Identifying Canadian-Authored Content

Background

  • Library and Archives Canada (LAC) Description Division records metadata that could be leveraged to identify Canadian authors, and to identify content about Canada.
  • LAC is also advocating to Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) to develop a default search filter for Voilà that presents Canadian authored content first in the search results.

Considerations

  • Shortly after the launch of the new National Union Catalogue (NUC) Voilà, LAC became aware of issues identifying Canadian authored content in the new catalogue, from multiple sources:
    • The More Canada report by a Canadian publishing industry think tank
    • The Manitoba School Library Association highlighted the difficulties in using Voilà to identify Canadian authored publications to support the Canadian school curriculum even though this functionality did not exist in AMICUS
    • Most stakeholders were consulted during engagements across Canada in 2019-20
  • The issues can be summed up as:
    • Searches in Voilà are ordered by “best match” with emphasis on title matches. Users have access to a much larger pool of records against which Canadian content must compete in the “best match” algorithm
    • Where Canadian authors do appear, there is no clear identifier or icon to show that it is “Canadian authored content” whereas this functionality did not exist in AMICUS. There is no navigation from the heading in the catalogue to the authority file in which identifying elements are stored
    • There is currently no filter for searching in Voilà or Aurora for Canadian authored content even though this functionality did not exist in AMICUS

Key Public Messages

  • LAC will work with OCLC to develop mechanisms for the identification of Canadian content in Voilà and in Aurora. LAC will investigate options and mechanisms for the identification of Canadian authors and Canadian authored content.
  • The possibility of a new search filter in Voilà and Aurora will be investigated which would prioritize Canadian authored content.

SME:

Monica Fuijkschot, Director General, Published Heritage Branch
Email: monica.fuijkschot@canada.ca
Tel: 819-934-7252

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