The LibraryThing blog featured a good discussion on Library of Congress Authorities and permalinks recently. Here’s the most salient point:
“The core of authority control is a stable identifier, in this case the LCCN, but the LC Authorities catalog can neither be searched by nor linked to by that identifier.”
Although this issue was solved for the Subject authorities via the Authorities and Vocabularies site, the name authorities were not included. LibraryAuthoritiesThing is a temporary solve for this allowing the inclusion of a permalink via this tool developed by LibraryThing.
This post also mentioned VIAF, the Virtual International Authority File, an OCLC project aggregating library authority files from around the world. However, these authorities will be copyrighted leading me to a question I often have about commercial taxonomies as well – really, you are copywriting words?