Warning: This feature is for advanced users. Read the following before attempting to enable separation rules. Common issues and how to resolve them are detailed at the bottom of this article.
- If you enable separation rules but have only a handful of tracks in your library then your service may stop broadcasting. You MUST make sure you have enough music to allow for the rules to take effect. Otherwise, your station will either fall silent, revert to shuffle or behave erratically (depending on your station playout scenario)
- If you want some of your tracks to play regularly (like jingles, sweepers, or adverts) make sure they are tagged, then exclude the tags from the rule by adding them to the 'Allowed Tags' section. That way your jingles will keep playing between songs.
- Please ensure your uploaded tracks contain Artist or Album names. If you have many tracks with 'unknown' artists/albums, these will fail to play and cause radio silence or shuffled tracks.
Access separation rules within your Radio.co Settings under the Advanced tab. Switch on either Album Separation or Artist Separation to activate these rules.
Please Note: Separation Rules only work on tagged tracks. For example, you will need to have a playlist that uses tags to take advantage of Separation Rules, as they do not interfere with tracks that have been added to a playlist manually.
Duration is in minutes, enter between 10 and 1440 (1 day).
Enter tags that you want to be excluded from the separation rule, for instance, jingles or promos are usually by the same artist, so you do not want this rule to affect them.
Common Issues and Troubleshooting
If you're using Tags and the Separation Rules, then you could have some issues if you haven't configured the settings correctly. For example:
- Is your station skipping tracks in your playlist?
- Is your station only playing a certain type of track? (Example, only your Jingles are being played)
- Are completely different playlists playing, and the station is not following your schedule?
All of these are signs that the Separation Rules are not working correctly with your particular settings. The reasons for each of the scenarios above are detailed below.
- If your station is skipping tracks (Tags), then that means Radio.co can't find any track that is allowed to play, as the Separation Rules are blocking all of them. Radio.co will skip the Tag when this occurs so it can move on to the next available Tag, which is allowed to play.
- Further to point one, if your station will only play one type of track, such as a Jingle, this could mean you have a Jingle tag which has been added to the Allowed Tags section. These tags are excluded from any Separation Rule settings, so these are allowed to play whereas your other tracks are not.
- If your station can't find anything to play in the playlist because the tags are violating the Separation Rules (eg, everything that is available to play has played within the Duration set), then your station may fall back to a random track from your Media library. This is because Radio.co isn't allowed to play anything from the playlist, and so to avoid dead air (silence), your station finds anything it can to continue playing.
To find the cause of these issues, you will need to check the following:
- Check that your Media library has the correct Artist and Album information for every track. "Unknown" information is known to cause the majority of conflicts that occur. You will need to correct any Unknown or incorrect information. You can bulk update information using the Edit button (left of the Delete button) in the Media section after selecting a group of tracks.
- Check that the Separation Rules Duration setting is not too high - for example, a duration of 300 minutes (5 hours) would only be suitable if your station has enough Artists or Albums to cover over 5 hours, approximately 30 unique Artists and/or Albums in a tag. You may wish to try reducing this time if you have problems.
- You may wish to try disabling one of the rules, so that only the Artist or Album Separation Rule is enabled.
- You may wish to try disabling Separation Rules altogether.
If you continue to have issues after trying these troubleshooting steps, please contact Support.