ALCTS - Association of Library Collections & Technical Services

Announcements and Reports

CC:DA Activities at ALA Midwinter Meeting in Boston

CC:DA held two Committee meetings in Boston, as well as an important Task Force meeting. The major business at all of these meetings was discussion of the draft Part 1 of AACR3, which has been issued for comment by the Joint Steering Committee for Revision of AACR. This draft marks the first significant step towards a new edition of the cataloging rules, which have been given the provisional title AACR3: Resource Description and Access. The draft was prepared by the new editor of AACR3, Tom Delsey, in consultation with the JSC. Part 1 of AACR3 covers description, and consists of general rules plus sections of supplementary rules for specific types of content and for specific types of media.

Consideration of the draft began at a meeting of all of the CC:DA Task Forces that have been involved in preliminary work leading to the draft. This meeting identified the larger issues that needed to be discussed and resolved, and set the agenda for later meetings.

At the CC:DA meeting on Saturday afternoon, Jennifer Bowen, the ALA representative to the JSC, reported on the recent JSC meeting and give background of plans for AACR3. This report was followed by a report from the Friday Task Force meeting and a general discussion of the Part 1 draft. This discussion continued at the CC:DA meeting on Monday morning. All comments on the draft are due to CC:DA by February 14, 2005, and the official ALA response is due to the JSC on March 28, 2005.

The discussion of the draft was intense and wide ranging. While there was considerable support for the general direction of the revisions (for example, the effort to make the rules more consistent and to avoid redundancy), there was some skepticism whether such changes to the document itself justified a new edition, or whether an attempt should be made to resolve some long-standing and fundamental issues. There was also a great deal of frustration expressed with the review process, particularly the limited distribition of the draft and the very limited timeframe for comments.

In addition to the discussion of the Part 1 draft, the Saturday afternoon meeting included reports from the Library of Congress representative, Barbara Tillett, and from ALA Publishing Services by Donald Chatham. Other business at the Monday morning meeting included reports from two task forces planning programs for the 2005 Annual Conference (one on AACR3 and one on Cataloging Cultural Objects); from the MARBI Representative, Everett Allgood, ALA’s NISO representative, Betty Landesman, and the CC:DA Webmaster, John Attig; and from a Task Force charges to investigate CC:DA’s Web Presence. Finally, a proposal from the Serials Section to revise an examples in rule 12.3G1 was considered.

For further details of the agenda and links to some of the documents, see the Agenda for the meeting.

AACR3: Resource Description and Access

The Joint Steering Committee for Revision of AACR3 is proceeding vigorously to prepare a revised edition of AACR; the working title is AACR3: Resource Description and Access. Further information about AACR3 may be obtained on the JSC website.

The first step taken in this process has been to produce a draft of Part I, covering rules for description. This draft has recently been made available to members of the constituent bodies represented on the JSC, including CC:DA. Discussion of this draft will constitute the main business of CC:DA at ALA Midwinter (see above for details).

The draft has not been made publicly available. However, the JSC and CC:DA are very interested in comments from working catalogers on the main issues reflected in the draft. To make such comments possible, a background document has been prepared that explains the objectives and principles of the draft and some of its major features, along with instructions for submitting comments.

New Task Forces Appointed

Two new CC:DA Task Forces have been appointed.

The Task Force Rules for Technical Description of Digital Media was charged propose revisions to the rules for technical description of digital media in the draft of Part 1 of AACR3, taking into consideration relevant data elements in other standards for descriptive metadata.

The Task Force on the Review of ISBD(CM) was charged to prepare a review of the 2004 revision of the International Standard Bibliographic Description for Cartographic Materials, available at