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Suggestions & Questions > ISBNs aren't all unique!!!

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message 1: by Kyle (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:45AM) (new)

Kyle | 5 comments Suddenly last night, when I try to enter my old pre-ISBN-days books, the program says they have to all have unique ISBNS. Please go back to putting 0000000000 on them all or I have to make up random ISBNs for them and that's bound to cause trouble before too long. I even have found books with ISBNs that are out of print, and the ISBNs have been reused since. I can't see why they should have to be unique. If someone punched in the ISBN it could bring up a list of books with that ISBN and they could select the one they wanted from the list. This issue is critical to my use and enjoyment of goodreads since I have hundreds of books without ISBNs.

message 2: by Otis, Chief Goodreader (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:47AM) (new)

Otis Chandler | 4184 comments Mod
Hey Kyle,

Sorry about that - not sure what happened. I think its fixed now, so let us know if you continue to have problems!

message 3: by Kyle (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:48AM) (new)

Kyle | 5 comments Thanks Otis! I was afraid it was on purpose. Glad it was just a glitch.

message 4: by Time (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:49AM) (new)

Time | 6 comments I tried to search an ISBN and it did not return any matches unless I included the dashes. :-(

When I did include the dashes... as (0-385-05040-2) there were four results--all different--and none of them the book I was trying to enter!

What do we do in this case?

message 5: by Otis, Chief Goodreader (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:50AM) (new)

Otis Chandler | 4184 comments Mod
Hi Time,

That ISBN doesn't appear to exist in either our database or in's. However it did exist in's. To search that you just need to hit 'more options' under the search box.


message 6: by Time (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:51AM) (new)

Time | 6 comments I guess I should say when I do a "find books" and only enter in "0-385-05040-2" then four results are returned--none of them Homer.

Without the dashes I get "No results found - sorry!. Can't find it? Try searching by ISBN." Which is kinda frustrating as that was what I was doing :-)

I think I stumbled upon this as I was trying to manually add this version of the book to our index--and when I submitted, it returned the message that I can't enter duplicate ISBN' I set off to search, only to get shut down on my search. :-(

Thanks for any further guidance Otis!

Best regards,

message 7: by Otis, Chief Goodreader (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:52AM) (new)

Otis Chandler | 4184 comments Mod
Hi Tim,

So you were right, our ISBN search didn't search all the Amazon libraries, and this was the cause of your pain. So we tweaked a few things and now its working much better!


message 8: by Tim (new)

Tim | 93 comments Hi Otis, following your last post in this thread, i was wondering if it is possible to tweak this a little more so that is a deafult option in the "find at" list under each book?

I know we can manually add this, but there is no way i fancy doing this for hundreds of books! If you were able to add it to the "find books" section perhaps you can add it to the "find at" section too?

One other thing which would be pure candy and not important would be to enable users to set their own default "find at" link. eg, if i only buy from, that that would then appear first in the list instead of As i say this isnt important but thought i would throw it out there.


message 9: by Michael (new)

Michael Economy (michaeleconomy) You should be able to manipulate the find at links to do this. Until about a week and a half ago it wasn't super easy to add new amazon links, but i think we fixed that.

on you can select other countries in the dropdown now, is under GB.

message 10: by Michael (new)

Michael Economy (michaeleconomy) also, maybe its a little confusing, but the find_at links are for every book you look at.

message 11: by Otis, Chief Goodreader (new)

Otis Chandler | 4184 comments Mod
The find at links should show if your profile states you are from there, or if you edit the links (which are global), as Michael stated.

message 12: by Tim (new)

Tim | 93 comments :D I just noticed this.. Nice one cheers guys! Perfect.

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