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When to input a new serial record HALDY, AMANDA E GS-11 USAF AETC AUL/LTSC 04 Apr 2014 15:22 UTC

This question concerns the Journal of Diplomacy and International Relations published by Seton Hall University--though I have run into similar situations before. See (OCoLC)ocm60491430 for this specific record.

The title used to be The Whitehead Journal of Diplomacy and International Relations (as in the above record), but when The Whitehead School of Diplomacy & International Relations (issuing body) dropped "Whitehead" from their title and became simply the School of Diplomacy & International Relations, the School opted to put the university name in the title instead--our most recently received issue is now Seton Hall Journal of Diplomacy and International Relations.

Does this really constitute a title change? I'm hoping someone can explain the subtleties to me. Current practice certainly seems to reinforce that, yes, this kind of change warrants the creation of a new record in the catalog, superseding the old title. Indeed, a 780 field linking the new Seton Hall Journal to the old Whitehead Journal now exists in the OCLC record.

The source of my confusion, however, lies within OCLC's own guidelines for when to input a new record. Accordingly, the guidelines for serials state that an "addition, deletion or rearrangement of the name of the issuing body anywhere in the title" should not be considered a change in the title proper. Furthermore, "If the only difference is a change in the place of publication [or] publisher..." do not create a new record.

Perhaps the logic for creating a new record in this situation (instead of merely providing an additional access point in the existing record) relies on the idea that both of the above situations, which on their own are not valid motivation, together are sufficient.

I'd appreciate any opinions on the matter to help me navigate these situations in the future. At the heart of the issue is a philosophical question about our motives for creating new records, especially in this digital age of extensible, FRBRized data that should have long outgrown the catalog card, and what manner of organizing the descriptions of our resources best serves patrons. But I don't expect that to be answered anytime soon!

Thank you,

Amanda Haldy
Catalog Librarian
Muir S. Fairchild Research Information Center
DSN 493-2135   Comm (334) 953-2190

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