Encoding Management Service

News

Service/Diary dates I: End-of-year planning for Apple Music, iTunes & Apple Books

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - The submission deadlines for iTunes Connect, for all releases in November, December and early January, are indicated below.

Please let us know in good time about any extensive catalogs that are to be launched online by the start of the new year. Thanks! :)

Apple Music & iTunes: Delivery deadlines for the indicated release dates:

Release Dates Music Delivery Deadlines
Fr, 12/14/2018 & 12/21/2018 Fr, 12/07/2018
Fr, 12/28/2018 & 01/04/2019 Fr, 12/14/2018

Apple Books: Delivery deadlines for the indicated release dates:

Release Dates Music Delivery Deadlines
Fr, 12/14/2018 Fr, 11/30/2018
Fr, 12/21/2018 Fr, 12/07/2018
Fr, 12/28/2018 & 01/04/2019 Fr, 12/14/2018

Service/Diary dates II: Our availability in the holiday period

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - As in previous years, we will be taking advantage of the slightly quieter period to perform maintenance and updates.

All members of the EMS operations team will remain at your disposal up to and including Friday 12/21. Our office will be closed for Christmas week. We will be fully operational again from 1/7.

The MMP will remain at your disposal throughout the period, of course, and the systems will be continuously monitored.

EMS/Videos: Performance upgrade

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - The use of music videos and therefore the audience size are continuously growing, as reflected by the increasing number of releases by our clients. To enable us to meet our quality aspirations and process jobs quickly in the future as well, we have been investing substantially in this segment. We have doubled the number of video workstations, tripled our performance, and recruited more staff to cover periods when the demand for new releases is especially high. So don't hold back ? just keep on sending us your videos.

EMS/Audio books: Increased throughput

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - Consumer demand in the booming audio book market is fueling steady growth in the number of digital titles. Spanning radio plays and podcasts, this segment is gaining in significance not only for distributors, but for us as well.

Music and audio book products differ as regards the quality management requirements, and very often in respect of the number of tracks and the running time. Among other things, product size determines the duration of the import process.

Against this backdrop we have optimized the import process by adopting new technical infrastructure. This upgrade has significantly raised the throughput of audio book imports.

EMS/Personnel

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - Aside from all the technology, we have also reinforced our human resources.

Since the summer, Cynthia Meier has been assisting the EMS operations team with processing audio and video imports. Her e-mail address is cynthia@media-ems.com. Some of you may already have received a review mail from her.

We would like to take this opportunity to welcome Cynthia on board.

EMS/Data center

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - The works to alter and extend the data center environment have been successfully completed.

Both the storage systems and the power supply areas have been completely renewed. The deployment of redundant UPSs ensures maximum reliability.

The new air-conditioning, which is likewise redundant, efficiently cools all the systems and already proved its worth during the recent record-breaking summer.

In-house: Congratulations...

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - ... first to our developer Jan Küchler of de_zwei_drei, who recently became a father. His son Jakob was born in June. All the family are in good health.

Our head of imports Erk Richter celebrated ten years with the company in September. Alongside the developer Wolfgang Stölzle aka Metadaten-Wolle, and the delivery expert Jörg Nijmejer, Erk is the third employee to pass the milestone marking a decade of service.

For our part, we are proud of their loyalty, but also pleased to acknowledge the key role played by their interaction and good relations with our clients. We therefore extend our sincere thanks to you as well.

EMS/Shops: New connections

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - The following destinations, including three Chinese shops, have been added in the last four months:

Shop Audio Video eBook
Alibaba DDEX Match
HiRes Audio DDEX Match
Netease DDEX Match
Overdrive Onix Match
Yandex DDEX Match

Away game/Retrospective: Reeperbahn Festival

October 31 2018 - Leverkusen - Although the Reeperbahn Festival already feels like ancient history, we think it's still worth mentioning that this year's event certainly reaffirmed its significance for the music industry and us as well.

We had the opportunity to discuss our clients' wish lists face to face, and to outline ideas for new projects together. And for Marc it was the ideal venue for his 'official' comeback. We'll definitely be attending again next year.

EMS/Service: Flasheet - next steps

May 03 2018 - Leverkusen - Das Beta-Flasheet-Angebot kommt sehr gut an und ist auch bereits bei vielen unserer Kunden im Einsatz.

The beta Flasheet service has been very well received and is already being used by many of our customers. Before we officially put it on the market as an independent marketing tool, we have one more request: please let us know any suggestions for improvement or further wishes you may have for the tool. Lukas is looking forward to receiving your ideas via .

Thank you for supporting us!

EMS/Service II: MMP labels are in the starting blocks!

May 03 2018 - Leverkusen - The countdown has started for the launch of the MMP label. Our developer team is already fine-tuning the latest version.

The digital music business is an extremely fast changing sector with a steady influx of new requirements that require implementation. This has made it necessary to relaunch the MMP label. As you requested, we are elevating the MMP label to a new technological level. We are slimming down the design so that the labels can directly take a look at topics relevant to them, e.g. top sellers, product status, etc. Filters sets can be defined individually depending on the respective requirements. And query results take only a few seconds to load. The new MMP label is of course also responsive, which means that trouble-free use on any terminal is guaranteed.

EMS/Hardware: Reorganization of technical infrastructure

May 03 2018 - Leverkusen - We are reorganizing our in-house data center so that we can continue to accommodate peak loads in the future. We are creating more efficient access to the relevant media data by dividing up the storage systems for import, encoding and delivery processes. The first new equipment has already been installed, tested, and put into operation.

A newly built network will provide access. All server hardware is being upgraded or exchanged. In some cases, this has already happened and the equipment is already in live operation in a limited capacity.

We are also busy working on updates for the software in our process chains; after all, we need to be able to make optimal use of all the new possibilities.

However, some downtime will be necessary to allow us to carry out all of these modifications ? but we will let you know well ahead of time when that will be.

EMS/Shops: Newly connected

May 03 2018 - Leverkusen - The following destinations have been added during the last four months:

Shop Audio Video eBook
AWA DDEX Match
Dubset Match
iMusica DDEX Match
NAXOS Match
SoundCloud DDEX Match

Away game/RETROSPECTIVE: SXSW Interactive & Music

May 03 2018 - Leverkusen - In March, Marc Radermacher and Irmin Wiechmann traveled to Austin for SXSW Interactive & SXSW Music. Their schedule was filled with panel discussions on topics of the future and lectures by visionary thinkers. You can read a summary of the highlights from this year?s SXSW Interactive in an interview between Creative.NRW and Marc Radermacher.

SXSW Music was next. In addition to meetings with iTunes and Spotify, they also had a lot of interesting conversations in the German Haus. Our thanks to Initiative Musik for the great organization :).

EMS/Service I: Flasheet - New B2B service in the beta phase

Dec. 14, 2017 - Leverkusen - The Flasheet service was developed by EMS and is already up and running in the beta version as a B2B service.

Our clients can use Flasheet directly from our web-based merchandise management system MMP to promote their releases with playlist managers and curators before the actual release date.

This first configuration level uses only data from the MMP. With just a few clicks, a flasheet can be set up for each product that is made up of cover, release date, liner notes, etc. as well as the streamlinks for the respective product tracks. The tracks are available either as single tracks in MP3 320 format and/or as a complete ZIP of the entire product so that both the recipient and sales and distribution are free to choose the format that best meets their needs.

The client individually and independently decides how long a flasheet remains available for download by setting an expiration date. For each flasheet, the number of page requests, the tracks played and the downloads are evaluated and presented in real time in the MMP.

This makes it possible to secure an attractive placement and negotiate cooperations early on, making the upload of data to third parties such as Soundcloud superfluous.

Please contact us if you would like to learn more about Flasheet BETA. We are looking forward to further developing this service in cooperation with you.

Here is a sample screenshot:

Flasheet example screenshot

EMS/Service II: DDEX Best Practice starter pack (ERN 3.7)

Dec. 14, 2017 - Leverkusen - A growing number of shops are being connected via the DDEX metadata format, but without a concrete requirements specification. In order to communicate more efficiently with the shops, EMS has now developed its own Best Practice DDEX format based on its experiences with prior DDEX shop connections and put together a starter pack that is presented to shops when they first get connected to the service. In addition to a questionnaire for the shops, it contains all the relevant connection information as well as a documentation of EMS Best Practice DDEX that includes sample products.

We hope that this will establish a routine that will be of benefit to all involved and, ultimately, save costs.

Again, we would appreciate receiving relevant feedback and/or suggestions for improvement or extensions.

MMP/Shops: Newly connected destinations

Dec. 14, 2017 - Leverkusen - The following destinations were connected within the last four months:

Shop Audio Video eBook
audiobooks.com Match
Audiolibrix Match
Kkbox DDEX Match
Pubfront Match
Saavn Match
UMA Match

All desintinations

MMP/Shop Status: Product Check via Deeplinks

September 18, 2017 - Leverkusen - MMP is offering a new service: Product Check via Deeplinks. When the service is activated, links to the product pages in each shop will be displayed in a separate column in Shop Status at product level. At the click of a button, a list will open up with all of the territories that have been enabled. Each link will automatically take you to the corresponding product page in the selected shop and country. This allows you to quickly verify if the product is correctly displayed in the relevant shop and territory. We are currently offering Deeplinks for the three most important players: amazon, iTunes and Spotify. Deezer is in preparation. If you are interested in this service, we will be happy to make you an offer.

EMS/Backend: DDEX 3.82

September 18, 2017 - Leverkusen - At last! The current DDEX Version 3.82 has been integrated into EMS. Right now we are experimenting with the new possibilities.

MMP/Shops: New Connections and DDEX

September 18, 2017 - Leverkusen - The following destinations have been added in the last four months:

Shop Audio Video eBook
anghami DDEX Match
BookBeat Match
Doctronic Match

Übersicht aller Shops/Destinations

MMP/Instant Grat: Automatization for Amazon

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - Preorder incentives are growing in importance for campaigns. After teaching our system to process 'incomplete' asset packages for releases as well, it became possible to automate 'ig powa' deliveries to iTunes. Now it was Amazon?s turn ? same procedure, same effect: Instant Grat tracks are already available in the shop despite the fact that the remaining tracks are still being cut.

MMP/Product administration: Validity check for EAN numeric codes

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - We have set up stricter 'access controls' for EANs during the MMP product entry process. This means that when the sales department assigns EANs, the MMP automatically checks whether the numeric code is admissible for music products or if it may have already been reserved for another use.

Depending upon the results, the system sends out a warning, e.g. this EAN is one of a series of numeric codes that has been reserved for future use, or an error notice should the EAN belong to a different product segment. This replaces the procedure that was previously followed in cases of conflict, i.e. deleting and then re-entering the data under a 'valid' EAN.

A further tool for improving data quality in the MMP and supporting sales staff in processing product data.

EMS/Backend: New tool for metadata synchronization

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - Besides the many additions to the front end of the MMP, we are always busy tinkering at its back end as well. We regularly put our processes to the test as we strive to meet our aim of offering the best possible quality management.

The latest outcome of this internal check-up bears the name 'diffalyzer'. Just as its name implies, the diffalyzer is a comparative tool that constantly validates and checks up-to-the-minute metadata to ensure immediate detection of unwanted changes. If the diffalyzer finds something, the system notifies the EMS Operations and Technology team and relays the relevant information. We can then immediately and specifically check whether the discrepancies were deliberate, e.g. changes that were made at the shop interface.

The latest product out of our laboratory for increasing data quality is already in the beta test phase and running successfully.

MMP/Shops I: Delivery of audio files with added value to Amazon and iTunes

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - There is a growing demand among customers who buy digital products for further supplementary content besides the audio files and covers. This is why booklets can now be transmitted not only to iTunes via the MMP, but also to Amazon. Further shop interfaces are currently being prepared.

Since it is not possible to subsequently transfer a booklet to iTunes, we now offer the option of blocking the delivery of respectively designated products to iTunes until the booklet has been completed.

The focus at iTunes is currently on the topic, or rather the added value of lyrics. For this reason, we would like to remind everyone that the MMP has long included the field 'Track Lyrics', making it easy to deliver these contents.

EXTERNAL: de_zwei_drei acquires new customer

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - In their search for a service provider who would restructure their web presentation, including the web design, the event organizers of lit.COLOGNE, one of the largest literature festivals in Europe, lit.RUHR, a festival that will be taking place for the first time this year, as well as of the international philosophy festival phil.cologne finally settled on our affiliated company de_zwei_drei and its range of services.

The job involves the development of a new system for the websites of all three festivals, providing accessibility and a flexible design, and optimally transporting various contents before, during and after the festivals.

We congratulate de_zwei_drei for acquiring this new customer and for their successful fulfillment of the contract.

EXTERNAL: New personnel at de_zwei_drei

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - Beginning on March 1, 2017, Barbara Jeszenszky has been adding her expertise to the de_zwei_drei team. We would like to use this opportunity to give her a sincere 'Welcome to the team!'.

After completing her training, Barbara carried out a range of different functions, but always in the music industry. Most recently she was IT project manager at Indigo in Hamburg.

Barbara has been hired by de_zwei_drei as a system analyst. Her job is to support the team during the evaluation of ideas, the planning of projects as well as the final quality control. Thanks to the experience she has gained over the course of her career, she is very well acquainted with the various facets of the music business and the needs of the individual players. Truly a stroke of luck for de_zwei_drei.

We are looking forward to a good and constructive cooperation.

IN-HOUSE: New optical fiber provider

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - Since January 2017, all data has been travelling through the newly laid optical fiber network of Netcologne. The partner in Cologne offers even better performance, which made the decision to switch an easy one. In order to eliminate even the slightest possibility of an interruption in supply, we worked with two optical fiber networks for two months.

EXTERNAL: Congratulations to the Zebralution founders

May 29, 2017 - Leverkusen - As of the beginning of April, Zebralution is 'indie' once more. Together with City Slang Managing Director Christof Ellinghaus and Embassy of Sound and Media Managing Director Konrad von Löhneysen, Zebralution founders Sascha Lazimbat and Kurt Thielen have bought the digital sales and distribution from Warner Music Central Europe. The four experienced music managers of the competence team want to strengthen their position as a digital sales and distribution company for independent labels.

We wish the new management board every success and look forward to continuing this good and well-established cooperation as well as taking on new challenges.

MMP/IG automation

Nov. 28, 2016 - Leverkusen - Effective immediately, IG POWA products that are only available as IG tracks can be imported via MMP and loaded into the iTunes store.

The same is also true for both 16 bit and MfiT products.

MMP/Shops I: Reconciling inventory

Nov. 28, 2016 - Leverkusen - The function "Upload shop inventory list" makes it possible to reconcile inventory between the MMP and the shops. This means that sales personnel can now independently check at any time whether all products are in fact live in the shop or if takedowns have occurred.

To achieve this, an EAN list of all active items in a shop is simply loaded into the MMP. Various lists of differences are then compiled and mailed to the address provided.

An important service for quality assurance in sales and distribution.

MMP/Shops II: Artist ID administration

Nov. 28, 2016 - Leverkusen - Correctly assigning releases to the respective artist profiles in the shops is certainly one of the great challenges when consolidating data.

The goal is to develop an Artist ID administration system that ensures that artists are not incorrectly matched across shops and that new profiles are not created by mistake.

The first stage of development has already been implemented and is ready to use. We are now working on the next steps.
Stay tuned.

MMP/Shops III: Quick look into the shops

Nov. 28, 2016 - Leverkusen - Just as important as the availability of a release in the individual territories is the information whether it was "reviewed" or "polished" by the iTunes editorial team. Up until now, this could not even be determined using Connect. It is, however, a decisive factor, for example when deciding whether a track title can be updated without a ticket.

The MMP now provides direct access to this information.

In-house/Staff: We back education

Nov. 28, 2016 - Leverkusen - On September 1, help for our teams arrived in the form of a new student employee and two new trainees. At this time, we would like to again - and now officially - extend a warm welcome to them.

Over the next few years, Christian Kisseler will be familiarizing himself with development issues at EMS on four days a week while working towards his degree at FOM University. He will also gradually take over projects of his own. He first completed training as a wholesale and international trade agent. As a working musician, he is quite familiar with the particular sensibilities and needs of our sector.

The second new member of EMS' team of developers is Sebastian Dehn. He is studying to become an IT specialist for system integration, and we are very pleased that he will be completing the required 6-month internship at our company. We wish him a great deal of success in his project work as well as for the final examination.

Ahmad Mukdad, who is doing a 3-month internship at our affiliated company de_zwei_drei, has a very special résumé. Before political events forced him to leave Syria three years ago, he was studying computer science at the renowned HIAST Institute of Technology in Damascus. Now he would like to continue to work towards his chosen occupation in Germany and we are proud to be able to support him along the way. Once Ahmad receives his German C1 certificate in December, he wants to study computer science at RWTH Aachen University.

Colleagues are helping him implement his chosen project, "Audio Fingerprints", which involves an examination of the different representations of sound in physics and mathematics.

You want to know more?

Please feel free to get in touch with us regarding any questions you may have related to our services.

Contact us!