Metadata is used to describe media files and a metadata editor lets users edit those descriptions. In order to quickly search and identify different files efficiently, you’ll want to use tools that automate and bolster metadata. This guide will give you a breakdown of what these tools and entail and why you should use them. Here’s a complete breakdown of the different ways to implement the right metadata editing software.

What Is a Metadata Editor?

A metadata editor is software that edits metadata on selected files. Metadata editors vary from system to system and users can utilize different metadata editing programs depending on their individual requirements. It is capable of opening and viewing metadata rich files as well.

Metadata is information or data about a specific file. A metadata editor alters that information based on user commands to account for accuracy errors. A metadata editor functions similarly to a records database does when it changes a file. If someone’s birth date (metadata) was incorrectly logged into the system, it would have to be changed by a user (metadata editor) to be accurate.

A young female office worker writes something down from her monitor.
Metadata software changes information.

When to Use Metadata Editing Software

Depending on the type of file you need to change metadata for – audio files, video files or other file types – you may need to use a program to edit a metadata file. You’ll need a metadata editor when your files require sophisticated editing and changes. For example, enterprises likely need a program to document the many metadata edits they’ll end up performing. They also might prefer the time saved from automating their metadata functions.

Though it’s possible to edit the metadata of certain file types (such as image file types, as explained below), this is a very basic option typically for users with a select small group of files to work with. Generally, a larger scale file group in an organization needs editing software. Especially as companies continue to grow their data, it’s inevitable that they’ll have an abundance of files that use metadata tags. This alone qualifies most businesses to use an editor.

A picture of a keyword search on a computer.
The amount of files you store typically dictates whether you need software systems to help.

How to Edit Metadata of an Image

Manual editing or non-software editing of metadata in a file is possible. In an image, for example, users can make edits directly in their computer OS. Here’s how to manually edit the metadata of an image file in Windows:

  1. Locate the image file you wish to alter
  2. Right-click it and select ‘Properties’ from the popup window
  3. On the top of the new popup window, click the ‘details’ tab
  4. Locate the type of metadata you would like to add or change. For example, under ‘Origin’ you can change the acquired date
  5. When you are finished, click ‘Apply’ then ‘OK’
A screenshot of someone editing a file.
The ‘Properties’ section on Windows holds metadata.

Conversely, here’s how to edit metadata manually on a MAC:

  1. Open the ‘Photos’ app
  2. Locate the intended image and right-click it
  3. Select ‘Get info’ from the popup window
  4. From the new window, find the details you wish to change

Automate Your Metadata and Tagging

Now that you have a structure in place to edit metadata, use a program that automates the entire metadata tagging process. Canto digital asset management (DAM) is a system with extensive metadata automation features. It automatically tags media files and organizes information about data for future search and retrieval.

DAM also integrates with numerous programs, so it’s entirely possible all your metadata-related systems are synced. Consider adding DAM when you need comprehensive metadata management on top of your metadata editing requirements.

Turn to a metadata editor when you have extensive editing needs for large quantities of files. It simplifies a lot of the data editing tasks. This keeps your company on top of trends such as growing data and file storage. It also ensures your efficiency stays intact and strong due to the fast retrieval of files through tagging.

Casey Schmidt – Content Manager and Industry Expert | Canto

Casey is a content management and branding expert who enjoys taking complex subjects and making them easy to understand for readers.