The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) today announced publication of its new Video and Audio Metadata Recommended Practice (NISO RP-41-2023), which establishes metadata guidelines for video and audio assets.
Audio and especially video assets are growing in volume, popularity, and use in scholarly, scientific, and professional communities around the world. Libraries are seeing higher demand from their patrons, publishers are developing and extending their offerings, and software developers and other vendors are improving support for media assets in their products and systems. From video abstracts of journal articles to podcasts to primary content and more, video and audio content is an increasingly important component of the academic information industry. However, until now it has been difficult to communicate metadata for academic media assets due to a wide variety of models in use. Different parties in the ecosystem often employ different and potentially incompatible metadata models, causing challenges for collaboration and interoperability, and impeding the dissemination, discoverability, and indexability of video and audio content.
NISO’s new Video and Audio Metadata Recommended Practice will help address these challenges, by providing a vocabulary that enables connectivity between existing standards covering key metadata elements: administrative (e.g., dates, versions, and identifiers); semantic (e.g., subject classifications and keywords); technical (e.g., media type, encoding, and bitrate); rights (e.g., rights owner, licensor, and embargo information); and accessibility (e.g., accessibility features and access).
Video and Audio Metadata Working Group co-chair, Barbara Chen (formerly Director of Bibliographic Information Services and Editor, MLA International Bibliography Modern Language Association, now retired) said, “We are delighted that this Recommended Practice is now published. It is the culmination of nearly four years’ dedicated work by a group of stakeholders from libraries, publishers, and vendors. Our goal is to make the exchange of content among producers and consumers more efficient by identifying essential elements of information exchange and by reducing ambiguity.”
Co-chair Violaine Iglesias (CEO, Cadmore Media) added, “The Recommended Practice acts like a ‘Rosetta stone’ rather than a replacement for existing standards. It enables clear and effective communication between two parties using different metadata models for their audio visual materials—for example, a broadcaster using PBCore, and a librarian using MARC 21.”
Co-chair Bill Kasdorf (Principal, Kasdorf & Associates, LLC) noted, “The NISO Working Group developed its hierarchical vocabulary in an iterative process, in order to create as comprehensive a list of candidate properties as possible. These are intended to communicate the basic information needed by a recipient of the metadata, and provide a structure for its interchange through documentation of a variety of use cases and application in relevant standards.”
And co-chair Michelle Urberg, independent consultant and Client Success Manager for LibLynx (representing the Music Library Association), summed up, ”Video and audio are no longer emerging media for scholarly outputs. They now play a primary role in many disciplines. We are proud and pleased that this new NISO Recommended Practice is officially published, and we hope that it will lead to meaningful improvements for everyone working with audio and video content.”
NISO's Executive Director, Todd Carpenter, added, "Many thanks to Barbara, Violaine, Bill, Michelle, and the other Video and Audio Metadata Working Group members for their hard work to develop this Recommended Practice, as well as to everyone who commented on the draft version. It is a valuable resource to help support the discovery and use of non-text formats for all those working in the scholarly information community.”
The NISO Video and Audio Metadata Recommended Practice is freely available at https://www.niso.org/standards-committees/video-audio-metadata-guidelines.
Based in Baltimore, MD, NISO’s mission is to build knowledge, foster discussion, and advance authoritative standards development through collaboration among the cultural, scholarly, scientific, and professional communities. To fulfill this mission, NISO engages with libraries, publishers, information aggregators, and other organizations that support learning, research, and scholarship through the creation, organization, management, and curation of knowledge. NISO works with intersecting communities of interest and across the entire lifecycle of information standards. NISO is a not-for-profit association accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). For more information, visit the NISO website (https://niso.org) or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.