Although not suited for even a “small” public or college library, LibraryThing sometimes serves as the system of choice for the very smallest institutions—schools, churches, non-profits and so forth. Some of these institutions want to preserve an “upward path” to a traditional, low-end Integrated Library System, based on MARC records. Although we don’t want to see anyone leave, and we think LibraryThing beats even high-end OPACs silly on most features, we see LibraryThing’s value as a first or transitional step to a “real” system for those who need to go that way.
To meet this need, we’ve just released a feature that will allow you to export your LibraryThing library as MARC (USMARC, UTF-8) records. You’ll find the Export as MARC option now on the Import/Export page, accessible via the “More” tab when you’re logged in.
For books in your library that you added from library sources (such as the Library of Congress or Overcat), we have the original MARC record. In this case, the MARC export feature will give you back the record you searched for and added.
For books in your library that you added from non-library sources, or added manually, you have a choice: fuzzy records, or non-fuzzy records. If you choose the fuzzy option, where we have a MARC record that matches your book closely (on the basis of ISBN or other control number), we will give you the library MARC record. If you choose the non-fuzzy option, or you choose the fuzzy option but we don’t have a match to give you, we will instead create a MARC record from scratch. Such records aren’t completely “up to snuff” as cataloging records, but they may serve some libraries’ purposes.
In both cases, your LibraryThing tag, review, ratings and collections data are added to the 9xx fields.
Come discuss in Talk.