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Two separate books, same ISBN evidently?????

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1yesyvonne
Jun 10, 2009, 3:57pm Top

Hi all,
I recently made a new manual entry, adding to my sizeable collection, and encountered a problem I hadn't seen before. That is, my book seems to carry the same ISBN as a different book, different title, different subject, from the same publisher. What to do about that? It seems LibraryThing may be conflating them, when they really are two very different books.

Mine is _More Than Equals: Spiritual Friendships_, by Trish Roberts.
The other one is _In Beauty: a Quaker Approach to End of Life Care_ by Kirsten Backstrom, with same ISBN, from the same publisher.

I see now that my manual entry says this "Requires valid ISBN," a comment that I did not enter. I *did* enter the correct ISBN: 0-87574-345-5, which is also assigned to that other title, evidently.

The tags mine now carries are not the ones I entered but seem to be the ones for the other book with the same ISBN, entered by the other owner.

I hate it that the two are getting conflated when they should stay, plainly, separate. What to do?

2lorax
Jun 10, 2009, 4:07pm Top

This is not an uncommon problem, and it isn't entirely LT's fault; publishers re-use ISBNs from time to time. (There are other cases of "different books sharing an ISBN", but this seems to be the one that applies here.)

I've fixed it in this case -- it's easy to do from the Editions page.

Your "invalid ISBN" problem is because LT does not recognize hyphens in the ISBN, and is unrelated to the ISBN re-use issue. Remove them (just enter 0875743455) and you should be fine.

3jimroberts
Jun 10, 2009, 4:09pm Top

Publishers shouldn't reuse ISBNs, but sometimes they do. It can also happen that the ISBN is misprinted: I have a book with a different ISBN on the cover than the one given inside the book, I suppose one is a misprint.

"The tags mine now carries are not the ones I entered"
That really, really shouldn't happen. Check again whether it is so, and if it is, post in the Bug Collectors group.

4lorax
Jun 10, 2009, 4:11pm Top

3>

"The tags mine now carries are not the ones I entered"

I suspect she was looking at the work page, rather than the book page, when she saw this.

5AnnieMod
Jun 10, 2009, 4:21pm Top

If you give us link to the work, it will help; there might be other issues there as well...

6AnnieMod
Jun 10, 2009, 4:21pm Top

This message has been deleted by its author.

7kathrynnd
Edited: Jun 10, 2009, 4:33pm Top

That was fast Lorax, the books were separating as I was looking.

I wonder if the entry had been entered from the Library of Congress instead of entered manually if it would have made a difference in keeping the works separate? At one time LT gave more value to data from library sources, over Amazon, though that does not seem to be the case now, but manually entered data is still at the bottom of the value list I believe.

http://lccn.loc.gov/00268742

ETA: and with the LOC data you get subjects and LC Classification numbers as well.

8jimroberts
Jun 10, 2009, 6:17pm Top

#4: lorax "I suspect she was looking at the work page, rather than the book page, when she saw this."

I was in a big hurry to get away when I posted (unfortunately there are things that have to take precedence to LT), or I would have checked the catalog myself.

9rholland
Aug 17, 2015, 9:51pm Top

I have recently had the same problem... and I can't seem to figure out how to separate them.

https://www.librarything.com/work/457012

I have the "Grasses of New South Wales" but it claims that it is part of the book "The Food of Italy"

10Taphophile13
Aug 17, 2015, 10:03pm Top

>9 rholland: I was able to separate the Grass from the Food. Could you verify the correct author?

11rholland
Aug 17, 2015, 11:12pm Top

That is so much better. All looks good now. Thank you.

12omfhk
Mar 15, 2:45am Top

I recently made a new manual entry, adding to my collection, and encountered a problem I hadn't seen before. That is, my book seems to carry the same ISBN as a different book, different title, different subject, from the same publisher. What to do about that? It seems LibraryThing may be conflating them, when they really are two very different books.

Mine is _CHRIST IN CHINA-AN ANTHOLOGY by TONY LAMBET , ISBN: 9789628402328
The other one is _BEFORE THE MOON DIES當月亮死去的晚上by CHRISTA WEBER, with same ISBN, from the same publisher.

I see now that my manual entry says this "Duplicate ISBN in your catalog,"

I hate it that the two are getting conflated when they should stay, plainly, separate. What to do?

13Jarandel
Edited: Mar 15, 10:48am Top

>12 omfhk: Separate them and recombine if/as appropriate. It seems someone already did it.

New copies added later may still get appended to the wrong book but not much can be done about that beside checking once in a while.

14MarthaJeanne
Edited: Mar 15, 3:53am Top

Christ in China

They are not combined. The publisher has reused the ISBN. This happens. They aren't supposed to do this but they do. The notice that you have two books with the same ISBN is useful for catching mistakes, but is not a sign that LT conflates the two.

15jjwilson61
Mar 15, 1:20pm Top

>12 omfhk: What do you mean by LT may be conflating them? Is it just the Duplicate ISBN warning or is there more?

16Jarandel
Edited: Mar 18, 11:25am Top

>15 jjwilson61: Sometime when there's enough overlapping data newly added copies can end up with the wrong book.

Most often seen in cases that run like this :
Yada yada Big Encyclopedia Name: Individual volume title by Editorname (Shared ISBN for all books the set)

17jjwilson61
Mar 18, 12:03pm Top

>15 jjwilson61: Yeah, but in this case it's just the ISBN's the same, so since the title and the author are different it shouldn't combine them.

18PhaedraB
Mar 18, 1:30pm Top

>17 jjwilson61: The ways of autocombining are strange and impenetrable, especially when ISBNs are shared. Even after separating, the system will suggest both books to be combined with each other. No way to fix except at the publisher level, so that's not going to happen.

If you have the only book with the reused ISBN, you can delete it from your record (maybe put it in the publication field or something) so when separated it won't suggest. But if someone else adds the book with the reused ISBN, autocombine may muck it up again anyway.

19jjwilson61
Mar 18, 4:54pm Top

>18 PhaedraB: You're conflating auto-combine and combination suggestions.

20PhaedraB
Mar 18, 5:48pm Top

>19 jjwilson61: Not conflating, treating them as related issues.

21AnnieMod
Edited: Mar 20, 7:28pm Top

>16 Jarandel: >17 jjwilson61:

Anything after the first":" is ignored (unless if there is a full text match I believe) - this is what causes these one to get together on adding. And why we have so many multiple volumes of the same sets into the same LT work.

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