Looking at cataloging data for institution after institution, it often appears that LIS professionals themselves are their greatest adversaries. Plagued by short staffing, pressed for time, pressured by management deadlines and objectives, often their own poor IT skills or even a lack of attention to details – all these factors and more, often lead to poor quality cataloging data.
Most of them love the fact that Koha is Free Software, but usually choose to overlook the fact that being Free Software means, the users themselves need to step up to the plate either learn new concepts, upgrade skills OR seek qualified support (often paid). Short of attention to these, Koha is not a magic wand that one can wield like Harry Potter and utter “Catalogus Bibliothecam” (‘catalogue the library’).
And once poor quality bibliographic data makes it way into a catalog, without oversight and correction, Koha is often unable to deliver the goods. This is not Koha’s short-coming. I will be harsh here and say that the fault largely lies with the catalogers for entering bad data in the first place. You need to be nit-picky about data and logically sharp in order to be a good cataloger – either you one, or you can acquire the habit with practice or you do not.
On L2C2 Technologies’s online helpdesk, we often encounter requests that lead us back to bad quality cataloging data entered by our client partners. While LIS professionals need to upgrade / sharpen their skills, we have decided to regularly release a bunch of cataloging data quality audit tools for Koha so that we can help our user community.
In the spirit of Koha Library System Project these will all be released as open source via the blog (http://blog.l2c2.co.in) and our GitHub repository.
#Koha #cataloging #data_quality #new_stuff