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What is streaming audio?
OLAC (Online Audiovisual Catalogers) defines streaming audio as audio "that is transmitted over a network that can be played immediately, with no need to download an entire file before playback. Audio content is sent to the user as a data stream. A small amount of data is sent ahead to the user’s computer and buffered temporarily on the hard drive, and as playback proceeds, more data is constantly streamed to the user’s machine. The files created by buffering are temporary, and are gone when playback is complete.
This technology allows users to access audio content without having to wait for entire files to download. This minimizes both the amount of time required to view audiovisual content online, and the amount of storage space necessary to do so."
For cataloging purposes, streaming audio is considered both sound recording and remotely accessed electronic resource.
Types of streaming audio
There are many types of streaming audio files, including but not limited to, .wma, .mp3, .wav, .aiff, and .wax
What is not considered streaming audio?
See examples of what is not considered streaming audio.
Method used in this Guide to catalog streaming audio
This guide shows how to catalog streaming audio following the guidelines recommended in the Best Practices for Cataloging Streaming Media created by the OLAC Cataloging Policy Committee.
How to catalog streaming audio: