Monday, December 12, 2011

New Site Launched to Encourage Embedding of Metadata

We support the Embedded Metadata Manifesto

A major initiative to encourage the direct embedding of descriptive and rights information into all manner of digital media has just been launched. endorses the effort and is helping to spreading the word.

“A picture may be worth 1,000 words, but permanently attached descriptions are worth a lot more as photos travel through the digital world. A campaign has been launched now to embed descriptive and rights information in digital media and to retain it during the whole life cycle.

The initiative has been launched by the International Press Telecommunications Council (IPTC), the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A's), and the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), with the support of trade organisations representing visual arts and photo agencies. It aims to establish the practice of applying descriptions and the copyright status of the content as metadata, and to embed it permanently during the electronic exchange of digital photo, text, audio or video files.

This practice is based on the principles defined by the Embedded Metadata Manifesto on the web site which invites organisations and individuals to support the campaign.”

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Why can't I insert metadata at the capture stage?

Mike Ashenfelder from the Library of Congress interviewed me recently for an article on their website Titled "Mission Possible: An Easy Way to Add Descriptions to Digital Photos." He was asking why adding information (metadata) to images is so difficult. I told him that this was an issue I had raised at the First International Photo Metadata Conference in 2007. I noted that photographers need ways to insert metadata as early as possible in the process; and asked why it wasn't possible to have some device that could be used to input information and tag it to the images I was shooting at the time of capture. There were engineers from Canon and Nikon in attendance, and it seemed that they understood the question, but I'm not aware of any progress in this area.

However, since manufacturers and developers do seem respond to input from those who purchase their products, perhaps what is needed is a grass roots appeal? With that in mind, I've included details on how to contact several of the larger digital camera manufacturers. If a number of you contact them, asking if they are working on improvements on how metadata (information) can be added to the Exif or IPTC at the time of capture, perhaps something will change?

Ask them "Why isn't there a 'Add Description' button for my camera?"
In the section labeled "Inquires" select your country and region for a listing of who to contact. In the US you can call Nikon Technical Support from 8AM - 2AM (Eastern) 7 days a week at 1-800-645-6687.

To contact Canon by email
In the US you can you can call Customer Service 1-800-385-2155


In the USA call Toll Free: 1-800-224-6767

In the USA call Digital Camera support Monday-Friday, between 9am-9pm Eastern at 1-888-553-4448

There are options to email, phone, or live chat from the link above. 

Let us know if you find anything out by adding a note in the comments below.