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What is the verb of Metadata?

by on August 2, 2012

I’ve been trying to write documentation and I realized that I am going to have to say that our Electronic Thesis and Dissertations are being cataloged, because I can’t think of a verb for Metadata. In searching around, I ran across this post by R. Todd Stephens.

Part of me wonders if this is just another example of why it is hard to explain Digital Library things to other people, when we don’t even have a good verb to describe what we do. A Cataloger catalogs. A Metadata librarian metadatas. What if we used the verb “describes”? Essentially, metadata is description. Cataloging is description as well.

That said, I’m not sure “describes” is a good enough verb for metadata. They do so much more than cataloging things, or describe them. It’s really more like “designs”. They design digital things to live online.

Any suggestions?



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