The introduction of the new Policy for Use and Transfer of WorldCat Records has been delayed, with an intention to review, amend and aim to release in Q3 2009. This is a massive opportunity for the library world to help OCLC develop a policy that really helps libraries innovate.
There has been sustained negative reaction to OCLC’s planned introduction of the new Policy for Use and Transfer of WorldCat Records across the library world from the first moment it was published. Reactions have varied in their strength and their has been support for the stated aim – to open WorldCat data for more uses – but a strong reaction against the ways in which the policy tries to do that.
OCLC has clearly listened to that reaction, and the many conversations that I’m told have happened behind closed doors and in private calls and emails. The result is the announcement a day ago that a review board will be convened in order to gather input from the membership and wider library community.
Karen Calhoun, who managed the production of the controversial new policy will act as liaison between the review board and OCLC. I presume that role will include providing clear statements to the review board on such things as the Copyright status of the various aspects of WorldCat – something that has not been forthcoming so far.