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Glossary of Acronyms

WritersServices Self-publishing

If you can't find it here, check the publishing or technical glossaries

  • AAA: Association of Authors Agents (U.K.)
  • AAR: Association of Authors Representatives (U.S.)
  • AA: author alteration
  • ABD: Publication abandoned (stock code)
  • A/W: abbreviation for artwork
  • AAAF: Anglo-American Authority File
  • AACR2: Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules, 2nd edition
  • AAC: Open standard for formatting music; one of many layers within MPG4
  • ALCS: Authors Licensing and Collecting Society
  • ATRAC 3: Sony's proprietary format for digital music downloads
  • ARLIS: UK & Ireland Art Libraries Society
  • BDS: Bibliographic Data Services Ltd
  • BIC: Book Industry Communication
  • BLNAL: British Library Name Authority List
  • BNBRF: British National Bibliography Research Fund
  • BOMC: Book of The Month Club (US)
  • CAE: Compositeur-Auteur-Editeur
  • CAN: Title Cancelled (stocking code)
  • CIP: Cataloguing-In-Publishing, the procedure by which catalogue records for new books are incorporated into the British National Bibliography before publication
  • CIS: Common Information System
  • CISAC: International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers
  • CLA: Copyright Licensing Agency

    CLA is the UK's Reproduction Rights Organisation. It is responsible for looking after the interests of rights owners over the copying of books, journals and periodicals. A non-profit making company, it is owned by its members, the Authors' Licensing and Collecting Society and the Publishers Licensing Society. www.cla.co.uk

  • CMYK: cyan, magenta, yellow and key (black)
  • CPI: Characters per inch
  • CPL: Characters per line
  • CPS: Characters per second as a measure of a line printer
  • CRC: camera ready copy
  • DOI: digital object identifier
  • DPI: dots per square inch
  • DRM: Digital Rights Management to prevent unauthorised distribution
  • EAN: Formerly the European Article Numbering Association, now renamed EAN International
  • EDI: Electronic Data Interchange, the exchange of trading messages in a standard format between computer systems
  • EGLS: Extended Graphics Language Support
  • EP: abbreviation for envelope
  • Epub: electronic publishing standard agreed for ebooks
  • GLN: Global Location Numbers are assigned by ISBN agencies to identify parts of the bookselling chain
  • GSM: Grammes per square metre
  • HLS: abbreviation for hue, lightness, saturation in graphic software
  • IDPF: International Digital Publishing Forum (Formerly the Open ebook forum)
  • IFLA: International Federation of Library Associations
  • indecs: INteroperability of Data in E-Commerce Systems
  • IP: In print (and in stock)
  • IPD: International Performers Database
  • IPDA: International Performers Database Association
  • IPI: Interested Party Information (system)
  • IPN: International Performer’s Number
  • IMAP: Internet Message Access Protocol, a newer email protocol that can be used instead of POP if the server permits it
  • Impression: used to refer to a page visited on a website, often in the context of advertising.
  • IIS: Internet Info Server, part of the internet definition that allows FTP and ASP to work.
  • iPod: Apple Computer's portable digital player for their proprietary AAC and MP3 files.
  • ISADN: International Standard Authority Data Number
  • ISBN: International Standard Book Number
  • ISTC: International Standard Text Code
  • ISP: Internet Service Provider, a company that provides access to the internet and email for a fee.
  • ISIL: International Standard Identifier for Libraries
  • ISO: International Standards Organisation
  • JPEG: Joint Photographic Experts Group, pronounced 'jay-peg', a close relative of the MPEG format used in DVDs. Most images on the web are in jpeg format. An updated version, jpg2, is now available.
  • JSP: Java Server Pages. Java is a language developed by Sun and now supported by most platforms via what is called a 'virtual machine'.
  • LMP: Literary Marketplace. Annual guide to who's who in the book trade
  • LC: also, LoC. Library of Congress

    The national library of the United States, which offers a massive amount of information easily available, including details about copyright registration. http://lcweb.loc.gov/homepage/lchp.html

  • LSI: Lightning Source international (print on demand supplier)
  • LTP: Licence to Publish
  • MD: Manufactured on demand (now POD)
  • MP3: Digital music file format that takes up much less storage space
  • MPG4: Multi-layered format for audio and/or video, which is an open standard i.e. agreed by all major computer and software companies and none of them own it. Apple iTunes uses a variety of MPG4 (AAC).
  • MARC: MAchine Readable Cataloguing
  • MO: minimum order
  • MOQ: minimum order quantity
  • NACO: US Name Authorities Co-operative
  • NBA: The National Bibliographic Agency
  • NBS: National Bibliographic Service (UK)
  • NE: New edition (stock code)
  • NLS: No longer stocked
  • NQ: Not stocked (NS not stocked)
  • OB: Temporarily out of stock (BIC code)
  • OCR: Optical Character Recognition
  • OO: On Order
  • OP or OOP: Out of print
  • OS or OOS: Out of stock
  • OSP: Out of stock at publisher (stock code)
  • P2P: Peer to peer, a transport technology or another way of transferring information from one computer to another.
  • PCI slot is a high performance Peripheral Component Interconnect.
  • PCMCIA: Personal Computer Memory Card International Association, is a consortium of computer manufacturers who devised the three standards for the credit card-size adapter cards used in many notebook computers.
  • PDA: Personal Digital Assistant, or handheld device with computing power.
  • PDF: Portable Document Format a popular document viewing format offering a free reader – owned by the company Adobe.
  • PDL (Page Description Language); a programming language which enables text and graphics to be described in mathematical statements such as PostScript and DDL
  • PE: proof reader mark meaning printer error, as opposed to an error by the customer
  • PGP: Pretty Good Privacy.
  • PHP: a scripting language.
  • PIE: Persistent Identification Element,  a technology that uses Macromedia's Flash MX to track you without using cookies.
  • PIM: Personal Information Manager. Often found on PDAs and mobile phones.
  • ping:  a tool used to test if host can be reached on the IP network. Ping sends “echo request” packets to the target. By timing the interval and response rate, ping estimates the round-trip time and reliability between the hosts.
  • PLR: Public Lending Right
  • PLS: Publishers Licensing Society
  • PN: Publishing News the British publishing trade weekly
  • PNL: Profit aNd Loss
  • POD: Print on demand see MD
  • POP: 1) Post Office Protocol, used to retrieve email from a mail server.  2) Short for Point of Presence, a phone number provided by an ISP so that users can access their mail and the internet.
  • QR code: a 2-dimensional barcode – the QR stands for "Quick Response" as  ntended to allow contents to be decoded at high speed.
  • QSOS: Qualification & Selection of Open Source Software: methodology for assessing open source software.
  • RE: Re-issues awaited
  • RSS: Really Simple Syndication
  • RPR or RP: Reprinting (stock code)
  • SaaS: Software as a Service
  • SAN: US and UK book trade Standard Address Number to identify organisations in the book selling chain
  • SEO: Search Engine Optimisations
  • Smileys:
  • SMS: Small message service better known as texting and used by mobile phones
  • SQL: Structured Query Language, developed by IBM for unskilled users to perform database queries. Now supported by all relational databases
  • S/S: (Same size)
  • SSL:  'secure socket layer' through which encrypted traffic passes to keep it secure
  • ST: Stock take
  • TC: Title Cancelled by publisher
  • TCP/IP: Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol, the communications protocol used by UNIX systems and the internet
  • SCAPR: Societies’ Council for the Administration of Performers’ Rights
  • SCORM: Sharable content object reference model
  • STM or SMT: Scientific, Technical and Medical publishing
  • SUISA: The copyright licensing and royalty collection society in Switzerland and Liechtenstein
  • TAC: Total Area Coverage
  • TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) is a good format for saving all the details and is the standard in the publishing business where Mac computers dominate the desktop
  • TOR: The Orion Router, software to drive the Dark Web
  • TU: Temporarily unavailable from publisher
  • UBCIM: Universal Bibliographic Control and MARC programme (of IFLA)
  • UC: Unavailable
  • UCE: Unsolicited Commercial Email, i.e. 'spam'.
  • UGC: User-Generated Content
  • URL: Universal Resource Locator,the official name for the web page address normally starting http://
  • USB: Universal Serial Bus, used in modern PCs for adding peripherals and offers 'Plug & Play'.
  • USNAF: United States National Authority File
  • USP: Unique Selling Point is a feature that makes something 'special'
  • VAR: Value Added Reseller, is a company which resells hardware with some added software or function.
  • VBS: Visual Basic Script, the latest incarnation of one of the first user-friendly languages, BASIC. 
  • WiFi: Name of a global alliance offering wireless communications.
  • WMM: Wi-Fi Multimedia
  • WMA: Windows Media format for digital media
  • WPA2: Wi-Fi Protected Access 2™
  • WWW: World Wide Web, the set of protocols that allow pages to be shared over the internet.
  • WYSIWYG: 'What You See Is What You Get', implies that what is on the screen is what will be printed out. 
  • XML: Extensible Mark-up Language, allows data to be displayed on different platform (not just computer screens).


If you can't find it here, check the publishing or technical glossaries



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