Originaldate and originalyear not saved


I’m using Picard on a Mac to tag some ALAC files. The field are found in musicbrainz and all the tags are saved in the file, except originaldate and original year. I see the data in the New Value column. I hit save and the data appears in the right place in the Original Value column, and a green check is placed next to the file name. I delete the files from the upper right pane, and add them back, and these two tags are not there anymore.

Any idea why these tags are not being saved?

I do not have anything in the preferences to ignore certain tags.


If the tag mappings page is accurate, Picard doesn’t write those tags for Apple MP4.

Related ticket here.


Sorry, but I cannot tell that from the mapping page. Can you walk me through how you are reading the page to determine what is written to an MP4 file?

I see in the bug report it hasn’t been fixed. Bummer.

I haven’t used tagge script before, but is there a way I could store that data in another tag, maybe just a custom one I make up?


In the leftmost column you see all tags supported by Picard in some way, the second column shows the tag’s internal name (the one used in tagger script). All other columns show if and how this tag is saved to the different file formats. For MP4 the entry for original date and year is empty, which means it is not saved.

Some explanation why this is the case: Originally Picard was very conservative when saving tags. It only saved tags to files if for the format there was either an existing accepted standard way of storing this tag or at least the big popular players such as iTunes where using some custom tag. But with the exception of MusicBrainz IDs Picard did not make up any tags. For MP4 this basically means Picard followed the iTunes Metadata Specification.

This changed a bit in recent years and Picard now writes more tags to files. A lot of MB users are using players flexible enough to handle custom tags. Still not every tag for every format is supported.


Doh! I was using an ipad to view that table, and I didn’t notice it was wider than the screen, so I didn’t scroll.

M4A tags not saving