25 April 2009
FREE OPEN CONTENT CATALOGING SERVICE
If you can't afford to belong to OCLC but still need access to catalog records, you have a new option.
LibLime offers biblios.net, "a free, browser-based" service with over 30 million bib and authority records licensed under the Open Data Commons Public Domain Dedication and License. It works somewhat like Wikipedia, allowing you to use and contribute to the records "without restriction."
Check it out at http://www.biblios.net/
Of course, you can always use the records from WorldCat.org by rekeying the information into your own catalog. I'm not sure how "legal" this is, but we've been using OCLC records in some manner for years, so I wouldn't be worried--as long as there's 1) no chance you could afford to join OCLC and 2) you only use a few records. (Not an option for public or academic libraries, but an idea for small corporate ones......)