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Book Subject Codes to Go International

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Oct 8 – Oct 14, 2012 Edition Book Subject Codes to Go International

Frankfurt, Germany (October 10, 2012) – Book industry representatives from 15 countries announced today the formation of a new, global standard to categorize and classify book content by subject. The project, initially known as “Thema,” was first announced during the Tools of Change Supply Chain Conference taking place during the Frankfurt International Book Fair.

“This is a very important step forward in creating a truly global community of book data,” said Jesus Peraita, Technical Director of DILVE, within the FGEE (Federación de Gremios de Editores de España), the group’s first chair. “Thema will not only facilitate the sale of content across borders, but is also flexible enough to allow each market to retain its unique cultural voice.”

A new, independent organization created to manage Thema will be governed by a multinational Board of Directors. Countries currently participating in the Thema project include: Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Pan Arab Group, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Thema will continue the work already begun by the iBIC project managed out of the United Kingdom. Book Industry Communication (BIC) and Nielsen Book, who jointly own iBIC, have graciously donated the iBIC intellectual property to the Thema Board for the creation of the global standard.

“We greatly appreciate what BIC and Nielsen have done,” said Len Vlahos, Executive Director of the Book Industry Study Group, “and we look forward to growing and expanding that work under Thema. We encourage all national groups to get involved. There is no doubt that bringing clarity to classification will help us all sell more books.“

The new standard is meant, initially, to work alongside existing standards such as BIC, BISAC, CLIL etc. The long range goal is to move all markets to the global standard, helping to eliminate confusion among both upstream and downstream trading partners. The Book Industry Study Group, working through the auspices of its Subjects Code Committee, will have responsibility for the application of the standard in the US.

For more information, interested parties in the US should contact Len Vlahos at len@bisg.org, or contact Jesus Peraita at thema@dilve.es. A temporary website has been published at www.panthema.org.