Re: [Videolib] separating VHS and DVD formats

Matthew Ballard (
Mon, 02 May 2005 13:34:16 -0700

At the Otis Library, we interfile VHS and DVD. Our collection is in open
stacks (almost everything we have that is cataloged is in the stacks), and
is browsed by many people. Most people are looking for things to watch,
and many don't care if it is DVD or VHS.

For classification, we don't use LC or an accession number, although it is
loosely based on LC. The first line is always Video. The second line is
the section, ie F for Feature Film, AA or Art and Artists, D for
Documentary, AN for Animation, M for Music Videos, V for Video Art, T for
Television, as well as a few other categories. The third line starts with
a letter, either based on title, or the last name of the Artists or group
if it is a Documentary or Video Art, and is followed by a number to keep
them in alphabetical order (note in my descriptions, I am not a
cataloger). After that we may have another line if there is multiple
videos within one Artist or a similar situation, volume numbers, and one
line for [DVD] if it is a DVD.

The system works well for us, it's easy to explain, similar enough to LC
that it doesn't confuse patrons, and makes it fairly easy to find items in
the collection even if you don't know the call number.

Matthew Ballard
Library Technologist
Otis College of Art and Design Library

At 02:19 PM 4/30/2005, you wrote:
>I've noticed that academic libraries arrange their media sections in a
>variety of ways and was wondering if anyone could give some advise as to
>which system works best.
>Does integrating VHS and DVD formats work well for anyone or is it best to
>keep them separated?
>Also, as for a classification system, most libraries seem to use a simple
>numeric system such as DVD 12, DVD 13, VHS 25, VHS 26 etc., while I have
>seem some that assign LC numbers, thus integrating formats. Which system
>do you think is preferred?
>Thank you very much,
>Tanya De Angelis
>Videolib mailing list

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