NISO Approval Ballot for Z39.4, Criteria for Indexes Opens in May

Join the Voting Pool for Draft Standard Z39.4

NISO has notified its Voting Members that they have 15 days to join the Voting Pool to approve the draft standard, NISO Z39.4, Criteria for Indexes.  The purpose of NISO Z39.4 is to support the work of those concerned with indexes used for information retrieval: professional indexers working with every kind of document, database producers, publishers of indexes and of documents containing indexes, designers of electronic index displays, designers of indexing algorithms, librarians and catalogers, thesaurus creators, students, authors, and other users of indexes.

This new standard, Z39.4, is an update of a NISO technical report from 1997, NISO TR02-1997, Guidelines for Indexes and Related Information Retrieval Devices, itself based on ANSI/NISO Z39.4-1984, Basic Criteria for Indexes. While NISO TR02-1997 is very robust and instructive, it lacked the authority and wider industry recognition of a formal standard and did not reflect the significant changes in technology and techniques since its publication.  This new standard was developed by using NISO TR02-1997 as a starting point. It was extensively revised and extended as needed to address any issues of currency and completeness of coverage. All relevant advances in technology and techniques since 1997 were addressed, including embedded indexing.

In order to ensure that NISO standards are developed by consensus for the benefit of the greater information community, public comments are regularly solicited on NISO standards and other consensus documents (e.g., recommended practices), during development via open lists, during trial use phases, and when at ballot.  This review period for Z39.4 will also be included as an announcement in the ANSI Standards Action newsletter. Draft materials are available from NISO upon request. If you are not a NISO Voting Member and wish to join the consensus body (Voting Pool) please contact the NISO Office.  There may be fees associated with non-Voting Member participation. 

More information about balloting and periodic review can be found in the NISO Operating Procedures. For information on joining the consensus body voting pool, see section 5.3.4.