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ISMN Registration & Legal Deposit

The Composers Edition Publication Registration Service (CEPRS) is a facility open to all Composers Edition members who wish to register their works in the UK and incorporates two operations, streamlined to save members time and expense.

1. ISMN registration

What are ISMNs?

  • International Standard Music Numbers are the music equivalent of ISBNs for books, identifying individual publications
  • Issued in the UK by the Music Publishers Association
  • The primary system by which retailers and distributors identity and reference musicpublications.
  • ISMNs help retailers and ultimately shoppers find and purchase publications as itemscan be registered with wholesalers

Why is Composers Edition getting involved in the issuing of ISMNs?

Each composer may purchase and assign their own ISMNs. However we have identified significant benefits from doing this collectively through Composers Edition

  • Bought in bulk ISMNS they are far cheaper. See rates
  • In dealing as a single point of contact with the MPA, Composers Edition greatlysimplifies the process of registration
  • Composers Edition is increasingly selling to retailers and distributors. ISMNs helpmake CE and its catalogue, and therefore its members works, more visible in the market place.
  • All publications require the ISMNS to be printed on the back cover using a barcode. CE can undertake updating covers.

2. Legal Deposit

Legal Deposit is the process by which the British Library and the 5 other UK & Ireland legal deposit libraries (Oxford Bodleian, Cambridge University, National Library of Scotland, Trinity College Dublin and the National Library of Wales) gather and catalogue new publications. There is a statutory obligation to deposit at least one copy of every UK publication, free of charge, at the legal deposit libraries. Requests for legal deposit are triggered by the issue of an ISMN (or ISBN) Requests also appear to be triggered by other events such as BBC broadcasts. The British Library handle their own legal deposits while The Agency for the Legal Deposit Libraries (ALDL) handle the rest.

Why is Composers Edition getting involved in supplying to the legal deposit libraries?

Since early 2016 The Agency for the Legal Deposit Libraries (ALDL) have been sending requests for works to Composers Edition. We have been forwarding these requests to the composers in question. The costs of providing 6 copies (to two addresses) is considerable. By streamlining the operation and acting on composers’ behalves Composers Edition can hugely reduce these costs.

Benefits of legal deposit include:

  • preservation for the benefit of future generations and heritage
  • record in online catalogues for future research
  • books and new serial titles are listed in the British National Bibliography (BNB),which is used by librarians and the book trade for stock selection

Two services bought together

Given that ISBN registration triggers legal deposit requests, the comparatively small cost of registering ISMNs and their benefits it makes sense to undertake both operations at once. Composers Edition will do this in batches, maximising savings in administration and delivery, which we can pass on to members.

3. How it works

We’ve designed the service to make it as simple as possible to register works. To elect to have works submitted to CEPRS.

  1. Email Sam Roberts with a list of works which you wish to register
  2. We will issue an invoice for the works to be submitted and process payment via GoCardless or Paypal
  3. On settlement of the invoice, we will undertake all necessary work : ISMN registration, barcoding products, processing of deliveries to the British Library and ALDL
  4. On completion we will issue a confirmation of ISMN registration and legal deposit.

4. Costs

The cost per item will be just 60% of the regular retail price and also includes free delivery to both the ALDL and the British Library, saving to members of between £11 and £55 on each work.

e.g.1 : six copies of 24 page A4 portrait score = £21.56 (regular members’ price £36.15 inc delivery)
e.g.2 : six copies of 60 page A3 score = £43.16 (regular members’ price £64.95 inc delivery)

5. Notes

  • Any updates to scores or parts formally require a new ISMN for the work in question.
  • Scores and sets of parts count as different publications with regard to ISMNregistration. We are only proposing that members register scores, but are happy to also register sets of parts
  • Composers Edition’s formal position with regard to ISMNs is that of registrant. Issuing of ISMNs bears no relationship to copyright or publishing rights
  • Composers Edition formal position with regard to members’ works is that of distributor; a service provider through which members publish, issue or distribute copies of works to the public at an agreed cost.Any Questions?Email me!