Some observations from Peter Brantley about what ISBNs will do in an age of digital books and multiple intermediaries between “publishers” and “readers.”
We are rapidly jerking forwards into a near term future where ISBNs will be assigned for derivative digital book products by intermediaries, not publishers. As an astute colleague observed in New York, the ISBN becomes a product SKU.
There are many disadvantages in this; one is that it will become increasingly difficult to find the â€œbookâ€ in the tangled weave of various digital instantiations. Perhaps no longer will we be able to ask how many copies did EduPunk 2020 sell.