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Princeton University Cataloging Documentation

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DVD regions

Descriptive cataloging

Subject cataloging


Physical treatment


Examples in Voyager


Some of the challenges of searching for video materials on RLIN and OCLC have been removed now that we can search without having to name a specific file. There will always be some titles which will necessitate honing in on the video formats. "Romeo and Juliet" is one prime example of such a title. We are focusing here on films (features and shorts), documentaries, and television programs (both whole seasons and single episodes)

There are primarily two types of formats we will encounter: DVDs and VHS cassettes. On rare occasions, however, other types will pop up (such as Beta, film reels). The container provides most of the information needed in cataloging the item, namely the title, the director, date this item was manufactured (the date that is entered in the 260 and the 1st fixed field date), cast, crew, and time duration.In cases where this information does not agree with what appears on the title screen(s), the latter should take precedent and be used as the chief source of information.

DVDs can be viewed on your computer (using the Windows Media Player) and VHS videocassettes can be viewed on the TV/VHS player in Technical Services. This player only plays NTSC (National Television System Committee) cassettes. Most North and South American countries use this standard as well as some Asian countries. You cannot view through this player the following types of cassettes:

PAL cassettes which are used in two South American countries (Argentina and Brazil), Europe, Africa, and some Asian countries. PAL cassettes can be viewed on the video cassette players in the French/Italian or Spanish/Portuguese study rooms on the B-Floor.

SECAM is used in a few European and Asian countries, some Caribbean nations, and in Africa. To view SECAM cassettes, consult the language lab in East Pyne.