The exchange of bibliographic records throughout the whole of the book world has raised new questions for the booktrade and librarians alike. This brief paper examines some of the features of concern to the three sectors, and the interaction between them. It falls into three parts: • Some aspects of the current situation as regards automation and the generation of bibliographic data are examined. • The uses of bibliographic data across the book world, and the different emphasis in the commercial and library communities are sketched. • The content of records is looked at. A trend is noted towards the provision of records which include more content and subject-descriptive data elements.