ALCTS Liaisons and Representatives Report on Midwinter 2005 Activities

Editor’s note: We are featuring reports on groups outside of ALCTS with whom we have formal liaisons in this separate article.

American Association of Law Libraries Technical Services Special Interest Group

The group held its annual meeting in Boston in July 2004. Sponsored for programs during this meeting:

  • What Else Do You Cut When You Are Already Cut to the Core of Technical Services?
  • New Horizons: The Future of AACR
  • International and Foreign Publishers and Vendors: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
  • What’s Happening at ALA: CC:DA and SAC Reports.

They also sponsored a workshop on Serials Cataloging Cooperative Training Program (SCCTP) Integrating Resources Cataloging.

Other programs of interest to technical services librarians included:

  • Creating and Maintaining Legal History Collections: Collections Development and Analysis Issues
  • Let’s Make a Deal: Strategies to Avoid Paying List Price
  • Parlez-Vous le Droit? Collecting Legal Materials in Foreign Languages
  • Taking the Law into Your Own Hands: Establishing an In-House Book Repair Program
  • CRIV Hot Topic: Trends in Legal Publishing
  • XML and MARC: Should We Remodel or Build Anew?
  • MARBI Report: What's the Latest on MARC Standards?

A new committee to provide input on law cataloging issues to the Joint Steering Committee for the Revision of AACR was established.

Discussion group and other committee topics included:

  • Cataloging Issues Roundtable—Inherently legal subject headings.
  • Research Roundtable—The process of reviewing books in professional journals and the content expected in published reviews; and The process of creating a writers’ retreat for librarians at SUNY Buffalo.
  • Preservation Committee—High profile conservation jobs taken on by NEDCC; and New online pamphlet produced by the Image Permanence Institute on media storage quick reference.

AALL is a voting member of NISO and TS-SIS is considering renewing its representation to NISO.

Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA) Accessibility Assembly

Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) is planning a preconference on Services to Aging Populations at the 2005 Annual Conference. The theme will be focused on baby boomers. The conference will also feature a session on “Best Practices for Library Accessibility” with a showcase on library design.Diversity Council will host a session on the topic “Diversity rights in library hiring.”

The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Round Table (GLBTRT) asked the Assembly to comment on sections 54.17 (Gay rights) and 54.20 (AIDS testing) of the ALA Handbook; we don’t have any specific comments or concerns about the items they are looking at in the ALA policy documents.

NISO has asked ALA to vote on the proposed Z39.50 standards for electronic books, and the Assembly was asked to comment about possible accessibility issues. No one at the table had any expertise in that area, so it was agreed to give ALA a list of people who might be able to provide some expertise, particularly NLS staff.

The assembly’s new mission statement was approved.

There was some discussion but no decision about the proposal to put the assembly under the auspices of the Diversity Office.

Joint Steering Committee (JSC) for Revision of AACR

The committee met in Cambridge, England, in October 2004. The primary business of the meeting was related to the preparation of a draft of Part 1 of AACR3 for constituency review, and the review of documents related to the final (2005) revision of AACR2. JSC also reviewed the editor’s preliminary proposals for the organization of Part 2 of AACR3 and another document outlining the principles underlying Part 2.

JSC discussed at length the distribution of the draft of Part 1 for constituency review. In consideration of recommendations by the Committee of Principals, JSC decided to make the document available via the JSC’s internal document distribution site so that review would be limited to those who have access to that site. [The JSC later received permission from the CoP to broaden the distribution as described in the document.] The JSC decided to form a small Outreach Group of others who have been involved in the preparation of AACR3 to help provide information about plans for AACR3 to the broader library and metadata communities. Constituency Review of the Draft of Part 1 was scheduled from December until mid-February 2005, to allow the JSC representatives time to compile reports prior to the JSC’s April meeting.

A document outlining the Objectives and Principles of the Draft of Part 1 and some of its major features is available at the Web site above. Major changes in the organization and scope of the rules include the organization of the rules of Part 1 into three sections, new rules pertaining to the focus of the description, and a redesign of the GMD (general material designation), to distinguish between designations that indicate the type of content and those that indicate the medium in which the resource is conveyed. The new rules permit the use of either designation, or both. In addition, the rules in AACR2 for resources in an unpublished form, resources issued in successive parts, assembled collections, early printed resources, and those pertaining to technical description, have been reconsidered and reorganized.

The next JSC meeting will be held in Chicago, April 24–28, 2005. At that time, JSC will discuss the comments received during the constituency review of the draft of Part 1, and will examine a preliminary draft of Part 2, which will be made available for constituency review in May 2005.

National Information Standards Organization (NISO)

Atandards up for review include:

  • Z39.29-200X—Bibliographic References. This standard was first balloted in 2003. We were asked to vote on substantive changes made based on the comments received on the first ballot. The balloting period ended October 25, 2004. In the absence of input, ALA voted Yes.

  • Z39.18-200X—Scientific and Technical Reports—Preparation, Presentation and Preservation. This is a revision of a 1995 standard. The balloting period ends February 11, 2005.

  • Z39.78-200X—Library Binding. This standard is up for its five-year reaffirmation. The balloting period ends February 11, 2005.

  • Z39.86-200X—Specifications for the Digital Talking Book. This is a revision of a 2002 standard. The balloting period ends February 11, 2005.

  • ISO DIS 10161-1—Interlibrary Loan Protocol Specification, Part 1: Protocol Specification. In the absence of input, ALA voted Yes. The U.S. voted to disapprove due to concerns over incompatibilities with an earlier version of the standard. A revised DIS backwardly compatible to version 2 will be balloted in 2005.

ISO DIS 2108 (ISBN, revised to expand from 10 to 13 digits) was approved. The industry will move from a 10-digit to a 13-digit ISBN on January 1, 2007.

ISO 3279—ISSN. The ISSN Working Group tasked to consider possible changes to the ISSN continued its deliberations. It has agreed that the ISSN will continue to identify serials and other continuing resources by means of separate ISSN’s assigned to different media, language, geographic, and audience editions; however, provisions will be made to enable the ISSN to meet the need for additional levels of identification. For serials that have multiple medium-specific ISSN’s, the Working Group developed the concept of designating one of them as a title-level ISSN. The Working Group will next meet in February.

The overall Digital Object Identifier (DOI) system will be advanced as an ISO standard in 2005.

Three new NISO registrations were approved. A registration is intended for specifications, guidelines, best practices, and other benchmark documents, and supports lighter-weight review and accreditation than a standard. It requires a 30-day review and ballot period and approval by 15 percent of the members.

  • The Metadata Encoding & Transmission Standard (METS) is an XML-based schema for encoding descriptive, administrative, and structural metadata regarding objects within a digital library.

  • The Search and Retrieve Web Service (SRW) and Search and Retrieve URL Service (SRU) are protocols for querying databases and returning search results. The Library of Congress is the maintenance agency for both registrations.

  • The Archival Resource Key (ARK) Persistent Identifier Scheme, a collaborative effort with the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the California Digital Library, facilitates the persistent naming and retrieval of information objects.

Z39.7-2004, Information Services and Use: Metrics & Standards for Libraries and Information Providers, will be issued as a searchable data dictionary in early 2005.

At the fall meeting, the Board endorsed NISO examining three areas for possible standards, best practices, guidelines, and registrations in 2005: electronic rights expression (Denise Troll Covey, lead planner); information identifiers (Rick Rodgers, program planner); and digital preservation and archiving (event being planned by Priscilla Caplan and Robin Dale).

NISO hosted a meeting of ISO Technical Committee 46, the international committee that parallels NISO’s work, on October 25-29, 2004.

On December 2, 2004, NISO joined with Book Industry Communication and the Publishers Association to sponsor a seminar on “Electronic Communication of License Terms and Rights Information”

NISO’s Draft Networked Reference Standard, which defines a method and structure for data exchange in digital reference services, is available freely for trial use through April 5, 2005.

A revised and expanded edition of the Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections is now available.

Understanding Metadata is available as a free download.

North American Serials Interest Group (NASIG)

The 19th annual conference in Milwaukee was rated the third highest of all conferences held. Trinity University (1991) ranked number one, followed by Bryn Mawr (1986). The blend of a hotel setting with preconferences at a nearby campus was favorably received, as were the programming options. The 20th conference, “Roaring Into Our 20s,” will celebrate NASIG’s anniversary and retain the hotel and programming positives. The poster sessions and focused vendor sessions will be a regular part of the schedule. The dates are May 19–22, 2005, at the Hilton Minneapolis. More information is available on the Web site.

In recognition of its twentieth anniversary, NASIG is currently seeking candidates for its first ever Champion Award. The purpose of the NASIG Champion Award is to acknowledge the contributions of a professional to the serials field. Years of service are not the primary focus, but rather the impact one has made on the profession. This could be demonstrated in publications, presentations, innovative thinking, service, and personal excellence. The award will be presented at the conference.

One of the issues the board struggles with is the need to cover operating expenses without dipping into reserves every year. The board developed a financial plan that it will present to the membership this spring, consisting of a dues increase with a “parity” approach. The proposed dues scheme will raise U.S. dues to $75; Canada $60; Mexico $18; students and retirees $25.