Handling of tracks that are not cleared

Record companies or aggregators sometimes ask DSPs to make available a Release even if some tracks on that Release are not (or not yet) available to consumers.

This case can easily be communicated before “street date” (i.e. the date a Release is allowed to be provided to consumers) by including (or not including) appropriate elements into the DealTerm composite: ReleaseDisplayStartDateTrackListingPreviewStartDateCoverArtPreviewStartDate and ClipPreviewStartDate.

After “street date” the record company or aggregator will have to signal that a sound recording is not available by not providing any binary for the relevant track.

The ERN standard does not, however, define how a DSP should handle such situations (beyond the fact that the affected sound recordings or videos should not be made available to consumers). Specifically, the DSP could

  • Include the track’s titles in the album track listing;

  • Include the track’s titles in the album track listing but mark it as not available (e.g. by “greying” them out); or 

  • Not including the tracks’ titles in the track listing at all.

While DDEX recommends to always show the complete track listing and to mark any tracks that are not available as being unavailable, the choice lies with the DSP.