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"Extra" Metadata: Two Roads in that Yellow Wood

And while I’m in a musing mood… I think there are two directions you can go when faced with metadata (be it AACR2, Dublin Core, or what have you) that’s populated with a whole bunch of information.

You could say, “Hey, we’re putting more information into this record than our patrons use, so let’s not work so hard.” (Better study your patrons good and hard, though, before assuming you know this for a fact.)

Or you could say, “Hey, we’ve got all this stuff. What could we do with it that we aren’t doing yet?” (But be aware that this could range from the simple to the we’d-need-to-hire-programmers complex.)

The path you choose will depend on your circumstances, your patrons, and your ability to dream up ways to exploit metadata. But the path you choose will make all the difference.