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Enhanced COUNTER Release 5 Validation Tool

We have enhanced the COUNTER Release 5 Validation Tool, adding checks that were previously missing. We would encourage all content providers to test their reports again, because the improved tool can now identify additional issues.

The upgraded Validation Tool now detects if metrics are missing or if the counts don’t make sense. For example, the Validation Tool will detect when there are less Total_Item_Requests than Unique_Item_Requests for a title (which would be a critical error). Please note that it is only possible to fully check if Unique_Title metrics are missing when the Data_Type is known, i.e. only for Master Reports with Data_Type included, TR_B1 and TR_B3.

This update includes:

  • Full support for Item Reports.
  • Checks for the JSON report structure: This includes checks for non-minimal JSON which will result in warnings. Please note the proposed timeline for enforcing this, is one year after the publication of release 5.0.2.
  • Storing all data in an internal data structure (in memory): This is necessary for some of the checks (see for example the next point), and for further processing the data.
  • Some checks across multiple rows/Report_Items: This includes for example checks for detecting duplicate metrics or inconsistent counts.
  • Additional error levels (Fatal, Critical, Error, Warning, Notice). An example of a critical error would be inconsistent counts.
  • Other additional smaller improvements and fixes.


About the Validation Tool

The COUNTER Release 5 Validation Tool tests compliance of COUNTER reports delivered in tabular format or delivered in XML via SUSHI.  Users upload COUNTER reports to the Validation Tool for testing. The Validation Tool highlights errors and provides a report to the tester.

The Validation Tool is freely available for all to use. Users are asked to self-registration, so that we can track usage and to improve error reporting.

Publishers and vendors implementing Release 5 can catch and correct errors before release. The result is more efficient deployment.

COUNTER auditors also use the Validation Tool in the audit process.

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