Data Fields – Episode

An Episode is an Abstraction record that is registered as a child of a Series or Season.

Episodes can have a Referent Type of TV, Movie, Web, Short, or Supplemental, which cannot be inherited and must be self-defined.

The required state of certain Base Object Data and Extra Object Metadata fields in an Episode record is determined by values in the parent record.

  • The Approximate Length can be inherited if the parent’s Approximate Length is not 0.
  • The Resource Name must be supplied for each Episode if the parent’s Original Title Required is true. Otherwise, the record can be submitted without a Resource Name field and the Registry will generate a standardized title based on available metadata: e.g., $100,000 Pyramid: Season 2: Episode 3
  • The Release Date must always be self-defined, but a full date (rather than just a four-digit year) is required if the parent’s Date Required is true.
  • The Episode must have a Distribution Number in its Extra Object Metadata if the parent’s Number Required is true.

NOTE: There is a Registry validation rule that requires Episodes to have a Release Date that is greater than or equal to the Release Date of the parent Series or Season and less than or equal to the End Date of the parent, if provided. Exceptions are provided for Episodes with an Episode Class of Pilot or Special, which can have release dates outside the span of the parent record.

The Extra Object Metadata for an Episode is contained within EpisodeInfo:

Field NameTypeCardinalityExplanatory Notes
ParentEIDR Content ID: e.g., 10.5240/7715-953F-1CCF-3501-D6CA-H   <xs:element name=”Parent” type=”eidr:assetDOIType”/>1 RequiredThe EIDR Content ID of the parent Series or Season.
EpisodeClassEnumeration: Main, Pilot, Standalone, Special, Omnibus, Recut, Segment <xs:element maxOccurs=”unbounded” minOccurs=”0″ name=”EpisodeClass” type=”eidr:episodeClassType”/>0-7 OptionalDescribes the general type of Episode. Most Episodes are Main, which is assumed if no Episode Class is provided.   See “EpisodeClass Details” below.  
SequenceInfo<xs:element minOccurs=”0″ name=”SequenceInfo” type=”md:ContentSequenceInfo-type”/>0-1 Conditionally RequiredEpisode sequence numbers.   Required if the parent NumberRequired is true.   SequenceInfo is a complex type where all data are recorded in child elements.
 /md:DistributionNumberA complex number[1] up to 8 characters long supporting the most common Episode number formats (1, 203, 4a, etc.) and compound Episode formats (3a/b, 4-6, etc.). <xs:element minOccurs=”0″ name=”DistributionNumber” type=”md:complex-SequenceInfo-DistributionNumber”/>0-1 Conditionally RequiredThe position number of the Episode within its parent Season (or parent Series, if a season-less episode) during initial broadcast.   Required if the parent NumberRequired is true.   See “Episode Number Details” below.
  @domainA text string with no whitespace characters, following the general pattern of a dot-separated list of sub-domains ending in a top-level domain: e.g.: itv.com   <xs:attribute name=”domain” type=”md:string-SequenceInfo-DistributionNumber-domain”/>0-1 OptionalIdentifies the organization that assigned the number.
 /md:HouseSequenceA complex number[2] up to 8 characters long, e.g.: 204   <xs:element minOccurs=”0″ name=”HouseSequence” type=”md:complex-SequenceInfo-HouseSequence”/>0-1 OptionalThe internal Episode number assigned by the producer or commissioning broadcaster. May differ from the Distribution Number in format or sequence.   See “Episode Number Details” below.
  @domainA text string with no whitespace characters, following the general pattern of a dot-separated list of sub-domains ending in a top-level domain: e.g.: itv.com   <xs:attribute name=”domain” type=”md:string-SequenceInfo-DistributionNumber-domain”/>0-1 OptionalIdentifies the organization that assigned the number.
 /md:AlternateNumberA complex number[3] up to 8 characters long, e.g. 1402b   <xs:element maxOccurs=”32″ minOccurs=”0″ name=”AlternateNumber” type=”md:complex-SequenceInfo-AlternateNumber”/>0-32 OptionalAny other numbering sequence for the Episode. Examples include: a number that is cumulative across seasons; numbers that result from re-ordering in foreign distribution; a number from an EPG provider, etc.   See “Episode Number Details” below.
  @domainA text string with no whitespace characters, following the general pattern of a dot-separated list of sub-domains ending in a top-level domain: e.g.: itv.com   <xs:attribute name=”domain” type=”md:string-SequenceInfo-DistributionNumber-domain”/>1 RequiredIdentifies the organization that assigned the number.   NOTE: Unlike Distribution Number and House Sequence, all Alternate Numbers must have an identifying domain.
EpisodeClassEnumeration: Main, Pilot, Standalone, Special, Omnibus, Recut, Segment <xs:element maxOccurs=”unbounded” minOccurs=”0″ name=”EpisodeClass” type=”eidr:episodeClassType”/>0-7 OptionalDescribes the general type of Episode. Most Episodes are Main, which is assumed if no Episode Class is provided.   See “EpisodeClass Details” below.  
TimeSlotA time of day (xs:time): e.g., 09:00:00-08:00   <xs:element minOccurs=”0″ name=”TimeSlot” type=”xs:time”/>0-1 OptionalThe start time of the time slot of the original broadcast.   See “TimeSlot Details” below.

Here is sample XML for the Extra Object Metadata for an Episode (the preceding Base Object Data is not shown):

ExtraObjectMetadata>
  <EpisodeInfo>
    <Parent>10.5240/14F9-6921-47AF-E605-E45D-H</Parent>
    <SequenceInfo>
      <md:DistributionNumber domain="spe.sony.com">2</md:DistributionNumber>
      <md:AlternateNumber domain="spe.sony.com">5518</md:AlternateNumber>
    </SequenceInfo>
  </EpisodeInfo>
</ExtraObjectMetadata>

EpisodeClass Details

ValueExplanatory Notes
 MainThe standard type of Episode for a Series. If no Episode Class is specified, then Main is assumed.
PilotThe Series pilot episode. Not all Series have pilots. NOTE: Setting the Episode Class to Pilot optionally allows the Episode to take on a Distribution Number of 0 and a Release Date outside the parent Season’s or Series’ run.
StandaloneWas, is, or could be in distribution as a standalone TV program, independent of its Series. This often applies to pilots, specials, series with movie-length episodes, anthology programs that re-air shows that were originally released on their own (in broadcast, theatrical, etc.), etc.
SpecialAn Episode that is outside the usual sequence of programs in that Season or Series, such as a Christmas special. NOTE: Setting the Episode Class to Special optionally allows the Episode to take on a Distribution Number of 0 and a Release Date outside the parent Season’s or Series’ run.
OmnibusAn edited synopsis of multiple Episodes, such as a weekly recap of the prior week’s episodes or a pre-season recap of the prior season’s episodes.
RecutThe primary content of multiple episodes merged into one episode. NOTE: Simply splitting an episode into smaller pieces either results in Episode Segments (if the pieces represent self-contained packages within the original program) or Split Edits (if the larger program is simply divided into pieces as a matter of convenience – to fit a shorter time slot, to make a more convenient download, etc.).
SegmentAn individual part of an episode that that can stand on its own, such as the common practice in half-hour cartoon programs of including two or more separate cartoons. Individual Episode Segments can also be re-combined to form new composite episodes.

1.1.1     Episdoe Number Details

Episode Distribution Numbers are 1 to 8 characters long. They can be simple integer episode numbers (1, 2, 3, …), season-episode numbers (201, 202, 203, …), a number followed by a letter (1a, 1b, 2a, …) or two such numbers with a separator character (2-6, 3a/b, 3a/4a, …). Only Pilots and Specials can have the Distribution Number 0. The allowed separators are :/-., (colon, slash, hyphen, period, and comma).

House Sequence numbers are less structured sequences 1 to 8 characters long and can contain any combination of 0-9, a-z, A-Z, and the symbols :/-., (colon, slash, hyphen, period, and comma).

Alternate Numbers are 1 to 8 characters long and start with one or more alphanumeric characters; optionally followed by 0 or more suffixes. Each suffix is composed of a separator character followed by 1 or more alphanumeric characters. The allowed separators are :/-., (colon, slash, hyphen, period, and comma).

TimeSlot Details

Time slots reference the start time of the original broadcast of a program based on the earliest time zone it was first presented in. For example, a national broadcast in the US would use Eastern Time as the basis for its time slot whether it was pre-recorded or broadcast live.

Time slots are based on XML xs:time and take the form hh:mm:ss[Z|[+|-]HH:MM]:

OR

All of the numbers are two-digit, non-negative integers with leading zeros as necessary.

1.1.1     Composite Episode Details

Episodes can optionally include Composite information (as described in “Composite” below) within their Extra Object Metadata block. For example:

<ExtraObjectMetadata>
  <EpisodeInfo>
    <Parent>10.5240/7833-E70C-F070-07B2-01F2-W</Parent>
    <SequenceInfo>
      <md:DistributionNumber domain="nbcuni.com">12/13</md:DistributionNumber>
    </SequenceInfo>
  </EpisodeInfo>
  <CompositeInfo>
    <CompositeClass>Mashup</CompositeClass>
    <Element>
      <ID>10.5240/4168-A39F-82BF-5A54-2129-Z</ID>
    </Element>
    <Element>
      <ID>10.5240/6BB9-B779-781E-196F-61CE-N</ID>
    </Element>
  </CompositeInfo>
</ExtraObjectMetadata>

[1] The XML regular expression that controls Distribution Numbers is “0|[1-9][0-9a-zA-Z]*([:/\-.,][0-9a-zA-Z]+)?”

[2] The XML regular expression that controls House Sequence numbers is “[0-9a-zA-Z:/\-.,]+”

[3] The XML regular expression that controls Alternate Numbers is “[0-9a-zA-Z]+([:/\-.,][0-9a-zA-Z]+)*”

Updated on April 10, 2021

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