#348 revise handling of ISBNs in <idno>


The element definition for <idno> gives some examples using various values of type=, but none of these examples is for an ISBN. The Guidelines have many examples using <idno type="ISBN">. So we could:

a) Add an example to the definition of <idno> that also uses <idno type="ISBN">.

b) In the element definition for <idno>, add some suggested values for type= (cf. element definition for <biblScope>).

c) Consider changing <idno type="ISBN"> in examples and in any changes made for (a) and (b) above to:

<idno type="ISBN-10">
<idno type="ISBN-13">

(to distinguish 10-digit and 13-digit ISBNs for ease of processing)

d) Consider changing <idno type="ISBN"> in examples and in any changes made for (a) and (b) above to:

<idno type="isbn-10">
<idno type="isbn-13">

to match the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries (whose recommendations for ISBNs were established before the Guidelines standardized on type="ISBN").

e) Consider no longer recommending use of <idno> for ISBNs and instead using target="urn:isbn:________" on <ref> or <ptr/>.


  • Laurent Romary

    Laurent Romary - 2012-03-10

    I don't feel at ease with e) since it tends to move in a direction saying that identifier are to be all replaced by urn and break a lot of backward compatibility (and coherence) with the the way IDNO is understood and used.

    Concerning ISNB-* : is this a sustainable distinction or just a transitional one, in which case, isn't it dangerous to mark in a type a specific format which may make people wonder (or smile) in 5 years?

  • Lou Burnard

    Lou Burnard - 2012-03-15
    • milestone: --> AMBER
  • Lou Burnard

    Lou Burnard - 2012-03-15

    I think (a) is the best choice from this list. Though we could also reverse our earlier decision (which I opposed at the time :-) ) to standardise on "ISBN" throughout, and introduce a few of the other variants as well.

  • stuart yeates

    stuart yeates - 2012-04-12

    My understanding is that type="ISBN" and type="isbn" are unrelated (since type is a data.name which is type sensitive). We need to pick a capitalisation and stick to it. We may also want to use the phrase "ISO 2108" in our description to aid finding, since this is the format name for this class of identifiers.

  • stuart yeates

    stuart yeates - 2012-04-12

    Sorry, that last should have read 'case sensitive' not 'type senetive'

  • James Cummings

    James Cummings - 2012-04-15

    I would go for a) as the simplest, but if we are really re-examining it, I would then suggest d) because we should appropriate useful recommendations from the libraries community for examples such as these.


  • Kevin Hawkins

    Kevin Hawkins - 2012-05-17

    Note that option (d) is now off the table thanks to r9746, in which Stuart changed all type="isbn" to type="ISBN".

  • Kevin Hawkins

    Kevin Hawkins - 2012-05-29
    • status: open --> closed-fixed
  • Kevin Hawkins

    Kevin Hawkins - 2012-05-29

    Per discussion in Ann Arbor, implemented (a) at revision 10405.

  • Kevin Hawkins

    Kevin Hawkins - 2012-05-29

    ... and 10406 (how embarrassing)


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