OCLC sending: what records are sent

Author: smoody
Posted in: Systems

What records are sent to OCLC/Melvyl and which are only in OskiCat?

Simple answer: We send any fully cataloged record that we are allowed to send to OCLC

A “cataloged” record is defined technically as a “bibliographic record” (a record that describes the basic bibliographic entity/title. Order, holdings, and item records must each be attached to a bibliographic record, which can be either brief or full level, as determined by existence of a Cat Date) with a cat date filled in in Millennium. A “fully cataloged” record is one with a cat date that is cataloged at a sufficient level to be sent to OCLC.

What kinds of things are not considered fully cataloged?

(July 1, 2012 = 690,798 titles: includes CUY – Berkeley general library – and non-CUY))

  • temporary records for course reserves that are not part of the collection (photocopies, instructor’s personal copies of books, etc)
  • order records for new incoming items for which there is no cataloged record (new to the collection)
  •  “On the fly” records staff create as temporary placeholders to track something sent from a branch to cataloging (for example, a gift received at the branch), or created to check out something to a patron that lacks a record
  • materials with provisional records entered on Gladis, most of them very old, have not previously been considered fully cataloged. These correspond to the old Gladis levels below Gladis levels f, r, and b (which were considered “full” or “full enough”)
  • records loaded for the Materials Acquired Digitally project which can get a cat date and be cataloged after cataloger review/upgrade

What kinds of things are considered cataloged?

(July 1, 2012 = 8,743,202 titles: includes CUY – Berkeley general library – and non-CUY)

Note: see below for categories of records are “fully cataloged” but are still not sent.

  • most materials that come from Yankee Book Peddler come with full copy with a cat date (but not all)
  • anything one of our staff catalogs either as original or copy cataloging from OCLC in any of the cataloging units
  • any of our batch loads other than few exceptions like Materials Acquired Digitally
  • batch loads from SCP, the Hathi Trust records, etc
  • “inventory control” records for non-UCB materials at NRLF for which we have loaded full metatdata (ie, the full record on which the campus set their holdings)

What does it mean “that we are allowed to send”?

Some batch loads come with license agreements that prohibit exporting the records to outside systems like OCLC.  These are not sent. Likewise, CDL has a policy that the campuses not set their holdings on shared electronic print and serial records. CDL sets the CUYER (CUY-Elec. Record) symbol on these records for us.

Although we are not forbidden to send Hathi Trust records we load for full text electronic materials, we do not send these records to OCLC.  They are already represented on OCLC and available in the Berkeley “view”.  Count of Hathi records as of July 1, 2012: 1,500,000

Truly active:

In addition, we only send records to set holdings where the title is not suppressed (ie, not completely withdrawn, a mistake, a staff tool, etc), and where there is at least one unsuppressed holdings or item record (ie, we actually have something), or full text electronic access other than via the SCP program.

What symbol is set?:

We now set CUY not only for things previously set as CUY but also for things at Institute of Transportation Studies, who used to use their own symbol CBT. We set LLB for Lawrence Berkeley National Lab materials and CBG for Institute of Governmental Studies materials.

We set ZAP (in addition to CUY or other qualifying symbols like CBG/LLB) if it is an NRLF non-restricted item. ZAP facilitates request and RLF duplication checking.  We set ZAPSP for shared print.

If there is full text electronic access on a record, we set all symbols (except ZAP/ZAPSP) on that basis alone, because if it is electronic all of us who share OskiCat “have” it equally. More details on setting of OCLC holdings is here.

Note that there isn’t a one to one relationship between OCLC holdings symbol and campus administrative structure (ie, the ITSL records are on the CUY symbol now), between OCLC holdings symbol and cataloging entity (the LBL materials use the LLB symbol but their cataloging is done by Catalog Dept), and a given record can have more than one symbol set.

We have automated batch processes in place to CANCEL holdings weekly when things change (for example, the print for one of the symbols is withdrawn or a url is removed).  This is important because it enables us to stay up to date with all the symbols for cataloged materials we are allowed to send.


Each week OCLC rejects a few of the records we send to set/cancel holdings. Analysis is underway about the best way to resolve these rejects.  While this isn’t a large problem in terms of setting holdings, it does mean we are unable to cancel holdings when appropriate and set the appropriate symbols as things change (ie, if an item is sent to NRLF the process that adds the ZAP symbol will fail).

Legacy Data
Author: Charis Takaro
Approval Group: PSC, ILSSC, CSG, BTech, Collections Council, Cataloging and Metadata Council
Update Group: Systems
Last updated date: 06/07/13

Archived Comments

Wed, 09/12/2012 – 09:17 — Charis Takaro
Being sent to the various groups for review as an FYI to help increase understanding of how Melvyl/OCLC and Millennium relate

Created: April 27, 2016
Last revised: December 3, 2016
Review date: None set

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