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ISMN Newsletter No11

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5. Implementation of DOI and URN in ISMN


DOI is completely compatible with ISBN and ISMN. With monographs of electronic sheet music we will certainly be in favour of using ISMN because that keeps us within the ISMN domain. If we want to use the DOI resolution service, the ISMN becomes the item number with in the DOI structure.

While ISMN will also only identify monographs in the electronic world, DOI is ideal for the identification of items of other granulations - a few bars from a piece to be used as the introduction to the evening news, for example.

The bad news concerning DOI: there are no regional maintenance agencies so far. The current view is that an agency that wants to administer DOI has to become a member and pay US$ 30,000 annual fees and 2 cents per assignment to the International Foundation. This is only a flat minimum payment apart from the equipment needed.

At the ISBN executive meeting in London the view was not optimistic about implementing DOI because of the financial burden an agency would have to carry. Nevertheless there are interested parties for agencies working in overlapping fields like electronic publications, cross reference, etc.

An alternative to DOI is the National Bibliographic Number (NBN), designed by the Nordic Metadata Project and customized to the needs of national libraries with regard to the identification and storage of electronic publications. So far it is only used by the Finnish and Swedish national libraries while the practical archiving of online material has not yet been implemented by other countries. The NBN is an URN with resolution service, and its use is free of charge.

For latest information please refer to and html.charters/urn-charter.html.
The International ISBN Agency filed an application to register ISBN as a Name Space Identifier because terms in the identification world should be standardized and registered. The same should be done with ISMN; nobody was against the registration of ISMN.



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