attempt to illustrate how ongoing entities in both categories of successively issued and integrating would be treated under this proposal according to the nature of the title and the rules for entry (AACR2).

In working out the examples, we realize that the major problem is having to give the body as it appears on the piece. There is a serious problems here:

The best solution we can envision is for the key title rules to change to indicate a way to provide corporate body qualifiers that would give the parts of a corporate hierarchy in a predictable order, and possibly specify which parts could be left out when transcribing the body name from the piece. Perhaps the existing provision in the ISDS Manual which gives instructions about qualifiers and states, "choose the briefest form (not an acronym or an initialism) which adequately identifies the issuing body" could be broadened to be applied in all cases, even if there was only one form on the piece and even if the briefest form did not appear on the piece in hand.

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1. Successively-issued serials
a. Printed journal entered under title

As first cataloged

Rec.1.

222  0    Snow fall statistics, New York
245 00    Snow fall statistics, New York / $c New York Weather Bureau.
After minor change

Rec. 1.

222  0    Snow fall statistics, New York
245 00    Snow fall statistics, New York state.
246 1     $i Issues for 1998-2001 called: $a Snow fall statistics, New York
After major change

Rec. 2.

222  0    Snow fall statistics, New York state and New England
245 00    Snow fall statistics, New York state and New England
780 00    $t Snow fall statistics, New York
Rec. 1.
222  0    Snow fall statistics, New York
245 00    Snow fall statistics, New York state.
246 1     $i Issues for 1998-2001 called: $a Snow fall statistics, New York
785 00    $t Snow fall statistics, New York state and New England
b. Printed journal entered under title; key title qualified by corporate body

As first cataloged

Rec. 1.

222  0    Bulletin--Committee on Kitchen Gadgets, Society for Useless Inventions
245 00    Bulletin / $c Committee on Kitchen Gadgets, Society for Useless Inventions.
710 2     Society for Useless Inventions. $b Committee on Kitchen Gadgets.
730 0     Bulletin (Committee on Kitchen Gadgets.  Society for Useless Inventions) 
{is this needed???}
After major change in corporate body qualifier in key title

Rec.2.

222  0    Bulletin--Committee on Kitchen and Bathroom Gadgets, Society for Useless 
          Inventions
245 00    Bulletin / $c Committee on Kitchen and Bathroom Gadgets, Society 
          for Useless Inventions.
710 2     Society for Useless Inventions. $b Committee on Kitchen and Bathroom Gadgets.
730 0     Bulletin (Society for Useless Inventions. Committee on Kitchen and Bathroom 
          Gadgets).
780 00    $t Bulletin--Committee on Kitchen Gadgets, Society for Useless Inventions 
Rec. 1.
222  0    Bulletin--Committee on Kitchen Gadgets, Society for Useless Inventions
245 00    Bulletin / $c Committee on Kitchen Gadgets, Society for Useless Inventions.
710 2     Society for Useless Inventions. $b Committee on Kitchen Gadgets.
730 0     Bulletin (Society for Useless Inventions.  Committee on Kitchen Gadgets.) 
{is this needed???}
785 00    $t Bulletin--Committee on Kitchen and Bathroom Gadgets, Society for Useless 
          Inventions
c. Printed journal entered under corporate body; key title is not qualified by body; body and title both change at different times

As first cataloged

Rec. 1.

110 2      Association of Librarians in Space.
222  0     Space librarians
245 10     Space librarians : $b annual report of the Association of Librarians in Space.
Corporate body changes {110 is changed; no new record created}

Rec. 1.

110 2     Association of Librarians in Outer Space.
222  0    Space librarians
245 10    Space librarians : $b annual report of the Association of Librarians in Space.
710 2     Association of Librarians in Space.
Key title changes (new record created)

Rec. 2

110 2     Association of Librarians in Outer Space.
222  0    Outer space librarians
245 10    Outer space librarians : $b annual report of the Association of Librarians 
          in Outer Space.
780 00    $t Space librarians
Rec. 1.
110 2     Association of Librarians in Outer Space.
222  0    Space librarians
245 10    Space librarians : $b annual report of the Association of Librarians in Space.
710 2     Association of Librarians in Space.
785 00    $t Outer space librarians
2. Integrating entities
a. Electronic journal entered under title; key title qualified by place

Assuming traditional latest entry cataloging

As first cataloged:

222  0    Journal of art and politics (New York, NY)
245 00    Journal of art and politics.
246 17    Art and politics  {running title}
After major title change:
           
222  0    Journal of art, history, and politics
245 00    Journal of art, history, and politics
246 17    Art and politics 
247 10    Journal of art and politics (New York, NY) $f Mar. 1998-Feb. 2000  
          $x 0098-6789
C. Proposal for handling series by Reynolds and Hirons In order to keep series and serials synchronized, we must apply the same rules and practices. Thus, a series that is analyzed will be entered under the key title, not the title proper or the corporate main entry/title proper.

The principal problem will be in cases where a generic title is qualified by corporate body and the body as given in the key title (as transcribed from the piece) does not provide a useful access point and the corporate body is not necessarily given in the record. The solution would be for those, such as the US, using a series authority record to give the key title in the authority record, along with a form of entry that is to be used on analytics and serial records that provides the desired access by established body name.

e.g.,  SAR:    130 0  Title name as it appears on the piece (key title)
               430    Title (name in established form) (to be used as added entry)
Note: This proposal assumes that all series would be successive entities, i.e., none would be integrating entities.

Examples: {all made up}

1. Key title qualified by place

Key title: Construction report (Birmingham, Eng.)

Series authority record

130       Construction report (Birmingham, Eng.)
Series on analytic
245 00    Housing starts in Birmingham, 1998-1999.
490 1     Construction report
830 0     Construction report (Birmingham, Eng.)
Series cataloged as serial (not analyzed)
222 0     Construction report (Birmingham, Eng.)
245 00    Construction report.
710 1     Great Britain. $b Bureau of  Housing.
2. Key title qualified by corporate body, not in established form; main entry under title.

Key title: Report Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Corporate body as established: United States. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Series authority record:

130 Report Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics {key title, form found on piece; tagging might be changed to same tag as key title}

430 Report (United States. Bureau of Labor Statistics) {uniform title cross reference, to be used as added entry}

Analytic

245 00    Construction statistics, Wyoming.
490 1     Report / Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics
830 0     Report (United States. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Series cataloged as a serial (not analyzed)
222       Report Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics
245 00    Report / $c Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
260       Washington, DC : $b The Bureau,
710 1     United States. $b Bureau of Labor Statistics.
730 0     Report (United States. Bureau of Labor Statistics)
3. Key title not qualified; main entry under corporate author.

Key title: Pastel highlights {a series of reports about the activities of the Maryland Pastel Society}
Corporate body as established: Maryland Pastel Society.

Series authority record

           
130       Pastel highlights
410       Maryland Pastel Society. Pastel highlights
Series cataloged as a serial
110 2      Maryland Pastel Society.
222 0      Pastel highlights
245 10     Pastel highlights / $c a series of reports on the activities of the 
           Maryland Pastel Society.
Series on analytic
100 1     Smith, Robin
245 10    Report on a group show held at the Rockville Civic Center, Aug. 2-29, 1998.
260       Baltimore : $b Maryland Pastel Society, $c 1998.
440 0     Pastel highlights
710 2     Maryland Pastel Society.

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