What will happen with Canadiana Authorities in English and in French?
Prior to 2018, LAC maintained the Canadiana authority file, the national, bilingual file that allowed for the creation of linked, equivalent pairs of English and French authority records using the 7XX MARC fields. In 2018, the transition to OCLC’s WorldShare Management System (WMS) required changes to how LAC creates and maintains authorities for the National Bibliography.
The opportunity provided by these changes opened the door for LAC to transition the Name Authority Cooperative Program (NACO) to manage English language authority records. The move to NACO will benefit the Canadian library community, since English-language bibliographic records created by LAC will be consistent with those used by other English-language libraries in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. This consistency of “access points”, or how names are formulated, is key for effective sharing of copy cataloguing records across libraries. To support this change, a new module for French- language authorities, known as “Canadiana Name Authorities in French”, has been developed within WMS.
With the NACO agreement, LAC adds 7xx MARC fields (called “heading-linking entry fields”) to English authority records in NACO. 7XX fields are also included in Canadiana Name Authorities in French in WMS. In this way, equivalent English and French records in NACO and Canadiana files can be linked and synchronized, as required by LAC to support cataloguing in both languages.
Not all unique authorities previously found in the bilingual Canadiana file will be immediately available in the NACO file. LAC will be adding unique authorities to the NACO file as part of the Canadiana Conversion Project. Once an authority record is added to the NACO file, a 667 note in the NACO record identifies it as a part of this project and indicates that a minimal amount of revision work has been done to the record.
NACO authority records in English can be freely accessed on the Library of Congress Authorities webpage and at www.viaf.org.
NACO has more than 750 participating libraries, including national libraries such as the Library of Congress (US), the British Library, and the national libraries of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Across Canada, there are several academic, government and public library participants.
While many organizations around the world maintain French-language authority files, there is currently no international shared French-language authority program comparable to what is available in English through NACO. For this reason, LAC has now begun to maintain its separate French-language name authority file using the WMS Canadiana Name Authorities in French functionality. LAC’s French-language authority data will continue to be freely accessible at www.viaf.org. LAC will also make batch files of French-language authority records freely available to interested libraries and other organizations via FTP. If you are interested in obtaining these files, please contact LAC at firstname.lastname@example.org.