[tdwg-content] Request for vote on proposal to add DigitalStillImage as a dwc:type

Steve Baskauf steve.baskauf at vanderbilt.edu
Sun Oct 31 15:34:14 CET 2010

The recent discussion on the tdwg-content email list has clarified my 
understanding about the community consensus on the nature of an 
Occurrence.  In my previous view that each Occurrence had a single token 
that provided evidence for the Occurrence, I felt that it was necessary 
to have a term in the Darwin Core type vocabulary for each type of token 
that could serve as evidence for an Occurrence and which could serve as 
a controlled value for dwc:basisOfRecord.  On the basis of this 
understanding, I proposed adding DigitalStillImage as a dwc:type.

However, given the apparent consensus that the documenting token is a 
separate entity from the Occurrence and that there may be multiple 
tokens associated with a single Occurrence, I no longer see any need for 
adding DigitalStillImage to serve as a controlled value for 
basisOfRecord, since still images that are tokens will be a separate 
resource from Occurrence and can simply be rdf:type'd as 
dcterms:StillImage .  (In fact, I no longer believe that basisOfRecord 
itself serves any useful purpose - I'm still waiting for someone to show 
me a case where it is necessary for it to exist as a term.) 

I'm not actually withdrawing my request, because if there is actually a 
purpose for basisOfRecord, then DigitalStillImage should be a value for 
it.  People who want to use basisOfRecord will need it.  But given my 
current understanding of an Occurrence, I would vote against my own 
proposal (if I were voting, which I'm not).  Anyway, unless there is a 
desire for further discussion of basisOfRecord, I feel like the 
discussion on tdwg-content of adding DigitalStillImage to the DwC type 
vocabularly has progressed far enough for the TAG to move on to the 
voting stage.


Steven J. Baskauf, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
Vanderbilt University Dept. of Biological Sciences

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