Difference between ISBN and ISSN

Difference between ISBN and ISSN

ISBN and ISSN are both numerical codes or series of numbers. These codes are used by publishers to serialize each and every publication. These codes are collections of one-of-a-kind numbers that aid in the identification of all previously published written material. Both the ISBN and the ISSN serve the same purpose, but they are designed for different types of publications. Both of the codes are useful in distinguishing between different books or book series.


The distinction between the ISBN and the ISSN is that the ISBN is used to specify book editions, whilst the ISSN is used to specify book series. The ISSN is required, whereas the ISSN can be avoided by the publishing industry. A thirteen-digit code, whereas an eight-digit standard number is represented by the ISSN abbreviation.

ISBN (International Standard Book Number) is a thirteen-digit code that is used to identify a single book. Each volume has a unique ISBN number assigned to it. The ISBN codes for different editions of the same book will be different as well. The ISBN code can be used to identify the publisher and the specifics of the publication. This code is essential for the publication process.

The ISSN (International Standard Serial Number) is an eight-digit code that is used to identify a series of books. The ISSN for a single series is supposed to be the same for all of the issues in that series. The publisher of the series cannot be identified based on the ISSN number provided. A publisher is not required to use the ISSN as a matter of contractual obligation.

What exactly is ISBN?

ISBN is an abbreviation for International Standard Book Number, which is the full term. This is a thirteen-digit number that is used to identify a particular book. The activities of the publishing industry can be controlled through the use of this ISBN.

ISBNs are assigned to hardcover and paperback books that have been published. The ISBN code varies depending on the volume being referenced. If a book is published in more than one edition, each of the editions will have a unique code that is different from the others. The number is divided into five parts, each of which is separated by a hyphen.

In the years prior to 2007, the ISBN code was a ten-digit number. A book’s ISBN (International Standard Book Number) indicates whether or not the book was published before 2007.

ISBN may seem to be pointless and trivial to the general public, but it is very vital to the publishing business, and it is imperative that every book be assigned an ISBN.

The ISBN number of a book may be used to identify the publisher of a publication. A book’s ISBN cannot be used to propose copyright; however, it may be used to identify the book and it is feasible to locate a particular book using its ISBN. The ISBN number may be found at the bottom of the back cover of a paperback book if the book is in paperback format. It may be written as a number or printed as a barcode, depending on the situation. This makes the sales process more straightforward.

Every publication that a publisher produces must have an ISBN assigned to it. It is a legal requirement. Otherwise, he or she will be subjected to legal proceedings.

What exactly is the ISSN?

The International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) system was established in 1971. International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) is an acronym for International Standard Serial Number. ISSN (International Standard Serial Number) is a number that is used to identify serial publications such as newspapers, magazines, journals, and other periodicals worldwide. ISSN codes may be assigned to both online and offline publications. It is an eight-digit number that appears after the uppercase ISSN (International Standard Serial Number). The eight digits are subdivided into two groups of four. Each section is represented by four numbers. The two portions are joined together by a hyphen in the middle.

Neither the code nor the publication’s contents give any information about the publication’s origins or contents, and neither does it guarantee the quality of the material. The ISSN disclaims any responsibility for the content of the published material. The ISSN does not protect intellectual property rights.

Publishers use it to distinguish their serial publications from one another. It is also used by libraries to differentiate between similar serial titles that are in the same collection. It is used by academics for research purposes in order to reference the specifics of publications. The ISSN is used in the construction of barcodes. The International Database of the ISSN is accessible online.

The ISSN code may be found on the cover page of a print publication, and in the case of an online publication, it can be found on the home page of the publication. The ISSN code is the same for each issue of a series, regardless of how many issues there are.

This code is completely optional. Publishers are not required to include the ISSN code on their publications by law. It is not required; thus the publisher may choose to forego it if they so like.

Difference Between ISBN and ISSN

  • As stated in the complete forms, ISBN is used to identify a single book. ISSN is used for serials and publications such as magazines and journals, among other things.
  • The ISBN number is thirteen digits long, but the ISSN number is eight digits long.
  • Third, the ISBN code for each book is meant to be distinct. The ISSN code, on the other hand, should be the same for each issue of the same series.
  • The inclusion of an ISBN is required by the publisher. It is the publisher’s legal responsibility to do so. Therefore, if the publisher does not get an ISBN number for his or her work, he or she may be subjected to legal action. ISSN, on the other hand, is not obligatory. The publisher is not required to include the ISSN number in a publication; he or she may simply omit this information without causing any problems.
  • The ISBN number can be used to hunt down the publisher of a particular book, but the ISSN code is ineffective in tracking down the publisher.


Humans are identified by identification cards, while books and book-like items are identified by ISBN and ISSN numbers. As identity cards are to us, ISBN and ISSN are to books and series of books in the same way that identification cards are to us.

Any published item must have a unique identification number in order to be considered legitimate. It facilitates the serialization of content for future reference.

All of the relevant information about the book, such as the title, author, publications, and publishing date, is obtained via the use of unique codes. As a result, in the future, it will be able to get all of the previously mentioned information via the use of codes.

These codes are not intended for the general public; rather, they are intended for professional and official use. Furthermore, it is quite important for formal reasons.