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MARC Standards

MAC Meeting Minutes
MARC Advisory Committee

ALA Annual Meeting
San Francisco, CA - June 27-28, 2015

MARC Steering Group Members:

Sally H. McCallum               LC                Library of Congress
Bill Leonard                    LAC               Library and Archives Canada 
Thurstan Young                  BL                British Library
Reinhold Heuvelmann             DNB               Deutsche Nationalbibliothek

MAC Chair and Secretary

Matthew W. Wise, Chair          NYU               New York University
Everett Allgood, Secretary      NYU               New York University

MARC Advisory Committee Representatives and Liaisons:

Sandra Barclay                  STS             Kennesaw State University
Sherman Clarke                  VRA             Freelance art cataloger
Sherman Clarke (rep. pro tem)   ARLIS/NA        Freelance art cataloger 
Catherine Gerhart               OLAC            University of Washington
Stephen Hearn                   SAC             University of Minnesota
Shana L. McDanold               PCC             Georgetown University
Susan M. Moore                  MAGIRT          University of Northern Iowa
María Jesús Morillo Calero      BNE             Biblioteca Nacional de España
John Myers                      CC:DA           Union College
Cory L. Nimer                   SAA             Brigham Young University
Jean Pajerek                    AALL            Cornell Law Library
Robert Pillow                   AVIAC           VTLS, Inc.
Elizabeth Plantz                NLM             National Library of Medicine
Regina Reynolds                 ISSN            Library of Congress
James Soe Nyun                  MLA             University of California, San Diego
Jay Weitz                       OCLC            OCLC

Other Attendees:

Chew Chiat Naun                 Cornell University
Gordon Dunsire                  JSC for Development of RDA
Deborah Fritz                   TMQ Inc.
Gloria Gonzalez                 Zepheira
Roger Jette                     ProQuest
William W. Jones                New York University
Adrian Nolte                    Essen Public Library, Germany
Bruce Rennie                    Kansas City Public Library
Jackie Shieh                    George Washington University
Tracey Snyder                   Cornell University
Amanda Xu                       University of Iowa
Janis Young                     Library of Congress

[Note: anyone who attended and is not listed, please inform LC/Network 
Development and MARC Standards Office.]

Introductions, etc.

Introduction of members

Matthew Wise (NYU, Chair) opened the meeting by asking Committee members, representatives, and liaisons to introduce themselves. A Committee roster was passed around the table and all were asked to “check in” and to annotate their entries with any corrections.

Approval of minutes from MAC January 2015 meetings

Matthew Wise (NYU, Chair) asked if there were any corrections to the minutes of the ALA 2015 Midwinter meeting. A motion was passed and the minutes were approved unanimously.

Library of Congress Report

MARC 21 Update 20 (Apr. 2015) is available via the MARC website.

The Library of Congress BIBFRAME Pilot Project will take place later this year and training staff are drafting documentation and training Library of Congress staff. Paul Frank will serve as the liaison between cataloging personnel and the Library of Congress Network Development and MARC Standards Office.

Catalogers will concentrate on Bibliographic records in multiple formats (including Serials). They will not do their Authority work in the BIBFRAME system. During the Pilot project the Authorities will be in the MARC system and will be imported daily into the BIBFRAME system. Once it begins, the Pilot Project will last 3-4 months. In support of the library community all records will also be input in MARC and be distributed.

Update from R. Heuvelmann (German National Library): In merging four large authority files within the German language libraries into one “Integrated Authority File” (“GND”) in 2012, librarians have encountered the use of several local fields and subfields. After three years of consolidation, these elements are currently being evaluated to determine their potential appeal as part of the MARC 21 communication standard. Among them are designation of the type of entity described by a MARC 21 Authority record, language and script of a field content, free-floating notes, and some workflow-driven elements.

The German National Library is likely to present several discussion papers at the ALA Midwinter meeting in January 2016 based on this evaluation. As the result of cooperation between NDMSO and the German National Library, the relationship code subfield $4 in fields 4XX and 5XX will be populated with codes driven by a list of relationship types used in the GND, up to now expressed in a local subfield in 4XX/5XX fields.



PROPOSAL 2015-07: Extending the Use of Subfield $0 (Authority record control number or standard number) to Encompass Content, Media and Carrier Type
Source: British Library
Summary: This paper proposes the definition of subfield $0 (Authority record control number or standard number) in fields 336, 337 and 338 in the Bibliographic Format and 336 in the Authority Format.
Related Documents: 2009-01/2; 2011-08; 2010-06

MAC Discussion and Action taken: The proposal was approved unanimously, with the friendly amendment suggested by Reinhold Heuvelmann of the German National Library to also validate subfield $0 (Authority record control number or standard number) in the 337 and 338 fields of the Holdings format.

In order to add subfield $0 within the Holdings 337 and 338 fields, MAC approved the editorial change of defining subfield $0 in Appendix A of the MARC 21 Holdings format.

PROPOSAL 2015-08: Recording RDA Format of Notated Music in the MARC 21 Bibliographic and Authority Formats
Source: Canadian Committee on Metadata Exchange (CCM)
Summary: This paper proposes defining new field 348 in the MARC 21 Bibliographic and Authority formats for recording the RDA data element Format of Notated Music.
Related Documents: 2015-DP01

MAC Discussion and Action taken: The proposal was approved unanimously.

During discussion, it was suggested that the same Field Definition and Scope note currently appearing with fields 336, 337, and 338 of the Bibliographic format should be repeated with this 348 field (i.e., Multiple content types from the same source vocabulary or code list may be recorded in the same field in separate occurrences of subfield $a (Content type term) and subfield $b (Content type code). Terms from different source vocabularies are recorded in separate occurrences of the field).

The note should also be added to Bibliographic fields 344 (Sound Characteristics), 345 (Projection Characteristics of Moving Image), 346 (Video Characteristics), and 347 (Digital File Characteristics).

PROPOSAL 2015-09: Defining 670 $w (Bibliographic record control number) in the MARC 21 Authority Format
Source: Library of Congress, Policy and Standards Division
Summary: This paper proposes the definition of subfield $w (Bibliographic record control number) in the 670 field (Source of Data Found) of authority records to contain a bibliographic record control number of the title being cited.
Related Documents: [none]

MAC Discussion and Action taken: The proposal was approved unanimously.

The British Library alternatively suggested the use of the 672 field as it already contains subfield $w. However, Gary Strawn reminded us that the 672 field is often used for the title of a Manifestation the cataloger may not have at hand (i.e., from a list of an author’s published works). 672 fields contain a: “Citation for a work that is related in some manner to the entity represented by the 100, 110, 111 or 151 field in the authority record.

The 670 field cites “a consulted source in which information is found related in some manner to the entity represented by the authority record or related entities.

Janis Young (LC) described how the use of field 670 in subject authority cataloging differs from the use of 670 in descriptive cataloging.

Discussion encouraged not mixing the use of 670 with 672 and 673.

It was suggested to include an example in 670 showing the use of $w on a record created for descriptive cataloging purposes, i.e., on a name authority record.

Adding a subfield $w to reference the Bibliographic Record Control Number of the specific Manifestation cited in a 670 field is seen as especially helpful for other authorities catalogers and agencies.



DISCUSSION PAPER 2015-DP02: Coding 007 Field Positions for Digital Sound Recordings in the MARC21 Bibliographic Format
Source: Canadian Committee on Metadata Exchange (CCM)
Summary: This paper proposes defining new values for some 007 field positions in the MARC 21 Bibliographic Format to better accommodate digital sound recordings.
Related Documents: [none]

MAC Discussion and Action taken: This discussion paper stimulated considerable discussion, and revealed a number of areas within the MARC 21 documentation that may need to be tweaked and revised to reflect current usage.

There was broad agreement that the Canadian Committee on Metadata Exchange (CCM) has indeed identified an area that needs further attention (i.e., digital sound recordings). Responses to the Discussion Paper questions:

5.1. Should the definition of value s in 007/00 be redefined to be more inclusive of both physical and digital media?

Yes. CCM will consult with OLAC on a new definition for sound recording.

5.2. Should a specific value (v) for Digital sound recording be added to 007/01 Specific material designation to support precise coding?

No. CCM will propose the definition of value ‘r’ (Remote) in 007s/01; this aligns with an equivalent value in 007c/01.

5.3. Should value n for Not applicable be added to 007s/03 Speed to support precise coding?

Yes. CCM will propose the definition of value ‘n’ (Not applicable) and that the scope of 007s/03 is amended to specify that it only relates to mechanical, hand-held devices.

5.4. Should code n for Not applicable be added to 007s/10 Kind of material to support precise coding? Or is it sufficient to use the existing code u (Unknown)?

Yes. CCM will propose the definition of value ‘n’ (Not applicable) and that the scope of 007s/10 is amended to specify that it only relates to mechanical, hand-held materials.

5.5. Are there other 007 positions that require redefinition and/or new values in the same vein as what has been discussed for s (Sound recording)? If so, which ones?

Yes. CCM will consider the proposal of new values in 007c/01 to cover removable and stand-alone storage such as USB flash drives and Playaways. The British Library’s suggestion that the existing value ‘b’ (Chip cartridge) be expanded to encompass these devices was not accepted; PCC argued that the term ‘memory capacity’ which is used in the current definition of chip cartridge is not analogous to ‘storage capacity’.

5.6. Does a combination of 007/s and 007/c adequately cover born-digital sound recordings or is additional information needed? 


Informal Discussion Paper: URIs in MARC: A Call for Best Practices / Steve Folsom, Cornell University

MAC Discussion and Action taken: This paper also generated extensive discussion. There was broad agreement that the time is right for the library community to begin using URIs consistently.

Folsom and others encourage the MARC formats and library community to develop consistent use and instruction guidelines in cases where subfields $0 and $u contain URIs. This should include a clear explanation of when recording URIs in subfield $0 (Authority Record Control Number or Standard Number) is preferable over subfield $u (Uniform Resource Identifier (URI))

Based on the feedback and guidance provided, Steven will work with the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) to develop a MAC Discussion Paper. Among other elements, the paper may contain:

  1. Identification of MARC 21 fields that currently contain subfield $u but not subfield $0, or vice versa.
  2. Strong, clear definitions and usage guidelines for subfields $2 “Source,” or “Source of Term,” $u “Uniform Resource Identifier,” $v “Source of Information” and $0 “Authority Record Control Number or Standard Number”.
  3. A suggested place, or places, to record Work Identifiers within MARC 21 Bibliographic records. Possibilities include $0 in 130 (Uniform Title) or 240 (Uniform Title) fields, or $0 (to be defined) within 787 (Other Relationship Entry) fields.
  4. A solution for the handling of URI in subfield $0, either with a parenthetical label “(uri)” at the beginning of the subfield (with some label or namespace being mandatory up to now), or without this label. Existing implementations should be considered in order to minimize disruption moving forward.
  5. Guidance on the repeatability of $0, either “one field – one entity”, or in some other way.
  6. Suggestions for handling other, non-authority data-driven URIs (e.g., allowing URIs within subfield $2 “Source”, or “Source of term.”)

As a communications exchange standard, MARC traditionally allows for various cataloging practices and user communities may apply these as they see fit. Consequently, those areas of this informal discussion paper which recommend a particular policy (as opposed to a change in MARC coding or definition of coding) may lie outside the remit of the MARC Advisory Committee.


Respectfully submitted,
Everett Allgood


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