[tdwg-content] clarification of the use of dwc:recordedBy

John R. WIECZOREK tuco at berkeley.edu
Wed Dec 30 00:54:04 CET 2009

Wow, that was a complete failure to communicate. A note to the wise,
don't try to send a draft from gmail finished while offline at the
time the offline feature is synchronizing, even if your internet
connection in the high Andes makes you desperate to send your message
while packets actually seem to be moving - you'll lose the finished
message in favor of the one last saved while online. Dang, and I was
so careful writing the response that didn't make it through.

Not enough time to reconstruct it now, but I'll try to do it justice
for the next trip to town on the 4th or so. Now that I know that
connectivity doesn't become usable until after 8pm...

On Tue, Dec 29, 2009 at 5:35 AM, John R. WIECZOREK <tuco at berkeley.edu> wrote:
> Hi Steve,
> Sorry about the delay. Not answering messages before the ink dries is
> one of the consequences of field work out of electronic contact. Feels
> good for the first week or two...
> To answer your question by way of an example, we've been actively
> capturing tucos, taking notes, and photos, and tissue samples (in a
> behavior study such as this, taking specimens would have deleterious
> consequences for the overall goal). Some of these tucos are young of
> the year, some are animals we caught as young in years past. We're
> keen to publish all of the data we have as well as we can, not
> presuming to know in advance how they might be useful to someone else
> in the future.
> On Sat, Dec 5, 2009 at 5:08 AM, Steve Baskauf
> <steve.baskauf at vanderbilt.edu> wrote:
>> John et al.,
>> I have been pondering the difference of the use of the terms dwc:recordedBy
>> and dcterms:creator (http://purl.org/dc/terms/creator). dcterms:creator is
>> defined as:
>> "An entity primarily responsible for making the resource."
>> dwc:recordedBy is defined as:
>> A list (concatenated and separated) of names of people, groups, or
>> organizations responsible for recording the original Occurrence. The primary
>> collector or observer, especially one who applies a personal identifier
>> (recordNumber), should be listed first.
>> Except for the one word "original" in dwc:recordedBy, I would believe that
>> these two terms would mean the same thing in the case of Occurrence
>> resources.  In some cases, such as the collection of a physical specimen or
>> photographing a live organism, I think that they are the same thing.  The
>> entity that creates the resource (specimen or image) is the same entity that
>> has recorded the Occurrence.  However, in the situation where a specimen is
>> imaged, the resulting image resource would have a dcterms:creator that was
>> the person or institution that did the specimen imaging, while according to
>> the way that I read the definition, dwc:recordedBy for the specimen image
>> would have a value that specified the collector of the specimen (not the
>> photographer).
>> If I am correct in this interpretation, this distinction would be useful in
>> the case of images because it would allow for a simple mechanism to
>> distinguish between images that directly record the appearance of individual
>> organisms and images that are simply digital representations of some other
>> thing that records the appearance of an individual organism, i.e. if
>> dcterms:creator= =dwc:recordedBy then the resource was collected directly
>> from an organsim and if dcterms:creator !=dwc:recordedBy then the resource
>> might represent some other resource that was collected directly from an
>> organism.
>> I am not sure how this would apply in situations other than images.  For
>> example, if a spider were collected and assigned a persistent identifier,
>> then later for a character documentation project the body parts were
>> separated and considered separate specimens with their own identifiers,
>> would the metadata for a leg specimen resource have dcterms:creator as the
>> person who made the leg prep and dwc:recordedBy be the person who collected
>> the spider?
>> Basically, I would like to know the intention of the use of the word
>> "original" in the definition of dwc:recordedBy.
>> Steve Baskauf
>> --
>> Steven J. Baskauf, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
>> Vanderbilt University Dept. of Biological Sciences
>> postal mail address:
>> VU Station B 351634
>> Nashville, TN  37235-1634,  U.S.A.
>> delivery address:
>> 2125 Stevenson Center
>> 1161 21st Ave., S.
>> Nashville, TN 37235
>> office: 2128 Stevenson Center
>> phone: (615) 343-4582,  fax: (615) 343-6707
>> http://bioimages.vanderbilt.edu

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