Media files, such as MP3 audio files, hold information about the file's content in containers called ID3 tags. ID3 tags form part of all MP3 files, and they contain information such as the episode title, artist or author name, description, artwork, and more.
When listeners download a podcast episode to listen to offline, media players show them the information in the ID3 tags. Some media players pull information from ID3 tags even when connected to the internet. That's why it is highly recommended you enter ID3 tag information. Even though entering that information isn't required when you publish in your Libsyn account, it's important to do so because it ensures that all your listeners get a consistent experience, regardless of how they listen to your episodes.
Although you don't need to have information in your ID3 tags when you upload an episode in your Libsyn account, you do need to have information in your ID3 tags if you are publishing using FTP. For more information about how to publish using FTP, see Use FTP to Upload or Publish Your Episodes.
There are two main ways to update ID3 tags in your media files: download an ID3 editor and use it to edit the ID3 tags in your MP3 files before you publish, or use the fields in Libsyn when publishing an episode.
Use an ID3 Editor to Enter Information in Your Media File
There are many ID3 editors that you can download to edit the ID3 tags in your media files. The editor you choose depends on your preferences.
After you download and install the tool of your choice, you can use it to update the ID3 tags with information about the episode contained in the file, including information such as the title of the episode, the name of your show, a description of your episode, episode artwork, and more.
Sometimes, the names of ID3 tags are geared to the music industry. For example, ID3 tags might include a field called Album. Libsyn uses that field to store the name of your show. For a general overview of how ID3 tag names correspond to Libsyn fields, see the table below.
ID3 Tag Name
|Corresponding Information or Libsyn Field
|Corresponds to the Author field.
|Refers to the name of your show.
|Truncated version of the Description field. You can enter your full description here. Players and other programs will truncate it to offer a short version of the episode description.
|Full version of the Description field.
|Contains the episode's artwork. If you include episode artwork, it overrides the artwork you set for your show. (We recommend that you limit the ID3 size for art to 300 KB with a maximum of 800 x 800 pixels.)
Import ID3 Tag Information to Libsyn
When you publish an episode and upload your media file in Libsyn, you can import the information you entered in the ID3 tags to Libsyn. Libsyn then uses that information to publish to the destinations you've connected your show to, such as your RSS feed, podcast directories, or your website.
To import the information in the ID3 tags, upload your episode and then click the Populate Form with ID3 Data button in the Add Episode form. The ID3 information you entered appears in the corresponding Libsyn fields.
If you began entering information in the fields in the Add Episode form before you clicked the Populate Form with ID3 Data button, the information in your ID3 tags replaces the information you entered in Libsyn. However, the information you entered is not lost! To retrieve what you wrote, click Undo.
If necessary, you can review the information from your ID3 tags. If you want to update anything, just edit the information in the fields in the Add Episode form. Then, select the Update ID3 Tags checkbox to export your updates to your ID3 tags.
Update ID3 Tags When Publishing in Libsyn
If you don't want to edit your ID3 tags before you upload a media file to Libsyn, you can write all of the information about the episode in Libsyn and then use that information to populate the ID3 tags.
When you're done writing the information about your episode in Libsyn, select the Update ID3 Tags checkbox at the bottom of the Add Episode form. Libsyn exports all of the information you entered about your episode into the corresponding ID3 tags in your media file. Now, when listeners download your file to listen to offline, it will contain the same information in the ID3 files that you entered in Libsyn.