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Scope of this Report

The scope of this report -- "library Linked Data" -- can be understood as follows:

Library. The word "library" as used in this report comprises the full range of cultural heritage and memory institutions including libraries, museums, and archives. The term refers to three distinct but related concepts: a collection of physical or abstract (potentially including “digital”) objects, a place where the collection is located, and an agent which curates the collection and administers the location. Collections may be public or private, large or small, and are not limited to any particular types of resources.

Library data. "Library data" refers to any type of digital information produced or curated by libraries that describes resources or aids their discovery. Data covered by library privacy policies is generally out of scope. This report pragmatically distinguishes three types of library data based on their typical use: datasets, element sets, and value vocabularies (see Appendix A @@@CITE@@@)).

Linked Data. "Linked Data" refers to data published in accordance with principles designed to facilitate linkages among datasets, element sets, and value vocabularies. Linked Data uses Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs) as globally unique identifiers for any kind of resource -- analogously to how identifiers are used for authority control in traditional librarianship. In Linked Data, URIs may be Internationalized Resource Identifiers (IRIs) -- Web addresses that use the extended set of natural-language scripts supported by Unicode. Linked Data is expressed using standards such as Resource Description Framework (RDF), which specifies relationships between things -- relationships that can be used for navigating between, or integrating, information from multiple sources.

Open Data. While "Linked Data" refers to the technical interoperability of data, "Open Data" focuses on its legal interoperability. According to the definition for Open Bibliographic Data, Open Data is in essence freely usable, reusable, and redistributable -- subject, at most, to the requirements to attribute and share alike. Note that Linked Data technology per se does not require data to be Open, though the potential of the technology is best realized when data is published as Linked Open Data.

Library Linked Data. "Library Linked Data" is any type of library data (as defined above) that is expressed as Linked Data.