Martha Yee on abdication in cataloging
A short essay by Martha Yee titled “Will The Response Of The Library Profession To The Internet Be Self-Immolation?” has been circulating in the cataloging blogosphere. I found it rather late, when it hit the JESSE list, which is read by LIS educators. It’s a good example of a statement that is being dismissed by many as “traditionalism” in a way that I think sidesteps its arguments. Comments on JESSE have been interesting, but I’m afraid I no longer republish email discussion threads, so I will leave it to you. I think the weakness of Yee’s argument is in the fact that library catalogs tend not to work as well as they are supposed to, but I think she’s very much right on the whole, in that MARC just does a lot more for users than the things that are being used in its place, which tend to dumb down the entire information cycle.