Department Guidelines

Most resource description policies and practices are recorded in either the RDS@UF LibGuide for local decisions or in Shared Bib Guidelines for collaborative decisions used in Alma cataloging throughout the 40 state university and college libraries.

Problems or questions concerning the Smathers Libraries catalog can be submitted to the Catalog Problems e-mail box. Please include a return e-mail address to allow us to reply.

Copyright for Catalogers

Copyright Basics

What is Protected: “original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression”

  • Print (e.g. books, newspapers, poems, sheet music)
  • Non-print (e.g. games, DVDs, photographs, software)
  • Internet (e.g. podcasts, blogs, digitized images)

First Sale Doctrine – provision of the Copyright Act that allows libraries to lend or re-sell materials it has acquired. The US Supreme Court has held that the First Sale Doctrine applies to foreign published works.

Intellectual Freedom/Censorship – not a copyright issue, but an issue that arises with respect to frequently challenged materials. In the case of child pornography, possession of such items is a crime; if you have a concern about an item, contact Library Administration for guidance.

Issues with Print

Preservation Copies – copies of works that have been damaged, deteriorating, lost, stolen, or are in an obsolete format may be duplicated and added to the collection.

Non-Preservation Copies – photocopied items shouldn’t be added to the collection if there is a suitable commercial version available.

Issues with Media

Legal Copies – Signs of a “bootleg” or illegal copy of a DVD or audio CD:

  1. Real DVD’s are always factory sealed in a hard case with inserts.
  2. Variations in the cover design should make you suspicious because it’s possible that a different cover was printed for pirated copies. If you see any words spelled incorrectly, it’s a dead giveaway. Another thing to look for is image quality. Gritty images, matte paper and dull colors indicate that the cover was probably photocopied.
  3. The UPC on the back of the DVD case should only be one color, black. If additional ink colors can be seen overlaid over the black in the UPC, or if there the lines in the UPC are indistinct because the image of the bar code has been re-processed with a halftone screen over it, then most likely the DVD case has been copied and re-printed.
  4. Examine the actual DVD
    1. Can you see through the DVD? If you can see through it, it is more than likely not authentic
    2. Is it colorful (like blue, gold, or purple instead of silver)? If it is any of the colors listed above, it is most likely not a mass-produced (hence authentic) DVD.
    3. Hold the DVD up to the light and tilt it to one side. You may be able to see a well-known manufacturer’s name, such as Maxell. If the disc has a name such as Maxell, then odds are the DVD was a burnable disc, and the disc’s contents are counterfeit.
    4. Region Coding – When a DVD is manufactured, it’s done so with a specific audience in mind – i.e., North America, Japan, etc. So a DVD encoded to work on DVD players in the United States probably won’t work on DVD players in Japan, China, Africa, etc. and vice versa. DVDs marked as Region Free or Region “0” are almost always illegal copies or fakes. Here’s a quick rundown of other DVD regions:
      1. Region 1 – US and its territories, Canada and Bermuda
      2. Region 2 – Japan, Europe, South Africa and the Middle East
      3. Region 3 – Southeast Asia, East Asia (incl. Hong Kong)
      4. Region 4 – Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, Pacific Islands, South America, Central America and the Caribbean
      5. Region 5 – Africa, North Korea, Mongolia, Indian subcontinent and Russia
      6. Region 6 – China

Materials Handling Policy

The Resource Description Services Department is committed to safeguarding library items in its care.  To that end, catalogers should take the following precautions when handling material:

General Collections

  • Maintain clean and clutter-free surfaces
  • Use covers for drinks
  • Limit food to snacks and non-messy meals

Specialized Collections

(Architecture & Fine Arts Library, Map & Imagery Library, Music Library, Special Collections)

  • Maintain clean and clutter-free surfaces
  • Store drinks and food out of reach of material
  • Secure rare and other items as needed