INTERNATIONAL STANDARD BOOK NUMBER (ISBN) THE DNA OF A BOOK
The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is the DNA of books, that is, it is an INTERNATIONAL IDENTIFIER that designates publications or monographs exclusively, in order to relate to a title, its editor, the country where it is published and the editorial characteristics of the edition.
The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) functions as an electronically readable identification code that recognizes all books by avoiding errors, as it is defined by thirteen digits, using a specific mathematical formula including a control digit that validates the code, as shown below;
- International Prefix: This should always be composed of 3 digits in length, either 978 or 979.
- Group Identifier or Record Group: This element contains 1 to 5 digits of length, representing a given country, geographical region or linguistic area of which make up the ISBN System.
- Publisher or Agent Editor Prefix: This element can be up to 7 digits long and its function is to identify a certain publisher or an editorial seal.
- Title or publication identifier: This element can be up to 6 digits long and identifies a given edition and format of a given title.
- Check digit: This element is always the last and only digit, which must mathematically validate the rest of the number.
Placing the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) in a book is the obligation of the Publisher, and has several advantages, as this aid to;
- Avoid handling long bibliographic records.
- Save time.
- Reduce errors.
- Clearly differentiate the works and ensure the customer receives the correct version.
- Facilitate the compilation and updating of catalogues of books for sale.
- It is a quick and efficient method for ordering and distributing books.
- In its barcode form, it can be read by electronic sales terminals in bookstores.
It is also important not to lose sight of the fact that the materials that should NOT carry International Standard Book Number (ISBN) are:
1. Ephemeral printed material such as calendars, theatre or concert programmes, advertising material, leaflets, posters and other related publications.
2. Artistic reproductions and art folders without cover or text.
3. Publications without text.
4. Phonograms, except literary works recorded in phonograms, for example records with musical works.
5. Serial publications such as periodicals or magazines, even if they are awarded to yearbooks and monographic series.
6. Web pages, information portals, databases, search engines, libraries and/or virtual classrooms, digital publications designed to renew their contents regularly or frequently through the Internet, blogs.
7. Abstract entities, such as textual works and other abstract creations of intellectual or artistic content.
8. Publications of the internal laws of the entities or with restricted circulation, such as: manuals of procedures, institutional regulations, company statutes, personalised books, among others.
9. Loose-leaf publications without binding (postcards, plates, posters, billboards, posters), stickers, prints, armables, etc.
10. Personal documents (such as a curriculum vitae or a personal profile in electronic format), sticker albums.
11. Greeting cards, calendars, dividers, containers, board games, cards, cards.
12. Recordings of musical sounds, musical Cds.
14. Computer programs that do not have educational or didactic purposes.
15. Games and hobbies, drawing material, coloring, skills, armables, removable, puzzles, lithographs, math tables, items, etc., fixes, flip charts, games.
16. Leaflets, diptychs or the like.
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