Always Load in Correct Order


We have often had clients ask us in what order they should load their authorities, if they have several groups to load.  Perhaps you’ve found yourself in the situation where you haven’t loaded your last set of authority updates and now you’ve sent in new bibliographic records to be processed, or maybe your next scheduled update has arrived.  You find yourself looking at two or more batches of authorities and you wonder, “Does it really matter which goes first?”  Absolutely!  And here’s why:


    *  Say you had a scheduled authority update in December, but things went crazy busy and you haven’t had time to load those authorities yet.  Now it’s March and you have a large group of new bibliographic records that need processing, so you send them in.  Thinking you can save time by loading both the December updates and the bibliographic authorities at the same time, you wait for the new group to be returned.  But now … which to load first?  You should load the December updates first.  Example:

    *  You have a heading for Doe, John,$d1955-   and sometime last year LC updated that to Doe, John Joseph,$d1955- (and if we’re lucky, LC added the “old” heading as a 400 see-reference).  This changed authority would deliver with the December group you hadn’t loaded yet.

    *  Now you’ve sent in your bib records and in there is the heading for Doe, John,$d1955-  .  However, between December and today’s date LC decided to edit the record again and they put out a new authority with the new heading of: Doe, John J.,$d1955- (and still kept the original “old” heading of Doe, John,$d1955-  in a 400 see-reference tag).

    *  With the processed bibs you’d get back the very newest authority for Doe, John J.,$d1955-, which is what you’d want in your system.

    *  But if you decide to load the bibliographic records and associated authorities first and the December authority updates second, the middle version of Doe, John Joseph,$d1955-  (from the December updates) would overwrite the newest authority sent with the bibs, and you would be stuck with an older, not current LC version of this heading.

Which is why it’s always wisest to load oldest-to-newest, when you’re working with several projects at once.

Written by: Judy Archer

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