Minutes

TexShare - Library of Texas Working Group Meeting
Friday, July 16, 2004

Meeting Place:
Texas State Library and Archives
1201 Brazos Street
Austin, Texas

List of Attendees:
John Asbell, Shedrick Pittman-Hassett, David Calabrese, Jeanette Mosey, Antonella Ward, Chris Peterson, Tim Mason, Luis Chaparro, Linda Barr (substituting for Martha Rinn), Kathryn Sturtz, Ann Mason, Beverley Shirley, Kevin Marsh
Absent: Sheri Benton

Welcome and Introductions:

Meeting was called to order at 10:00 a.m. Everyone was asked to introduce him/herself. Ann Mason welcomed attendees to the first meeting of the Library of Texas workgroup.

Mission

Kevin Marsh gave a brief history of the Library of Texas (Lot) Project. Detailed information about the history of the LoT Project will be made available at a future date on the TexShare Web site.

Organization

Beverley Shirley reviewed the roles and responsibilities of TexShare Working Groups and their respective Chairs.

Jeanette Mosey was elected Chair of the Library of Texas Working Group by acclamation.
Antonella Ward volunteered to record the meeting minutes.

The group agreed to meet in person at least once a year, and tentatively scheduled their next face-to-face meeting for the middle of July 2005. Routine communications are to be handled via email. The group agreed to hold quarterly remote meetings by means of alternative methods of communication technology, such as telephone, video, or web conferencing. TSLAC staff will create a LoT electronic discussion group, and copy a list of members’ email addresses to everyone in the workgroup.

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. – Lunch break

Business

Kevin Marsh explained the need for software enhancements in order to improve LoT’s functionalities.
The following technical issues were brought to the discussion table:

  • Add the ability to track library-specific subscription information so that databases beyond the list of core TexShare databases (beginning with TexShare Select dbs) can be made available to users from libraries that subscribe to those resources.
  • Add the ability to display additional native interface links on each search screen so that we can provide authenticated access to databases that currently do not support standard-compliant searching.
  • Investigate and apply additional types of remote authentication - possible options considered: Rich URL (pros: the user ID and password are embedded in it, no need to memorize or distribute them; cons: if ID and password are visible to anybody, then subject to possible abuse by non-authorized users); statewide license for EZProxy (possible DIR contract?).

Beverley Shirley addressed the issue of accessing and sharing MARC records among LoT participating libraries. She pointed out that policies and procedures are necessary to ensure that correct and desirable information is shared. The workgroup was asked to consider the proposal submitted via email by Sue Phillips, representing UT Austin, that no MARC records be made available for viewing or downloading without the knowledge and consent of the participating libraries.

LoT currently displays MARC information in two ways: “View MARC” and “Download MARC”. The “View” option is automatically enabled for all MARC records provided to LoT, whereas the “Download” feature is activated only after TSLAC receives permission from the participating libraries. After taking into consideration the benefits derived by small libraries from the possibility to download MARC records for free from LoT, and the concerns raised by Sue Phillips from UT Austin about the indiscriminate access to MARC records, the group unanimously decided to make both the “View” and “Download” options available by permission only.

TSLAC currently obtains permission to activate the “Download” feature by means of an email from the library director or appropriate designee. Because of the concerns raised by some LoT workgroup members that a simple email does not provide a way to verify the identity of the person submitting it, the group decided to convert the electronic form into a file type that can be printed on paper, is to be signed by the library director, and then mailed or faxed to TSLAC. A subgroup was formed, comprising Linda Barr, Tim Mason and Kevin Marsh, who will work on tweaking the LoT “MARC Permission Page” to reflect the changes mentioned above.

Workgroup members were also asked to examine how MARC records display in LoT, and suggest what fields could be stripped from these records without undermining copy-cataloging processes (currently MARC records in LoT are displayed without headers).

Beverley Shirley and Kevin Marsh asked the group to come up with a list of priorities for the next two years. The following suggestions were made: promote outreach and conduct usability studies to increase usage of LoT; enhance search features; improve LoT’s utilization as a cataloging tool (e.g. download multiple MARC records at once, instead of one record at a time); expand the “Help” feature or implement other forms of training; partner with other digitization endeavors. This list of priorities will be submitted to the TexShare Advisory Board for final approval.

John Asbell, Antonella Ward and Linda Barr (standing in for Martha Rinn) volunteered to speak with Kevin Marsh at TLA 2005 on the topic of “Connecting Your Patrons to the Library of Texas.”

The meeting was adjourned at 2:30 p.m.

- Minutes recorded by Antonella Ward

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