Asking readers for duration

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Kazbek
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Post by Kazbek » June 3rd, 2020, 8:48 pm

As a not-quite-experienced BC, I'd like some advice about our standard procedure of asking readers to list the length of their recording when they submit it for PL or spot PL. I understand that we want to list duration in the MW to help PLers budget the time they'll need for the task. I also like to open the upload links to check that they work and compare the actual and the reported duration to make sure the file wasn't cut off during the upload (though I'm not sure this is actually possible). Here's a question I'm sometimes struggling with: is there a reason why we would insist on having the reader tell us the duration for every upload? For example, if I'm the BC and PL for a poetry collection, I get all the information I need by glancing at the text of the poem and then following the text with the recording. If I'm getting an upload for spot PL as a BC, I can usually tell from the PL notes and the actual length that the recording isn't the original version and wasn't cut off. Is there a reason to initiate an extra round of back-and-forth with the reader in cases like these?

Michael

annise
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Post by annise » June 3rd, 2020, 9:05 pm

Yes - the recording doesn't stay in the uploader, it is moved during the validating process, then again to Archive and it's nice to know it all arrived each time. :D It's also handy when someone uploads files with the wrong number to be able to work out which is correct.
And it's easier to get in the habit of always adding runtime than having exemptions - it is always necessary to post a link after uploading so adding the run time is not a great effort.

Anne

ej400
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Post by ej400 » June 3rd, 2020, 9:10 pm

Also, say for example someone uploads and says the file was 2 minutes and 5 seconds, but when the BC checks it, it says it's 18 minutes and 30 seconds long.... kind of makes sure the reader knows what they uploaded :D

TriciaG
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Post by TriciaG » June 4th, 2020, 5:43 am

When cataloging, I check the run times at Archive with what is in the MW. I've had sections either totally the wrong files (such as Anne mentions) or I've had the unedited section show up at Archive because the link to the file in the MW pointed to the old, unedited file. Having run times to compare is a first line of defense against such mistakes.

Granted, that can't fix every mistake of this kind. If the only edits were such that they didn't change the run time much, then I wouldn't catch them. And it's amazing how many times the run times are 2-3 seconds off! I've even noticed it on my own computer: in one place it's listed as one time, in another it displays as another time. :shock: But that shouldn't be a deterrent to posting them, please. :)

(Consider this also a good reason for the DPL/PL to download the file from the MW rather than from the link posted in the thread. That way they're checking the file that is destined for the catalog, if it's different than what was posted in the thread.)
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Kazbek
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Post by Kazbek » June 4th, 2020, 3:36 pm

Thanks for the responses. I don't quite see the difference between noting duration in the MW based on the reader's indication and doing it based on actual length of the recording, in those cases where I'm reasonably sure that the recording in the correct version, but the unanimous verdict has convinced me that getting duration from readers is a community practice we want to uphold consistently.

Michael

TriciaG
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Post by TriciaG » June 4th, 2020, 4:46 pm

I don't quite see the difference between noting duration in the MW based on the reader's indication and doing it based on actual length of the recording, in those cases where I'm reasonably sure that the recording in the correct version
If the reader hasn't posted it, then yeah - go ahead and enter it if you have the info. :) Usually the BC isn't the one downloading the files (unless they're also PL'ing), so they generally wouldn't know the length of the files unless they were told. We don't want to put the onus on the PL to enter that info - it's generally not part of their job. But if you're PL'ing, and the reader hasn't said how long the file is, then please do put that info into the MW.
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mightyfelix
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Post by mightyfelix » June 4th, 2020, 5:05 pm

What Tricia said is a good rule of thumb. However, even if I do go and check the duration myself, I'll almost always, as BC, remind the reader that they need to include that information every time they post a new file. I figure that the more I drill it in, the quicker it will become habit for them. :)

tovarisch
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Post by tovarisch » June 5th, 2020, 6:57 am

mightyfelix wrote:
June 4th, 2020, 5:05 pm
... I figure that the more I drill it in, the quicker it will become habit for them. :)
Not to question your BC practices... Putting the duration will become a habit if they do it (in response to your nagging). Otherwise it might become a habit of seeing you nag and ignoring you. Keep in mind that the habit in is their mind, not yours, and it forms as the result of their actions, not yours. :)
tovarisch
  • reality prompts me to scale down my reading, sorry to say
    to PLers: do correct my pronunciation please

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