Metadata is used in photography to give information about the digital file of a photograph. It contains the creators name and email address for example. In fact, it can have lots of information in it and this information is all put into the file by the creator.
The metadata has basic info like the file name, a label and caption. You can add camera information into it too. It has IPTC content, copyright, creator, image, status, extension admin, extension artwork, extension description, extension models (for if there are people in the image), extension rights, video information and you can also add keywords and this is very important to help you find files in the future. IPTC stands for International Press Telecommunications Council and this is a group of the Worlds major news agencies with members like Associated Press, Getty Images and Reuters. IPTC aims to simplify the distribution of information between global powerhouses of the industry.
The three main sections of all the metadata are administrative, descriptive, and rights and these are all the metadata as one whole. The metadata is easily transferred with the image file so that end users and software can use the information and is universally accepted.
Metadata should always be used by a digital photographic creator not just to make it easier to find the files they want quickly but it is also a large tool to try and keep total control of your intellectual property. If you capture an image that the whole World wants to use then you should make double sure that you have filled in as much metadata as possible to protect your work, as with all your work really because, some of your images may have a slow start on the World stage but then gather momentum so to speak.
Below is a video of me adding some metadata in Lightroom.