Suggestions/Comments

From Jessie Zhong:
Credits are an incentive to participate


From Kristen Northrup:
We definitely don't have the staff to justify enhancements without credits. We'd still make corrections in our OPAC, but not in Connexion.


From Stacy Pober:
Enhancing records in an international cooperative catalog is not necessarily "normal behavior." Enhancing the records locally would seem to be the default behavior.


From Keri Cascio:
We've been budgeting this way since 1985—cost to catalog mitigated by expected original/enhanced records. This would be a huge change in how we budget, and we would expect subscription pricing to reflect the loss in cataloging credits.


From Anita Clary:
It seems to me that the people that are earning the credits are also doing the work. This benefits everyone—not just OCLC.


From Joy Banks:
The cap instituted this year really hindered our usage of credits. We are a very small library but do quite a bit of original cataloging (about 90%). Whereas before, we could accumulate credits over several years to help justify the addition of services without concern of not having it funded, my ability to argue this to my administrators is now significantly hindered. I guess I'm part of the less than 0.5%. We would often earn more in credits than our annual bill (which is rather low). I've already hit my max credit for the year only 3 months into our billing cycle.


From Kristen Northrup:
When a library cleans up a Level 3 vendor record, charge the credit to the vendor.


From Emily Jaycox:
Nearly all libraries must do more with fewer budget dollars. Administrations are eyeing staff productivity. I have been able to protect the investment of additional staff time in creating original cataloging records by pointing to the cataloging credits. This communicates the value of this activity to the parent organization much more clearly than supporting the virtues of cooperative cataloging.


From Jeni Delfs:
Perhaps instead of a per-transaction credits, all subscribers could have a "flat rate" credit based on past activity?


From Stella Tang:
The vendor records are usually problem records.


From Darmae Brown:
Some vendors (e.g., Midwest Tape) have good records. Others are lousy.


From Erica Findley:
I just finally built up a staff over the past 3 years to increase our capacity to do original cataloging. Credits based on past activity do not reflect our current capabilities.


From Andrea Kappler:
An elimination of all cataloging and resource sharing credits could push our library to drop OCLC in favor of subscribing to SkyRiver.


From Celia Davis:
I think OCLC needs to decide what activities it wants to encourage/discourage. I hear a lot of complaints about bad vendor records. Either don't accept them or as someone suggested charge them for the credit when someone else upgrades the record. I think it is important to encourage libraries to keep their collections in OCLC correct. Update new records, delete items no longer in the collection.


From William Shakalis:
Our library would like to continue to earn credits for original, ehancements, database enrichment, etc. We have a two-person cataloging staff and enjoy contributing to enriching the catalog, but wish to receive credits to help our budget.


From Barbara Brownell:
Maybe instead of raising rates for libraries, OCLC should reduce benefits in order to save money.


From Cynthia May:
Maybe OCLC should reduce overhead.


From Karen Schneider:
The enhancement and deletions credits seem really crucial to the quality of WorldCat.


From Charlotte Xanders:
I truly did not understand the explanation just given to my question about reducing subscription costs if credits go. What does it mean that institutions pay each other? We all pay OCLC. If OCLC gets our money and stops giving us credits, they will have more money, right? So, reduce our fees. Please?


From Cynthia May:
I can't understand how the focus groups could be so positive about eliminating credits while the listservs are so emphatically negative.


From Sharon Purtee:
Listserv participants are the workers, and the focus groups are the administrators.


From Andrea Kappler:
I recently refocused my catalogers' workflows so they did more of their edits in OCLC, rather than in our ILS. We reduced our annual subscription costs by 22% in one year, just by doing the same work in OCLC. I notified my supervisor and the director, who saw the value and importance of our contributions not just to our library, but to the broader cataloging community.


From Barbara Brownell:
The credit program is important to smaller and poor libraries, especially with SkyRiver.


From Jeffrey Trimble:
We've used the incentives program to justify OCLC. We've used the credits to undercut our costs since we have the rival vendor breathing down out neck for business.


From Cynthia May:
I think recognition programs are worthless.


From Celia Davis:
As a copy cataloger I depend on there being good, accurate records in OCLC. I am happy to encourage this activity by paying credits.


From Jeanne DeMars:
Incentives are very important to us and to our budget. It is also important to us to have quality cataloging. It takes time to create those quality records, and libraries who take the time to do so should receive credits for contributing their time and expertise to the database. Without incentives, we'll probably be looking at alternatives to OCLC, and I would expect others may be doing the same.


From Andrea Kappler:
I agree with Jeffrey Trimble about using the OCLC credits program to justify OCLC and undercut our costs! We have the same rival vendor breathing down our neck for business.


From Nancy Cowden:
Monetary credits are important to our library. Any help in keeping our cataloging costs down is important. A recognition program sounds trivial and we are not interested in that. I think it is also very important to have our cataloging subscription costs be re-evaluated each year. And I would like to know exactly how those subscription costs are determined. We are a very small library and money issues really matter.


From Scott Markham:
In reference to Q2,without a credit or other financial incentive like lower subscription cost, we would perform fewer enhancements and upgrades from Enc. Level 3.


From Stella Tang:
Sorry, nonfinancial incentives mean no credit and incentives.


From Karen Schneider:
The problem is that the credit program is taking a larger chunk of money every year while cataloging and ILL revenue continue to decline. I'm not saying that to justify ending the program, just that OCLC is in a bit of a pickle.


From Barbara Brownell:
Q.4, better and fuller records should get higher credits.


From Tim Murphy:
Pass the enhancement costs along to the originator of the record, vendor or not.


From Shellie Cocking:
The credit program is important as well for large libraries with SkyRiver. We have chosen not to switch to SkyRiver mostly due to the lack of financial incentive. If our bills go up $3,000 a month, I would consider switching.


From Jolene Armstrong:
As someone who is at a very small academic library when I do get the time to do original cataloging it does make the library director happy to have that credit on the record. We are also going through a heavy weeding project and we are removing from OCLC as we go. If we did not have the incentive you can bet we would be deleting from just our ILS and then doing the recovery program and letting OCLC handle getting rid of our holdings from all the items we have deleted.


From Carol Kirsch:
Our OCLC costs are almost out of reach for our budget. The credits help us hold down our costs somewhat. I do not anticipate that we would be able to expect an increase in our budget for OCLC participation and losing the credits may mean that we will have to discontinue participation in OCLC unless the subscription price is modified.


From Xiaoli Li:
The current incentive definitely encourages the cataloging work we do. Given the current budget situation, the credits we earn help to justify our participation in OCLC.


From Jeff Siemon:
I'd like to see credits for members creating apps, for example the Amazon ordering app that works with WMS. I'd love to see apps that connect Connexion with the VIAF (Virtual International Authority File).


From Leslie Engelson:
I believe credits are incentive for people to make the changes in WorldCat, not just in their local catalog. I don't feel recognition programs would be very meaningful, especially when they are not controllable by the institution, such as the 1 millionth record. Budgetary issues are very real; staffing in cataloging departments is being reduced, not increased, and I think a large part of this is that directors do not see the value of the work we do. When we can show a positive impact to the bottom line, it really does matter.


From Jeff Siemon:
I'd like to see credits for members creating search boxes for WCL with more customizable options.


From William Shakalis:
Current credits do influence our cataloging given budgets we suffer under.


From Cynthia May:
Maybe OCLC could give itself credits for discontinuing bulk loads of substandard records.


From Stacy Pober:
Financial incentives are a much more compelling motivation than symbolic recognition. It is not as if libraries do not have alternatives to OCLC. We would prefer to continue to participate, but only as long as good quality records are provided. In a financial incentive-free system, the quality will decline.


From Andrea Kappler:
Our library is a net lender for resource sharing. I would hate to see lending credits go away. Libraries like us could decide to lend fewer materials due to the costs we put into staffing our ILL depts. and sending out materials.


From Stella Tang:
Building an app is good but that is a different issue. I don't mind OCLC including this in the incentives program.


From Ivon Cecil:
I have been told that the consortium for which I catalog receives credits for original cataloging but not for enhancing records. Therefore, I seldom enhance existing OCLC records, although I do improve Level 3 records that I intend to import into our system. I have also been told that without the credits we receive, an OCLC subscription would be "too expensive."


From Helen Hughes:
I think that changing/enhancing records is particularly important to a sense of membership in the community. It is a way to underscore that it is OUR database. For example adding series (490 and 8XX) is a way for a small member to add value to records, enhance use of records for the public that large institutions have given up. Receiving credit for this work from OCLC helps members justify the work to local administration. The level of credit does not fully fund the time required to do the work.


From Lisa Sallee:
Pointing to our credits has been the deciding factor in our consortium not pursuing business with SkyRiver. Like many others, I agree that the vendor records are a huge problem and they should be penalized for creating these often worthless records. I also feel that with RDA on the horizon, it is a terrible time to consider changing this program significantly. Finally, local history is something that libraries are being encouraged to preserve and bring access to. This would lead to even more original cataloging. if libraries do not have incentive to add these records, it decreases access of this specialized material to the world.


From Mark Bresnan:
PCC members (such as my library) may get "recognition" from the PCC but the real credit has been the financial credits we get Fromfrom our enhance activity on OCLC.


From Leslie Engelson:
I wonder if there were not so many records needing enhancements if the amount of credits wouldn't be so high.


From Jolene Armstrong:
For small library we do not have the expertise or time to do apps. What would that do for anyone at a small library? We definitely would be looking at the competitor if something like that happens.


From Andrea Kappler:
Cataloging credits are crucial to the membership cleaning up sloppy records and maintaining a clean bibliographic database that is shared by all member libraries. Isn't that the spirit of cooperation?


From Kristen Northrup:
If short-staffed, time-crunched libraries have a financial incentive (only) to participate in betas, they'll definitely then do less enhancing.


From Charlotte Xanders:
Looks to me that I need to request a review and change in our subscription cost. As we purchase many fewer books due to budget cuts, we are copy cataloging many fewer titles.


From Lenis McBride:
We value credits because any reduction in our subscription cost is a good thing.


From Andrea Kappler:
My catalogers have no training or reason to spend time creating apps. They're catalogers, not software developers.


From Cynthia May:
Focus groups are anonymous and ergo unaccountable.


From Roberta Winjum:
Administering the incentive credits is complex and costly for OCLC. I don't see them looking for some new way of doing incentives. However, the cost of OCLC is currently too expensive. If they could reduce our costs, I suppose eliminating the credits would be acceptable.


From Brian Kern:
If there were greater transperency in subscription fees, there may not be as much concern with credits ...


From Darmae Brown:
I heartily agree that subscription prices should be lowered if credits are eliminated. Perhaps the amount of reduction should reflect level of original cataloging, enhancements, holdings deletions, ILL, etc.


From Barbara Brownell:
Maybe there should be a sliding scale of credits. The better and more complete a record, the higher the credit.


From Stacy Pober:
If the issue is fairness, then open a credit program for non-North American libraries. Do not take away a popular program From the N.A. group!


From Stella Tang:
It is very, very important to continue the credits program.


From Jessie Zhong:
I don't think such an important decision should be solely based on what the focus groups think should or should not. Every library's voice should be heard and considered.


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