Information Displayed.

Hello all,

I'm not sure if I'm posting this to the right thread (or forum really), but I couldn't see a thread for "Opinions sought", so here goes:

I manage a very small online setup, and spend a lot of time cataloguing music using Media Monkey - the service focuses on championing new artists and bands as well as playing the classic alternatives, so data that is important to us, may not be so to other stations, this includes record label and release date information, etc.

I recently experienced an E-Mail exchange with a pal of mine who is much more experienced in running online radio services than me, and told him about what I was doing, cataloguing wise; this was his response:

"Hi mate, Media Monkey is a great piece of software, but when it comes to data entry, be careful of not falling into the 'too much information' trap'. A few things you have to remember:

Firstly, almost all Internet radio/streaming services are listened to by the consumer via a smart phone, with few exceptions, so most of the information displayed will be on a comparatively small screen.

Secondly, with Media Monkey, one can enter information such as record label, release date (which is probably quite important with your service doing what it does), copyright information, and lyrics. But does your app. provider display all this?

Thirdly, most app. providers will show the artwork, artist, title, and some the year at the very most. The other information you enter into Media Monkey will only be shown if you're listening via that at the time.

Fourthly (that doesn't sound right somehow!): Not obvious. From published statistics most listeners to online radio using their smart phone as a radio, how do they do this? They prop it up on a desk and let the phone get on with it, the result of this for most is the screen saver comes on and goes black, so they can't see anything anyway - puts it into perspective a bit don't it?

Lastly, there is a counter-argument that if you're going to go the relevant page on Amazon or Discogs for the information, you may as well enter it in, otherwise it's like doing half the job, and your digital music collection doesn't have to be used for streaming only does it? The lyrics can be a pain though and take some while to download, when they're available - and CAN your listeners see them via their app.?

At the end of the day though it's up to you, how much time you have got to spend on this, and how much data you want displayed.

Just a thought!"

What do you think of his views? What data do other online operators enter into their music libraries?

Look forward to hearing from you and thanks for your help.


Level 1 Support
Staff member
Well we do not think having such detailed track information is really all that necessary, if I personally wanted to locate a track just having the artist name and track title is enough for me. Google is a wonderful thing! ;)

So yes, we do mostly agree with the comments made above.
Thanks for your reply Support and your view on my pal's opinion.

I'm actually getting more and more disheartened with this...

After seeing your reply, I E-Mailed the software supplier of the services Pop-Up player (when the listener clicks on the link, they can see the artist, title, and artwork of the track being played), with essentially the same question, this is what they said:

"Your friend is moreorless correct in everyway, and as they said, most listeners to online services tend to do so via a mobile device, where their screens are usually set to blank after a default amount of time, so entering data such as record label, copyright information, genre, etc., would for your specific use be a waste of time.

Regarding your comment that you just used to "use Audacity to enter artist, title, and year meta data, normalise and truncate, perhaps I should just go back to doing that?", is a valid point. I'm surprised the normalising feature is still being included as most recording studio's (even home based) record at a default level. All you are doing is setting volume levels within each track, whereas what you really need is a comipressor, but at this stage in your services development is over the top. This ensures ALL output broadcasts within set preset volume limits.

Even manually inserting the artwork is largely pointless! Our service grabs artworks from either iTunes or Amazon, it doesn't look to your meta data at all, although other services might. We do have a workaround for stations that play new artists and bands - if you supply us an XML file with the URL of your artists artwork then it will be displayed, however if you add 30-40 new/unsigned artists per week,, this could become a full-time job AND you would need to have a page on your website where this artwork is stored.

Overall, I think a review of the way you manage your information may be needed, as you appear to be putting in a lot of work without any visible reward or (literally) visible return. Personally I would always include the artwork, as this situation may change, you never know!

Sorry I couldn't bring you more positive news".

Permission to cry please?! :(


Level 1 Support
Staff member
Yes again we agree with the points made above, it is worth you reviewing how you do this.

Don't let it dishearten you, just think that if anything it will save you some time. It is what is coming out of the speakers that counts, not how detailed the meta-data is. :)