Committee on Technical Processing (CTP)
Council on East Asian Libraries (CEAL)

2001 Annual Meeting

Thursday, March 22, 2001
1:30 p.m.-3:50 p.m.
Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers
Chicago, IL


I. Welcome and Introductory Remarks (Abraham J. Yu, UC Irvine)

II. Cataloging Issues and Projects

  1. OCLC CORC and Electronic Resource Cataloging (Marty Withrow, OCLC)

  2. Quality Control of Korean Cataloging Records in Shared Databases(Hee-sook Shin, Ohio State University)

  3. Cataloging and Development of a Digital Union Catalog for Ancient Chinese books (Josephine Sche, Southern Connecticut State University)

  4. Chinese Rare Books Project (Soren Edgren, Princeton University)

  5. Latest Development of the HKCAN Project (Patrick Lo, Lingnan University)

III. Transition to Pinyin: Status Report and Discussion

  1. Library of Congress (Philip Melzer)

  2. OCLC Report (Glenn Patton, OCLC)

  3. RLG Report (Karen Smith-Yoshimura, RLG)

  4. Proposed Changes in Chinese Romanization Guidelines (Peter Zhou, UC Berkeley)

IV. Questions, Answers, and Discussion


I. Welcome and Introductory Remarks
(Abraham J. Yu, UC Irvine)

Mr. Yu, Chair of the Committee, convened the meeting at 1:30 p.m. He welcomed everyone to the meeting, introduced committee members, committee projects, meeting programs, and the speakers.

(Click here for the PowerPoint version)

II. Cataloging Issues and Projects

1. OCLC CORC and Electronic Resource Cataloging (Marty Withrow, OCLC)

Mr. Marty Withrow, Director, Metadata Services, OCLC, reported on OCLC's Cooperative Online Resource Catalog (CORC). The system is a web-based metadata creation toolset optimized for the creation of bibliographic records and subject bibliographies for electronic resources.

The CORC toolset has the following features:

  • Automated record creation and multiple metadata formats-The CORC automated tool kit lets you catalog at Web speed. Just type in a URL, and CORC harvests and formats basic information about the resource, in either MARC or Dublin CORE format.

  • Dynamically linked authority control-With linked access to the Library of Congress authority file, a simple mouse click lets you verify online the correct form for names and subjects. When an authority heading changes, CORC's linked authority feature automatically updates all linked resource records. This allows for a more structured quality database and effective searching.

  • URL maintenance-OCLC software scans the CORC catalog to identify broken or redirected URLs and notifies each library that has attached its OCLC holding symbol to the record. A single update of the master record by one institution immediately benefits every other library. The task of maintaining link currency shrinks through the power of the cooperative.

  • WebDewey (by subscription)-During record creation, CORC can automatically generate possible Dewey numbers for you-based on an analysis of the Web site's content-and map them to potential Library of Congress Subject Headings.

  • Subject bibliographies (digital pathfinders)-CORC streamlines the creation and maintenance of pathfinders, which showcase your highest quality resources. Using the pathfinder template, you can easily draw from existing pathfinders in the CORC database, customize content with local material, and integrate physical and digital resources. You can even create pathfinders that search the CORC database at the time they are accessed and return new descriptions of sites based on the query. Pathfinders stored in CORC benefit from shared link maintenance and updates to the CORC catalog.

    CORC facilitates the creation of resource descriptions for quality Web sites, Web-based documents, digital exhibits and more. CORC uses the cooperative model developed by OCLC to reduce the duplicate efforts of libraries. CORC also improves access to appropriate resources by eliminating broken links and updating changes in content automatically.

(Click here for the PowerPoint version)

2. Quality Control of Korean Cataloging Records in Shared Databases (Hee-sook Shin, Ohio State University)

A sample of 623 Korean bibliographic records was randomly selected for this research from 2000 Korean bibliographic records in the OCLC WorldCat database. The sample consisted of 508 OCLC records and 115 RLIN records. Types and frequencies of errors were reported. The average error rate per record was 2.09. The error rate was 1.85 in OCLC and 3.21 in RLIN. The average error rate for original records was 1.91 and 1.44 for enhanced records. Errors were categorized into four types: format, content, editing & inputting, and romanization. The top five errors reported were:

  • ISBD punctuation

  • Missing (or extra) fields

  • Inconsistency between fixed and variable fields

  • Incorrect romanization and capitalization

  • Incorrect word division

About 23 percent of the sample records were found without errors. The duplicate rate was 9 percent. Ms. Shin concluded her presentation by making the following suggestions:

  • Simplify the LC romanization guidelines

  • Provide an updated and comprehensive CJK cataloging manual

  • Add vernacular characters to CJK authority records

  • Develop a duplicate detection program in OCLC for CJK records

  • Add an automated romanization functionality

  • Provide regular workshops related to CJK cataloging

(Click here for the PowerPoint version)

3. Cataloging and Development of a Digital Union Catalog for Ancient Chinese Books (Josephine Sche, Southern Connecticut State University)

Prof. Josephine Sche, Department of Library Science and Instructional Technology, Southern Connecticut State University, introduced her new multilingual graduate course for the Master of Library Science degree and post-Master Professional Development Diploma programs via the internet. The online course ILS 608: "Cataloging and Development of a Digital Union Catalog for Ancient Chinese Books" will be offered in Fall 2001 semester through the online education server "OnlineCSU"of the Connecticut State University system. For course and degree information please check:

This course is designed to teach library staff, working for special Chinese collections world-wide, how to catalog ancient Chinese books and create a digital union catalog for ancient Chinese books cooperatively. The major goal of this Digital Union Catalog for Ancient Chinese Books is to identify and describe ancient Chinese book holding information in major academic and research libraries around the world for the access of scholars and librarians of East Asian Studies on the internet when the union catalog is fully developed.

The course uses a CD-ROM: "Getting to Know Chinese Rare Books," produced by the Sepcial Collection Department of the National Central Library in Taipei, and articles that can be downloaded from the course units to introduce details of descriptive cataloging of ancient Chinese books in Chinese Bibliographies. These teaching materials will display and explain the special features of external appearance and internal contents and structure, and other information for major physical description and subject analysis data used for cataloging ancient Chinese books. Chinese text and pictures of individual elements of books are displayed via selection of demonstration on the CD-ROM which can be purchased and also available on the Web site of the National Central Library at:

The differences and similarities of bibliographic databases, cataloging rules, classification systems, and MARC formats for CJK records used in the United States (OCLC and RLIN) and Chinese library communities (Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Mainland China) are introduced and compared.

Students learn how to identify and select the major bibliographic elements of ancient Chinese books for input into the bibliographic records which can be accepted internationally. The Dublin Core Metadata Elements Set is introduced and considered as the ideal cataloging data description for this Digital Union Catalog. The potential of OCLC-CORC system which could be further developed to support the input of the CJK cataloging data and to convert between MARC and Dublin Core records is also introduced in this course for libraries that need this feature.

For more information, please visit the course development Web site at: or email to Prof. Josephine Sche (

4. Chinese Rare Books Project (Soren Edgren, Princeton University)

The Chinese Rare Books Project (CRBP) is a consortial project. It was developed to create a unique electronic catalog of Chinese rare book holdings, primarily in North American libraries. The Research Libraries Group (RLG) initiated the project in 1991. Catalog entries produced by the project become part of the Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN) database. As of February 28, 2001, full bibliographic records of some 15,525 books and manuscripts have been produced, including the entire collections of the East Asian libraries of Columbia University, Princeton University, and the University of British Columbia. Participation is open to any research library with Chinese rare book holdings. To date, 27 major libraries in China, Europe and North America are associated with the project.

The East Asian libraries in Europe and North America hold fewer Chinese rare books compared to collections in China and Japan; however, they contain thousands of rare and unique editions, many gathered by Westerners early in this century. Simple descriptions of some records have appeared in various published book catalogs.

This project, for the first time, provides a comprehensive and searchable catalog. It is based upon contemporary bibliographic standards, state-of-the-art cataloging, and Chinese character software. This project enables scholars to work in Chinese traditional sources effectively. The CRBP also has the additional virtue of self-propagation, i.e., Chinese scholars and librarians are beginning to use the project's bibliographic standards to catalog their own collections, including older Chinese editions that are not rare, as well as collections of Japanese and Korean books.

Several earlier cataloging efforts undertook in China and Japan had neither a fully unified approach nor the benefit of computer applications. In North America and Europe, where computer applications were further developed, but it lacks qualified staff to organize collections of older Chinese books and manuscripts.

One of the project's greatest challenges was to create guidelines for online cataloging that fully recognize the special characteristics of Chinese traditional books and the value of Chinese bibliographic tradition. RLG rightly saw the project as an opportunity to help its member libraries in North America, address a growing international need for access to these unique resources. Through an extensive compilation and review process, which involved a 22-member committee, a bilingual edition of guidelines was compiled.

The CRBP received major financial support from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Henry Luce Foundation, the Starr Foundation, the Chiang Ching-Kuo Foundation, and a significant anonymous donor. Princeton University has hosted the project since 1991 and solely administered the project within the Department of East Asian Studies since 1996, providing all local overhead needs. RLG has been responsible for additional cost-sharing contributions.

Based on the production standards now achievable, Mr. Edgren said, it will take a minimum of 4 years (FY01-FY04) to complete the cataloging of North American holdings, which currently account for 42 percent of the online records. Now that initial challenges have been addressed and the fundamental work of the project is well under way, building of the database must be completed and the project's resources made better known to scholars and librarians. Last year, the CRBP began cataloging the holdings of the Library of Congress and the Harvard-Yenching Library, the two largest collections of Chinese rare books in the West.

Mr. Edgren explained some special characteristics of the project with examples of records created by CRBP for two Ming editions held by the East Asiatic Library of the University of California, Berkeley. He also pointed out that each edition cataloged anew. Regardless of previous status, visual images (photocopies) from the caption title accompany each worksheet received become part of a permanent archive for the project. The project has developed innovative methods for identifying contemporary woodblock facsimile editions within the MARC record; useful biographical data based on CRBP research is often added to online records.

5. Latest Development of the HKCAN Project (Patrick Lo, Lingnan University)

Mr. Lo reported the major changes of the HKCAN Project since April 2000. Fields 7xx in MARC21 becomes the linking fields for equivalent headings in the same/different database(s)/authority thesaurus(es). In April 2000, based on the Library of Congress's advice, the HKCAN Project workgroup decided to adopt the [7xx] model for the following reasons:

  • [7xx] field is a standard MARC21 practice & performs the same functions as [19x]

  • [7xx] field is repeatable - capable of handling parallel headings in multiple forms/scripts

  • [7xx] field is able to facilitate sharing & exchanging of authority data on a global scale

  • There is no requirement for a corresponding authority record for [7xx] heading

  • [7xx] field is supported by the Innovative Interfaces, Inc. (III) and will be implemented in the new immediate release.

    For more information, please visit the HKCAN project Web site at:

III. Transition to Pinyin: Status Report and Discussion

1. Library of Congress (Philip Melzer, LC)

Mr. Melzer reported that OCLC has converted 158,368 name and series authority records. CPSO has manually converted approximately 500 subject authority records. RLG has converted 172,363 LC Chinese bibliographic records.

Loading and Distribution of Converted Records

Converted name and subject authority records have been loaded into the LC database, and distributed to NACO nodes and CDS subscribers. Converted bibliographic records have been distributed to OCLC and to vendors by CDS. Those with parallel vernacular fields have been loaded into the LC database. LC has loaded roman-only book records, and will load roman-only non-book records soon. The Cataloging Distribution Service will make available a file of all name authority records that were converted to pinyin. An announcement will be posted on the CDS home page, explaining what this file contains and how it can be obtained.

Thanks to RLG and OCLC Staff

This achievement was possible because LC staff worked closely and collaboratively with the staff at RLG and OCLC throughout the project. The project to convert both authority records and all manners of romanized Chinese data on bibliographic records has presented LC with a number of unique challenges. LC has worked through these problems together and kept in contact frequently exchanging data, test files, and reports. "It has been a pleasure to work with the staff at RLG and OCLC," Mr. Melzer said. On behalf of LC, Mr. Melzer presented certificates of appreciation to Ms. Karen Smith-Yoshimura, representing RLG; and Mr. Glenn Patton, representing OCLC, in recognition of their significant contributions and wonderful spirit of cooperation throughout the project.


LC is now moving to the cleanup phase. OCLC has greatly facilitated the cleanup of name and series authority records by providing files of different categories of converted authorities. Mr. Melzer reported that LC is making good progress with the review and cleanup of these records.

Mr. Melzer also pointed out that the LC Pinyin Conversion Project has been greatly aided by fourteen NACO participants, who have generously volunteered their time and efforts to make adjustments to 8,000 undifferentiated Chinese personal name authority records. Because pinyin romanization makes more distinctions than Wade-Giles, hundreds of new unique (and a few new non-unique) authority records are being created for names that have become unique and can now stand on their own. Evaluating and changing these records is difficult and time-consuming, but the finished work is distinguished by its uniformly high quality. Because these catalogers, and their administrators, were willing to devote their time and expertise to improve the national authority file, they were presented with certificates of appreciation from LC at the ALA 2001 Midwinter Conference. The following cataloger were recognized:

    Hsi-chu Bolick, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

    Shi Deng, University of Alabama

    Sarah Elman, University of California, Los Angeles

    Shu Yong Jiang, Art Institute of Chicago Library

    Teresa Mei, Cornell University

    Wayne Richter, Western Washington University

    Zehua Sun, Ada Cheung, Cho Chuen Wong, and Xiaolie Wang; Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

    Daphne Wang, University of Oregon

    Eddie Wang, Columbia University

    Iping Wei, Princeton University

    Kuang-tien Yao, University of Hawaii, Manoa

If you are an experienced cataloger from an institution that has received NACO training, and if you are an independent contributor of Chinese names, your participation in this project is welcomed.

There will be a number of clean-up tasks associated with the conversion of bibliographic records. About 14 percent of all converted LC records were marked for review (a total of 20,191). After printing out these records, we will identify those on which access points were marked, and then begin to change those records.

Some subject headings have changed since the conversion specifications were prepared. These headings will be identified and corrected on bib records. We will also need to update some headings on bib records that were changed as part of the cleanup of authorities (for example, many of the corporate headings and place names that include the names of minority peoples).

At the end of last year, LC observed a 5-month moratorium on enhancing Chinese bibliographic records that were created before August 1, 2000. Now that most of the converted records have been loaded into the LC database, they are again eligible for input/update. LC catalogers are now focusing their efforts on cataloging the several thousand items that have accumulated since last August 1.

Chinese Romanization Practices

Catalogers and CPSO specialists held 5 meetings, between November and February, to identify and resolve discrepancies in romanization practice, particularly in the romanization of place names and personal names. They have drafted a detailed clarification on how to apply pinyin romanization guidelines in a consistent and uniform manner within the framework of AACR2 cataloging rules. This document has been posted on the pinyin home page for comments. Mr. Melzer urged audience to comment on the draft clarification and send comments to LC by May 4, 2001:

    - Do they make sense to you?

    - Are they clear and consistent?

LC will evaluate the comments, post final instructions on the pinyin home page, and then draft modifications to the pinyin romanization guidelines (clarifying LC practices and providing more examples).

The LC Pinyin Home Page

The Library of Congress will continue to share information about the conversion project on its pinyin home page. The following information is now available:

  • The timeline coordinated among LC, OCLC, and RLG is updated periodically

  • Explanations of name/series authority conversion and bibliographic record conversion: scope and extent of conversion, how text is converted, what did not convert, and known errors and inconsistencies

  • Guidelines for BIBCO libraries

  • The complete conversion specifications

  • A description of LC cleanup tasks, along with status reports

LC also plans to post:

  • Information on the conversion of subject headings: those that converted correctly, those that did not convert, and those that will need to be changed after machine conversion

  • Instructions and tips for Cuttering Chinese literary authors and Chinese local history

If you have questions, or need more information about the pinyin conversion project, please do not hesitate to contact the Cataloging Policy and Support Office, or Mr. Melzer at

2. OCLC (Glenn Patton, OCLC)

Mr. Glenn Patton, Director, Metadata Standards & Quality, OCLC, reported on OCLC's Wade-Giles/Pinyin conversion activities. He began by reviewing the conversion of authority records that took place in September 2000. He noted several categories of headings that were excluded from conversion (including pre-AACR2 corporate names and uniform titles, as well as headings that appear to be Wade-Giles, but, based on examination of the related bibliographic records, are not romanized forms).

Mr. Patton also described discussions at ALA Midwinter on references that were not retained in converted authority records. These were Wade-Giles forms of name-title headings and corporate names with subordinate bodies that would represent references not required by NACO practice. Attendees at the RLG Pinyin Conversion Planning Forum asked that consideration be given to restoring these references, and after discussions with the Library of Congress and RLG, OCLC undertook a project to restore the references. The headings are converted to 4xx references coded with a subfield (w"nnea." Addition of these references was completed in late March 2001.

Mr. Patton then reported that OCLC was in the final stages of testing its conversion software for bibliographic records. He also acknowledged the enormous amount of help received from the LC staff and the OCLC CJK Users Group Pinyin Conversion Task Force. OCLC planned to start the conversion of the Chinese bibliographic records in WorldCat in early April (Since the meeting, that schedule has been postponed to late April or early May). CONSER Chinese serials will be converted first, followed by other Chinese bibliographic records, and then by non-Chinese records containing Wade-Giles text.

Finally, Patton briefly reviewed local file conversion options and urged that meeting attendees look at the OCLC web site for further information. (

(Click her for the PowerPoint version)

3. RLG (Karen Smith-Yoshimura, RLG)

Karen Smith-Yoshimura, Project Manager, RLG, briefly introduced several important RLG Pinyin Conversion milestones:

RLG Pinyin Conversion Milestones

Sept. 2000

  • Loaded converted pinyin authority records distributed by LC into the RLG Name Authority File >

Oct. 1, 2000

  • RLIN requested catalogers to add field 987, the pinyin marker, when creating original Chinese language bibliographic records

  • Field 987 retained on all record copies, export, import

  • New local index for field 987 status codes "n" (no Wade-Giles strings encountered) and "r" (requires manual review)

Mid-Oct. 2000

  • LC signed off on RLG pinyin program conversion for bibliographic records

Nov. 2000

  • LC signs off on test loading of RLG pinyin bibliographic records

  • Conversion of RLG union catalog began

Dec. 2000

  • RLG converted all Chinese-language clusters with LC (CJK) records

  • 142,555 converted LC records delivered to LC and OCLC; 20,182 records flagged for "manual review"

Jan.-March 2001

  • All Chinese-language records romanized LC records converted and delivered to LC

  • Clusters with University of Michigan, Columbia University, and Yale University East Asian Records converted

  • Number of clusters converted to date: ca 450,000 (about 30 percent of total)

  • Estimated number of records converted to date: ca. 1,400,000 records (about 50 percent of total)

Overlaps of Chinese-language Records in RLG Union Catalog

  • 23 percent of Columbia University East Asian records in clusters with LC records

  • 26 percent of University of Michigan Asian Library records in clusters with LC or Columbia University East Asian records

  • 59 percent of Yale University East Asian Library records in clusters with LC, Columbia University, or University of Michigan records

RLG Project: Transition Issues

  • With advice from RLG Pinyin Working Group - Chinese catalogers, technical services/systems heads form Columbia University, LC, Princeton University, University of Michigan, and Yale University:

  • Created "Guidelines for Cataloging Chinese Materials in RLIN during Conversion"

  • Added "Frequently Asked Questions for RLIN Users"

  • Created "Status of RLG Union Catalog Record Conversions"

  • Identified questions to be addressed on LC Pinyin Conversion Project Web site

4. Proposed Changes in Chinese Romanization Guidelines (Peter Zhou, UC Berkeley)

Mr. Peter Zhou led a discussion regarding LC's memo containing two proposed changes to the Chinese Romanization Guidelines (see appendix 1)

The memo was sent for comments to the CEAL community via Eastlib right before the Chicago Meeting. Mr. Zhou expressed thanks to members of the CEAL Pinyin Liaison Group for their hard work. Based on LC's memo, Mr. Zhou presented the arguments for and against the changes as well as the final options for each.

Proposal One: add an umlaut over the letter "u" in the syllables "lue" and "nue"

e.g. lue ==>l? ? nue ==>n? ?

Arguments for the change:

  • Conformity to ISO, Han Yu Pin Yin Fang An, US Board on Geographic Names standards

  • Convenience for data storage, transmission and data exchange

  • Since an umlaut is already used in syllables "l? and "n? which occur more frequently than "lue" and "nue", the practice should be kept consistently across board

Arguments against the change:

  • "Lue" and "nue" without an umlaut do not conflict with other syllables, thus are not ambiguous

  • Absence of diacritic marks is convenient for user


    1. No change

    2. Make the change on an "as encountered" basis now and in the future

    3. Option 2 plus going back to authority and bibliographic records to add the umlaut

Proposal two: Use of apostrophe in joined syllables containing "n" and "g"

e.g. Zhang Zhan'gang ???

Arguments for the change:

  • Conformity to ISO, Han Yu Pin Yin Fang An, US Board of Geographic Names standards

  • Convenience for data storage, transmission and data exchange

  • This rule is not necessary, as there is almost no confusion without it

Arguments against the change:

  • It is convenient for readers to distinguish the syllable break

  • Omitting apostrophe shall end in confusion as in Fang'an (scheme) vs. Fangan (aversion)

  • (Counter argument: No. Since there is already a rule requiring putting an apostrophe before a, e, and o, when it is adjacent to another syllable, this requirement is redundant.)


    1. No change

    2. Cease the practice, and remove this apostrophe on authority and bibliographic records on an " as encountered" basis

IV. Questions, Answers, and Discussion

One question was raised on the release of the rare book project records in the RLIN database. Ms. Karen Yoshimura answered that records are in the save mode. It is up to individual libraries to complete their records in the production mode.

As for the two proposed changes on Chinese romanization, Mr. Zhou conducted informal votes for these two proposals; however, several concerns and comments were raised:

  • Authority file needs to be changed first, as it is project-based

  • Is it possible to do the global change?

  • There are inconsistent opinions on romanization from end users

  • We have to consider the cost

  • LC practice vs. international practice

  • Should follow the Han Yu Pin Yin Fang An and drop the diacritic symbol (for Proposal 2)

  • We need more time and preparation to discuss these proposed changes within institutions because

  • CEAL received the memo only a week before the meeting

Finally, Mr. Zhou urged individuals to contact LC regarding submitting comments on these two proposed changes.

The program adjourned at 4:00 p.m.

    Respectfully submitted,

    Teresa Mei, Cornell University
    Taemin Park, Indiana University
    Fung-yin Simpson, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Annual Meeting
Agenda and Minutes

 Valid CSS!
Designed by the Committee on Library Technology chair Rob Britt , January 13, 2012
Modified by Hyun Chu Kim, last updated on February 15, 2017