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Newsletter March 2015


London Book Fair 2015

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The 2015 London Book Fair will be held between Tuesday 14 and Thursday 16 April, with a global roster of 1500 exhibitors and a range of 250 free-to-attend seminars and other events. The exhibtion returns to a former location in Kensington Olympia, a short walk from last year’s venue at Earl’s Court.

As mentioned in our January 2015 Newsletter, EDItEUR will as usual be hosting a number of key meetings during London Book Fair – read all about them in the Forthcoming Events section of this newsletter. In particular, please join us at the EDItEUR members’ open meeting on the middle day of the Fair. If you’re unable to attend our meetings or would like to speak to us informally, then please visit us on our Stand (7K41).

Pre-registered tickets for the Book Fair are £35, or £50 on the day. If you haven’t booked yours yet, EDItEUR has 100 half-price passes to distribute. Please e-mail info@editeur.org for details of how to obtain your discounted tickets.

Digital Minds conference

Also in the January 2015 newsletter we advertised that the seventh Publishing for Digital Minds Conference will take place on Monday 13 April in the Olympia Conference Centre adjacent to the main Book Fair exhibition hall.

The event brings together inspirational speakers drawn from the international trade and academic publishing industry, digital disruptors, prominent thinkers and best-selling authors. This year, Unbound co-founder and QI director of research John Mitchinson and Sam Missingham of HarperCollins will co-chair the conference. There will be sessions on:

with speakers including author David Nicholls, Rob Newlan from Facebook, Ed Humphrey of the British Film Institute, HarperCollins’ CEO Charlie Redmayne, Sonja Jefferson of Valuable Content, Helen Sun from Publishing Technology China, consultant Alison Jones, Javier Celaya of Dosdoce, Elisa Yuste from the Fundación Germán Sánchez Ruipérez, Richard Mollet, Chief executive of the UK Publishers’ Association, Michael Healy of Copyright Clearance Center and Paul Brindley of Innovate UK.

EDItEUR members registering for the Digital Minds Conference can obtain a 10% discount on registration using the promo code LBF15DPM.

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International ISBN Agency News

Upcoming Meetings

The next regional meeting of national ISBN agencies will take place in Sofia, Bulgaria in May 2015. This will be a meeting of the Balkan Agencies and will be kindly hosted by National Library St. Cyril and St. Methodius, which runs the national ISBN agency there.

Revision of the ISBN Standard

The ISO ISBN Working Group has now completed the work towards the Committee Draft (CD) version of the revised ISBN Standard. This is the first of the ‘official’ drafts of the new edition of the Standard and it has now been issued to all national member bodies of ISO/TC46/SC9 in order that they can cast their votes and submit comments. The ballot opened in early February and will close on 3 April, after which the results and comments will be collated for the Working Group to consider. Most meetings of the Working Group take place via WebEx but the next meeting will be just the second face to face meeting and it will take place in Beijing in early June (timed to coincide with the ISO/TC46 plenary meetings). The next stage after the CD is to work towards a DIS (Draft International Standard).

An ad hoc group comprising representatives from national ISBN Agencies has also been working on an updated version of the ISBN Users’ Manual to reflect the developments in the new draft of the Standard. The Users’ Manual will go through further revisions as the standard continues to progress. We will share the Users’ Manual with all national agencies for information and comment since we know this is a critical document for them. It is likely to be discussed in some detail at the ISBN Annual General Meeting taking place in September, to which we invite all national ISBN Agencies.

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ONIX for Books

ONIX Codelists Issue 28 released

Issue 28 of the ONIX codelists was finalised in January, and documentation plus data files in several formats are available on the EDItEUR website. A full list of the changes is available from the ONIX Codelists page of the website, and the new codes have been integrated into the documentation packages for ONIX 3.0.

As noted in the previous newsletter, Issue 28 is a small update, including:

It also includes a code for a ‘digital exclusivity statement’. It’s a common error in ONIX to use the DGO edition type code (Digital original) to mean ‘digital exclusive’. Digital original is a permanent feature of a book that was released first or only in digital form, whereas an e-book that is digital exclusive may lose that status when a printed equivalent is published. The new code ensures that ‘digital originals’ and ‘digital exclusives’ can be described without ambiguity.

Here’s an ONIX 3.0 digital exclusive example, which loses its exclusivity on 15th May:
    <Text>Exclusively available as an EPUB until 15th May</Text>

Note that this issue of the codelists is the first that also includes the codes for the new ONIX Acknowledgement Message, which was released in January. For continued post-sunset use with ONIX 2.1, the DTD or XSD versions of the codelists files – as well as comma-separated, tab-separated, JSON and XML versions – can be downloaded separately from the Codelists page.

Work has already begun on Issue 29, and a draft circulated to ONIX National Groups around the world for comment. The intention is to ensure comments are dealt with, and to ratify the revised codelists during the meeting of the ONIX International Steering Committee during London Book Fair. Issue 29 should be published by the end of April.

Beyond Issue 29, EDItEUR is actively seeking detailed comments from ONIX users on requirements to support ‘subscription’-based business models, such as Oyster, Scribd, Kindle Unlimited. Are there new data requirements? Comments should be addressed to the ONIX National Groups, or direct to EDItEUR.

Upcoming improvements to ONIX 3.0 schema files

Alongside Issue 28 of the codelists, EDItEUR published a note warning about some upcoming changes to the ONIX 3.0 XSD and RNG schema files. These improvements to the schema will not require any changes to properly-constructed ONIX files – and do not imply any change to the standard itself – but will ensure that any XML validation is a little more rigorous than before.

Validation improvements will involve ensuring that numbers in data elements such as <EditionNumber> or <PackQuantity> are positive (ie that you cannot have an edition ‘-3’ or a pack quantity of zero). Similar limitations will be applied to other numeric data elements. Further details can be downloaded from the EDItEUR website. Preview ‘strict’ versions of the XSD and RNG schemas are included in the various Issue 28 schema file packages, so developers can check their existing applications and data files conform.

ONIX training

“…the two days in New York were among the best training sessions I’ve attended in my career. Fast paced, lots of information, good interaction from the assembled publishers, and fun.” Paul Dever of Elsevier, via LinkedIn

Trainee feedback doesn’t get better that. A successful and well-attended series of training sessions were held in co-operation with EDItEUR members BISG and BTLF in early March. In New York, the BISG courses were hosted in the Manhattan offices of Hachette Book Group, and most delegates attended both the Essentials and the Advanced courses. The Canadian sessions were at BTLF’s Montreal location. And for the first time this year, the BISG programme was extended to Boston, where Harvard University Press provided a venue.

The next ONIX courses will be part of BIC’s training programme in London, on 29th and 30th April. See Forthcoming Events below for details.

ONIX 2.1 sunset update

January saw the long-planned ‘sunset’ of ONIX 2.1, and a reduction in the level of support for the 2003-era version of ONIX. Much of the documentation has been archived, and the DTD and XSD files removed from the EDItEUR website.

In late January, EDItEUR member BookNet Canada hosted a webcast by Graham Bell covering the transition from ONIX 2.1 to 3.0, and a full recording of the webcast is now available. The slides – without the audio – are also available. (This session has been run as a seminar or webcast on several previous occasions.)

The removal of the DTD and XSD files means that many metadata management applications are failing to connect to the ONIX schema files they require. Any software that creates or receives ONIX 2.1 messages and which relies on the presence of those files (eg for validation or in constructor functions) is now be failing to connect – during January, there were around 1.2 million failed attempts to access the ONIX 2.1 DTD and XSD files. The trend during February and March is downwards, but there have been 600,00 failed attempts over the most recent four weeks. To avoid these failures, some active steps are necessary. Last November, EDItEUR published a guide describing a relatively simple but vital workaround using the hosts file. An alternative – and more sophisticated – workaround uses an XML Catalog, and a sample catalog is available from EDItEUR on request.

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Thema 1.1 Translations and mappings added

Following the release of Thema version 1.1 at the beginning of December, various translation resources have been updated – in particular the German and Norwegian translations are complete, and are available from the EDItEUR website. They have also been updated on the Thema online browser. Other languages are in a late stage of preparation.

EDItEUR is convening a working group to consider how Thema geographical qualifiers should be created and managed for countries where there is as yet no national group. For more details, contact alex@editeur.org.

Thema implementation mailing list

A mailing list for Thema issues – modelled on the similar ONIX support list – is now up and running. You can join here.

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News from ICEDIS: serials, subscriptions & library supply

ICEDIS Meeting at UKSG Glasgow, 1st April

Plans are now finalized for the meeting of ICEDIS at the forthcoming UKSG Conference in Glasgow. ICEDIS, which is EDItEUR’s special-interest group for the serials and subscriptions supply chain, will meet from 1.30 to 4.30 pm on 1 April, the final day of UKSG. The venue for the meeting will be in the same complex as UKSG: The Leven Room, Seminar Suite (upper level), Scottish Exhibition & Conference Centre, Exhibition Way, Glasgow G3 8YW.

Central to the agenda on this occasion will be a report-back from the ICEDIS Open Access working group and specific proposals on how the ONIX-PC standard should be extended to better support OA products. We will also discuss how best to progress efforts to define business cases for an eventual migration to more modern ICEDIS standards and hear about the wider rollout of ONIX-PC. We will also be particularly pleased to welcome several guests to the meeting, including KBART Co-Chair Magaly Bascones (Jisc) and William Kilbride (Digital Preservation Coalition), who will be updating us on several key initiatives.

ICEDIS is open to any EDItEUR members interested in serials/subscriptions issues: if you would like to join us in Glasgow and haven’t yet been in touch, please let us know via a brief email to info@editeur.org. We look forward to seeing you on 1st April!

Open Access Working Group – OA Extensions for ONIX-PC

The ICEDIS Open Access working group has had four meetings so far this year, exploring requirements voiced by the membership for better support for Open Access products. Attention to date has focused on modifications to the ONIX for Product and Price Catalog format, ONIX-PC.

The working group will report back to the main ICEDIS Committee during the Glasgow meeting and will propose an extended version 1.2 of the standard. There will be a non-technical review of the business cases covered by the extended standard, and issues that have emerged will be highlighted. Looking further ahead, the group will also propose necessary actions to support implementation of the revised standard, including pilot exchanges, updated documentation, and communication to the rest of the supply chain.

If you are interested in knowing more about what is proposed and would like to contribute to the group’s work, please contact tim@editeur.org.

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Forthcoming Events

UKSG 38th Annual Conference and Exhibition

Monday 30 March to Wednesday 1 April 2015. Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, Exhibition Way, Glasgow, G3 8YW, United Kingdom

The 2015 UKSG Annual Conference will take place from 30 March to 1 April 2015 in Glasgow.

It’s the 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. The full conference programme can be found here. EDItEUR’s ICEDIS Committee will meet as usual during the event.

The AAG Accessibility Toolbox at London Book Fair 2015

Wednesday 15 April 2015, 10:00–11:00. Olympia Room, Grand Hall, Olympia Conference Centre, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, London, W14 8UX, United Kingdom

The Annual Accessibility Seminar, organized by the PA Accessibility Action Group at The London Book Fair, will concentrate this year on practical ways to include accessibility within publishing workflows. IDPF Executive Director Bill McCoy (who is also serving as President of Readium Foundation) will be presenting on Readium at this session which is open to all fair attendees. Please see the EPUB Zone website for further details.

Thema International Steering Committee Meeting

Wednesday 15 April 2015, 10:00–12:00. Conference room One, Olympia Conference Centre, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, London, W14 8UX, United Kingdom

The Thema International Steering Committee will meet during the 2015 London Book Fair – at London Book Fair’s new home in Kensington Olympia. This will be the first meeting of the committee since the release of version 1.1 of the Thema subject classification code system and this meeting will look at the first year since the launch of Thema scheme, and at how the geographical and other qualifiers can be extended.

ONIX for Books International Steering Committee Meeting

Wednesday 15 April 2015, 13:30–15:00. Conference room One, Olympia Conference Centre, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, London, W14 8UX, United Kingdom

The next meeting of the ONIX for Books International Steering Committee will be held during the London Book Fair. This meeting will be first the since the sunset of ONIX version 2.1. The Committee will as always discuss the latest developments in the ONIX for Books standard, including the Acknowledgement message.

EDItEUR Open Meeting for Members

Wednesday 15 April 2015, 15:30–17:00. Conference room One, Olympia Conference Centre, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, London, W14 8UX, United Kingdom

The first EDItEUR Open Meeting of 2015 will take place during the London Book Fair. All EDItEUR members are welcome, and interested non-members may participate by invitation (please e-mail us if you are a non-member that would like to attend).

The meeting provides members with an opportunity to meet the EDItEUR staff face-to-face, to learn more about EDItEUR’s current work with the standards and identifiers that it administers, and to find out about the projects in which EDItEUR is involved. Members are also invited to provide feedback and suggestions for new areas of work.

BIC Supply Chain Seminar: Building a Better Business

Thursday 16 April 2015, 10:00–12:00 Apex Room, National Hall Gallery, Olympia Conference Centre, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, London, W14 8UX, United Kingdom

In this two hour session attendees will hear from book industry experts on a variety of topics, all focussed on helping to build a more efficient business. There will be a talk about how Thema can help with discovery and market analysis, and the opportunity to learn about the importance of more effective sales reporting. Kobo will talk about their experiences and the challenges faced in the supply chain when digital content moves from one platform to another. You can view the relevant Book Industry Communication webpage for further information.

Publishers’ Forum

Monday 27 to Tuesday 28 April 2015. Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm, Augsburger Str. 41, 10789 Berlin, Germany

The 2015 Publishers’ Forum, organised by EDItEUR member Klopotek, will illuminate two current, strategic challenges in publishing enterprises:

Well-known speakers from leading German and international publishing companies will share insights into their decision-making practices, and further details can be found at http://publishersforum.de/.

Understanding BIC Subject Classification & an Introduction to Thema Training Course

Tuesday 28 April 2015, 10:00–17:00. Faber Creative Spaces, Bloomsbury House, 74–77 Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DA, United Kingdom

This course describes the structure and purpose of the BIC subject classification scheme, explaining how the BIC codes are used and interpreted throughout the supply chain, including their role in enabling effective search and discovery online. It also provides practical guidance in how BIC codes should be best assigned.

The course will also provide an introduction to Thema, the new international classification scheme for the global book trade – explaining the need for such a scheme, its benefits, and the key differences between BIC and Thema. Again, some practical guidance on assigning codes to book records is included. The course is aimed at anyone with an interest in book product data quality in general, and subject classification in particular. Whatever your background, whether from an Editorial, Marketing or Systems perspective, this course is relevant to individuals from all professional disciplines within the trade. Some knowledge and experience of the BIC scheme is very useful (and assumed) but not essential.

Bibliographic Metadata & ONIX: the Essentials Training Course

Wednesday 29 April 2015, 09:00–17:00. Faber Creative Spaces, Bloomsbury House, 74–77 Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DA, United Kingdom

This course provides delegates with essential practical information about the importance of reliable metadata, the ways in which it is best communicated and disseminated in the marketplace, and how it can deliver efficiencies in-house and boost sales performance. It is aimed at staff with management responsibility for metadata, either in IT, marketing or production within a publisher, or in similar roles in distribution and retailing. The course is suitable for beginners and/or those with no prior knowledge of ONIX.

Please see the course EventBrite webpage for further information. EDItEUR members qualify for BIC member pricing for this course

ONIX for Books: Advanced Topics Training Course

Thursday 30 April 2015, 09:00–17:00. Faber Creative Spaces, Bloomsbury House, 74–77 Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DA, United Kingdom

The Advanced ONIX for Books course delivers in-depth information on advanced ONIX topics, including e-books, and is aimed at staff with management responsibility for metadata, either in IT, marketing or production within a publisher, or in similar roles in distribution and retailing. Delegates should ideally have attended the Bibliographic Metadata & ONIX: the Essentials course, or have extensive experience with ONIX gained over several years. It is not aimed primarily at developers – there is relatively little technical content – but developers wishing to gain broad background knowledge will benefit from attending.

Please see the course EventBrite webpage for further information. EDItEUR members qualify for BIC member pricing for this course.

2015 SSP 37th Annual Meeting

Wednesday 27 to Friday 29 May 2015. Crystal Gateway Marriott, 1700 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA 22202, United States

The 2015 SSP Annual Meeting will examine the ways in which organizations of all shapes and sizes, regardless of discipline, mission, or products, are experimenting and innovating to develop solutions that will ensure a sustainable future. The meeting will focus on connecting these diverse perspectives so that attendees can share insights and experiences and learn from each other. The conference website is www.sspnet.org/events/annual-meeting/event-home.

BookExpo America

Wednesday 27 to Friday 29 May 2015. Javits Center, 655 West 34th Street, New York, N.Y. 10001, United States

BookExpo America (BEA) is the number one book and author event in North American Publishing. Book industry professionals can discover new titles, meet favorite and new authors, learn about trends shaping the book industry, and network with those who have a passion for books and reading. A BEA ticket includes access to BEA exhibits and BEA Content & Digital Conference sessions. It is the largest show floor in North America with over 1,000 exhibitors displaying their upcoming titles in all formats and every genre, from across the country and around the world. The conference website can be found here.

NASIG 30th Annual Conference

Wednesday 27 to Saturday 30 May 2015. Hilton Crystal City at Washington Reagan National Airport, 2399 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA 22202, United States

The 30th annual conference of NASIG will be entitled Building the Digital Future and will take place in Washington D.C.

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.

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New Members


Thieme is a leading and award-winning publisher of books, journals, digital media, and services for medical, health, and related sciences. Popular Thieme online products include Thieme eJournals and the Thieme eBook Library, available on www.thieme-connect.de. The family-owned enterprise with a staff of 900 employees worldwide develops and produces connected, printed and digital information products based on 150 scientific journals and 4 500 available books. Thieme’s products are aimed at all stakeholders in the health sector, from medical students to specialists, from nurses and midwives to physiotherapists, from librarians to health insurers, clinics, and the general public. Thieme stands for reliably high quality. The company’s high publishing standards are reflected by its continuous top ranking in market researcher Innofact’s publisher score. For further information please see www.thieme.de.

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For further details, contact

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