SC-03-07 meeting, SFO, 2006-10

Report of the meeting of SC-03-07 Working Group on Audio Metadata of the SC-06 Subcommittee on Network and File Transfer of Audio, held in Paris 2006-10-07

The meeting was convened by chair C. Chambers

The agenda and the report of the previous meeting, held on 2006-05-22, were accepted as written.

Development Projects

AES-X071: Liaison with SMPTE Registration Authority
Project scope: to formalize a working relationship with the SMPTE Registration Authority
Assigned to: SC-03-07, Initiated: 1997
Intent: Liaison, Target: Continuing
Current goal: Status report, Goal date: Continuing
M. Yonge reported that he was following the development of the SMPTE metadata registry that is also being mirrored through IEC standards. For the last six months SMPTE had been trying to complete the balloting of a document called RP210 that is central to the metadata registry. This document of within weeks of becoming a trial publication and this is important to the AES as this document is where the concept of class 13 dictionary entries is established. This is where an organisation such as the AES who wants to organise its own internal sets of metadata could register these with the SMPTE dictionary. A discussion ensued on the development of this dictionary and the importance of this to the AES standardisation work including linking the work in this group with the work of SC-03-06. Liaison continues.

AES-X114: Metadata review
Project scope: to study and report on the methods and techniques for attaching and implementing metadata through all aspects of interfacing real-time and file-transfer audio, including, where related to audio, other metadata related to other media. The scope includes metadata for professional recording, sound reinforcement, production, broadcasting, and transmission as well as the exchange of metadata and associated audio among different organizations. It also includes the development of techniques, such as UML, to aid the description of the relationships and flow of metadata requirements in an open and recognised way.

Assigned to: SC-03-07, Initiated: 2001-01
Intent: Review, Target: Continuing
Current goal: Status report, Goal date: Continuing
Three documents were tabled, one from the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) and two from the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

The first discussed was EBU Tech 3001, Metadata for non-tape based camcorders along with the EBU P/META output document. This work will be maintained by the EBU P/MAG group in the future. This document is effectively a "metadata set" that has links to show which items map into SMPTE RP210 (the SMPTE metadata dictionary) and which also map into the P/META structure. EBU Tech 3001 and SMPTE RP210 were then discussed but some concern was expressed that the mapping seemed rather approximate in some cases and it was the view of some at the meeting that mapping should be binary; either it maps or it does not. However, mapping across complete sets need not be exact provided it is clear which elements within the set have not been matched. The general view of the meeting was that individual metadata elements should either map exactly or not to avoid inconsistencies. A discussion ensued on how audio metadata structures should be constructed and the way that systems may end up referencing the metadata dictionary.

It is understood that the EBU will also be working on media metadata sets and there could be more information by our next meeting.

The SMPTE metadata dictionary was then studied and "Class 13" registrations that have already been included were discussed. This document as freely available from the SMPTE web site and it is recommended that those interested in metadata study this further.

AES-X134: Core audio metadata XML definition
Project scope: "To study and produce a standardised set of XML tags, along with their definitions, that describes the core set of metadata to accompany professional audio when being transferred by file or streamed formats and define these within the SMPTE metadata dictionary."

Assigned to: SC-03-07, Initiated: 2002-09-23
Intent: Report, Target: 2005
Current goal: PTD, Goal date: 2007-05
Status: PTD expected
The prime input to this work is being carried out by the NRK as well as the EBU to some degree. The Standards manager will add document AES-X98A to this work which has been released by SC-03-06 to this group. These sources of work are based on Dublin core elements so these should be fairly easily brought together. It was stated that SMPTE has already added XML tag names to the dictionary although this is not currently shown in the web available document. (Subsequent to the meeting, it was established that a draft document will be made available to this group from SMPTE containing the XML tag names being proposed.) The Standards manager will circulate the SMPTE reference site link on the reflector.

It was also hoped that someone could be found to help push this work forward.

AES-X138: IFPI Liaison

Assigned to: SC-03-07, Initiated: 2003-03
Intent: Liaison, Target: Continuing
Current goal: Status report, Goal date: Continuing
Status: Continuing
It was reported that the work IFPI was doing on metadata has been hived off to a group called Digital data Exchange ( This has been set up by four major record companies (EMI, Sony-BMG, Warner Music and Universal) plus an independent company. Also the music rights societies and the on-line major music providers plus a telcoms provider are also involved. This group is publishing a metadata set for music exchange and there should be a press release in the next few weeks.


There is informal liaison with the EBU P/MAG group as at least one member of this group is also a member of that EBU group.

New Projects

A new project was proposed by the chair of SC-03-06 to take the document AES-X98B and map this into the SMPTE metadata dictionary. This was agreed and a new project will be raised.

New business

There was no new business.

The next meeting will be scheduled in conjunction with the AES 122nd Convention in Vienna in May 2007.

AES - Audio Engineering Society