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OCLC Support

Why use Dummy collections?

Applies to
  • WorldShare Collection Manager
    • WorldCat knowledge base
      • Exact title mismatch
      • Dummy collection(s)

Why use a dummy collection in WorldCat knowledge base?

When a link is surfacing due to an exact title mismatch, adding a title to a dummy collection is the best option for fixing this issue at this time. This issue is not caused by OCLC's matching algorithm. Matching connects knowledge base title data to the best OCLC number for that record. In cases where the errant links are a result of the process where WorldCat Discovery (WCD) calls the WorldCat knowledge base (WCKB) API to return search results and E-access links. In short, the WC API asks WCKB if the library has the OCLC number in their knowledge base, the ISSN or ISBN, or the E versions. When the answer is "no," the system looks for an exact title match. It is this match that causes the errant link.

This means that putting better data in the records in WCKB and/or in the WorldCat records will not help solve the problem because the item is not one that is owned in the WCKB. Even with better data, when the WCD API asks the WCKB if the library has the OCLC number, the ISSN or ISBN, or the E versions, the answer will still be "no" and the title match will still happen. Adding a title without a link and with an OCLC number and/or a standard number to the WCKB (a dummy title), makes it so the answer is "yes" and prevents the system from getting to a title match.

OCLC explored the option but determined that removing the title match makes links less discoverable and would cause greater issues. As long as we are reliant on field matching between data sets, correcting the issue will be a challenge.

Thank you for asking about this and for your continued engagement with improving data globally, for all libraries.  

Additional information
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