Recently, OCLC launched an experiment in making it easier for members to update and correct WorldCat records. Dubbed the Expert Community Experiment, the goal is to engage the community in improving overall database quality. Specifically, members with full-level cataloging authorizations have the ability to improve and upgrade WorldCat master records during the experiment. It began in February and will last six months.
In March, there were 18,910 Expert Community Experiment replaces. There were 1001 institutions that did at least one replace. Individual institution numbers ranged from 3 institutions doing more than 500 replaces to 242 institutions doing 1 replace each. Other figures:
Database Enrichment: 18,235
Minimal-Level Upgrade: 14,791
Enhance Regular: 15,052
Enhance National: 3,583
CONSER Authentication: 1,929
CONSER Maintenance: 6,183
To put this into perspective, during the same period OCLC staff replaced 1,086,715 records. This isn’t to say that we couldn’t see substantial improvements in database quality under a less strict editing regime, only that you likely didn’t know just how hard we work to improve the WorldCat database. I sure didn’t, and I work here.
Roy Tennant works on projects related to improving the technological infrastructure of libraries, museums, and archives.