Future Credit Program

From Charlotte Xanders:
If credits are discontinued, will we see this reduction in OCLC's expenditures reflected in a lowering of our cataloging subscription amounts? I would heartily support a lessening of this expense!

Response: That potential approach to a change in the Credits Program is one of many that could be considered by the Global Council Advisory Committee and OCLC management.

From Roberta Winjum:
The growth of the incentives program (the credits) perhaps in part reflects the need for more participant contributions to cataloging due to changes at LC. How do you see removing this incentive as supporting that increased need/activity?

Response: The budgetary crises of the past several years have affected both the amount of materials that libraries (including the Library of Congress) acquire and catalog and, in many cases, how fully they catalog them. The speed at which libraries are shifting to digital resources and are using a variety of means to provide access to those materials is also changing the face of technical services in many member libraries. The committee is working to take all of these changes into consideration.

From Jeff Siemon:
There were many posts on OCLC-CAT. Were there also many posts on the reference or ILL listservs?

Response: While there have not been as many posts, OCLC staff are monitoring those lists and will provide all feedback to the Global Council Advisory Committee.

From Stella Tang:
We could just do all original cataloging on our own system. If all members do that, will WorldCat still have good quality master records?

Response: WorldCat depends on the cooperative to add and update records for the benefit of all.

From Stacy Pober:
The majority of responses on OCLC-CAT indicated that the credits were important and should be retained, but the first feedback slide has the minority view as the first one listed.

Response: The slides were reporting on what OCLC learned through the several focus groups, Global Council and Americas Regional Council discussion groups to date. The feedback on the OCLC-CAT listserv, webinars, e-mails, etc., is all being considered and reviewed by the Advisory Group.

From Leslie Engelson:
Have you considered the impact of RDA in conjunction with discontinuing the credits, and whether the combination may be the motivation for libraries to find alternative sources for copy cataloging and not contribute to WorldCat anymore?

Response: It is important to note that OCLC will not require the use of RDA. The Global Council Advisory Committee will take all of these factors into consideration.

From Darmae Brown:
So libraries are recognized but don't get any credits for it?

From Joy Banks:
I'm interested to hear more about how "recognition" is defined in this proposal. I can't bring a certificate to my budget meeting.

Response: A recognition program was one of several suggestions that were received during the OCLC Global Council meeting for the Advisory Group to consider.

From Julia Conlee:
Since you allowed members to choose to have their previous credit average applied to their subscription price would OCLC provide that option to institutions if they discontinue the program?

Response: We will pass this suggestion along to the Global Council Advisory Committee.

From Anita Clary:
If credits disappear, will every cataloging subscription be reviewed to include discounts for average credits earned on an annual basis?

Response: No changes to the Credits Program have been decided; we will pass this suggestion along to the committee.

From Stella Tang:
Where do the WorldCat Local records come From? So we are going to provide good master records and no credits?

Response: WorldCat Local records come from WorldCat. The importance of WorldCat quality and maintenance are important factors under discussion and review by the Advisory Group.

From Audrey Baker:
You continue to state that the credits that are under review are mainly the cataloging credits. While cataloging credits may be the focus, action on these credits can affect the quality of records and holdings information, ultimately affecting the ILL system. If records are poor, how are we going to find the appropriate items for lending requests? I have great concerns for the quality of the records.

Response: We’ll pass along the concern to the committee. To reiterate, the Credits Program review is covering both cataloging and resource sharing credits.

From Audrey Baker:
Conversely to increasing subscriptions to extend credits, would eliminating them also reduce subscriptions?

Response: We will pass your suggestion along to the committee.

From Jeni Delfs:
It was mentioned that members' subscriptions are paying for other members' credits, correct? I haven't heard that members are against this practice, so why the need for change?

Response: The program had not been reviewed and studied since 1985; Global Council felt it was time for this review. There have been no decisions made on any changes to the program.

From Maria Pinkas:
So is it about shifting the incentives to other areas that are not cataloging? And/or extending it to other countries? Is it that there is not enough money for all of this? What is it that we are not affording that moves the thought to get rid of incentives?

Response: The Credits Program has extended to few libraries past the North American geography. The Global Council Advisory Group includes members from multiple geographies to address these and other issues surrounding extending the program across new geographies.

From Keri Cascio: But we're funding the work of the cooperative then. Who has a problem with this? Is the money needed by the cataloging cooperative (not OCLC as a whole) elsewhere?

Response: The Credits Program is both funded and received by the members. The Global Council is therefore asking a group of members, the Advisory Group, to assess the current program and make recommendations for the future.

From Lenis McBride:
What other sort of activities have you examined for incentives?

Response: In addition to the discussion of potential changes or updates to the traditional credit services covered, cataloging and resource sharing activities, the Global Council Advisory Committee has discussed the potential of considering incenting to member libraries to build and share other types of library-related contributions. These include the creation and sharing of library service apps, to incent increased participation in pilot programs to name a couple of the ideas that members have provided.

From Cynthia May:
What will you do with the money you save from not giving credits?

Response: There has been no decision on a change to the Credits Program. At this point, the Advisory Group is still collecting information and feedback.