Re: [Videolib] ISBN #s

Jessica Rosner (
Fri, 24 Mar 2006 11:39:13 -0500

Trust me no one is assigning them. They have no idea what they are
I know many of our newer titles don't have them as I asked someone to
randomly check them. My best guess is that perhaps places like
Midwest Tape, Ingram or Baker & Tayler have something to do with getting
some of our titles ISBN numbers but again it is a mystery.

I am still a bit unclear as to what the cost per title would be if we did in
fact to this ourselves for every title.
It is really weird that this never come up before and that our video guys
don't know about it but we are kind of an odd company

On 3/24/06 10:41 AM, "Helen Mack" <> wrote:

> Kino does indeed have ISBNs. I just checked in OCLC, searching on Kino
> as publisher, visual format, and a date range of 2004-06. I found 12
> records for 2006, 89 for 2005, and 142 for 2004. Very few of these
> lacked ISBNs, and some of these are some other company that happens to
> have Kino as part of its name.
> In fact, all of the ISBNs were the new 13-digit type ... which tells me
> that OCLC has taken the 10-digit ISBN in MARC field 020 and converted it
> to a 13-digit ISBN in MARC field 024. There is probably an algorithm
> built into the 020 that looks at the check digit and identifies ISBNs
> with errors. And OCLC probably wants to keep that algorithm intact,
> rather than also make it work for the 13-digit ISBN.
> Apparently Kino's prefix is 7383290. The remaining 6 digits that follow
> are basically an accession number, which parallels the Kino product
> number (e.g. ISBN 738329044121 = Kino #441). In those instances where
> Kino is distributing titles for KimStim, the prefix is 6984522, again
> with the remaining 6 digits being accession numbers which match the
> KimStim product numbers (e.g. 698452202136 = Kim Stim #KS2021).
> So, the ISBNs are coming from somewhere. I assume that someone at Kino
> must be assigning them, because when OCLC member libraries catalog these
> materials, the ISBN is on the package. I, too, think that an ISBN is
> critical to the identification of an item. Non-library folks probably
> don't appreciate its value. Very interesting discussion, though. I
> never realized that publishers had to pay for them. So that's how
> Bowker makes their money!
> Stephanie Andrew wrote:
>> In fact, New Yorker, Wellspring, Koch Lorber, and Wellspring are among
>> the imprints who do have ISBNs. Kino, Milestone, WMM, and CA Newsreel
>> are among those that don't. Very occasionally, I've run into a big
>> distributor title which doesn't have one.
>> Someone undoubtedly knows the statistics, but I think most library
>> workers looking for recent materials routinely first search OCLC, etc.
>> by ISBN. It's much more likely to bring up a single, matching record
>> than a title search does. And ordering by ISBN instead of title makes
>> it easier to specify and get a particular edition of a title which has
>> different editions. Collectively, the ISBN system has saved lots of
>> library time and money. It was, and is, a good idea.
>> Stephanie Andrew
>> Film Study Center
>> Yale University
>> At 12:48 PM 3/23/2006, you wrote:
>>> It seems that some of our older films ( DAUGHTERS OF THE DUST, COME
>>> AND SEE)
>>> have them but most newer ones don't. I am afraid this is not anything we
>>> would pursue or pay for on our own so I assume most of our films will
>>> not
>>> have them. I would be surprised if companies like New Yorker,
>>> Wellspring,
>>> Koch Lorber etc have them either but I don't really know.
>>> On 3/23/06 9:44 AM, "Marlene Graham" <> wrote:
>>>> Jessica
>>>> FYI, I noted that a Kino title listed in the New York Public Library
>>>> database does not have an ISBN number. What it has is a Dynix
>>> number that
>>>> was assigned by the library.
>>>> At Cinema Guild and Third World Newsreel where I was the distribution
>>>> director they purchase and assign ISBN numbers.
>>>> Cheers,
>>>> Marlene
>>>> Marlene Graham (aka Afua Kafi-Akua)
>>>> Media Resources Manager
>>>> York College
>>>> The City University of New York
>>>> Center for Academic Computing and Education Technology
>>>> Academic Core Building, 4G02A
>>>> 94-20 Guy R. Brewer Blvd.
>>>> Jamaica, NY 11451
>>>> Phone: 718-262-2753
>>>> Fax: 718-262-2114
>>>> Quoting
>>>>> Sorry I realize I am so out of the loop on this I was confusing them
>>>>> with OCLC numbers or records. We definately don't pay for ISBN
>>>>> numbers in fact
>>>>> our video dept has never heard of them. I suppose that means our
>>>>> titles do not
>>>>> have them but I really don't know. It has honestly never come up
>>> at all.
>>>>> I know that various wholesalers buy our stuff and resell it
>>> pre-catalogued
>>>>> but am totally clueless as to if that means that they get them ISBN
>>>>> numbers or they don't have them.
>>>>> Quoting
>>>>>> Thanks to all who have responded (and to future responders as
>>>>>> well!). I'm a
>>>>>> big fan of ISBNs and have put them on all the work we have
>>>>>> published/released since 1989 (and retroactively to the ones we
>>> produced
>>>>>> 1986-1988). I have
>>>>>> every intention of continuing to assign ISBNs to all new
>>> releases, but have
>>>>>> run into a roadblock, as I mentioned. Here is what I have
>>> learned so far:
>>>>>> 1. Bowker is indeed the only agency that can assign ISBNs in the
>>> US and
>>>>>> since it is a monopoly it can and does charge big bucks. (As an
>>> aside,
>>>>>> ISBNs in
>>>>>> Canada appear to be free.)
>>>>>> 2. ISBNs have traditionally been 10 digits (as are the ones I
>>> currently
>>>>>> use). As of January of 2007, a new 13-digit ISBN system will go
>>> into
>>>>>> effect. I
>>>>>> haven't called Bowker back yet, but my hunch is that it's because
>>>>>> the entire
>>>>>> numbering system is being modified that I can't keep my old prefix.
>>>>>> 3. Because each prefix is a technical number that denotes first
>>> of all the
>>>>>> country of origin and second of all the particular publisher, it's
>>>>>> much more
>>>>>> convenient and less error-prone for a publisher to have the same
>>> prefix for
>>>>>> all titles. (To put this in perspective, the current 10-digit
>>> system
>>>>>> consists
>>>>>> of 7 digits of prefix and only 3 of suffix that changes with each
>>>>>> title.)The
>>>>>> issue for smaller publishers is that Bowker sells ISBNs in blocks of
>>>>>> numbers
>>>>>> and you can only get a consistent prefix when you purchase that
>>> particular
>>>>>> block; you can't go back and get more numbers for that prefix. The
>>>>>> smaller,
>>>>>> more affordable blocks are much more expensive per number than
>>> the larger
>>>>>> blocks and also involve changing prefixes as time goes by. Larger
>>>>>> publishers of
>>>>>> course just purchase an initial block of 100 or 1,000 or 10,000
>>> ISBNs and
>>>>>> then they have the right to use those numbers, all with the same
>>>>>> prefix, far
>>>>>> into the foreseeable future. (As another aside, I came across a
>>> website
>>>>>> that
>>>>>> suggested that in the future book and media reviewers will be
>>> able to
>>>>>> discern
>>>>>> the size of a publishing/media house by its ISBN; as far as I
>>> know, that's
>>>>>> not possible now.)
>>>>>> 4. The tooth fairy doesn't put ISBNs under your pillow,
>>> Jessica. Somebody
>>>>>> somewhere is in charge of assigning them to your titles. The
>>> ones you
>>>>>> distribute that are produced by others would, of course, come
>>> with ISBNs
>>>>>> already
>>>>>> assigned (and with a variety of prefixes, one for each
>>> publisher). But for
>>>>>> any
>>>>>> that Kino actually publishes, someone on your staff (or possibly
>>> an outside
>>>>>> contractor like a copyright/permissions professional or lawyer)
>>> assigns the
>>>>>> ISBN.
>>>>>> So, there you have it. I'll probably bite the bullet and
>>> purchase a pricey
>>>>>> block of ISBNs, but then, I've been in business for 20 years.
>>> It does seem
>>>>>> to me unfortunate that a system is evolving that greatly
>>> disadvantages
>>>>>> startup
>>>>>> and micro publishers. The ISBN system is fabulous; it's just
>>> too bad that
>>>>>> the US ISBN price system is structured the way it is.
>>>>>> Many thanks again for this listserv.
>>>>>> Jocelyn Riley
>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>> Videolib mailing list
>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>> Videolib mailing list
>>> Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE
>>> Jessica Rosner
>>> Kino International
>>> 333 W 39th St. 503
>>> NY NY 10018
>>> 212-629-6880
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Videolib mailing list
>> _______________________________________________
>> Videolib mailing list

Proud Resident of a BLUE STATE

Jessica Rosner
Kino International
333 W 39th St. 503
NY NY 10018

Videolib mailing list