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New Radio Metadata Terms define “Fair Use”

Nick Piggott 1st September 2020

Our mission is to accelerate the growth of hybrid radio. We do that by creating standards that reduce the cost and complexity of implementation, and create a bigger ecosystem of providers and receivers.

Most of our standards work is technical, to make sure that systems and devices from a variety of providers all interoperate together well. Content from one radio station can reach a multitude of devices, and devices can get content from a multitude of radio stations.

What’s “Fair Use” of Metadata?

We’ve heard from broadcasters and manufacturers that they want clarity on what “fair use” of metadata and content means. So, to complement the technical standards that explain how to transfer metadata and content, we have created a standard for how to use metadata and content.

Radio Metadata Terms of Use is our latest standard, and it’s not technical.

The Terms is a template agreement between a broadcaster (content provider) and a radio device manufacturer. It simply describes what is allowed to be done with metadata and content.

Here’s some key points

  • RadioDNS isn’t a party to the Terms – we just provide the template, and we will never change the wording of each version.
  • If a manufacturer knows they are using metadata and content as described in the Terms, they can use it from every broadcaster who adopts the Terms with no further checks
  • If a broadcaster is happy for their metadata and content to be used as described in the Terms, they can adopt them just by linking to them.

We think this simple, passive, implied agreement is the right approach for majority of metadata and content. It’s easy for both parties and it scales really well. It provides the certainty both broadcasters and manufacturers have been asking for.

There’s more information, including guidance and the full legal text, on the Radio Metadata Terms of Use pages.

What Does This Mean For Me?

If you’re a broadcaster, you should review the Terms, and then adopt them by linking to them in your Service Information (SI.xml) file. If you don’t adopt them, your metadata and content may be ignored.

If you’re a manufacturer, you should review the Terms. If you are following them, you can use any metadata or content in a Service Information (SI.xml) file that refers to these Terms. If the metadata or content you’re using isn’t covered by these Terms, you’ll have to contact the provider directly to check you can use it.

Now is the time for Terms

Now is the right time to put these Terms in place. There are some great initiatives to encourage broadcasters to provide more metadata and manufacturers to use it to create better experiences of radio:

  • The Automotive User Experience Working Group of WorldDAB publishes its recommendations on publishing Metadata today.
  • The NAB in the USA is assisting broadcasters through initiatives like their recent online Tutorial on how to produce RadioDNS services.

We’ll be contacting broadcasters and manufacturers directly over the coming weeks as well roll the Terms out, but we’re always contactable if you have questions.

Further information: Radio Metadata Terms of Use

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