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Code Replacements
Ian Harding, Photographer
Calgary | AB | Canada | Posted: 7:48 PM on 03.28.13
->> Hey all,

I'm curious about the reliability of downloading code replacements from a third party website, for sports team rosters prior to events.

I'm looking to use the code replacements in Photo Mechanic and have read some people pushing to use However, whenever I download a file from them, regardless of the date or teams, the "stad" item always displays "Pepsi Center", which is in Denver, CO.

For example, I downloaded the roster list for tonight's game between the Blue Jackets at the Flames. The home arena for the Flames is the Scotiabank Saddledome, yet just like before, the "stad" items displays as "Pepsi Center".

Does anyone have any recommendations for where I could get reliable code replacements? Or should I just accept that for the most accurate results, I need to create them myself?

Thanks in advance for your help.
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Russ Isabella, Photographer
Salt Lake City | UT | USA | Posted: 8:37 PM on 03.28.13
->> In my experience, codes from this site tend to be very accurate, but I don't recall stadium ever being part of those codes. That's information I fill in myself within the IPTC in Photo Mechanic. The codes from this site I rely on are specifically with reference to the rosters for each team.
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Randy Sartin, Photographer, Assistant
Knoxville | TN | USA | Posted: 9:04 PM on 03.28.13
->> I'm with Russ, do not remember seeing the stadium code before, but that is not a feature I would normally use. I find the rosters to be very accurate and use them several times a week, especially during the basketball season.
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Eric Canha, Photographer
Brockton | MA | United States | Posted: 9:21 PM on 03.28.13
->> I use that site on a weekly (usually) basis. I've only once encountered a problem and reported it via email... I got an email back in no time and also received a call while at the venue to make sure that I had a working file for the game. That said I'm sure that there is always the chance that a file may contain an error. Best bet is to report it so that it gets fixed. It's also a good practice to go through the file with a text editor to verify the data. I can verify a roster a heck of a lot faster than typing it from scratch.

I also came to depend on there custom roster feature. A huge time saver in my view.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer, Photo Editor
PLANET | EARTH | | Posted: 10:02 PM on 03.28.13
->> I have never seen a problem with code replacement. ever. I've also never seen the "stad" thing you're talking about. but if you email jason directly he will help you out. it is the best money spent on anything dealing with photography....ever.
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Craig Mitchelldyer, Photographer, Assistant
Portland | OR | USA | Posted: 10:40 PM on 03.28.13
->> Sounds like you have more than one file being read for the replacements. The stad code must be old and that's why it's the same always. I'd clear them all out in PM and then re add. Code replacement is the best thing ever on earth for sure.
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G.J. McCarthy, Photographer
Dallas | TX | US | Posted: 10:43 PM on 03.28.13
->> Yep, agree with Eric (and Chuckie Poo, of course) completely.

I've never had any problems with Jason's product, or that of my buddy Mike Stone's before him. It's reliable and well worth what I think is a pretty reasonable price.

Having said that -- and again, as Eric mentioned -- the onus is kind of on the shooter to verify that all the information in the Text Edit doc downloaded via code replacement matches with the game day roster.

I just consider it another part of my setup workflow, going name by name, position by position, and making sure everything matches up. Remember that code replacement is pulling roster info off stuff available online that may not be quite as accurate or up-to-date with what officials produce at a game. While mistakes are rare, I do catch them on occasion.

Also, I personally only use code replacement to fill in player info, and leave the rest of the typing to me; just feel more comfortable that way. I pre-load in my IPTC cutline with my PhotoMechanic ingest anyway, so really, all I have to do is key in the player codes and then write something to describe the action in the frame. So for example, I would set my PM ingest to fill each frame with the following:

" during the first half of their game Thursday, March 28, 2013 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. (G.J. McCarthy/The Dallas Morning News)

The rest I do myself. I know code replacement can key in all kinds of cool stuff, but I just keep it simple. Again, my preference.

Anyway, good luck,

- gerry -
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Eric Canha, Photographer
Brockton | MA | United States | Posted: 11:18 PM on 03.28.13
->> Criag I downloaded the code file for the teams as mentioned and the stadium is listed as Pepsi.... So at least in this case it's clearly a mistake in Jason's database. That said, it's simple to fix and if Jason has been made aware it's probably fixed already.

One little gem that I was turned onto by a fellow shooter is a program called TextPad... This program is the absolute BOMB for editing the downloaded file, HUGELY flexible and easy to make changes to the files. I drag the code file from my Chrome browser straight to TextPad. Check and make any changes needed and save to the PM folder where I keep code replacements. I also use the same IPTC workflow that Gerry lays out.
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John Korduner, Photographer
Baton Rouge | LA | United States | Posted: 12:13 AM on 03.29.13
->> I think the program ingests tables directly from ESPN's website. I agree with Chuck regarding the value for the events it aggregates, but it's not flawless. Consequently, if you photograph a wider spectrum of events, I've found it more efficient to save a couple basic functions in an Excel worksheet then copy/paste from the website roster.

I also suspect your "stad" issue is an old file you saved to your photomechanic archive.
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Dennis Wierzbicki, Photographer
Chicago | IL | USA | Posted: 8:22 AM on 03.29.13
->> John is correct. Jason has no "database" of his own, but relies on several sources for his rosters. In fact, for some sports, there are multiple options for where you can have his service look for the information ( or, for example).

The only times I've had issues (and Jason has always been very quick to respond to this issues) with what is being compiled are those rare occasions when the site changes its format or when the information contained therein is inaccurate, as sometimes occurs with a new addition to the roster (trade, call-up, etc).

Subscribing to Jason's service is one of the biggest no-brainers around, especially if you shoot more than once each week.
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Eric Francis, Photographer
Omaha | NE | United States | Posted: 10:10 AM on 03.29.13
->> Ian,

Do you remove the old codes then add the new ones for each game. I had this issue a long time ago. Once I started clearing out all other codes and just adding the one that I am using, problem solved.

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Michael Chang, Photographer
Mobile | AL | USA | Posted: 12:22 PM on 03.29.13
->> Save your money and create them yourself.

Download an Excel addon called ASAP Utilities, copy and paste the roster from the school's site or ESPN and format the way you want.

ASAP Utilities can merge columns, add characters in front of a selection of cells or at the end of a selection of cells.

Once you do it a few times, it doesn't take that long to get everything just right.
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G.J. McCarthy, Photographer
Dallas | TX | US | Posted: 12:57 PM on 03.29.13
->> Ian:

Ditto what Eric said; I can see how having the old ones in there would create problems.
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Tim Vizer, Photographer
Belleville | IL | USA | Posted: 5:36 PM on 03.29.13
->> To echo what's been said here already, Jason's site is an invaluable resource. The only problem I ever had was a couple years ago when a basketball coach on a visiting team was fired and on the same day a new one had been named (I think the assistant coach was promoted). Before the game started, when I was building the PM IPTC data, I noticed the discrepancy, and I emailed Jason. By halftime of that same game, he had it fixed!
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Ian Harding, Photographer
Calgary | AB | Canada | Posted: 1:09 PM on 03.31.13
->> Thanks everyone for the comments. I realize nothing is perfect, but I definitely see my CodeReplacements subscription as a positive thing and will continue to utilize their service. Its super handy.

Thanks also for the archive issue note. I'll be sure to keep an eye on that as I move forward.
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Michael L. Stein, Photographer
Smithtown | NY | USA | Posted: 1:57 PM on 03.31.13
->> Hi Ian
Contact Jason at code directly, via the phone number or email address at bottom of his web page. He is always open to updates and revisions. He is also helpful with general questions, from my past communication.
Good luck
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Thread Title: Code Replacements
Thread Started By: Ian Harding
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