Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Tuesday Thingers: Cataloging Sources

Wow, Marie at Boston Bibliophile just keeps coming up with more and more LT stuff I had no idea existed. This week's topic for the Tuesday Thingers group is a case in point:

What cataloging sources do you use most? Any particular reason? Any idiosyncratic choices, or foreign sources, or sources you like better than others? Are you able to find most things through LT's almost 700 sources?

I've never really checked to see what sources I use most. Be right back.

OK. Well, not surprisingly, it looks like I've used Amazon.com decidedly more often than any other source – 769 of my books were cataloged using that source. After that, 556 were manual entries (we have an awful lot of older books that we've put in manually), 110 were entered using the Library of Congress as source, and only ten used British sources (seven were British Library, and three were Oxford University).

I'm a little surprised that there weren't more British source entries – a lot of my husband's scholarly texts are Oxford University Press books. But I guess they're not so obscure that they couldn't be found using Amazon or LC info. And since I've got so many manual entries, I guess I have had a little trouble finding everything using LT's sources. But, even though I know it's perverse, I kind of like putting in all the information myself, so that's never really bothered me.

This topic reminds me of one other thing I'm interested in – which spelling do you prefer? Catalog? Catalogue? I think I tend to use the British version more often (except for this post!), since that's what I was taught as a child. But I know we Americans are supposed to use the "shortened" variety of the word, without the -ue ending. Any thoughts?


  1. I never thought about it, but I think I use the British version catalogue more than the American version.

  2. Well as I'm British I spell it "Catalogue" - it just doesn't look right to me any other way.

  3. yvonne--
    I had a really hard time making myself use the "American" version for this post! Thanks for the input.

    Yes, I agree. It just doesn't look like the right word with the -ue cut off.

  4. I like "catalogue" better and I find myself typing it that way instinctively. Unfortunately, Firefox tells me it's wrong because I think I have it set to American English, so I usually switch it to get rid of the red line. I didn't really think of it any other way until I joined LT and saw catalog everywhere.

  5. I've often pondered this question as a copywriter - the word comes up a lot. I just think catalog looks wrong...

  6. I think they added the British Library recently, which probably has a lot of stuff. But then again it surprises me sometimes that some of these scholarly sources actually don't have a lot of the things that us regular folks look for. :-)

  7. I'm American but I use the British version too... huh weird!

  8. I always write "Catalogue" and get perturbed that the computer tells me it's misspelled.

  9. Didn't we learn it "catalogue" when we were in school? I have never spelled it any other way. Catalog just doesn't seem right to me.


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