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BISG Study Questions ISBN Use for E-Books

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Jan 17 – Jan 23, 2011 Edition BISG Study Questions ISBN Use for E-Books

NEW YORK, NY/Authorlink News/January 17, 2011—A study conducted for The Book Industry Study Group on how ISBN numbers are deployed for e-books in the retail marketplace found that the supply chain is fraught with bad practices, inconsistent application of meta data, and ISBN numbers, and suffers from haphazard communications.

Michael Cairns of Information Media Partners conducted the study for the BISG and released an executive summary of the findings. The full report will be available in a few weeks.

The study concluded that the proliferation of formats, and retailer work-around to assign their own identification numbers has made “the ISBN agency virtually irrelevant” to those who participated in the study – including sophisticated players – who do not understand or acknowledge important aspects of the ISBN standard.”

The study said that bad practices are deeply embedded in the structure of the supply chain and may be difficult, if not impossible to correct and that participants in the marketplace show no collective desire to fix the problem.

The study asks whether use of the ISBN is relevant in today’s fast-paced environment and points out that what the industry needs is:

Direction Consistency Compatibility with all markets “Best practices” Education

More details are expected in the full report.