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Newsletter March 2014


A personal note from Mark Bide

I have already written to you all at length about my impending departure from EDItEUR. It has come around all too quickly. I will cease to be Executive Director on 31st March, and Graham Bell will take my place on the following day. Expect no fireworks! EDItEUR will continue quietly to do what it has always done, and I do not anticipate that you will see much immediate change as the reins are handed on. Today, I will be brief, and simply wish a very fond farewell to Graham, the EDItEUR staff and consultants, our board, and all of our members and friends. I have enjoyed my 5 years, working for an organisation that is right at the centre of the global industry – and I am sure you will all continue to give Graham your full support.

I look forward to seeing many of you at the London Book Fair.


London Book Fair 2014

London Book Fair 2014

EDItEUR is delighted to be working with London Book Fair once again and we will be present throughout the 2014 event in April – visit us on stand Q625, and please join us at the EDItEUR members’ open meeting on the middle day of the Fair. Please see our Forthcoming Events section for details of all the individual events that will be occurring during the Fair. EDItEUR’s own events are listed, along with the highly-regarded Publishing for Digital Minds Conference. Discounted tickets to the Book Fair are available to all EDItEUR members – contact info@editeur.org for details of how to claim yours.

Digital Minds conference

The International ISBN Agency

New database and website

The International ISBN Agency is delighted to announce the release of its brand new, modern website. The web portal is more informative and intuitive than the previous site, and the accompanying database and ISBN management system available to the 150 national ISBN agencies around the world has also been overhauled with improved functionality and greater ease of use. The website can be found at www.isbn-international.org – please feel free to have a look!

ISBN website

The new site has been developed by a team at CINECA – a non-profit consortium of 69 Italian universities and 3 other institutions which today is Italy’s largest computing centre – and we’re very grateful for their tireless work and suggestions for improvements.

Special thanks are also given to the National ISBN Agency of France for their hard work in translating the new site into French.

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ONIX for Books

ONIX for Books 3.0 revision 2

This minor update to the ONIX 3.0 specification was published at the end of January as planned. The contents of the update were described briefly in previous newsletters, and detailed notes about the changes are available in a summary document from the EDItEUR website.

The most significant change is a slight reorganisation of the <SalesRights> and <SalesRestriction> composites to make it clearer that the restriction applies within a particular rights territory. The original way of doing this worked in simple cases, but was not usable in complex cases. The old way is still valid, but is deprecated.

The update also adds the most-requested single addition – the ability to associate a contributor with a town or city, not just with a country or region. This should allow publishers to provide much more detailed information to support ‘local author’ promotions.

3.0.2 also brings ONIX into line with the EDItX stock report message, so each can be used to convey the same information in a price and availability update (this would be a Block 6 update in ONIX 3.0). There was previously a large overlap, but with some simple additions, these messages are now in effect interchangable.

All the main documentation and downloadable resources – the ONIX 3.0 Specification, the Implementation and Best Practice Guide and other documents, plus the DTD and XSD/RNG schema files – have been updated on the EDItEUR website, and you should ensure you have up-to-date copies of all these resources.

ONIX Codelists updates

Alongside the release of the 3.0.2 update, Issue 24 of the ONIX codelists was also published. This includes a number of codelists to support the new features of the update, as well as new codes added to existing codelists. Issue 24 includes:

and a number of other additions. The new codelists are included with the various downloadable XML tools, and can also be downloaded separately.

Proposals for Issue 25 of the codelists have been circulated to the ONIX National Groups around the world, and will be considered by the International Steering Committee at its meeting during the London Book Fair. The final Issue 25 should be published at the end of April.

ONIX Users and services directory

Because of the way that the ONIX specification is made available free of charge to everyone, there is no central registry of publishers or booksellers which are ONIX users, or of suppliers who can provide ONIX-compliant software or services. However, EDItEUR maintains a small registry to which organisations can add themselves. If you want your organisation listed on the EDItEUR website, you can fill in the form, and your details will be added within a few days.

ONIX Training in North America

EDItEUR logo

New York, Toronto and Montreal in early March. Oh, so cold… particularly in comparison to an early Spring in London. The visit centred around providing in-depth ONIX training to four enthusiastic groups via EDItEUR members Book Industry Study Group, BookNet Canada and BTLF, plus BookNet Canada’s Tech Forum conference (image of Graham Bell at Tech Forum © Yvonne Bambrick, courtesy BookNet Canada). The training included both ‘standard-’ and ‘advanced-level’ courses.

Other updates

Graham Bell published two guest blog postings on metadata and ONIX, the first aimed particularly at small publishers looking to improve their metadata, on the website of EDItEUR member IPG (Independent Publishers Guild), and the second on the transition to ONIX 3.0 published by e-book distributor ePubDirect. And Book Business magazine also published a themed issue on metadata in February, including articles from Bill Kasdorf, Len Vlahos (from EDItEUR members Apex Covantage and Book Industry Study Group respectively).

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Sunrise for Thema

The new Thema global subject categorisation scheme continues to attract early interest, with the spreadsheet of categories being downloaded over 3000 times in the first three months. A couple of application vendors have already added Thema codes to their product management applications. A new complete German language translation of the subject headings and notes has been completed by a group led by MVB, and work is progressing to integrate Thema into the German VLB books in print database.

A number of other translations are in preparation, and will be posted to EDItEUR’s website and the interactive Thema browser as they become available.

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News from ICEDIS: serials, subscriptions & library supply


As many of you will know, ICEDIS is EDItEUR’s special interest group for serials, subscriptions and the library supply chain. On the afternoon of Wednesday 16 April, we will be holding the next full ICEDIS Meeting in Harrogate, UK to coincide with the final day of the UKSG Conference 2014. The ICEDIS Meeting will take place in the same venue as UKSG, in Room 9 of the Queen’s Suite, in the Harrogate International Centre.

Topics for discussion will include the rollout of the ONIX-PC price catalog standard, further steps toward an eventual migration to a more modern family of ICEDIS standards and enhanced resources for organisations implementing ONIX and ICEDIS standards.

If you are planning to attend the Harrogate ICEDIS Meeting, please let us know via a short email to info@editeur.org and we’ll make sure that you get a copy of the Agenda. And if you would like to know more about ICEDIS and its work, please drop a line to tim@editeur.org.

ONIX-PC Developments

ONIX-PC is EDItEUR’s format for communicating rich catalog details and prices for subscription products. Uptake of the standard is gradually spreading. EDItEUR member Springer is actively working on an implementation of the standard, aiming to be in time for this summer’s pricing round. It joins Wiley, Taylor & Francis and Elsevier who pioneered production of ONIX-PC files and continue to produce them today. Equally important are the receiving organisations – already including LM Info, Swets and Lehmanns and soon to be joined by Harrassowitz.

In February EDItEUR held a successful ONIX-PC training and familiarisation workshop in Wiesbaden, Germany, very kindly hosted at its European headquarters by Harrassowitz. This was a full-day event and covered the background and purpose of ONIX-PC, together with a very detailed walk-through of the message structure and implementation advice. Colleagues from publishers NPG, Ullstein, Springer and CUP participated in the workshop, together with agencies LM Info and Harrassowitz.

Codelist Revision & Website Updates

Following a decision at one of last year’s ICEDIS Meetings, we are formalising somewhat the process for revising the ONIX Serials Codelists that underlie both our ONIX formats and the newer ICEDIS/XML standards. The current Issue 6 of the ONIX Serials Codelists was published in May 2013. Since that time, there have been a small number of suggested additions and revisions, mainly related to the expanded use of ONIX-PC. A list of the candidate changes will be circulated ahead of the ICEDIS Harrogate Meeting and members will then have the opportunity to review and approve these before publication.

Separately, we have produced a set of sample files to illustrate how the ICEDIS XML New Orders standard should be used. We have also corrected a few minor errors and, we hope, improved the explanations around certain features of ONIX-PC. A small set of modified ONIX-PC documents (the Overview document and the sample files) will be posted to the EDItEUR website later this month.

The Keepers Registry and ONIX-PH

Based at EDINA in Edinburgh, the Keepers Registry is gradually extending its coverage of preserved e-journals. A total of ten preservation agencies or memory institutions are now contributing details of which e-journals each agency is preserving and which volume/issue ranges of each resource are already included in their programmes. At the time of writing, over 23,000 e-journals are reported as being preserved by at least one (and frequently more than one) Keeper agency.

EDItEUR collaborated with the Keepers to create ONIX-PH, a dedicated format for communicating details of preserved e-resources. So far, three of the Keepers – the British Library, Archaeology Data Service and Scholars Portal – and of course the Registry itself, are actively using ONIX-PH to communicate details of preserved holdings. A fourth Keeper – Portico – has already produced ONIX-PH test files and is expected to formally adopt the format in due course.

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Other Major Projects

DCH-RP: Preserving Digital Cultural Heritage

EDItEUR is continuing its participation in the EC-sponsored DCH-RP project, as reported in earlier editions of the Newsletter. Our role within the project is primarily to act as a bridge between the publishing world and the project partners engaged in developing a strategic roadmap for the preservation of digital cultural heritage.

Although a number of useful contacts have already been forged, Tim Devenport (who is leading for EDItEUR on DCH-RP) would still very much welcome expressions of interest from two target groups within EDItEUR’s membership. The first group involves publishers – perhaps primarily those with lists or interests in the humanities or fine arts – to advise on factors that might most encourage them to partner with cultural heritage institutions in the future. The second group concerns preservation agencies, national memory institutions and others involved, or interested, in the preservation of digital resources. Here, EDItEUR is exploring whether there might be a useful exchange of views and knowledge transfer between the publishing and cultural heritage domains, for example on the very successful arrangements that now exist for preserving e-journal content.

Please email tim@editeur.org if you feel you could contribute to either of these lines of approach.

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Forthcoming Events

BIC Training Course – Bibliographic metadata and ONIX

26 March 2014, 09:30–17:00. CILIP, 7 Ridgmount Street, London WC1E 7AE, United Kingdom Note the late change in venue for this course

This course is run as a collaboration between Book Industry Communication (BIC) and EDItEUR, and will be delivered by Graham Bell, EDItEUR’s Chief Data Architect.

It is a one-day course that introduces the business value of accurate metadata, then provides a thorough and authoritative, ground-up introduction to ONIX for Books, and concludes with a look at best practices and some of the trickier parts of the ONIX message. It covers both ONIX 2.1 and 3.0, and it’s relevant to both e-books and physical products. For further details please see the Eventbrite webpage. EDItEUR members qualify for the BIC member rate for this course.

Publishing for Digital Minds Conference

7 April 2014, 09:00 to 18:00. Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre, Broad Sanctuary, London, SW1P 3EE, United Kingdom

Europe’s pre-eminent publishing conference returns for its 6th year in April 2014. The perfect accelerator to LBF itself, it’s for all those serious about the future of their content businesses in the digital now.

There are over 40 speakers and conversation starters, and the programme will include important topics such as:

Please visit the website for more information.

London Book Fair

8–10 April 2014. Earl’s Court Exhibition Centre, Warwick Road, London, SW5 9TA, United Kingdom

The London Book Fair continues to be the global market place for rights negotiation and the sales and distribution of content across print, audio, TV, film and digital channels. EDItEUR will be actively involved at London Book Fair as usual. You can see the relevant details of specific EDItEUR meetings taking place at LBF 2014 belowy. EDItEUR will also have a stand during the fair: Q625.

Thema International Steering Committee Meeting

9 April 2014, 10:00–12:00. Marlborough Room, Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Warwick Road, London, SW5 9TA, United Kingdom

The newly-formed Thema International Steering Committee will meet during the 2014 London Book Fair. This will be the first meeting of the committee since the ‘sunrise’ of the Thema subject classification code system on 31 December 2013. Open to representatives of Thema national groups and observers by invitation only.

ONIX for Books International Steering Committee Meeting

9 April 2014, 13:30–15:00. Marlborough Room, Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Warwick Road, London, SW5 9TA, United Kingdom

London Book Fair will host the next meeting of the ONIX for Books International Steering Committee. Details about the latest revisions to the ONIX standard, updates to codelists and a discussion about proposed and future changes will all feature. Open to representatives of ONIX national groups and observers by invitation only.

EDItEUR Open Meeting

9 April 2014, 15:30–17:00. Marlborough Room, Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Warwick Road, London, SW5 9TA, United Kingdom

The first EDItEUR Open Meeting of 2014 will take place at the London Book Fair and is open to any EDItEUR member or interested observer. The meeting will provide members with an opportunity to learn more about EDItEUR’s current work with the standards and identifiers that it administers, along with the major projects in which it is involved. Members are also invited to provide feedback and suggestions for new areas of work.

BIC Supply Chain Seminar

10 April 2014, 09:30–12:30. Cromwell Room, Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Warwick Road, London, SW5 9TA, United Kingdom

The 15th BIC Supply Chain Seminar will take place at the London Book Fair on Thursday 10 April 2014 in the iconic Earls Court Exhibition Centre. The programme will include more than a dozen speakers over the course of two and a half hours, who will discuss the hot topics of today’s (and tomorrow’s) book industry. Please visit the website for details on how to book.

The Fiesole Collection Development Retreat Series

10–12 April 2014. DoubleTree by Hilton, Granta Place, Mill Lane, Cambridge, CB2 1RT, United Kingdom

The Fiesole Retreat Series offers a unique opportunity to interact with a select group of your colleagues in a relaxed and thoughtful setting. Sessions are carefully balanced to assure equal and exciting representation from three communities: the library, the publisher, and the vendor, with viewpoints from North America, the UK, continental Europe, Australasia, and elsewhere. The 2014 theme is ‘Succeeding in the Next Decade’. Further information about the programme is found at http://www.casalini.it/retreat/retreat_2014.html.

UKSG Annual Conference and Exhibition 2014

14–16 April 2014. Harrogate International Centre, Kings Road, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 5LA, United Kingdom

The 2014 UKSG Annual Conference and Exhibition is a perfect opportunity for all players in the serials information chain, both industry newcomers and seasoned campaigners, to exchange news, views and information on the rapidly changing and developing global serials scene, to find out about the latest product and service technologies, and to make new friends and business contacts. Full conference details can be found at http://www.uksg.org/event/conference14 and EDItEUR’s ICEDIS Committee – for work in the serials sector – will be represented as usual.

ICEDIS Meeting, UKSG Harrogate

16 April 2014. Harrogate International Centre, Kings Road, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 5LA, United Kingdom

ICEDIS will hold a full meeting during the United Kingdom Serials Group’s Annual Conference and Exhibition. The 2014 meeting will be held on 16 April 2014 in Harrogate. ICEDIS brings together business and technical representatives from the world’s leading journal publishers, subscription agents, distributors and other intermediaries in the library supply chain. Together these trading partners develop and define industry standards for EDI and other e-commerce applications to facilitate journal subscription processing and the exchange of subscriptions related information.

NASIG Conference 2014

1–4 May 2014. Hilton Fort Worth, 815 Main St, Fort Worth, Texas, 76102, United States

The 29th Annual Conference of the North American Serials Interest Group (NASIG) will be entitled Taking Stock and Taming New Frontiers and will take place in Fort Worth, Texas in May.

Established in 1985, NASIG is an independent organization that promotes communication, information, and continuing education about serials and the broader issues of scholarly communication. NASIG welcomes anyone interested in the serials information chain. The annual conference provides a casual venue for preconferences, formal sessions, practical workshops, special events, and networking. An emphasis on thoughtful discourse and informality promotes an intensity of purpose not always possible at other conferences, and this year’s event will be no exception.

2014 SSP 36th Annual Meeting

28–30 May 2014. The Westin Boston Waterfront, 425 Summer Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02210, United States

The 36th annual meeting of the Society of Scholarly Publishing will be held in Boston, Massachusetts. The meeting theme is: Who’s at Stake and What’s at Stake? Looking Outward at the Future of Scholarly Publishing. The SSP Annual Meeting is the focal point for those engaged in scholarly communication. By bringing professionals together in an open exchange of the newest technical and industry related information, the meeting provides the highest standards in professional communication.

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For further details, contact

Graham Bell, incoming Executive Director, EDItEUR
United House
North Road
London, N7 9DP
Tel: +44 20 7503 6418
Mobile: +44 7887 754958
E-mail: graham@editeur.org

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