Issues & Trends
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Issues and Trends

Posted By Lisa McFall, Monday, June 9, 2014

By James Soe Nyun

Providing metadata for musical resources has special challenges not routinely encountered in other areas. Effectively communicating a musical resource’s characteristics may prove difficult or impossible when using descriptive tools designed for more general materials.

For instance, how do we provide the rich web of information about composer, performer, title, duration, etc. that users require, and how do can we be sure that this information about a work remains attached to parts of it that might get separated? How do we best display and search existing metadata? How do we ensure that an item’s physical format is described properly? What information on a pop album is significant to record, and how should you format the metadata?

These questions and many others have been grappled with in several metadata subcommunities. This web site presents some of their work in which they have developed possible answers to some of these questions. Different communities have different needs, and these links will show different solutions for musical materials in different contexts. You will also find here a listing of some of the current discussions taking place that could impact those working with musical resources.

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The Music Library Association is the professional association for music libraries and librarianship in the United States. Founded in 1931, it has an international membership of librarians, musicians, scholars, educators, and members of the book and music trades. Complementing the Association’s national and international activities are eleven regional chapters that carry out its programs on the local level.