Standards Watch

Ah, Holdings Statements!

In a former life, I spent a lot of time with holdings standards, so the one below took me back a bit to those thorny issues of display. Cindy Hepfer, our ALA Voting Representative to NISO, has forwarded yet another systematic review for us to consider: ISO 10324:1997, Information and documentation — Holdings statements — Summary level (1st edition). This is not the NISO standard, but is being balloted by ISO, which means that ALA is not voting on the standard itself but rather is providing feedback to NISO as to whether to approve or disapprove the standard. Vote options are Confirm (as is), Revise/Amend, Withdraw (the standard), or Abstain (from the vote). Comments are required for all votes other than Confirm.

The scope note for the standard states:

“This International Standard specifies display requirements for holdings Statements at the summary level for serial and non-serial items, to promote consistency in the communication and exchange of holdings information. It is intended for use in reporting holdings when reporting is in display form. For machine-readable reporting not in display form, the data elements specified in this International Standard should be included, although their order, etc., may be different in the machine record.

This International Standard identifies and defines the data elements for Statements of holdings of serial and nonserial items at a summary level appropriate for listings of holdings in one or more libraries or institutions. It specifies the content and sequence of data elements within data areas and requirements for inclusion of data areas in the
holdings Statement.

This International Standard requires that the holdings Statement be linked to an identification of the item to which the statement pertains; however, the method of identifying the item is excluded from this International Standard.

This International Standard applies to holdings Statements for bibliographic items in any physical medium.

This International Standard does not specify the way in which the data elements should be represented in a machine-readable data format, nor the medium (media) employed for storage, display, or transfer of the holdings Statements. The guidelines are independent of cataloguing rule Systems.”

As is usual with ISO standards which are not openly available, ALA members interested in reviewing the standard should apply directly to Cindy at and verify their membership in ALA. I ask that those requesting a copy of the standard from Cindy copy me on their request ( so that I can keep track of how these notices are used.

Cindy’s deadline for comments is Monday Feb. 23, 2009.

Diane I. Hillmann
LITA Standards Coordinator