U.S. ISBN Monopoly Denies Threat From Digital Self-Publishing

LOOK inside any book published since 1970 and you will find a number. But perhaps not for much longer. The International Standard Book Number (ISBN), invented in Britain in 1965, took off rapidly as an international system for classifying books, with 150 agencies (one per country, with two for bilingual Canada) now issuing the codes. Set up by retailers to ease their distribution and sales, it increasingly hampers new, small and individual publishers. Yet digital publishing is weakening its monopoly.

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How is it weakening it's monopoly?

A monpoly is a monopoly. If you want an ISBN etc you go to them.
However nice ASIN's might be they are not ISBN's
You could say the market for book identifiers is changing though as that would be more accurate.

It is amazing though to read the link and see just how some countries are getting screwed over by cost and others get them for free!

ISBN

>>A monpoly is a monopoly. If you want an ISBN etc you go to them.
However nice ASIN's might be they are not ISBN's

Ten years ago if Jane wrote a book and wanted to get it in a bookstore she needed to get an ISBN. Now with the option to publish electronically with Amazon and others, you do not have to have an ISBN.

If you want the book in paper and electronic and you want it in bookstores you still want an ISBN but you can get a book to a wide audience now without an ISBN and that was not possible previously.

Exactly

But it's not affecting their monopoly which is for ISBN numbers.
You can do what you like now which is great but they still have their monopoly.

That their monopoly now means less in the overall book market isn't the point, or rather it is but that's not what the title is saying ;)

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