Notes from the KF Modified Committee Meeting – May 15, 2011 – Calgary

26Jul2011 at 2:38 pm (General) (, , )

The Osgoode Hall Law School Library is moving back into it’s newly renovated space so things are a little hectic around here and many of my files are packed in anticipation of our office move next week. The following is from the notes I took at the KF Modified Committee meeting and some updates will likely follow when things settle down.

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The KF Modified Committee meeting is an opportunity for the Committee members to meet face-to-face and discuss and work out some of the editorial details that have been in development over the past year. All but one of the Committee members (Joan Yanovsky, Supreme Court of Canada Library) were able to attend this year. In attendance were: myself (Chair); Humayun Rashid, Bora Laskin Law Library, University of Toronto; Darren Furey, Gerard Forest Law Library, University of New Brunswick; and Alain Rochfort, Dept. of Justice Library. We were also pleased to welcome Sarah Sutherland, from McMillan LLP, who was joining us for the first time.

The meeting began with a discussion of ways to promote the KF Modified schedule. With the broadening of the title to include common law libraries in general the use of KF Modified is poised and ready to expand beyond its current use in Canadian law libraries. With the recent introduction of the optional expansion for Quebec civil law at KF 385 ZB5 it was agreed that we should approach Quebec and New Brunswick law firms either directly or through the appropriate law associations or both. In addition many law libraries using Moys may appreciate using KF Modified which is an updated and ‘living’ classification scheme. Moys has a similar organizational structure but updates are irregular. There are also a number of law libraries that use home grown classification schemes who may be ready to switch to something more formal like KF Modified. HR, DF and AR agreed to draft a letter that we could send and/or use as the basis for email communications.

An ongoing concern continues to be the lack of an electronic version of KF Modified. TK is concerned because KF Modified is still produced in WordPerfect and suggests that at the very least steps should be taken to convert the current format to something that is more open like Open Office. There was a brief discussion about the possibility of providing an open access version of KF Modified that would allow anyone to access the schedule. There was no consensus reached but discussion with CALL head office should be a first step. TK will also pursue getting the schedule converted to a format other than WordPerfect and consider creating a database version that could be reused/repurposed to a variety different formats, i.e. print, web-based, searchable electronic, etc.

Information about the current subscription status was not available at the time of the meeting and TK will get an update from the CALL office.

HR provided some background on the enhancements that he and AR had been working on over the past year. He is pleased that we have been able to respond to some of the requests that libraries have been making for improvements to the classification schedule and cites this ability as one of the advantages KF Modified has over some of the other schemes. KF Modified caters to many different types and sizes of law libraries, some are specialized and need to have more numbers available to better organize their collections. The enhancements used the KE classification (the LCC classification for law in Canada) as a starting point adding new concepts, legislative developments, the expressed needs of law libraries, and other influences. As a matter of editorial policy we want to avoid adding new numbers beyond those provided in the original KF classification (the LCC classification for federal U.S. law) because that will ensure there will be less likelihood that conflicts between the two schedules will arise. Conflicts can lead to costly reclassification projects. This is why expansion of the Cutter number is preferred, for example adding Z9 to KF 3776 to add numbers for particular divisions under public health services.

There was a discussion of KF 3819 and the probability of adding this to all sections instead of general sections. Agreed to review and possibly add scope notes where necessary. HR pointed out that making use of the form tables is more convenient and more likely to be used.

DF noted that due to other professional obligations he has been unable to make much progress on the revision of Guide to KF Modified. The remainder of the meeting was devoted to review and discussion of the enhancements for environmental law and labour law prepared by HR and AR.

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