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Orphan authors in the system

Combiners!

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1woolly
Edited: Jan 18, 2009, 10:12am Top

Not sure whether this is the right place to ask, but it is related to combining.

What's the policy on orphan authors? They're usually caused by someone making a mistake when entering an author, but they spot that error while they're working later and correct it. A good example is Georeges Simenon (http://www.librarything.com/author/simenongeoreges&norefer=1). Whoever once had a book by this author has corrected the spelling of the first name, but the orphan author remains without a book. Georeges (sic) Simenon has also been combined with Georges Simenon, which is fine when there's a title there, but when there are no works it seems a little odd. Shouldn't this "author" really be removed from the system?

One of the authors who really suffers from this is Erle Stanley Gardner (http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnererlestanley) who has at least 8 orphan authors (none of which has any book associated with the author) who are not combined with the correct author and at least 23 which are combined with the correct author.

To my mind this causes two problems. First it just looks sloppy. If an "author" has no works associated with it why should it remain in the system at all? Second, it makes combining authors more tedious and wastes time.
There are plenty of other examples of such problems. Shouldn't they all be purged?

Uncombined

A A Fair Earl STanley Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardneraafairearlsta&norefer=1
ERLE STANLEY GARDER http://www.librarything.com/author/gardererlestanley&norefer=1
Earl S. Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnerearls&norefer=1
Earl Stanle Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnerearlstanle&norefer=1
Erle Gardner; Stanley http://www.librarything.com/author/stanleyerlegardner&norefer=1
Erle S. Gardner A.A. Fair http://www.librarything.com/author/fairerlesgardneraa&norefer=1
Erle Stanley Gardener http://www.librarything.com/author/erlestanleygardener&norefer=1
GARDENER STANLEY ERLE http://www.librarything.com/author/erlegardenerstanley&norefer=1

Combined

A. A. (erle Stanley Gardner Fair http://www.librarything.com/author/fairaaerlestanleygar&norefer=1
A.A. & Gardner Fair Erle Stanley http://www.librarything.com/author/fairaagardnererlesta&norefer=1
A.A. & Gardner, Erle Stanley Fair http://www.librarything.com/author/fairaaampgardnererle&norefer=1
A.A. Fair (AKA Erle Stanley Gardner) http://www.librarything.com/author/gardneraafairakaerle&norefer=1
A.A. Fair (Erle Stanley Gardner) http://www.librarything.com/author/gardneraafairerlesta&norefer=1
A.A. Fair - Erle Stanley Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/aafairerlestanleygar&norefer=1
A.A.; Gardener, Erle Stanley Fair http://www.librarything.com/author/fairaagardenererlest&norefer=1
Earl Stanely Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnerearlstanely&norefer=1
Earl Stanley; Fair, A. A. Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnerearlstanleyfa&norefer=1
Earle Stanley Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/earlestanleygardner&norefer=1
Erle Stanley http://www.librarything.com/author/stanleyerle&norefer=1
Erle Stanley Gardiner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardinererlestanley&norefer=1
Erle Stanley Gardner alias A.A.Fair http://www.librarything.com/author/erlestanleygardneral&norefer=1
Erle Stanley Garner http://www.librarything.com/author/garnererlestanley&norefer=1
Erle Stanley Stanley http://www.librarything.com/author/stanleyerlestanley&norefer=1
Erle Stanley as Fair, A. A. Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnererlestanleyas&norefer=1
Erle Stanley writing as A. A. Fair http://www.librarything.com/author/fairerlestanleywriti&norefer=1
Erle Stanley writing as A. A. Fair Gardner http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnererlestanleywr&norefer=1
Erle, Stanley Gardener http://www.librarything.com/author/gardenererlestanley&norefer=1
GARDNER ERLE STANLEY http://www.librarything.com/author/stanleygardnererle&norefer=1
Gardner Earle Stanley http://www.librarything.com/author/gardnerearlestanley&norefer=1
Gardner Stanley Erle http://www.librarything.com/author/erlegardnerstanley&norefer=1
Garnder; Erle Stanley http://www.librarything.com/author/stanleygarndererle&norefer=1

----Later edit----

P.S. I should have read the post http://www.librarything.com/topic/54866 before sending this, but I think the problem is much greater than that topic suggests.

2jjwilson61
Jan 18, 2009, 1:08pm Top

But those authors may not have been corrected in the other person's library and so may not really be orphaned. When an author misspelling occurs in someone's library but the work is combined with correct work then all the correct authors will win and the book will show up on the correct author's page. But the incorrect author name is still in a library so that author page will stay but with zero books ascribed to it.

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