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Mix Challenge - stricter Rule Book enforcement (October 2022 Update)

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Mister Fox
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Mix Challenge - stricter Rule Book enforcement (October 2022 Update)


Post by Mister Fox »

Hello everyone,

as announced during the "Summary for MC087", and reiterated with MC088 / October 2022...

Starting with MC089 / December 2022, but no later than MC090 / February 2023 (assuming we have access to multi-track source material), I am enforcing the adherence to the given filename template.

:arrow: Explanation for the stricter requirement:

Part of the Mix(ing) Challenge game mechanics and learning process, is getting access to a Statistics Sheet, which gives a global overview in whether or not participants have adhered to the given Rules and Guidelines prior to submitting an entry. The Statistic Sheet is created with the help of the Batch Analysis tool from Steinberg Wavelab. The readouts are exported as CSV file, then manually(!) edited into readable form for distribution in PDF format. For quite a while now, I've also been using scripting to speed up the layout process.

However, problems keep arising with the file naming by each participant. Proper filename templates have been provided since MC058 / September 2019, always in form of MC000__ArtistName__TrackName__ForumUsername.wav -- either in the first post of each thread, or in the second one. Yet each participant still seems to do their own thing. As in, omitting the full Mix(ing) Challenge number on occasion, underlines, or just ignoring the filename template altogether. This in turn causes massive troubles on various layers.

First and foremost, browsers often don't properly remember the folder where a file should be saved to, and are then saved in the wrong folder. If you utilize for example MC87 instead of MC087, I can't find your file anymore. Then there is the topic of sorting files, which makes it infinitely harder to figure out if I picked up all entries for analysis. If somebody used one underline instead of two, or no underlines at all, then files are sorted as the OS seems fit. To prevent this chaos, I went ahead and started to also note down the "post ID" of the entry, which in turn makes it easier for both the participants and song provider(s) to find an entry on the Statistic Sheet, and/or the corresponding documentation on the forum.

There is also the learning factor that the community tries to provide. A wrong filename can result in less favorable communication between you and your client. As somebody that has been on this particular receiving end, it has been ingrained to triple check how things need to be labeled.

The biggest issue arises with the scripting. If the filenames are all over the place, then data that can be omitted while running a script, results in scrambled results. So I have to go back and edit things manually again, which is unnecessarily time consuming.

:arrow: "Tagged Disqualified" criteria:

Up until MC087, not adhering to the provided filename template did neither result in a warning, nor a "entry disqualified" tag. Those that did not adhere to the template provided with MC088, will merely see a warning on the Statistic Sheet at the end of the month.

As of MC089 / December 2022, I will be setting your entry to "tagged disqualified" on the Statistic Sheet, if you do not use the provided scheme.

This does not mean your entry is fully out of the game. Only that, if you have been selected for Mix Round 2, you might need to use one of your available Wild Cards in order to advance the game. So paying attention to detail is important. Your entry will only be fully disqualified, if it can't be downloaded by the time the deadline has been reached, or can't be associated to your forum account.

The "Song Length" topic is still unaffected from this. As of the moment, it is merely an additional piece of information on the Statistic Sheet. Regardless of that, you should always leave suitable silence in front and in back for proper fade in/fade out and reverb tail processing and prevention of transient smearing for possible follow-up editing.

:arrow: Rule Book update:

You might have noticed, that the Rule Book mentions a template with a different layout than provided with each game. This has been an oversight and will be addressed / edited in the coming weeks. Most important is what has been mentioned in the game threads themselves.

Thanks for reading :educate:
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