Scope of the ISBN


What kinds of publications are identified by the ISBN?

Books published in Hungary receive Hungarian ISBN numbers, irrespective of the place of printing or circulation and the language of the publication, etc. Originally only printed books were identified by the ISBN, but its usage has been widened: ISBN is provided for maps, monographic CD-ROMS and electronic books, too. In case of maps the CM (cartographic material) must appear at the end of the number.

The following documents cannot be identified by an ISBN:

  • Periodicals in general (daily newspapers, journals), they can get an ISSN;
  • Records, cassettes, printed music sheets (the latter must have an ISMN, International Standard Music Number);
  • Drawing [Sketch?] books having no continuous text;
  • Off prints (except if members of series);
  • Calendars;
  • Advertisement materials;
  • Business prints, handouts;
  • Small prints not listed above.

An ISBN must be assigned to the whole set of volumes of a multi-volume work; also individual volumes of the set must be assigned their own ISBN. The common ISBN must appear in all volumes (followed with the letter "Ö"), and each must contain its individual ISBN, too. In case of new (expanded, corrected, etc.) editions new numbers must be used. But in case of reprints the original ISBN must be used, even if the year of printing is different. Different numbers must be used for the printed and electronic copy of a work. New numbers must be assigned for different bindings and languages.