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New ISNI Identifier creates better opportunities for international author identification


A recently completed report  examines the benefits of the ISNI identifier and its potential to copyright management organisations (CMO). This unique identifier helps to promote services and practices specifically based on data pertaining to works and contributors.

ISNI is widely used around the world to uniquely identify any individuals and organizations contributing to creative activities, including for example authors, translators, composers, performers, visual artists, producers and publishers. In the newly released report, the benefits of adopting the ISNI identifier were examined.

The report is related to a project coordinated by the National Library of Finland aiming to implement the international ISNI identifier in Finnish copyright organizations and to provide identifiers to all rightholders of these organizations. In addition to Teosto, the project involves the Finnish Copyright Management Organizations Gramex, Kopiosto, Kuvasto and Sanasto.

Global, secure identifier for all creators

ISNI is an identifier used globally, for example, to uniquely identify the public identities of persons and organisations. In addition, ISNI is persistent and can be shared openly and securely. Finnish copyright management organisations are currently widely adopting the ISNI standard because

  • The identifier provides better opportunities for identifying creative-sector contributors, particularly in the international context.
  • The quality of metadata related to contributors is improved and harmonised.
  • Cooperation will be facilitated through data exchange across sector boundaries.
  • The identifier will bring new practices to the creative sector, optimise operations and advance the utilisation and management of digital data.

Finnish copyright management organisations are pioneers in ISNI

The wider the use of ISNI, the more the benefits of its use will increase. ISNI contributes to the unique identification of creative-sector contributors and enhances the quality of metadata provided by CMOs.

In general, Finnish copyright management organisations are pioneers in the adoption of ISNI and improving administrative metadata, as high-quality metadata is the key to improved copyright management.  

The adoption of the global ISNI identifier has been initiated with funding from the Ministry of Education and Culture. The structural support for the development of cultural and creative fields is based on the NextGenerationEU programme, the EU’s one-off emergency instrument.

CMOs participating in the ISNI project:
•    Gramex is the CMO for recorded artists and producers.
•    Kopiosto is the CMO for creative industry professionals, performers and publishers.
•    Kuvasto is the CMO for visual artists.
•    Sanasto is the CMO for literature.
•    Teosto is the CMO for composers, lyricists, arrangers and music publishers.

The report, entitled ‘When the name is not enough: A report on the benefits of the ISNI identifier for copyright management organisations(opens a new tab)’, is available in the publication archive of the National Library of Finland.

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