Over at HVCats we’re talking about cataloguing teams transitioning to information management teams; as I’ve previously mentioned once the ball is rolling it is a quick skip from AACR2 cataloguing to metadata management and before you know it, you’re outdated, antiquated and unless you can shift up a gear, you’ve done yourself out of a library role. So….without further doom and gloom, here are the ups!
With the skills you’ve gained as a cataloguer, and I’m not talking about the rules and regs of AACR2, I mean the transferrable skills (attention to detail, file management, building taxonomies, categorization and classification, understanding subject headings, linking data and using LMS) you’re more than ready for metadata management! Whats the difference? (sorry I heard that all the way over here) As John F Myers so eloquently puts it in his essay within ‘Conversations with Catalogers in the 21st Century’ , “things are not so different as they may seem at first glance”. I personally see that one of the major differences is that as cataloguers, we describe and organize FIXED resources, but in metadata management we deal with CHANGING resources. By this, I mean to identify the differences between tangible resources, e-resources and sometimes transient web resources. So what is the leap to information management? Essentially I feel that this encompasses more website activity, more controlled vocabulary (corporate language) for document management, file management including archiving, information ownership and permissions, copyright and sensitivity,plus much more I am sure, and this is outside of the library realm and into institutional organization. Ok it looks like I’m proposing that the library metadata team take over University records management, but not in a practical sense. We have the skills to know what to do with information; the prevelence of,retrieval of, dissemination of, filing of, permissions of, copyright of, and the old chestnuts availability and access so bring it on.
I would like to point out that we’re starting off the Twitter book club for ‘Conversations’ on Friday 18th March 2011 and we’ll be tweeting our cataloguing book chat using the hashtag #catbkchat. If you miss Friday your tweet will still be captured as long as you use the hashtag. We’re starting with the Intro and first section on RDA & AACR2. You can also comment on the blog and link your own blog to this. Lets all get our constructive thoughts captured and build them into what we believe to be the future of cataloguing.