Folgerpedia:Manual of Style/Cataloging

This article elaborates on the Folgerpedia Manual of Style for articles about cataloging and metadata topics. Anything not covered here defaults there.


  • Prefer imperative language when giving instructions. For example, "Make a note" instead of "A note should be made."
  • Avoid unnecessary catalogerese. Pretend these articles will be read by a non-specialist interested in cataloging.
  • Refer to staff by role or job title, not name.
  • Spell out abbreviations, especially the Latin abbreviations e.g. and i.e.
  • Use preformatted text for examples.


  • Use call number instead of shelfmark.
  • Hamnet refers to public-facing MARC records. Prefer "Hamnet" if the context encompasses both public and cataloger information.
  • Voyager refers to the ILS as a whole
  • Use "At the Folger ..." to distinguish between what we can customize in Voyager and what we can’t.
  • Examples:
 Multiple works bound together subsequent to publication will have multiple bibliographic records in Hamnet, one for each separate title.
At the Folger, Voyager indexes 008 and the 046 dates in Hamnet and the staff modules. 
Voyager indexes only 852|h and 852|i for left-anchored call number search.


  • Resist the temptation to arrange the instructions in full syndetic structure. Aim for only two or three levels of hierarchy. Even if the lead section is not specific to cataloging, do not create a level for "Cataloging instructions."

Article titles, headings, and sections

  • Name articles without particular reference to cataloging. For example: Things in books. This allows an article to bring together all information about a topic, of which cataloging policy is one. If an article becomes too lengthy, cataloging policy can be separated into a subpage.
  • Formulate article names about MARC fields in this way:
MARC [tag] [Name of Field from the MARC Format]

Articles on MARC fields

  • Begin lead section with these or similar words:
MARC field XXX in the bibliographic format contains <...>
  • If the field exists in two or more formats and is essentially identical, enumerate all format names in the lead section using the short form. The formal and short titles of the format names are:
  • If the field has different definitions (as does 046 in bibliographic and authority formats), create separate articles. Disambiguate by putting the format in parentheses after the name of the field
  • These articles integrate policy and instructions on content and mark-up; we are using the MARC field as a shortcut for the corresponding AACR2 and RDA elements.
  • Elements of articles on MARC fields usually include:
    • A lead sentence. In general, copy the remaining part of the lead section from the Field Definition and Scope from the MARC format, truncating or editing as desired. Example:
MARC field 856 in the bibliographic and holdings format contains information needed to locate and access an electronic resource in a Hamnet record. The field may be used in a bibliographic record for a resource when that resource or a subset of it is available electronically. In addition, it may be used to locate and access an electronic version of a non-electronic resource described in the bibliographic record or a related electronic resource.
    • a section on "Commonly-used tags" containing the most commonly used indicators and subfields
    • a section on "Policy and formulation," or as two separate sections if content is extensive
    • Folger policy statements, style, and interpretations of cataloging instructions, but not basic cataloging instruction itself; compare to LCC/PC Policy Statements
  • Make redirects from the name of the MARC field. For example, MARC 852 redirects to MARC 852 Location. However, do not redirect from more ambiguous terms, such as "852," which was the original title of the article.
  • Use a double dagger (ǂ) for subfield delimiters.

Advisory statements

  • Advisory statements come first on a page, preceding the lead section.
  • Use {{Draft}} while a new article from scratch or one combining information from several sources is in process. Remove it when the article is substantially usable, even if not complete.
  • Use {{Legacy}} when copying and pasting from Bard pages or other sources and there's uncertainty about whether the instructions are current and authoritative.
  • Use {{Outdated}} when copying and pasting from Bard pages or other sources and it's known that some of the content is obsolete.
  • Use {{Incomplete}} for articles that are meant to cover a broad area, but the content is narrow. For example, Conservation, which contains content only about conservation issues catalogers face


When moving (renaming) a page, the system defaults to creating a redirect. Retain the redirect, even if the change was as minor as different capitalization. This will preserve linkage to the moved article that exist in other pages.


  • Add newly-migrated articles to List of cataloging pages migrated from Bard
  • Cataloging information is spread among several sources. Search these
    • Bard
    • pbworks
    • [file://\\nerissa\CentralLibrary\Cataloging\Cataloging%20website.html| Old cataloging website]. Most of the pertinent information had been migrated to Bard, but there may be small oases of hidden information.
  • Refrain from doing any editing except for what is necessary to create and format the article. Add Advisory statements as appropriate
  • Once a page has been migrated, add a statement to the effect and a link to the Folgerpedia article.
This is an archived version of this article. For the most up-to-date version, see: [URL] 
Migrated to [URL]
  • If only a portion of a Bard or pbworks page is migrated, strike through the migrated text.
  • If none of the content of an existing Bard page is relevant (for example, pages made specifically for projects that have ended), do not migrate.

External links

  • Add "External links" as the final section of an article.
  • Add a link to the [| MARC field] for all MARC-based articles.
  • Other external links may be added if particularly helpful, such as LC or OCLC.


  • Add these categories to all articles on cataloging:
[[Category:Staff policies and procedures]]
  • Add categories for material types only when an article is specific to one or two material types. Otherwise, the Description category is enough.
  • Categories are a controlled vocabulary in Folgerpedia; other categories may be proposed, but not used before approval.

Talk page

  • Create a talk page for every article populated by migrated material.
  • Name the first section "Origin of page" and give links to original pages.
  • Create a new section for every distinct issue or query; new sections go at the bottom.
  • Add discussion text within migrated pages to the talk page with a "needs discussion" link on the main page.
  • Once the issue is resolved, strike through the text.