The Smart Way to Send Book Information: An Introduction to ONIX

March 2006
by Angela Bole

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With the dawn of book
digitalization and the explosion of online book sales, it has become more
important than ever for publishers to transmit book information—including
title, cover design, synopsis, reviews, author bios, and more—to their
trading partners in a standardized way. That’s why more and more publishers are
using the relatively new industry standard that’s called ONIX International.

ONIX (an acronym for Online Information
Exchange) is the international standard for representing and communicating
book-industry product information in electronic form. You don’t think
transmitting your data using a standard electronic form is important? Imagine
trying to get information about your book to online markets without one. Since
every major organization (Ingram, Bowker, Baker & Taylor, Barnes &
Noble, Amazon.com, etc.) would have a different format preference for receiving
your data, you would have to spend precious time and countless resources
reformatting your information to satisfy conflicting trading-partner demands.

Enter ONIX International.
Developed and maintained by EDItEUR jointly with Book Industry Communication
(U.K.) and the Book Industry Study Group, Inc. (U.S.), and with user groups in
Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and the Republic of Korea, ONIX
International was launched in 2000 as a solution to two current problems:

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