Playlist Log File Guidelines

In order to generate SoundExchange compliant reports, NPR Digital Services (NPR/DS) needs logs of all the recordings streamed by your station (aside from those on nationally syndicated shows, which we will gather directly from the producers) during the reporting period, broken down by stream.

We need these data in a tab-delimitedtext file for processing (one file per stream). If you have your data in a spreadsheet (i.e. an xls file), please save the file as a tab-delimited text file before sending to us. We cannot accept written logs, Word documents, PDF files or files that do not present the data in this format for processing.

Data files that are not in the following format will not be processed, and hence reports will not be submitted to SoundExchange on your station’s behalf.

Required Data Fields Per Recording Played

For each recording played on a stream the following attributes must be tracked in order to allow NPR/DS to generate SoundExchange-compliant reports:

  1. Song (track) title (“Title”)
  2. Featured artist/group/orchestra (“Artist”)
  3. Album title (“Album”)
  4. Marketing label (“Label”)
  5. Start date and time of song play (“Start Time”), including hour, minute and second
  6. End date and time (“End Time”), including hour, minute and secondor duration (“Duration”) of song play

The data columns in the file can be in any order, so as long as it is consistent throughout the file and properly reflected in the ordering of the field identifiers in the header row (see 4 below).

It’s OK to have other data fields in the file, as long as they are clearly identified so we can exclude them during processing.

Required Playlist Log File Format

Your playlist log(s) must adhere to the following format in order for us to be able to process your files:

  1. Tab-delimited (i.e. single tab separating each field of data) text (.txt) file; no Word, RTF, PDF or XLS files
  2. One file per content stream
  3. First row of the file must be a header row using the field identifiersindicated above (Title, Artist, Album, Label, Start Time, End Time, Duration), tab delimited, in the order in which the data is organized. See the sample data file below for an example.
  4. One row per play, ordered chronologically by start date/time
  5. Within each data row, consistent ordering of fields
  6. Start/End dates and times must be one of the following formats, and include the day, month, year, hour and second, with time given in 24-hour format (NOTE: leading zeroes in months and days may be omitted).
  • MM/dd/yyyy HH:mm:ss e.g. 06/25/2009 14:05:05
  • yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss e.g. 2009-06-25 14:05:05
  • MM-dd-yyyy HH:mm:ss e.g. 06-25-2009 14:05:05
  1. By default, we assume that date and times in your playlist file are in your local timezone. If they are not you can specify the timezone by appending the UTC offset in the form -HHMM, e.g. 2009-06-26 00:45:56 -0400
  2. Specify song durations as mm:ss, e.g. 4:38 (leading zeroes for hours can be omitted)
  3. Finally, please do NOT include any show/schedule information or anything other than the header rows and play entries

Here is a sample playlist log file that demonstrates this format.

Sample Playlist Entry Spreadsheet

If your station will be entering playlist data by hand, we have prepared an empty, sample spreadsheet that you could use as a starting point.

Download this sample playlist entry spreadsheet here.

It has all of the required fields (though remember that we only need either End Time OR Duration, not both), including the proper field headers, and formatting for start and end times. Once you enter your data you would simply choose to Save As a Tab Delimited text (.txt) file, and upload the file into the old composer program.