[tdwg-tag] provenance chains and DwC:recordedBy

joel sachs jsachs at csee.umbc.edu
Wed Aug 4 16:12:08 CEST 2010


In preparation for the tdwg bioblitz, I'd like to configure our Spotter 
tool (http://spire.umbc.edu/spotter) to compose DwC records. Currently, it 
uses an observation ontology that we whipped up a few years ago. 
(Here's an illustrative record - 

For the most part, the mapping is straightforward. However, I'm wondering about 
two terms: "hasObserver" and "hasReporter". We distinguished between these 
two terms to accommodate situations where a student makes an observation, 
but her teacher reports it. Similarly, in a bioblitz event, one model is 
that a survey team leader will fill out and submit a spreadsheet comprised 
of the observations made by members of the survey team.

Both these terms seem to map to DwC:recordedBy. According to 
http://rs.tdwg.org/dwc/terms/#recordedBy, "The primary collector or 
observer, especially one who applies a personal identifier (recordNumber), 
should be listed first." So if we simply listed observer followed by 
reporter, we would comply with the spec. Of course, the ordering would 
be lost in typical rdf representations, since triples are considered 
unordered. And whether in rdf or in text, the distinction between observer 
and reporter would be pretty much lost.

Since one of the goals of the bioblitz is figuring out good ways to use 
DwC in citizen science, I'm interested in opinions on whether we should preserve the 
observer/reporter distinction, 
and include these non-DwC terms in the bioblitz data profile.

Many thanks -

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