Proposal by BL: Full name as addition to Initialism or Acronym in Access Points for Corporate Bodies (Revision of RDA

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17 Responses to Proposal by BL: Full name as addition to Initialism or Acronym in Access Points for Corporate Bodies (Revision of RDA

  1. John Myers says:

    Editorial correction: the example IBM (Instituto de Biologia Maritima, in both marked up and clean copy, is lacking a closing parenthesis.

    • Dominique Bourassa says:

      This proposals starts by saying that in LC/NAF, “the fullest variant name of a corporate body has often been added to an initialism or acronym.” Yet, the BL picked an example that is not used as such in LC/NAF not in other AFs in VIAF:

      Instituto de Biologia Marítima (Portugal) ‎ Library of Congress/NACO
      Instituto de Biologia Marítima ‎ National Library of Portugal ISNI-test
      Instituto de Biologia Marítima (Lissabon) ‎ German National Library

      This does not make a convincing argument. Maybe a better example could be found. The example given in LC-PCC PS AAA (Association Art Action) is already more convincing.

  2. John Myers says:

    In the main, this makes sense. But I wonder whether the Exception should be written as a separate rule? And whether the guidance under 11.13 for additions ought to reformulated along the lines of 6JSC/BL/20 regarding similar additions to persons under 9.19? (Assuming 6JSC/BL/20 finds favor with the JSC, which I’m somewhat lukewarm about, but the BL could have been consistent when dealing with similar situations.)

  3. Robert Bratton says:

    I agree that we should be able to qualify corporate body names consisting of initials or acronyms with the actual name of the body. However, the LC/PCC practice listed in the LC/PCC-PS gives this as an *option*, leaving it to cataloger’s judgement: “Alternatively, a spelled out form of the name may be used as an Other designation addition (see if such an addition better identifies the corporate body.”

    This change proposal states that you can *only* qualify corporate body names consisting of initials or acronyms with the actual name of the body. What if you need to qualify IBM, but you don’t know what the letters stand for? There are also groups that identify themselves by letters, but the letters don’t represent words.

    Wouldn’t this proposal needlessly invalidate a lot of existing AAPs like:

    IBM (Musical group)
    MGEN (Organization)
    GBH (Musical group)
    RC III (Organization)

    I would much prefer the RDA instructions here to align with the LC/PCC Practice.

  4. Dominique Bourassa says:

    I also agree that we should be allowed to use the fullest variant name of a corporate body as an addition to initialism or acronym but I am not sure that an exception to is the best way to do so. One problem is that the BL proposal only provides instruction at, a section about constructing access points, without adding anything to section 11.7. I believe that any instruction about additions to authorized access points in the constructing access points section (11.13) should be preceded by a similar instruction on recording other identifying attributes in sections 11.3-11.10.

    As Robert wrote, would be a good place to show this based on LC-PCC PS that refers the cataloger to Instead of an exception at we could add something to and (Other Designation Associated with the Body). Or maybe we could devise a new section based on the fuller form of name (9.5). Isn’t this a somewhat similar situation?

    • Kathy Glennan says:

      In response to Dominique’s comment ( August 13, 2014 at 1:02 pm) about requiring an instruction in 11.7, I think that providing the spelled-out form of a preferred name that takes the form of an initialism/acronym would be covered by, Expanded Name.

  5. Kathy Glennan says:

    I agree with the points that Robert & Dominique have raised. I have also reviewed some of the correspondence on this issue on the PCC list over the past couple of years, and I don’t see anything to suggest that spelling out the name of the corporate body is always “a more useful addition to an initialism or acronym than Type of Corporate Body”.

  6. Kathy Glennan says:

    I found the following preferred corporate names (not RDA) in the the LC/NACO Authority File this afternoon. I think these are all situations where the current qualifier would be preferred over spelling out the acronym/initialism :

    CAt (Firm)
    not CAt (Coelacanth Architecture Tokyo)
    CAT (Musical group)
    not CAT (Community Arts Team)
    CAT (Organization)
    not CAT (Centre Agro-environnemental du Tocantins)

    Note that the first example above probably would not be covered by the BL proposal, since it’s not written in all capital letters. This may mean that the proposed language is too restrictive.

  7. Kathy Glennan says:

    It seems to me that this is all potentially more useful (or possibly more controversial) when it comes to variant names, rather than preferred names.

    The correspondence on the PCC list was not uniform in endorsing the need for either supplying a qualifier at all (as long as the variant doesn’t conflict with the preferred name of another corporate body), or in endorsing/requiring this particular qualifier.

    VAPs aren’t core, so including them is based on cataloger’s judgment.

  8. Kathy Glennan says:

    If we think that RDA 11.13 should be modified to enable the use of an expanded name as a qualifier, I would prefer to see that as a separate sub-instruction, as John Myers suggested (July 15, 2014 at 7:07 pm ).

    If we were to suggest this in the ALA response, we’d not only need to come up with specific wording, we’d also need to suggest where this belongs in 11.13.

    As John noted (above – same response), this has similarities to the problems/solutions proposed in BL/20. RDA currently says you have to use if the name does not convey the idea of a corporate body. It also says to “Make the additions specified at– if they are needed to distinguish access points representing different corporate bodies with the same name.” There’s no statement about applying those instructions in a particular order, so maybe a new sub-instruction could go just about anywhere.


  9. Robert Bratton says:

    RDA says “Make additions to the name as instructed at–, in that order, as applicable.” Would we need to remove “in that order” here?

    Borrowing from existing RDA language, here’s a stab at wording (copious criticism welcomed)…

    Fuller Form of Name
    If the preferred name of a corporate body consists solely of an initialism or acronym (with or without periods between the letters), add the fuller form of the corporate body’s name if the addition assists in the identification of the body.

    IBM (Instituto de Biologia Marítima)
    CCF (Crédit Cinématographique Français)

    Optional Addition
    Add one of the additions specified at RDA– RDA if the fuller form of name is not sufficient or appropriate, if the fuller form of name is unknown, or if the letters do not represent words.

    YYZ (Gallery)
    GBH (Musical group)
    XXX (Society)

  10. Kathy Glennan says:

    How about this as a slightly different approach? Addition to a Name Not Conveying the Idea of a Corporate Body (New)
    When constructing an authorized access point for a corporate body whose name does not convey the idea of a corporate body, add one of the following elements as appropriate:
    type of corporate body (see
    expanded name (see

    Make the additions even if they are not needed to distinguish one access point from another (i.e., when two or more bodies have the same name or names so similar that they may be confused). Type of Corporate Body (New numbering, modified paragraph, unchanged examples)
    Add a term designating the type of corporate body (see
    Apollo 11 (Spacecraft)
    Beanpot (Hockey tournament)
    Gingerbread (Organisation)
    Designation added by an agency following British spelling conventions
    Health of the Public (Program)
    Designation added by an agency following American spelling conventions
    Johann Traeg (Firm)
    KBS Kyōto (Radio station)
    Merced de Quito (Monastery)
    Niagara (Passenger ship)
    Niagara (Whaling ship)
    Rachel Ann (Sloop)
    Red Hot Chili Peppers (Musical group) Expanded Name (New)
    Add the expanded name of the corporate body (see if the addition assists in the identification of the body.
    IBM (Instituto de Biologia Marítima)
    CCF (Crédit Cinématographique Français)

    • Kathy Glennan says:

      I admit, it’s a bit crazy to propose reinstating that instruction name “Addition to a Name Not Conveying the Idea of a Corporate Body” when it was just taken out of RDA this year, but I think this may be a better approach.


  11. Tracey L. Snyder says:

    I like Kathy’s proposed approach.

  12. John Myers says:

    This just came to me as I contemplated Kathy’s observation about reinstating “Addition to a Name …” Am I crazy, or couldn’t we just add Fuller/Fullest Form of Name as a new subrule under 11.7.1 (probably displacing Other Designation), and then add a corresponding subrule under 11.13.1 (probably displacing and then loosening up the ordering of such additions, as has been proposed under 6JSC/BL/20 concerning additions to personal names under 9.19? This seems so straightforward that I can’t help but wonder why it hasn’t been considered and so assume there must be something off kilter with it. I’ll skulk back to my corner if it is too far in left field. 🙂

  13. John Myers says:

    Otherwise, I am onboard with Kathy’s solution as a marked improvement over the BL’s original proposal.

  14. Robert Rendall says:

    Comment from Adam Schiff, University of Washington:

    The entire revision focuses on the authorized access point. I’d like to see the same option be included in the variant access point, as there is no provision there for it either (or at least some examples added in the relevant place).

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