ISBN-13 Conversion One Month Away

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On January 1, 2007, all retailers' Point-of-Sale (POS) systems will need to accommodate 13-digit International Standard Book Numbers (ISBN), the unique identifiers assigned to every published book and book-like product. This change will affect everything from publishers' catalogs, price sheets, and invoices to booksellers' ability to place and receive orders.

To aid in the transition, the Book Industry Study Group's ISBN-13 Task Force has created a comprehensive web resource, www.bisg.org/isbn-13/index.html, with relevant sections for different segments of the industry, including retailers and publishers.

In addition, to help booksellers prepare for the transition, the American Booksellers Association has created a "Getting Ready for ISBN-13 Checklist", which was sent to all main store members and which is also available for download in PDF format on BookWeb.org. Links to other valuable information are also available on ABA's trade website, BookWeb.org.

ABA members can also address questions or concerns about ISBN-13 to David Walker, the association's representative on the ISBN-13 Task Force, at davidw@bookweb.org or (800) 637-0037, ext. 6612.