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Advantages of the ISSN

Although it is not mandatory for publishers to request an ISSN, there are many advantages to doing so:

  • The ISSN enables a serial publication to be identified unequivocably worldwide, regardless of the country in which it is published or the language in which it is written, and without this identification being affected by other serial publications with the same or a similar title. For this reason, the ISSN is an essential element of all of the information, communication, control and management processes related to serial publications.
  • It guarantees accurate and immediate identification when an order is placed.
  • It enables swift and effective communication to take place between publishers, distributors, booksellers and subscription agencies, thereby enhancing their sales networks.
  • The ISSN can be used to create bar codes for serial publications.
  • Assignation of an ISSN also means that the publication's details are included in the international ISSN Register. The size (more than one million records), coverage (worldwide) and reliability of the information in this database makes it an essential source of information about serial publications.
  • The ISSN facilitates identification, acquisition and loan operations in libraries and documentation centres. The ISSN Register is also the most comprehensive authorised source for cataloguing serial publications.
  • ISSN assignation is completely free of charge.

The ISSN is not related to the copyright of a publication or title. An ISSN is not owned by anybody and the ISSN Register does not act as a copyright register. The only way to protect the copyright of a publication or title is to register it with the Patent and Trademark Office.

The only mandatory procedure for serial publications is the Legal Deposit requirement (which is in fact mandatory for all publications). This should be fulfilled by the printer at their local Legal Deposit Office

The Spanish ISSN Centre requires the Legal Deposit requirement to have been fulfilled before a publication is assigned an ISSN.

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