If you have some free time, you should watch the Making Your MetaData Better video. Around the 30 minute mark, Bob Oeste, Senior Programmer/Analyst, Johns Hopkins University Press starts his presentation, and he makes the whole concept of metadata entertaining. So, if you want to learn more about metadata, I highly recommend watching this video.
Some things to keep in mind. Metadata is the new place. Places are ephermal, in that people tend to find information about products in locations that are not physical. Therefore, publishers need to think of data in a different way.
Also, metadata should be a collaborative effort, so as to add the maximum amount of accurate information.
- Acquisitions adds the title, subtitle, series, ISBNs
- Rights adds copyright information
- Manuscript editing adds word count
- Production adds trim size, final page count, thickness
- IT adds book url, trim size in metric
- Marketing adds blurbs, reviews
- Author adds a concise description that explains to a general audience (editor whittles it down, which marketing punches up, manuscript copy-editing corrects grammar)
- Accounting adds price
- Warehouse adds book weight
- Everyone works on author blurb, subject categories, pub date
Other things to remember are that it’s important to have well-formed XML, and to use attributes according to DTD rules, such as ONIX. For example, in ONIX you cannot use <author>. Instead you have to use <contributor> and then choose one of the 55 kinds of contributors listed in ONIX. Lastly, you have to validate against a Schema.