All of OCLC’s WorldCat Heading Toward the Open Web

All of OCLC’s WorldCat Heading Toward the Open Web by Barbara Quint – Excited by the “resounding success” of the Open WorldCat pilot program, the management of OCLC, the world’s largest library vendor, has decided to open the entire collection of 53.3 million items connected to 928.6 million library holdings for “harvesting” by Google and Yahoo! Search. A letter from Jay Jordan, president and CEO of OCLC, went out to members on Oct. 8. Currently, the Open WorldCat subset database contains about 2 million records, all items held by 100 or more academic, public, or school libraries—some 12,000 libraries all told. The new upgraded Open WorldCat program will automatically include all of the 15,000-plus OCLC libraries that contribute ownership information (holdings) to WorldCat, unless the library asks to have its holdings excluded. In January 2005, Open WorldCat will officially graduate from a pilot program to a permanent “ongoing program”; however, the database will be open for “harvesting” to Google and Yahoo! Search as early as late November 2004. This has been added to the articles section of Deep Web Research Subject Tracer™ Information Blog.

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