OCLC Canada Advisory Council

Minutes – October 3rd, 2014


Hélène Roussel, Director General, Direction générale de la diffusion, Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec
Lisa O'Hara, Head, Technical Services, University of Manitoba Libraries
Madeleine Lefebvre, University Librarian, Ryerson University
Fabien Lengellé, Director General, Content and Access, Library and Archives Canada
Debbie Schachter, Director, Learning Resources, Douglas College
Suzanne Payette, Director, Bibliothèque publique de Brossard
Joyce Garnett, University Librarian, Western University
Marie DeYoung, University Librarian, Saint Mary's University
Bruce Crocco, Vice-President, Library Services for the Americas, OCLC
Daniel Boivin, Executive Director, OCLC Canada, Latin America & the Caribbean

Gwen Ebbett, University Librarian, University of Windsor
Mary-Jo Romaniuk, SLIS, University of Alberta
Michael Ireland, Director, Information Management Services Directorate
Knowledge Management, National Research Council

Submitted Agenda:

  1. Opening of the meeting at BPB and agenda approval (Chair, Debbie Schachter)
  2. Review the minutes of the June OCAC meeting (update, questions)
  3. Update on the Americas Regional Council and discussion about the next Global Council agenda (if available -- all delegates)
  4. Brainstorming on the actual library landscape (economy, staff, technology, top
    priorities at your library) and specific recommendations to make to OCLC
  5. OCLC enterprise / Canadian division year in review and update
  6. OCLC Metadata Strategy (Ted Fons)
  7. Review of the OCAC Charter (clauses, number of delegates, etc.)
  8. Geek the library Campaign / Program (Jenny Powell)
  9. Other business (OCLC Symposium at CLA, etc.)
  10. End of the meeting


1. Opening of the meeting and agenda approval

  • Agenda approved as submitted.

2. Review the minutes of the June meeting (update, questions)

  • Marie DeYoung’s name was incorrectly typed in the action item and this needs to be corrected.
  • The minutes are approved with this change. All action items had been taken care of.

3. Discussion on the upcoming Global Council (GC) Meeting

  • The draft agenda was shared with the delegates even though it had not been posted to all of the GC delegates yet.
  • Mr. Crocco indicated that within the agenda, the “Timely topics” are trying to improve the communications and the sharing of information with delegates.
  • Ms. Lefebvre suggested that it would be helpful to have for the delegates “an elevator speech cheat sheet” to help with getting back the positive about OCLC’s various efforts knowing the amount of negative things going into social media these days.
  • Following this suggestion, a discussion about how to respond to these messages occurred.  It was suggested to OCLC to be more active in spreading a “positive” message to the market.  Ms. Lefebvre shared her experience with presenting and talking to research libraries in the UK, the CILIP group.  She felt that this event allowed, by how it was designed and constructed, librarians and vendors to be together.  It was not a “them vs us” mood and she thought it was very good to see how most vendors are out there working with libraries, not against them.  The vendors were also included in the sessions and this was a nice experience to allow for cooperation from all parties present at the conference.
  • It was suggested that maybe a “pin” be given to members to wear at conferences and that could say “I am OCLC”.
  • Since the discussion went into some of the concerned comments made about the fact that LAC-BAC is considering using OCLC services to run AMICUS in the future, Mr. Boivin referred the delegates to the ODC-BY protocol (http://www.oclc.org/en-CA/news/releases/2012/201248.html) to review the changes with the “WorldCat Rights and Responsibilities.  The purpose of sharing this document was in fact to help the delegates on how to respond to librarians’ concerns regarding sharing WorldCat records.  It is possible and not prevented.
  • Further to keeping delegates informed, Mr. Boivin proposed to see with Mr. Needham, VP Member Services, if the OCAC delegates could be re-added to the GC + ARC listservs as all the newest delegates do not seem to be receiving these postings.
  • The delegates then also suggested to OCLC, more so the Canadian team, to emphasis more the role that OCLC plays globally and the global perspective.  They feel that this would help minimizing the perception that OCLC is just one big American company with mainly a US focus / perspective (Ex.: address the multilingual strength of OCLC in BC where a need to Asian language material is continually growing).
  • Ms. Lefebvre went on by indicating that it is also hard to promote WMS with only 4 clients. Mr. Crocco pointed out that we are bringing more people to the WorldShare platform through ILL, Metadata (Collection Manager for now) and the knowledge base.  In doing so, over 9 000 libraries are now using WorldShare ILL (about 150 in Canada).  But, Ms. Lefebvre indicated that this model seems to create a bit of confusion as well within the membership so did the change with the FirstSearch name to WorldCat Discovery.
  • Ms. Payette mentioned that with all the English communications going around from OCLC, this also creates confusion as to how much is OCLC providing bilingual services and if WorldShare is available in French or not.  She suggested that, for example, it would have been nice to provide a multilingual summary of the new report “The Tipping Point”.  She strongly feel that OCLC still need to continue working at finding the “right” (read “better”) approach to make public libraries want to look at OCLC’s products and services.  They do not know and cannot easily see what could be the value for them to do business with OCLC, what difference OCLC can make to their operation.
  • Ms. Garnett suggested OCLC to gather and to share testimonials from other “users” to help spread the message (“what do they do with it…”).  This is probably covered now with the member stories we are putting up on the Web.
  • Mr. Boivin indicated that Ms. Ebbett shared that the Global Council Communication committee is gearing up for the Ambassadors initiative for ALA mid-Winter.  To that regards, Mr. Crocco emphasized the fact that ARC is working closely with Ms. Irene Hoffman at OCLC.  Ms. Hoffman and her team have developed numerous “Member Focused Meetings” to be run in the US with possibly two in Canada (Toronto and Vancouver – between Jan. and June 2015).   
  • To further improving communications and reaching out to more members as this is always a challenge for OCLC and ARC, Ms. O’Hara mentioned that all of the larger ILS vendors have users’ conferences where many people go to.  She feels that this is something OCLC could consider doing to reach out even more librarians, not just directors.  Mr. Crocco indicated that in fact, the EMEA and Asia Pacific Regional Council events are done like that but not the ARC.  Mr. Crocco indicated that he will take this as an action with senior managers and ARC Executive.
  • Delegates also touched on the fact that our Canadian delegates could assure to continue, with EMEA and Asia Pacific colleagues, emphasizing the need for OCLC to be able to serve members in various and more languages.  There are more than just 2 languages in Canada and many librarians are very knowledgeable with those other languages.
  • It was then asked if we knew of many other countries that were talking about BIBFRAME.   All the participants indicated not being too sure how much this was being talked about around the world, including OCLC staff.  Mr. Boivin indicated that he often receives questions about it or requests to find someone to talk about it from the Latin American and Caribbean regions but to his knowledge, these requests are at this point to make sure that librarians are aware of the evolution of the talks on this topic. 
  • Ms. Lefebvre is on the ARC Executive.  She indicated having missed the last call.
  • ARC is struggling with scheduling calls as many people are always missing.  The group decided to go ahead with meetings on dates where the most people were available.

4. Brainstorming on the actual library landscape (economy, staff, technology, top priorities at your library) and specific recommendations to make to OCLC

  • Ms. Garnett indicated that a lot of librarians are wondering at how you move on to serving and/or working with the next generation and this can be overwhelming for some libraries and librarians.  She sees that as an opportunity for OCLC to continue educating librarians. 
  • Ms. DeYoung then said that consortia these days are muddying the water a little as it is very complicated for some to move to next generation library systems as they have many “linked” systems/services.  To break this out is complicated and costly, even if there is a perceived value and savings in the long run.  For these consortia, being able to define, to view, to understand and to rely to these next generations systems is a must.  Some consortia are set up to share managing library systems + infrastructure and the cloud solutions requires that they reinvent themselves which can be a scary and daunting task.
  • Ms. Payette indicated that many cities are talking about developing “smart cities” and for OCLC to position itself as a “smart” solution to public libraries would help OCLC and the libraries as they would then fit well in these plans.  And if they do, their chances to obtain new funding for new projects will be improved.
    Ms. Garnett offered OCLC to consider being a partner for identifying new ways for doing research and delivering education as chances are that this would be trendy knowing the amount of attention MOOCs is getting.
  • Mr. Crocco reported that Air Canada has a documentary on “big data”.  In it, it referred to the city of Boston and how they manage their pot holes.  He recommends all to watch it on their next flight.
  • Ms. Payette also suggested marketing OCLC outside the library community, like at municipal conferences.  Mr. Crocco indicated that OCLC did that a few years ago by taking ads in key academic and municipal journals in US and Canada.
  • Ms. Garnett then suggested that OCLC could help with researching what the new roles and competencies for the future might be:  research data, big data management, research metrics (productivity, etc.) and assessments.  These are all new areas for libraries that are adding to the daily challenges.   
  • It was also indicated that faculties have huge concerned regarding data privacy.
  • A discussion then on copyright went on.  Mr. Lengellé reported that the Federal Copyright was amended in 2012, but that the core copyright rules remained.  Furthermore, the Access to Information and Privacy Legal Framework date back to 1983.  Digital information resources are sometimes difficult to manage through this framework.   LAC-BAC continues to work internally to improve the current situation.   Ms. Schachter indicated that BC has a strong act on privacy and companies do comply if they want to do business in the province.
  • Ms. Garnett also asked if OCLC was trying to pitch and to present its reports, like the recent one “Tipping pont”, to Academic or Municipal administrations.  Mr. Crocco indicated that OCLC staffs sort of do it if these discussions and presentations are set up by the library or another entity.  OCLC employees gladly do these things if requested but OCLC employees do not force the opportunities, they do not seek for opportunities to present to these audiences.  It has to come from the librarians within these respective communities.  In concluding, Mr. Crocco proposed the idea to reverse the sharing of information, i.e. have libraries tell OCLC how to pitch better these pieces of information outside the library community knowing that our message is “library influenced/biased.

5. OCLC enterprise / Canadian division year in review and update

  • Mr. Crocco and Mr. Boivin provided the update.  The presentation will be posted on the OCAC private site.
  • Mr. Crocco indicated though that the FY14 revenues were rather at $214 M and not at $200 M as shown on the slide.  It will be in FY14 at this level because of an acquisition made in the EMEA region.  For FY15, it is planned to go back around $205M.
  • There are today 1418 participants in Canada.
  • Worth noting out of the presentation that the Board of Trustees is losing five members this year.  This means that “new blood” will be added to the Board soon.
  • Ms. Schachter asked OCLC to provide the full list of Web partners that bring traffic to the libraries.

6. OCLC Metadata Strategy

  • Ted Fons presented on the future directions of metadata at OCLC.  The presentation will be posted on the OCAC Web portal.
  • Ms. O’Hara suggested to deliver, or to record and to share this presentation at large so that libraries could bring cataloguers to listen to this.  She felt it was giving the big picture for libraries about future possible directions and that this group of librarians specifically needed to hear about this and how metadata could be managed moving forward.  All agreed that this would be a good topic for a Webinar.

7. Review of the OCAC Charter

  • It is recommend to change the following:
    • Remove mention of the ARC as delegates are now automatically elected to both.
    • It is also suggested to refer to “OCLC GC delegates actively practicing in the Canadian library market.”  Mr. Boivin will suggest a new wording based on this to the delegates.
  • The delegates felt that there is no need to address the U of Manitoba situation at this point (two delegates from the same institution on OCAC).

8. Geek the library Campaign / Program

  • Jenny Powell presented on the Geek the Library Program.  Her presentation will be shared on the OCAC Portal.
  • The program is phasing out in 2015 but Ms. Powell thinks that some libraries will continue the program anyway using consumer or library sites.  If they do, they will be asked to follow the brand architecture and the guidelines (some of these are registered trademarks).
  • European campaign: there is a link about presenting these campaigns.  OCAC delegates can go to Geekthelibrary.org, username = Canada, password=canada123 for more information.

9. Other business

  • CLA Symposium.  The same model will be once again used and all seemed to like the idea to ask Ms. De Rosa to be the keynote and present the “Tipping point” report.

10. End of the meeting

  • The meeting was adjourned at 15h35.


Actions required before the next meeting



  1. Produce an “elevator speech cheat sheet” for delegates.

  2. Add OCAC delegates to the GC + ARC listservs).

  3. About “testimonials” as suggested in point 3, please refer to our newly redesign “member stories” Web pages.  URL to be provided later.

  4. Investigate at OCLC the idea of having “user group” meetings for WMS, make this more of a national or an “Americas” conference event to gather more participation from all level of librarians.

  5. Provide the full list of Web partners that bring traffic to the libraries


  1. Daniel Boivin with the communication team of OCLC.

  2. Daniel Boivin to verify with Mr. Needham.

  3. Daniel Boivin to provide.

  4. Mr Crocco.

  5. Mr. Boivn.