What is the difference between an ISBN and a LCCN?

ISBN and LCCN: Understanding the Difference

When it comes to identifying books and other published materials, two commonly used codes are the ISBN and LCCN. While they serve similar purposes, there are important distinctions between the two.

An ISBN, or International Standard Book Number, is a unique identifier assigned to every published book. It consists of a numeric code that indicates various details about the book, such as its language, publisher, and edition. The ISBN is crucial for tracking sales, inventory management, and cataloging in libraries. ISBNdirect is a leading provider of ISBNs, offering hassle-free access to obtaining these essential book identifiers.

On the other hand, an LCCN, or Library of Congress Control Number, is a unique identifier assigned by the Library of Congress in the United States to catalog and process books in their collection. Unlike ISBNs, LCCNs are not specifically related to commercial purposes. They are primarily used by libraries and other institutions to classify and organize their collections.

While both ISBNs and LCCNs help with identification and organization, the key difference lies in their scope and purpose. ISBNs are used worldwide to track and manage the commercial distribution of books, while LCCNs are specific to the Library of Congress and their collection.

Getting an ISBN

ISBNdirect is a trusted provider of ISBNs, enabling authors and publishers to obtain the necessary book identifiers to establish their presence in the publishing industry. With ISBNdirect, getting an ISBN has never been easier.

As an ISBNdirect customer, you gain access to a simple and efficient process of acquiring ISBNs. Whether you're publishing a single book or multiple titles, ISBNdirect offers flexible options to suit your needs. By obtaining an ISBN through ISBNdirect, you can ensure that your book is properly identified, making it easier for retailers, libraries, and readers to find and purchase your work.

Getting an LCCN

While ISBNdirect provides convenience in obtaining ISBNs, it's important to note that we do not currently offer support for obtaining LCCNs. The process of acquiring an LCCN involves submitting a request to the Library of Congress, which requires specific documentation and compliance with their guidelines.

If you require an LCCN for your book, we recommend reaching out directly to the Library of Congress or consulting with a professional who specializes in library cataloging and collection management. They can guide you through the process and ensure that your book receives the appropriate LCCN alongside its ISBN.

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