OCLC Canada Advisory Council

Conference call meeting minutes - June 19th, 2012


  • Diane Beattie, Acting Director, Open Content Division, Services Branch, Resource Discovery Sector, Library and Archives Canada
  • Gwen Ebbett, University Librarian, University of Windsor
  • Hélène Roussel, Directrice générale, Direction générale de la diffusion, Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec
  • Lisa O'Hara, Head, Technical Services, University of Manitoba Libraries
  • Michael Ireland, Director (Acting), Information Management Services Directorate Knowledge Management, CISTI
  • Debbie Schachter, Director, Learning Resources, Douglas College
  • Mary-Jo Romaniuk, Acting Chief Librarian, University of Alberta
  • Bruce Crocco, Vice-President, Library Services for the Americas, OCLC
  • Daniel Boivin, Executive Director, OCLC Canada, Latin America & the Caribbean


  • Bill Maes, University Librarian, Dalhousie University
  • Joyce Garnett, University Librarian, Western University
  • Joseph Hafner, Associate Director – Collection Services, McGill University Library

Submitted Agenda:

  1. Opening of the meeting (Chair: Hélène Roussel)
  2. Review the minutes of the March 2012 Conference call (Group)
  3. ARC Update (Bill Maes)
  4. Key topics/areas needing to be reported on or affecting Canadian Libraries (Group)
  5. New OCLC President and CEO (Bruce Crocco)
  6. CLA Symposium and 15th year anniversary summary (Daniel Boivin)
  7. Brief Update on WorldShare
  8. Next in-person meeting on October 16-17, 2012 (OCLC Canada office in Brossard)
  9. Other business
  10. End of the meeting

1. Opening of the meeting and agenda approval:

  • Agenda approved as submitted.

2. Review the minutes of the March 2012 Conference call (update, questions):

  • Debbie Schachter’s position and employer name needed to be changed.
  • Michael Ireland submitted by email a change in point 10.
  • The minutes are accepted with these changes.

3. ARC Update (Bill Maes):

  • Mr. Boivin reviewed the agenda for the upcoming ARC meeting during ALA on June 22nd. He provided a bit of history as to why a discussion on credits and incentives was on the agenda and Mr. Crocco provided further explanations such as:
    • this started as a recommendation from the Cost Sharing Task Force knowing that practices differ around the globe (for example, Europe and Asia do not get credits), that most of these credits had been in place for many years and now new services like building apps on the WorldShare platform were being offered to libraries;
  • Global Council struck a committee to look at this in more details and to see if the program needed a refresher or not;
  • This will be an interactive session with the people attending ARC.
  • Debbie Schachter added that the Task Force also talked about the need to consider the possible impacts on OCLC revenues as well as possible impacts to libraries if some of these credits were to be removed.
  • Mr. Crocco added that, in addition, focus groups will be arranged during ALA to research these possible impacts.
  • Mr. Boivin then shared the notes provided by Mr. Maes regarding what the ARC Executive Committee had been discussing lately:
    • current discussions are about creating regions within the US to increase the opportunities for interaction and communication;
    • they are considering disconnecting the ARC meetings from ALA and holding meetings which stand on their own or on conjunction with other Association meetings (e.g., Amer. Assoc. of Archivists);
    • they are creating a more formalized structure for the Ambassador program.
  • Gwen Ebbett and Mary-Jo Romaniuk are attending ALA and ARC.
  • Debbie Schachter added that it is too expensive to just going to the ARC meeting and it is also expensive to attend ALA that goes to major cities with expensive hotels. This makes it hard to justify attending the ARC meetings during ALA.

4. Key topics/areas needing to be reported on or affecting Canadian Libraries:

  • Federal government cuts are right now a real concern for many (CAP, LAC funding, cutting federal libraries, etc.).
  • Mr. Ireland indicated that their relationship with OCLC for contract cataloguing has helped them addressing some of these challenges.
  • Mr. Boivin added that many librarians from federal libraries stopped by the OCLC both to talk about these challenges and contract cataloguing opportunities during CLA.
  • Hélène Roussel went to an IFLA meeting in Spain and realized that many libraries were selecting non librarians to manage libraries. She then asked if others were seeing such a phenomenon in Canada and their thoughts on this. The general impression was that it does happen from time to time but that this is definitely not the norm.
  • Ms. Ebbett then asked the following question: “How much data mining is OCLC doing?” Mr. Crocco indicated that this was a broad question but that there are initiatives happening at OCLC using WorldCat, for example. He is aware of huge issue within ARL board members and indicated that our Office of Research department is looking into the “management” of large data sets to help libraries. OCLC is also looking into shared print / storage collections (using WorldCat) and has provided support through WorldCat Collection Analysis to some initiatives, like the COPPUL one in Western Canada. Linked data would also be part of the reflection on “how should libraries make better use of data” and everybody sounded interested in finding more about these challenges in future meetings.
  • Ms. Roussel also indicated that right now in public libraries, eBooks do remain a hot topic mainly because there is not enough Canadian content and the buying / owning versus leasing models are not pleasing everybody, especially the Overdrive model. However, owning the eBooks does seem to remain the preferred approach still.

5. New OCLC President and CEO:

  • Mr. Crocco indicated that on June 8, Jack Blount was announced as being the person selected as the next President and CEO of OCLC and that he will be officially in position starting July 1st. He asked if everybody had watched the video of his introduction to staff, board members and Global Council and some delegates had. The introduction of Mr. Blount happened the Friday before the board meeting so Mr. Blount stayed along for that meeting.
  • As indicated in his biography, he has a business background, he was at Dynix at one point in his career so he has a good understanding of the library world and definitely a strong IT expertise.
  • Ms. Roussel then asked how long was his term at OCLC and Mr. Crocco nor Mr. Boivin knew at this time. This was not mentioned in the release and not asked when he was introduced to the staff.

6. CLA Symposium and 15th year anniversary summary:

  • Mr. Boivin provided a brief summary of the event:
  • The keynote speaker, Stephen Abram, had some technical issues but everything went well and his presentation was liked.
  • It was then followed by 5 short 15 minutes presentations.
  • Mr. Maes provided an ARC update and that was followed with a round table discussion on the "The Short and Long of Library Collaboration”.
  • Mr. Boivin and Mr. Abram presented a check to the CLA President Fund. The check was Mr. Abram agreed upon speaker’s fees.
  • OCLC Canada was also celebrating its 15th year anniversary in Canada by serving a cake in conclusion of the Symposium.

7. Brief Update on WorldShare:

  • Mr. Boivin indicated that the data centre will open in July and is located in Toronto as mentioned during the last conference call. More interestingly for us in Canada, the WorldShare translation to French has started. The release date has not been defined yet but the work has started.
  • Mr. Crocco indicated that so far for this fiscal year, there are 89 signed contracts representing a total of 109 libraries in the Americas alone. He expects that another 15 to 20 libraries should be signing before the end of the month, including the 2nd library in Canada. The first consortia signing for WorldShare will be announced at ALA and is from Nebraska.
  • Mr. Crocco noted that some of these new WorldShare sites were in fact also new members to OCLC. WorldShare do help recruiting new members and that benefits the entire cooperative.
  • Ms. Schachter then asked what was OCLC’s capacity to get/handle new contracts? Mr. Crocco responded in indicating that we were a little under the number of sales that was planned at the beginning of the fiscal year but that technology wise, we can handle as many as we can sign. OCLC’s challenge is how to help libraries implement if there are many wanting to do so during summer time which is often a requirement within academic libraries. Thus, “bunching” / grouping of libraries all wanting to go live together is creating some challenges, especially on the loading and conversion of data during the implementation process (bib records, financial and patron records). Similarly, some libraries are deciding to put up WorldCat Local first, on top of their legacy system, take more time to implement and transition all to WorldShare a little later to facilitate this change technically and with staff. OCLC also been offering a cohort model for implementation and training (group by library type or similar ILS for example) and this helps OCLC and the libraries implementing as it creates something like an “alumni” group with whom they can continue sharing expertise.

8. Next in-person meeting on October 16-17, 2012 (OCLC Canada office in Brossard):

  • Ms. Roussel indicated that topics for the meeting and the professional day were welcome.
  • Mr. Boivin suggested that having a VDX user group meeting on October 16th, like the last time OCAC meet in Brossard / Montreal, was something that would be considered.
  • Ms. Roussel asked if there was anything new on QP to report or discuss for this meeting. Mr. Boivin is investigating as something was announced recently.

9. Other business:

  • OCAC thanked Mr. Hafner for his contribution to ARC and OCAC on behalf of the Canadian library members to OCLC. Mr. Boivin and Ms. Roussel will send him a letter to that effect and possibly a small gift.
  • As of July 1st, Madeleine Lefebvre will start as the new Canadian delegate at large on ARC and will replace Joseph Hafner on OCAC during her mandate on ARC.

10. End of the meeting

  • The meeting is adjourned at 14h05.

Actions required before the next meeting Responsibility
Consider inviting someone from OCLC (Office of research or else) to get a discussion on “data mining” and/or linked data. Daniel Boivin
Who is the new WorldShare library in Canada? Daniel Boivin
What are the new features being offered in QP? Daniel Boivin
Send a thank you note to Joseph Hafner. Hélène Roussel and Daniel Boivin.