Glossary

This glossary of publishing terms is a simple look-up guide to key publishing terms, abbreviations and acronyms

AAP

Association of American Publishers

 

Add-on

Extra value added into a product, for example a DVD in the back of a printed book

 

Advance

Sum paid in advance to the author in anticipation of the author earning royalties from sales of their work. Advances may be paid on signature of contract, delivery of the typescript, and on publication.

 

Advance copy

Printed copy available ahead of publication. Advance copies are sent to the author and used in marketing.

 

Aga saga

Novel set amongst the Aga-owning English middle class

 

Agent

A literary agent may act on behalf of an author and negotiate the contract for a book with the publisher

 

Aggregator

An aggregator will license the rights to distribute content online from a variety of publishers

 

Airport edition

Export paperback edition of a book sold at airport shops ahead of the main paperback edition

 

AI sheet

Advance Information sheet containing essential bibliographic and marketing information

 

APC

An article processing, or publishing, charge

 

App

Application for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers

 

BA

Booksellers Association of the United Kingdom & Ireland

 

Backlist

A publisher’s established titles; compare frontlist

 

BIC

Book Industry Communication

 

Big Deal

A large bundle of journals sold by a publisher as one package

 

Blad

Sample printed section

 

Blurb

The selling copy that appears on the back cover or front jacket flap of the book

 

Book club

Traditionally a mail order bookseller; now also a reading group

 

Born digital

Products originated in digital form

 

BRIC

Shorthand for the fast-growing economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China

 

Bulk

A paper’s thickness

 

Bundling

Journals are often packaged up into bundles of titles for sale to institutions such as university libraries; also a printed book and ebook may be bundled together

 

Chick lit

Genre of fiction principally aimed at single women in their 20s or early 30s

 

CIP

Cataloguing in Publication

 

CIVETS

Shorthand for the second wave of fast-growing economies of Colombia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt, Turkey and South Africa

 

CLA

Copyright Licensing Agency

 

CMS

Content management system

 

Co-edition

An additional part of the print run sold to a third party. There are both English and foreign language co-editions

 

Commissioning

Creating a new project and signing up an author; or acquiring the rights to publish a work from the author, their agent or another publisher

 

Contract

Legal agreement between the author and publisher, outlining the rights acquired by the publisher, financial terms, and the responsibilities of both author and publisher

 

Co-publication

Joint publishing agreement between two or more companies

 

Copy-editing

Editing the author’s manuscript with regard to style and consistency to eliminate errors and improve the text for the reader

 

Copyright

The protection which gives authors and other creative artists legal ownership of their work – it establishes their work as their personal, exclusive property. The period of copyright in the UK is 70 years. © is the copyright symbol

 

Coursepack

A collection of chapters and articles, photocopied or accessed electronically, for teaching use in higher education

 

Cover-mount

Special edition of a book attached to the front of a magazine, or bundled with a newspaper

 

CRM

Customer relationship management

 

Crossover title

A children’s book with an adult market

 

CSR

Corporate social responsibility

 

CTP

Computer to Plate

 

CUP

Cambridge University Press

 

DAD

Digital Asset Distribution

 

DAM

Digital Asset Management

 

Depreciation

Reducing the value of stock in the company’s accounts

 

Digital rights management (DRM)

The technical means by which the access to digital content is controlled

 

Discount

Publishers give retailers a discount off the recommended price to encourage them to list or stock their titles

 

DK

Dorling Kindersley

 

DNB

Dictionary of National Biography

 

DOI

Digital Object Identifier

 

Dummy

A mock-up of the final printed book, mainly used for selling illustrated books to retailers or overseas customers

 

Ebook

Electronic book; a vanilla ebook echoes – or is a straight transfer from – print; an enhanced ebook has added value such as audio and video

 

ECM

Enterprise content management

 

EDItEUR

International standards organization for the book trade

 

Embargo

Restriction placed by a publisher on a book to prevent it either being sold or covered in the media prior to its official publication date

 

Enhanced ebook

Ebook with additional features such as audio and video

 

EFL

English as a foreign language

 

ELT

English language teaching

 

EMEA   

Europe, the Middle East and Africa

 

EPC

Educational Publishers Council of the Publishers Association

 

Frontlist

A publisher’s new titles; compare backlist

 

GLN

Global Location Number

 

Goodwill

Assets that contribute to a publisher’s competitive advantage, including its brand and employees

 

House style

The set style imposed during the editing of a text – elements include spelling, grammar, capitalization and hyphenation

 

HSS

Humanities and Social Sciences

 

HTML

HyperText Markup Language

 

Institutional repository

A digital collection of research papers by members of an institution such as a university

 

Intellectual property (IP)

A publisher’s IP includes its copyrights, licences and trade marks

 

IPR

Intellectual property rights

 

IRI

Industry Returns Initiative (UK)

 

ISBN

International Standard Book Number

 

ISSN

International Standard Serial Number

 

Imprint

A list of books within a publisher’s overall publishing programme. Each imprint will have its own flavour and direction

 

Jisc

Formerly termed the Joint Information Systems Committee, Jisc is funded by the post-16 and higher education councils of the UK

 

JPEG

Joint Photographic Experts Group

 

Licence

A licence gives a publisher the sole, exclusive right to publish an author’s work and sell it as widely as possible. The publisher also licenses a book to other publishers, for example for translation. A non-exclusive licence enables the publisher to sell content – for example for digital use – to a number of companies

 

Licensed publishing

An exclusive licence granted to a publisher to exploit in book form a product or character

 

List-building

Taking a strategic view of commissioning in order to create a new publishing list or expand the present publishing programme

 

Litho

Offset lithography. This form of printing is still common for long print runs

 

LMS

Learning Management System

 

Long Tail

First proposed by Chris Anderson in 2004 in Wired magazine, the idea that there is greater total value in the long tail of less popular products (available over the internet) than in the more widely available hits

 

Manuscript (MS)

The author’s version of the work; also typescript. It was originally handwritten

 

MARC

MAchine Readable Cataloguing

 

Marketing mix

Product, price, place and promotion

 

Mass market paperback

‘A format’ paperback – 178 x 110 mm; compare trade paperback

 

Metadata

Data about data. This enables content to be categorized and found more easily in online searches

MOOC

Massive open online course

 

Moral rights

Additional to copyright, these statutory rights granted to the author are the right to paternity, the right of integrity, the right to prevent false attribution, and the right to privacy

 

NBA

Net Book Agreement (UK)

 

NBI sheet

New book information sheet – also known as AI

 

NSR

Net sales revenue

 

OA

Open Access

 

OEBF

Open Ebook Format

 

OED

Oxford English Dictionary

 

OER

Open Educational Resources

 

ONIX

ONline Information eXchange

 

Online marketing

Use of the internet for marketing. Activities include the use of social media, search engine optimization, email marketing, and website promotion

 

On-screen editing

Copy-editing on screen rather than on a paper print-out

 

Ontology

The structure of a set of data

 

OUP

Oxford University Press

 

Overheads

The ongoing costs of running a business, for example office costs and salaries

 

PA

Publishers Association (UK)

 

Packager

Separate from a publisher, a packager supplies an edited and designed book for the publisher to market and sell

 

Patron-driven acquisition

Free access is given to content, for example a set of ebooks, and payment is then triggered by usage past a certain threshold

 

Pay per view

Pay as you go model for content, e.g. purchasing a single article from a journal or a chapter from a book

 

Pbook

Printed book

 

Peer review

The evaluation by reviewers of an academic author’s work

 

Positioning

Placing the product in the mind of the consumer

 

PDA

Personal digital assistant; also patron-driven acquisition

 

PDF

Portable Document Format

 

PLS

Private language schools

 

POD

Print on demand. Digital printing enables the economic printing of short runs. True print on demand is the ability to print single copies to order

 

POS

Point of sale

 

Post-print

Journal article as revised after peer review; compare pre-print

 

PR

Public relations

 

Pre-print

Commonly accepted as the version of an article submitted to a journal, before peer review; compare post-print

 

Print run

The number of copies printed of a pbook

 

PS

PostScript

Production values

The quality of the paper, design, printing, binding and cover of a book

 

Proofreading

Reading proofs of a book in order to spot mistakes missed at the copy-editing stage as well as any errors introduced in the design and production stages. Proofs can be read against the original copy or by eye (with no reference to the original version)

 

Proposal

A document outlining the content and market potential of a proposed title

 

Puff

Endorsement used on the book’s cover, ahead of the book being reviewed

 

REF

Research Excellence Framework, UK

 

Returns

Unsold books sent back to the publisher by the retailer

 

RFID

Radio Frequency Identification

 

Royalty

The share of the income from a book paid by the publisher to the author; royalty rates will vary according to format and the source of the income (e.g. from subsidiary rights)

 

SAN

Standard Address Number

 

Schema

The structure of an XML document

 

Serial rights

The right to sell selections from a work to a newspaper or magazine. First serial rights cover extracts before the book’s publication; second serial rights are for extracts published on or after publication

 

Smart content

Content with an added layer of semantic meaning

 

STM

Scientific, Technical and Medical. STEM adds in Engineering

 

Subsidiary rights

Rights a publisher can acquire in addition to the volume rights of publishing their own edition as an ebook and pbook – examples of subsidiary rights are translation rights and serial rights

 

TIFF

Tagged Image File Format

 

Trade paperback

‘B format’ paperback – 198 x 129 mm; compare mass market paperback

 

Trade publishing

Publishing of books that are sold through the book trade; also known as consumer publishing

 

Unicode

An encoding system which gives a unique identity to each character, ‘no matter what the platform, no matter what the program, no matter what the language’. (unicode.com, accessed 1 October 2007)

 

USP

Unique sales proposition – what makes a book stand out from the competition

 

VAT

Value Added Tax

 

Version of Record

Published version of a journal article with the final formatting

 

Viral marketing

Spreading a marketing message using social networks

 

VLE

Virtual Learning Environment

 

Wasting

Disposing of unsold stock

 

Web 2.0

The new generation of the Web in which users upload as well as download

 

Widget

Mini Web plug-in with sample content that can be emailed or copied on to the user’s social networking pages

 

Wiki

Collaborative website. The name derives from the Hawaiian word wikiwiki – quick

 

WIPO   

World Intellectual Property Organization

 

WOM

Word of mouth

 

XML

Extensible Markup Language

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