Latin America and Caribbean

WorldCat Principles of Cooperation

WorldCat has become the international online catalog that helps OCLC members share resources, reduce costs, and increase their visibility and impact in the communities they serve. OCLC's ongoing development of the WorldCat platform has capitalized on and added value to this core shared resource of metadata and holdings information. WorldCat and related files and the OCLC systems, and services based upon them, are vitally important to the operations and services of many libraries, museums, and archives.

WorldCat's relevance depends upon four factors:

  • Its scope, the extent to which it accurately reflects the full holdings of libraries, museums and archives
  • Its timeliness
  • The usefulness of WorldCat records for end users and participating institutions
  • The functionality and flexibility of OCLC systems and software which support access to and use of records and services

Recognizing the importance of these factors, member institutions, partner organizations and OCLC work together to build and maintain WorldCat and to promote the responsible use of WorldCat and OCLC systems and services.

Members make a commitment to:

  • Contribute to OCLC all current metadata and holdings information, which represents items in their collections
  • Create bibliographic records and related data consistent with established guidelines maintained by OCLC and its advisory groups for entering information in WorldCat records
  • Support prompt contribution of bibliographic records and related data to promote shared use of records and library resources
  • Cooperate with OCLC, regional networks and other partners, and participating libraries to identify and correct errors in contributed information and to avoid introducing duplicate records
  • Use WorldCat records in accordance with "WorldCat Rights and Responsibilities for the OCLC Cooperative."

To enable members to meet these expectations, OCLC makes a commitment to:

  • Encourage participation in OCLC
  • Strengthen WorldCat by promoting the full and timely contribution of records by member libraries
  • Facilitate communication between member libraries and OCLC to promote effective planning and rapid resolution of issues of mutual concern
  • Provide high quality, cost-effective training, consultation, and support to encourage the efficient use of OCLC records, systems and services and the timely adoption of OCLC system enhancements

To enable libraries to meet these expectations of membership, OCLC makes a commitment to:

  • Facilitate the participation of libraries, archives and museums as authorized users of OCLC systems and services
  • Respond to changes in technology and in the goals, organization, and cooperative agreements of members consistent with OCLC's public purposes
  • Provide cost-effective methods which enable libraries, museums and archives promptly and efficiently to contribute information to WorldCat and related databases and to report changes or corrections to OCLC
  • Facilitate ease-of-use and cost-effective access to OCLC systems and services to benefit all members and their users
  • Disseminate clear and timely documentation of the standards and guidelines for contributing to WorldCat and related files

Member institutions, partner organizations, and OCLC share a commitment to:

  • Ensure the continuing viability of WorldCat and related services to libraries, museums, archives and the information community
  • Promote effective education and training in uses of OCLC systems and services
  • Disseminate this statement and related information to current and potential OCLC members and partner organizations
  • Identify and correct errors in contributed information and to avoid introducing duplicate records

As amended and approved by Global Council, 21 June 2010.