Goodreads Librarians Group discussion

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CN numbers

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message 1: by Darren (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

Darren | 6 comments Hi everyone, hope you can help me with this. Some of the books I have don't have an ISBN number on them (that I can find!) although they do have a CN number. I have been putting this number in place of the ISBN number. Is this ok? Or is there an easy way of finding the ISBN? The books I tend to find this with are hardback published by BCA or Abacus, an example being A Song of Stone by Iain Banks.

Many thanks

Darren


message 2: by John (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

John | 73 comments Try using Google with keywords in quotes such as "Iain Banks Song Stone Abacus hardback" - I got an ISBN of 0316640166 that way. If you don't see an ISBN on the back cover, it should definitely be on the title page along with the copyright date, etc. Somewhat "buried" perhaps, but it should be there.


message 3: by Lisa (not getting friends updates) (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:08PM) (new)

Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan (lisavegan) | 2409 comments Books published before about 1966-1970 do not have an ISBN number.


message 4: by Seizure Romero (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:08PM) (new)

Seizure Romero | 11 comments BCA is Book Club Associates in the UK (http://www.bca.co.uk/about.aspx). For those not familiar with the wily ways of publishing, book club editions are generally cheaper "knockoffs" of trade editions with ISBNs (this sort of thing can drive first edition collectors to drink. More). Sometimes book club editions will display full publishing data, sometimes they won't. I don't have solid data to back this up yet, but CN is probably referencing an in-house catalog number.


message 5: by Otis, Chief Architect (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:09PM) (new)

Otis Chandler | 315 comments Mod
Hey all,

ISBN numbers are optional - you should be able to just not specify one. And we'd prefer that to having invalid ones in there.


message 6: by Roxanne Hsu (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:12PM) (new)

Roxanne Hsu Feldman (fairrosa) | 10 comments The newest books are having the new 13-ISBN. Is the field large enough to accommodate this new system?


message 7: by Otis, Chief Architect (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:13PM) (new)

Otis Chandler | 315 comments Mod
Adding support for ISBN-13 is on our todo list. It will be a separate field from ISBN-10.


message 8: by [deleted user] (new)

hi darren
you can find book's ISBN in library of congress online catalog
URL: http://catalog.loc.gov/


message 9: by Andy (last edited Aug 25, 2010 03:06PM) (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments I've got a load of BCA books, which I've recorded the CN numbers for, before storing them away. Could go through by title/author, but would rather not. Is there a way to relate CN to ISBN?

If not will have to do the long way around and record the CNs in review (I take it you can only put notes like this in as "reviews").

Oh and what about OLD books - i have a few from the 50s/60s, from before the ISBN system...


message 10: by Cait (new)

Cait (tigercait) | 5005 comments Andy wrote: "Is there a way to relate CN to ISBN?"

I don't think so -- perhaps BCA has a list somewhere? I know that a lot of book club editions don't have ISBNs at all. There isn't a field for CN specifically, but a librarian could add it to the book description for book club books.

"Oh and what about OLD books - i have a few from the 50s/60s, from before the ISBN system..."

Those won't have ISBNs either, unless they've been reprinted more recently.


message 11: by vicki_girl (new)

vicki_girl | 2765 comments Cait wrote: "Andy wrote: "Is there a way to relate CN to ISBN?"

I don't think so -- perhaps BCA has a list somewhere? I know that a lot of book club editions don't have ISBNs at all. There isn't a field for CN specifically, but a librarian could add it to the book description for book club books."


For vintage science fiction paperbacks, I have been putting things like 'Signet W7766' in the "edition" field. Could that be used for CN numbers as well?


message 12: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments That sounds like a good point and could be used for my other query, about vintage sf (digit rather than signet...).

To do the edition thing do you have to create a new book, or can you just add an edition to an existing book?


message 13: by Sandra (new)

Sandra | 21536 comments To add edition information, you just need to edit the existing book, if it's the right one.


message 14: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments So does this create a duplicate book?

What I mean is, if I find a book that is the same apart from the edition (i.e. has a valid ISBN no.) and I edit it, won't that edit that edition?

Is there a way to create a duplicate of a book, and enter the edition information against that copy only?


message 15: by Cait (new)

Cait (tigercait) | 5005 comments To do the edition thing do you have to create a new book, or can you just add an edition to an existing book?

There is an edition field on records which is used to display edition-specific information that's not part of the content, per se: things like "Second Edition", "Boxed Set", "Anniversary Edition", etc. It makes sense to me to put book club information in that field.

Editing the edition field does not create a new edition record. Adding an edition to an existing book requires creating a new edition record, which is done by creating a new book record (a duplicate book, as you said) and then combining that record with the existing editions so that they form one book. (On GR, a book is a set of editions which are combined because they all have the same content.)


message 16: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments Ohhh Kay...

But a book has to have a valid ISBN, yes, or it can't be added?

So could I copy a book or is this a manual process?

(Sorry to ask so many questions, just want to get it right!).


message 17: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 41003 comments Mod
Andy wrote: "But a book has to have a valid ISBN, yes, or it can't be added?"

No. We have many pre-ISBN books in the database.

If you go to the editions page of a book, you can select "add a new edition". This has the advantage of pre-populating certain fields (title, author), but it will NOT automatically combine the new edition with its fellow; you'll need to do manually that after creating the book.

And never apologize for asking questions. That's one of the main things this group is for! :)


message 18: by Andy (last edited Aug 26, 2010 08:42AM) (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments So, I find a version as close as possible, add a new edition, and don't populate the ISBN field?

Or can I put CN9262 or D.235(for instance)?


message 19: by Ralph Gallagher (new)

Ralph Gallagher | 212 comments Andy wrote: "So, I find a version as close as possible, add a new edition, and don't populate the ISBN field?

Or can I put CN9262 or D.235(for instance)?"


If there is no ISBN, or you don't know it, leave it blank. We don't want incorrect ISBN's listed.


message 20: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments Quite, but the CN and D numbers ARE correct.

Does the system check that ISBNs are valid? (i.e. check the length/check digit)


message 21: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 41003 comments Mod
They are not correct ISBNs. No, the system does not check for ISBN validity; that job falls on librarians.


message 22: by vicki_girl (new)

vicki_girl | 2765 comments Andy wrote: "So, I find a version as close as possible, add a new edition, and don't populate the ISBN field?

Or can I put CN9262 or D.235(for instance)?"


Okay, I think I will walk it through step by step. Things are getting a little confusing. :)

1. Find the book you want.
2. Go to the "book page". Example:
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/78...
3. On the right is a bar with a link that says "other editions (number)"; click that.
4. This will take you to the "editions" page. Example:
http://www.goodreads.com/work/edition...
5. On the left there is a link "add a new edition"; click that.
6. This will take you to the "add a new book" page with some fields pre-populated. Example:
http://www.goodreads.com/book/new?aut...
7. There will be multiple fields to fill, but only 'title', 'author', and 'sort by title' are required. (They have red stars next to them)
8. Following these first three fields you will see...

ISBN
publisher
published
number of pages
format
edition
official url
description
etc., etc...

9. Put the CN number in the box following the 'edition' field.

Does that help?


message 23: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments should I combine this back in with the other editions?

I hesitate to do so right now, in case its wrong - and it looks like its tricky to separate...

Book is here:
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/90...


message 24: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments Yup, but it won't help others find their books with cn, d, or other non-isbn codes...

Which was why I wondered about the isbn fields validation.

If it doesn't have validation you "could" put the non isbn (but still unique) code there, allowinjg others to find it.

As it is goodreads import engine makes some assumptions about contents of isbn field and makes some (not very reliable) guesses... (thus I got the writings of jean paul sartre for one of my cn codes, donnerland for another, etc...).

This leads me to a couple of suggestions:

1) be able to choose what sort of code is in isbn field(cn, lcc, isbn, isbn_13, etc...{just noticed that asin is an option})
2) if its an unrecognised code (as isbn) during import don't try to import, offer suggestions and allow importer to make choice

That's it for now


message 25: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 41003 comments Mod
If you put non-ISBN codes in the ISBN spot, they will be removed by the next librarian to notice. If you do it a lot, you'll get a nice email asking you to stop.

Please don't.

As far as other fields, you're welcome to suggest the option in the Feedback group, but I doubt it will be considered very high priority.


message 26: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments I wouldn't expect it to be. Thanks for all the feedback.


message 27: by Andy (new)

Andy (argon0) | 11 comments Useful info.

I knew the cns were book club, having bought them from there.

The d. Stuff I have predates isbn, and is digit's internal cataloguing system. Seem to be uk editions of signet originals. Digit seems to have disappeared from the scene, and I can't seem to find anything out about them...

Needs to be a structured/standard way to record these non-standard codes (maybe an extra field?)...


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