Should a new version of my song be merged with the original version or separated?
- New versions of older songs that are no longer Current on the airplay charts should usually be separated from the original versions.
- New versions (remixes, live versions, acoustic versions, etc.) of songs that are currently charting should usually be merged with the original versions. This is so that all airplay, streaming and sales counts towards one unified chart position and the chart impact of the song is not diluted. Example: If there's a song being promoted to radio and it is working its way up the charts, and then a remix or new version of the song is released, in most cases we will merge it with the original version.
- The exception would be if the label specifically requested that a version be encoded separately or if the new version did not meet the guidelines to be merged. Ex: a song is technically current on the charts (based on Release Date and its chart history) but the label is not actively working it to radio. They then release a new version/remix that they want to keep separate from the original version because they are actively working the remix to radio and trying to get it onto the airplay charts.
If an alternate version of a song that is currently charting has different lyrics AND melody than the original version it will not be merged. Remixes should be an extension of the original recording in order to be merged.
If elements of a song are included in a new version which contains vocals by an artist who was not a part of the original recording or was solely listed as a featured artist the two versions will not be merged if the lead artist from the original recording has been relegated to featured status or otherwise has minimal presence in the new version.
Multi-artist versions of charity, holiday or other themed songs will only be merged if a majority of the artists appear on both versions.
- Sometimes there are technical limitations to what we can separate in the BDS encoding process and therefore versions must be merged. If two versions are very similar sonically our computers might not be able to distinguish between the two versions.
- Media that is related to a song but is not the song itself will be separated (such as tribute versions, karaoke tracks, commentary tracks, behind the scenes videos, etc.)