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Special Interest Group Archive: Cataloging 11/4/2015

These are the notes from meetings dating back to 2015.

Meeting Notes

What other roles do you do?

DG – also does instruction for nursing, committee work, reference desk, collection development

RA – lends laptops, backup instruction, front desk, troubleshooting, coffee!

WW – instruction, collection development with other librarians, reference & virtual reference

LM – previously in an academic library: periodicals, copy cataloging, original cataloging & archival work back then, now, at the public library she is learning Dewey now book repair, weeding project, gardening, circ desk

MC – systems upgrade, discovery service, public services, bibliographic instruction

MG – reference & virtual reference, libGuides, all technology related online work, liaison to four departments, collection development.

MV – thesis cataloging, liaison to arts & biology, zine collection, ally program

MC – reference & instruction, turned herself into a cataloger by anticipating retirements, service on committees, liaison work, sustainability person

Current Struggles:

Dewey extended numbers (Access Pennsylvania – a good resource for figuring out how to look at numbers)

MV - Cataloger’s desktop – helpful but prohibitively expensive

RA – Lack of documentation for cutter numbers at. General note: be kind to your future replacement – make a note about why you do things. (New Paltz has them up in a shared server)

MG –getting old records out of Aleph – how long do you keep weeded records?

MC – you lose the circulation status, so they list them as withdrawal, suppressed records causes issues. Even discarded records stay in the system – but they don’t get rid of the entire record

MG – does it matter if you don’t use the acquisitions module? Group – probably not. They can’t just get rid of things, they have to be given away through proper channels. The college administration has a problem with weeding, not the library.

RA – there is repercussion from predecessors who threw things away without checking first. They have to hide things when they are

Public libraries have had people take photos of dumpsters.

Collection Development Policy – almost no one has a written one.

Where does anyone think the books are going to go?

New Paltz found books in the ceiling :)

WW – does anyone else have law books stolen?

The community has an idea of books as sacred.

DG – had luck giving out old books to professors and others that wanted it

MV – read about a weeding social w/ tea & cookies with the department whose books are going away.

WW – they did it with the nursing department, and they were almost too into it. They wanted to get rid of things that were brand new, however.

DG – The flip side is that they also find holes in the collection. They feel more invested in the library.


Everyone subscribes to OCLC except Woodstock – but they have MidHudson and Sierra.

LM – They use records from other libraries. They have a lot of local authors and DVDS, and esoteric items. The CDs and DVDs are very brief records because there isn’t data on them.

MC – Most of the records come to them semi-OK. But they get some brand new stuff.

RA – when is enough enough with an original record?

MC & MV – update a few dozen records a month, and they submit errors weekly. She got an email asking for proof of images, for instance.

Adding the summary and the table of contents and anthologies is the most helpful information to add.

MC - Sometimes OCLC removes the abstracts that they put in.

MV - Code of ethics for people who are working on zines. Protecting people’s privacy, by not including information that is not on the piece. Are they OK to catalog as monographs? That is the preferred method for zines.

How do you catalog ebooks?

There is no original, just take the copy and change the URL.

DG – there is an “access ebook here” button. They used Sierra to make the global change.

Vendor records are not great – what can they do for access

Ebrary – a Proquest database that is an ebook collection. You can get MARC records for the collection, and it is more academic. They can’t all be viewed on an ereader.

Academic and public ebooks are a totally different world. People stopped cataloging them.

MG – is pushing people towards discovery and away from the catalog. The books get buried, and the books aren’t being used anyway.

DG – they can’t get the nursing students to use ebooks. They now have Access Medicine and they don’t need it.

RA – They use web of science for two or three faculty who don’t need it.

SUNY Catalogers listserv – for further questions

Are there Aleph trainings? Reaching out for a mentor might be the best option. Sandy Card in Binghamton might be worth talking to.

The SUNY Catalog is no longer moving forward

Do you worry about being outsourced? Some SUNYs are cataloging for others.

MV – What makes us unique? That helps to make you seem valuable.

MC – Not a lot of time to think about bigger picture.

MG - Only 3 full time librarians and one part-timer – they lost 80 hours with the retrenchments, including one full-timer. The librarians still teach online, separate from their library time. They also have an aging staff. The only way to get attention is to close. Students still use the physical space.

Instruction – there are so many ways librarians can be reaching students, but they are not doing it.

Do you have support to go to a conference or professional development?

ALA Midwinter in Boston – there is a more working group and focus group place.

ACRL will be in Baltimore in 2017

NYLA groups

What is new with BIBFRAME?

Information is in XML and is more interoperable. The Germans are already all over it.

It could take away some of the specialized knowledge of catalogers.

Catalog records could be in a Google search.

We need to speak up as a group and be annoying. Conclusion - we talked a lot about advocacy, gender, stereotypes, and what we can do to encourage others to shake of their natural introversion and become librarians!

Fun & Games introduction

We started the day off with introductions and then the Where the Wind Blows icebreaker. As a result, we learned some interesting things - like the fact that many people would rather say, "thanks, but no thanks" to RDA...

Next up: what do we all do on the job?

Many of us use local subject headings: local history (in the MSMC archives), special collections

One participant was learning cataloging on the job – the technical services person was let go, and no one replaced that person. There is a copy cataloger that does the main stuff, she mainly does ebooks.

November 4, 2015, In attendance:

  • Megan Coder & Madeline Veitch (conveners) - SUNY New Paltz
  • William Woford - SUNY Orange
  • Denise Garofalo - Mount Saint Mary College
  • Linda McAteer, Woodstock Public Library District
  • Marla Gruner, SUNY Ulster Community College
  • Marta Cwik, Marist College
  • Rhonda Altonen, Culinary Institute of America
  • SENYLRC - Carolyn Bennett Glauda


Mark your calendar:

Thursday, January 14


Registration opening soon!

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Phone: (845) 883-9065