Apple, Microsoft, ‘Big Four’ music labels partner for Digital Data Exchange (DDEX)

“In an effort to better track digital music sales, several big-name record companies, digital music services and music rights agencies have founded a consortium called Digital Data Exchange. The purpose of DDEX (pronounced “dee-dex”) is to establish standards for the meta-data in digital music files, mainly for sales and rights-tracking purposes,” Candace Lombardi reports for CNET News.

“Founding members of the consortium include artists’ rights group ASCAP, Sony BMG Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group, Universal Music Group and EMI Music, as well as several other music rights societies and agencies from the U.S., U.K. and Europe. Apple Computer, Microsoft and RealNetworks, which all provide digital music services, are also charter members,” Lombardi reports. “‘What we hope to accomplish is a foundation or baseline so that information about music and songs are going to be transmitted more efficiently,’ Chris Amenita, senior vice president of ASCAP, told CNET ‘Sort of like what the credit card industry did a number of years ago when they standardized their numerics.'”

Full article here.

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  1. so when I buy a song composed by Mozart, it won’t say Mozart in the song title column, name of the piece and movement, as well as the performers’ names in the artist column?

    That happens too often with classical music, and its a pain to go through your library and retype it all.

    RealNetworks still sucks though.

  2. Sure is funny to see Apple and Microsoft partnering on a digital audio standard. One would think with all the disharmony over iPod/iTunes vs. Microsoft WMA formats and music stores that Microsoft and Apple wouldn’t be working together for a digital audio standard. Maybe the latest deal between Steve Jobs and the Music Big 4 companies to extend the 99 cent licensing mandated that Apple join and support this music metadata standard?

  3. Trollin’

    Where does the article say anything about “digital audio standards.” The article mentions “establish standards for the meta-data in digital music files.” Big difference.

  4. the realist: I’m a classical fan too, so I feel your pain … but I don’t think that is the meta-data they are talking about. Probably more like digital signatures or fingerprints embedded in the files, which the typical user never sees.

  5. Actually, a lot of this work may land up being based on the work of the ISRC project which seeks to give every version of a song a unique identifier, so that producers, songwriters, session musicians, publishers et al all get their ‘fair share’ of royalty income.

    ISRC is actually quite sophisticated and, combined with audio watermarking, would actually make the streaming music/Internet radio industry really easy to police.

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