Syndicating your news with an RSS feed is easy. Syndicating your media and videos with MRSS (media RSS)? Well that’s easy as well, here’s is a complete tutorial on how to do it.

In case you are wondering just what the difference is between RSS and MRSS, you can read our tutorial here.

Since MRSS is just an extension of RSS some of this might look familiar to you. Below is the example MRSS file that we will work with in this tutorial. The empty lines are not necessary and could be removed if you so wished, they are purely for ease of reading.

<rss version=”2.0″ xmlns:media=””>
<title>ReelSEO Video News</title>
<description>The ReelSEO Video News Archive</description>
<title>MRRS Example Video</title>
<description>The example landing page for this MRSS item</description>
<guid isPermaLink=”false”></guid>
<media:content url=” /example.avi" fileSize=”405321″ type=”video/x-msvideo" height=”240″ width=”320″ duration=”120″ medium=”video" isDefault=”true”><media:title>The ReelSEO MRSS example video</media:title>
<media:description>Check out the 120 seconds of fast-paced MRSS fun with ReelSEO.</media:description>
<media:thumbnail url=”" height=”120″ width=”160″/>

As you can see from the file it begins like a normal RSS file (line 1), but we need to specify the fact that we are using the Media RSS extension for RSS 2.0 which is done with this:


This alerts RSS and news reader applications to the fact that there will be some form of media in the feed so it knows what to do. The Media RSS module adds on to the standard RSS 2.0 protocol so that audio, video and image files can be syndicated more easily.

The next few lines are standard RSS:

<channel> – A standard RSS 2.0 container for all information. One feed, one channel

<title> – It’s the name, generally similar to where the feed is coming from, like your main media page.

<link> – The URL where the feed is coming from. A media archive page, your home page, etc.

<description> – Well it’s a description of your MRSS feed content.

<item> – This tag is required so that the RSS applications know the beginning and end of each item.

Everything in the <item></item> tags is considered one separate entry, article or story. Again there is a <title> tag for the specific item, a <link> to the item’s URL, a <description> of the item and a <guid> (Globally Unique Identifier) which is optional and is generally a URL to the item itself. That covers lines 7-11. Moving forward we now get to the important information about the Media Extension for RSS 2.0.

Line 14 begins the <media> block which is where we will define the specific content that is to be included in the item. This is obviously a very important section as it is the vehicle by which your media will be shared. All of the tags have a two-part element to show that they define a media item. In total there are 13 actual tags that you could include in the media section. However, only the <media:content> tag is actually necessary provided there is a URL in the tag or you use a <media:player> tag later, which we will discuss. The most basic item would look like this:

<title>MRRS Example Video</title>
<description>The example landing page for this MRSS item</description>\
<media:content url=" /example.avi" medium=”video”>

As you can see we have the <media:content> tag with a URL to the video file and the medium, which I left in there so that everyone knows what is being sent. The medium descriptor could be audio, video, image, document or even executable. Theoretically that could also be taken out. Now this is a very basic item set up and would not be very helpful to your potential readers. So let’s add in some further details.

Here is a more useful media element from our original file:

<media:content url=” /example.avi" fileSize=”405321″ type=”video/x-msvideo" height=”240″ width=”320″ duration=”120″ medium=”video" isDefault=”true”>
<media:title>The ReelSEO MRSS example video</media:title>
<media:description>Check out the 120 seconds of fast-paced MRSS fun with ReelSEO.</media:description>
<media:thumbnail url=”" height=”120″ width=”160″/>

In this version we have some of the optional tags to give our potential viewers more information about the file. The first is filesize which is increasingly more important as video definition increases and Hi-Def files become more prevalent online. Next is the type which specifies the exact mime type for the file. I handy reference to them can be found here which also includes a list by file extension. Next are the height and the width of the video as well as the duration. Again we have a medium tag which was already discussed and finally the isDefault tag which determines if this is the default item, or first item to be played, if there is a <media:group>

The <media:group> is the super-group for <media:content> and is used when there are multiple formats for the same content. This would be used if our video were in .avi, .mpg and .mov for example. There would then be multiple <media:content> containers in the <media:group>.

A quick example:



<media:content> 1 </media:content>

<media:content> 2 </media:content>



The other three tags title, description and thumbnail should all be self-explanatory as well. There are other optional tags that can be included which includes: keywords, rating, player, copyright, credit and text. The text tag is interesting as it allows the inclusion of a text transcript or closed captioning file for the video. See the ReelSEO tutorial on making captions and subtitles for further information on why you might wish to do that.

Full Media RSS Elements and explanations can be found here. Furthermore, they have a good selection of examples there as well and other useful information including all changes that are made to the specification, which are posted in the changelog at the top.

Unfortunately as with all cutting-edge technology and specifications there is no quick and easy-to-use program that will generate MRSS files for you. Though, some editor applications, like PSPad, are able to generate a standard RSS file that you can then add your required information into it is more of a time-saver than an actual help at times.

For a list of places to submit your video or multimedia MRSS feed, check out our post and list of places to submit videos and video RSS/MRSS feeds.

Other Useful Links pertaining to Media RSS:

<media:content> attribute list:

  • url – The location of the media itself – Optional. If not present then there should be a <media:player> element.
  • fileSize – How big the media file is – optional.
  • type – It’s the mime type of the media file (see above) – optional.
  • medium – What is it? Is it image, audio, video, document or an executable? This helps the reader application know exactly what to expect when used with the type attribute – optional.
  • isDefault – Is this the default object for the media group? There can be only one of these – optional
  • expression – Is this a sample file or is it the full-length media file and does it loop? Can be set to sample, full or nonstop. Default value is ‘full’. – Optional.
  • bitrate – This is the kilobits per second of the file – optional
  • framerate – How many frames are displayed per second – optional.
  • samplingrate – How many samples per second were taken to create the media? Set in kilohertz (thousands per second) – optional.
  • channels – How many audio channels does the media have? – optional
  • duration – How long is the media file (in seconds) – optional.
  • height – How many pixels high? – optional
  • width –How many pixels wide? – Optional.
  • lang – What language is the media in primarily? Language codes possible are detailed in RFC 3066. – optional

MRSS elements list:

  • <media:rating>
  • <media:title>
  • <media:description>
  • <media:keywords>
  • <media:thumbnail>
  • <media:category>
  • <media:hash>
  • <media:player>
  • <media:credit>
  • <media:copyright>
  • <media:text>
  • <media:restriction>