Business benefits of implementing MWN
The standardised MWN choreography and messaging between record companies and publishers improves data quality, which enables more efficient data processing. Better data quality and efficiency means cost savings and more timely communication. The implementation of MWN also provides options for incorporating other processes into the workflow.
As a result of the automated exchange of data using DDEX’s MWN standard, the reduced volume of manually rekeyed data being sent between parties via emails and alternative formats provides higher reliability and quality of data. This is further enhanced by the greater reliance on metadata sourced directly from the record companies’ and publishers’ authoritative systems.
The structured data associated with the MWN standard makes troubleshooting of critical data information issues easier without reference to the standard specifications. Also, the flexibility of the MWN messages enables the sending of right share information that does not add up, in the aggregate, to 100%. This recognises that rights owners that have a part share in a musical work frequently do not know the identity or the rights shares of other rights owners in that work. Similarly, the MWN standard enables the communication of more robust recording information, clearly distinguishing between attributes of musical works and sound recordings.
Efficiency improvements are mainly due to the automation of processes that previously involved the manual creation of emails. This is because all data necessary to create outgoing MWN messages can be automatically populated from a sender’s database. Similarly, such responses can then be ingested and linked automatically to the relevant song.
The MWN standard enables the consolidation of ad-hoc files (such as policy or relinquishment files) that a publisher would otherwise need to send separately to DSPs. This is important information for DSPs as policy actions determine whether or not a song is monetisable on a platform or not.
Increased efficiency through automation using the MWN standard also means that the volume of requests processed can be increased with less resource, so the amount of work to be done in other areas can be expanded without hiring new teams.
Also, the links between sound recording and musical work data that is being captured as a result of the exchange of MWN messages once ingested into the relevant systems can be “re-used” and pushed out in MWN registrations to other sources. For example, to organisations such as The Mechanical Licensing Collective and DSPs, where that link between sound recording and musical work is most important in ensuring payments are made. This will increase the speed of payouts from other sources and reduce the danger of payments being held in escrow.
The use of MDX as a data hub increases the visibility of the data of sound recordings linked to musical works through access to a dashboard of information (such as timestamps and relevant statuses). This also improves the transparency of processes and allows tracking of the status of the data and any appropriate links, as reports can be pulled and shared between parties regarding what is being processed and what is outstanding. The benefits of this information being visible in a hub enables the easier transfer of catalogues of musical works. Such a hub also provides access to multiple ISRCs relating to a single work.
Through the use of the MWN messages requests can be routed to the likely publishers of new works in the fastest way currently possible without additional manual steps and the danger of user manual oversight. Responses can be ingested daily and mapped back to the original request and musical work. This facilitates a more comprehensive and strategic management of the large volume of publisher responses/claims that record companies receive on an ongoing basis. The ability to receive, assess and take action on publisher responses on a faster and broader basis speeds up the overall process for making and communicating publisher right share claims.
Incorporating other processes
Implementing MWN enables moving e-mail work which takes place in isolation into internal system integrations. This enables the automatic connection of data in the internal system upon receipt of a right share claim response, effectively a one-click action to match musical works to sound recordings. This also means an improvement in the internal tracking of requests and enables better follow up and missing split queries processing.
Once MWN is implemented it is much easier to gain the benefits of other messages, such as the Letters of Direction (LoD) standard, used in conjunction with it to automate more processes.
The creation of a standardised, shared, connected process between parties utilising MWN messages supports enhancements which improve existing workflow going forward, and may provide opportunities to align processes with other parties involved in parallel initiatives or activities.