International Press Telecommunications Council
The International Press Telecommunications Council, based in London, United Kingdom, is a consortium of the world's major news agencies and news industry vendors. It develops and maintains technical standards for improved news exchange that are used by virtually every major news organization in the world.
Currently about 70 companies and organizations from the news industry are members of the IPTC.
Most of IPTC's current work involves XML-based business-to-business standards for sharing news, and development of advanced metadata to describe and classify news text, photos, graphics, videos and other media.
The IPTC was established in 1965 by a group of news organisations including the Alliance Européenne des Agences de Presse, American Newspaper Publishers Association (now NAA), Fédération Internationale des Editeurs de Journaux (now WAN-IFRA) and the North American News Agencies (a joint committee of Associated Press, Canadian Press and United Press International) to safeguard the telecommunications interests of the world's press.
The IPTC defined a set of metadata properties that can be applied to images, part of a broader standard developed in the early 1990s and known as the IPTC Information Interchange Model (IIM). Embedded IIM image information is often referred to as an "IPTC header".
The Extensible Metadata Platform (XMP) has largely superseded IIM's image file header structure, but the IIM properties are redefined in the IPTC Core schema and extended by the IPTC Extension schema, both used in XMP. Most image manipulation programs keep the XMP and non-XMP IPTC properties synchronized.
Because of its nearly universal acceptance among photographers — even amateurs — this is by far IPTC's most widely used standard.
IPTC G2-Standards Family
Using XML and the W3C’s model for the Semantic Web, in 2008 IPTC launched a new series of standards that feature modular construction and many opportunities for embedding metadata. This allows developers to build applications that use only the parts if the IPTC G2-Standards that are required by the customer, and that reduce programming costs by re-using XML and metadata modules. Further the G2-Standards extend the scope of exchange formats beyond news content, they include event data and well organised information about persons, organisations, points of interest, geopolitical areas or abstract concepts.
NewsML-G2 acts as an envelope and organizer so that news providers can create single news items — text, photos, video or anything else — and bundle them into concise cohesive packages than can be automatically processed by web CMSs or newsroom systems. The content and relationships of the individual news items can be described using a rich set of metadata.
NewsML-G2 is not a text or image mark-up format. For example, it does not contain paragraph or headline tagging. Rather, it is an envelope and organizer that does not, by itself, act as a content format.
EventsML-G2 optimises the sharing of event information such as meetings, sports events, elections, and even rocket launches — virtually any announced activity that can be broadly classified as an "event." Using XML and metadata, EventsML-G2 allows news providers to create rich descriptions of events plus information about planned coverage, and then share that information with web sites, databases, newsrooms or other customers.
SportsML-G2 is a convenient way to share sports statistics in a concise, unambiguous way. All major sports are supported, and certain sports that are known for rich or especially complex statistics (such as baseball) can use special add-on modules. SportsML-G2 has found wide usage outside the news industry; among the user communities are sports teams, fantasy sports leagues, sports betting firms and sports historians. SportsML-G2 is the newer sibling of SportsML.
NewsML is an XML standard developed by the IPTC to provide a media-independent, structural enveloping framework for multi-media news. It was recently superseded by NewsML-G2, although IPTC plans to support this standards as NewsML 1.x indefinitely.
News Industry Text Format
News Industry Text Format (NITF) is an XML specification published by the IPTC that is designed to standardize the content and structure of text-based news articles.
SportsML is a convenient way to share sports statistics in a concise, unambiguous way. All major sports are supported, and certain sports that are known for rich or especially complex statistics (such as baseball) can use special add-on modules. SportsML has found wide usage outside the news industry; among the user communities are sports teams, fantasy sports leagues, sports betting firms and sports historians. The newer sibling of SportsML is SportsML-G2.
IPTC 7901 is still a widely used format for plain text news, despite being 30 years old. It is a close relative of the Newspaper Association of America North American standard ANPA-1312, and uses similar control and other special characters to create a file that can be used to drive computerized news editing systems, photo typesetters or even teleprinter machines.
- The International Press Telecommunications Council
- Current IPTC members
- IPTC Photo Metadata
- NewsML 1.x and NewsML-G2
- SportsML and SportsML-G2
- IPTC 7901