Commercial cataloguing, Humanities

Commercial Cataloguing 

When centralised processing like preparation and sale of catalogue entries on-cards is undertaken by an agency as commerical proposition we may call it. 'Commercial Cataloguing'. Barbara Westby defined commercial cataloguing as "Centralised Cataloguing performed and sold by a non-library agency operating for profit". Such commercial cataloguing efforts are described below in brief: 

Publisher's Title Slips 

The idea of a Printed Title Slip was mooted as early as 1877 at the American Library Association (ALA) Conference. A Committee on Publisher's Title Slips consisting of Winsor, Bowker and Dewey was formed at that conference. The committee recommended the supply of title slips prepared for immediate use as catalogue cards to subscribers. The New York office of the Library Journal and Publishers Weekly was the central office but title slips were to be prepared under the supervision of the librarian of Harvard University and the Boston Atheneum. The catalogue entries were printed on one side of a thin paper so that it could be pasted on a card. Extra copies were supplied for use as title and subject entries. This programme could not survive beyond one year. The project which started in 1879 came to an end by February, 1880. 

Rudolph Indexer Company 

A proposal to supply printed catalogue cards for all books 'currently' published in America was thought of by Rudolph Indexer Company in 1893. But the project did not materialise since a similar plan was thought of by the Library Bureau also, 

The Library Bureau 

The Library Bureau had a plan similar to Rudolph Indexer Company. Its intention was to supply printed catalogue cards for all current standard books. Even this project could not succeed.   

H.W. Wilson Company

This famous American publisher of several bibliographies and indexes supplied many school and public libraries simple but adequate card copy at nominal cost for widely read books from 1938 to 1975. During that period over one hundred other distributors and publishers followed the Wilson example of supplying a packet of cards with each book sold. With the introduction of cataloguing-in-publication (CIP) the concept and practice of Books-with-cards was replaced. 

Posted Date: 10/25/2012 8:35:14 AM | Location : United States

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