Tuesday, October 31, 2006

OCLC Interim Support for ISBN 13

OCLC has a new announcement on their treatment on ISBN-13 numbers. It is not the same as the current cataloging guidelines. "For original records, OCLC libraries should input ISBN-13 numbers into an EAN field (024, first indicator '3') rather than inputting into the ISBN field (020)." How does this impact searching, not only in OCLC but in the systems these records are downloaded into? What fields should a Z39.50 client search in an ISBN search? I'm very interrested in this topic since I'll be presenting on this at the Texas Library Association conference.

5 comments:

Hugh Taylor said...

Since this revised policy applies only until OCLC has completed implementation of ISBN-13 - which is scheduled for 12 November - I'm not sure there's an issue (unless your talk is in the next 12 days). Looking at the final para of the latest announcement, once the full implementation is complete this seems to become a "non-issue". All ISBNs will be in 020, and will be stored and indexed in both 10- and 13-char forms (where that's appropriate, I guess).

Anonymous said...

I'd like to second Hugh's comments. As the manager of OCLC's ISBN-13 project, I'd like to clarify some points. The policy instructing users to use tag 024 for 13-digit ISBN's is not a new one--it's been around for about two years. The announcement on OCLC's Web site was an update to refer users to the November 12 installation of new ISBN software. After November 12, the interim policy will be abandoned and users will input 13-digit ISBN's in tag 020. THose that have been entered in tag 024 will be moved back to tag 024 sometime after November 12.

Rich Greene
OCLC
richard_greene@oclc.org

David said...

OK, but this means that EANs will be moved to 020 as well as ISBNs. The numbers have been merged. And there are the records created in the past that now are on local systems that will not get the changed records. I still think people should consider what fields they should index for an ISBN and standard number search. This applies not only to their catalog but also to Z39.50 searches as well.

Anonymous said...

I certainly agree with your indexing comments. We've already heard from libraries who are concerned about the same thing. One option we've considered here but have not followed up on as yet is to index 020 ISBN's and 024 EAN's in the ISBN index and all of them (along with other numbers) in a standard number index.

Anonymous said...

It seems only reasonable to follow the suggestion of the previous poster and index BOTH ISBN numbers. We want to resist the creation of duplicate records and if the library searching for a record is using ISBN 13 and doesn't find the existing record....we WILL have duplicates. Not to mention the problems of libraries whose catalog is storing only the 10 char form. Please...OCLC has too many duplicate records as it is.