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Friday, December 20, 2013

UPC, ISBN, GTIN: Maybe you need some clarification? (-:

New writers (and writers who are hoping to publish traditionally), are sometimes unclear on publishing terms. Linda Carlson tackles a few in the December issue of the IBPA Independent magazine. Here are some of the troublesome ones surrounding product codes:

UPC (Universal Product Code) are the barcodes and related marks you find on products that let your grocer check you through the line faster. They were once required on books and many still use them to accommodate alternative retailers’ systems because books are often sold and categorized in other places besides libraries and bookstores these days.

ISBN-13: These mostly replaced UPCs for books and now are the preferred identifier used by most retailers (also called  GTIN-13). They made it unnecessary to use more than one identifier. It is preferred that they not be used with barcodes because two identifiers tend to confuse tracking they were intended for.

Access to UPCs: Linda says, “UPCs are available from GSI US (gs1us.org) founded in 1974 as the Uniform Product Code Council and later known as the Uniform Code Council.” When you publish with Createpace.com you can use the UPC you buy from GSI that designate you as a separate entity from Createspace) or you can let Createspace assign one of their own to you book ( and the one from Createspace is free).
Reach Linda Carlson at info@lindacarlson.com

Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of This Is the Place; Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered; Tracings, a chapbook of poetry; and how to books for writers including the award-winning second edition of, The Frugal Book Promoter: How to get nearly free publicity on your own or by partnering with your publisher; The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success; and Great Little Last Minute Editing Tips for Writers . The Great First Impression Book Proposal is her newest booklet for writers. She has three FRUGAL books for retailers including A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In-Store Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques. Some of her other blogs are TheNewBookReview.blogspot.com, a blog where authors can recycle their favorite reviews. She also blogs at all things editing, grammar, formatting and more at The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor .

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