Announcement: New release statuses "Cancelled" and "Withdrawn"

What does Picard show when it fills in original release date? I don’t know how to test API calls but if this still returns the correct date it is not an issue, Picard does read the date correctly, just tested it.

On the Release page the Withdrawn is placed at the bottom of the list. I think that looks a bit odd as I don’t think Withdrawn should be a the bottom with bootlegs and promos. If anything the Withdrawn status makes it more interesting.

We should still be able to set the Official flag. This should not be an either or state. How would you set a Promo as withdrawn?

sorry, I’ll go away…

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Oh yeah, The Avalanches first album could not be re-released because of sample clearances… Also, the Gray Album (mash-up).

And also this:

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OH! I almost forgot one of the most famous examples of this:


another example of a withdrawn release might be when a label re-releases an album with a different artist name, for example:

the story behind this is quite interesting, at least to me. there’s a video on this whole situation that I’ve posted before~

anyways, I’ve got more work to do on Caramell… :saluting_face:


The whole story is even worse. This label stole the remix from its actual creator, attempted to erase the origins of the meme underpinning it and has been abusing the DMCA to cover its tracks.

For those who are uncertain as to what we mean by “withdrawn,” I’m throwing my hat in the ring with this edit.
Long story short, I found a greyed-out release on Spotify and imported it using a-tisket. Since the release is no longer available to stream, I figured it might qualify as “withdrawn” (unlike with other streaming services, Spotify’s API still returns results for pulled releases).


That’s a good example.

There are a few artists on Bandcamp who have changed their name – their account name – so that it breaks all the previous URL links, but not altered their previously released albums in any way. I’ve manually had to go to each release in MusicBrainz, edit the old URLs to be “Ended”, and then added the new ones. This editing could be done with a single SQL UPDATE statement, but it’s very tedious to do through the web UI.

Wikipedia has some lists…

(This one missed two of Jane’s Addiction’s album covers.) (Yeah, I know I can just edit the Wiki to add them…)

(This one missed Delerium replacing “Koran” with “Window to Your Soul” on the album “Karma”.)

But, so, like… When a later release of an album, changes relative to an earlier release, does that automatically imply “Withdrawn” or is it only “Withdrawn” if the change was a deliberate response to an error, or controversy, or legal action, or um… something other than just letting something lapse after a long period of time.

Like, songs get dropped from releases for time constraints on the medium, and maybe for artistic reasons if the artist has enough control over what gets re-released. (Basically, and artist doesn’t really like a song, and if the album is self-published, they can just remove it.)

Or, does “Withdrawn” mean that a record company has actually had physical media recalled from stores and warehouses to be destroyed?

Like this:

When the album publishing got far enough along that there was a tangible, physical object, created, and may or may not have made it to the public (or radio stations).

If an album is changed in development, before being pressed into plastic, that’s not considered “Withdrawn”, right?

For digital releases though… there may have never been a physical representation of the music in a bunch of plastic. And digital releases disappear all the time, mostly due to a lack of maintenance and upkeep by the custodians of the music… not because the label/publisher was forced the remove something due to external controversy, or because the artist just didn’t want people to listen to the album for their own personal reasons.

But… yeah so… there are many examples, of physical media releases, which were changed in later manufacturing runs, but also for which the initial manufacturing runs were not physically recalled from physical stores… The release was allowed to just sell out normally. Are these cases “Withdrawn”? A lot of album cover changes fall into this category. … oh, but also… A lot of album covers are changed purely for artistic reasons (preferences by the artist), and not because Walmat refuses to sell it for showing too much cleavage.

(Oh also, some album covers are changed between American/European/Australian/etc. releases, just because someone at the label likes a different photo of the band or something. Some ABBA releases are like this for example.)

Anyway… Here’s another example of an album which was sold to the public for only three days by mail-order TV commercials, before getting sued out of existence:

The URL parser in this editor will stop parsing a URL when it hits a third “:”, I had to replace it with %3a in the above URL.

Oh yeah, here’s a famous example:

I don’t know if this album was physically manufactured with the original cover art or not. It sounds like the public release date was after the 11th, but that was postponed until the new cover art was made.

Anyway, Wikipedia has a lot of stuff documented

There was a promotional release with the original cover art

Street Date 9/4/01 For Promotional Use Only

So… was this “Canceled”, or “Withdrawn”, or neither?

As has previously been covered, I don’t think a promo can be ‘withdrawn’.

I haven’t read everything, but I don’t think it’s that complex tbh:
Released, then taken off the shelves: Withdrawn
Planned but never released: Cancelled

Something that was just sold out or stopped being manufactured ‘naturally’ doesn’t meet either of these criteria.


So… I started asking these questions, because of all this stuff:

Is all of this stuff actually “Withdrawn”, and not just because an artist deleted their Bandcamp account.

(Skimming through the list, the Nirvana Pennyroyal Tea CD single definitely meets the criteria for Withdrawn status, and, maybe, maybe, the Taylor Swift stuff?.. but I don’t know about anything else…)


imo an artist deleting their Bandcamp account, or removing older albums because they have new ones they want to present instead, can be considered part of the ‘natural’ release cycle. Just like physical media eventually not being for sale anymore.

It’s a bit grey, but I think the artist or the label has to really disown the original release.

P.s. I didn’t realize Reo’s description for these new status’ wasn’t in the guidelines? That I could find? Something should go in huh


with the given definition

A previously official release that was actively withdrawn from circulation by the artist and/or their record company after being released, whether to replace it with a new version with some changes or to just retire it altogether (e.g. because of legal issues).

and especially considering the context given in the ticket

  • Artist changing their name, and updating releases to use their new name.


A part of this behaviour will be to de-emphasize the withdrawn listings in favour of the Official status releases in release group listings, while allowing the withdrawn listings to still be available for historical reference, and to allow tagging to continue to work for people who obtained the release before it was withdrawn.

it seems like very many of these fit… i’m biased, because i added about 50 lol, but for example i happen to know $WAGGOT’s withdrawn releases are definitely because he actively hates them and doesn’t want people to listen anymore

i hate that my only frame of reference for everything is $WAGGOT lol, i can feel myself becoming annoying about it, but i just edit him a lot so i use him as examples for everything all the time

it’s a tough line to draw… i guess i personally would say “if the artist still considers it part of their discography, then it wasn’t withdrawn, just ‘sold out’ (or the digital equivalent)”. but the problem lies in what that means… not every artist is kind enough to give us a webpage listing what they consider to be their full discography.

i think once withdrawn releases are shown with the official discography it won’t matter so much


Something no longer available on Spotify is definitely not a case for Withdrawn, without corroborating evidence directly from the artist.

Not Withdrawn:

  1. Artists may pull their catalog only from Spotify but leave it up on other digital platforms
  2. The contract between the artist/label and Spotify may have expired, and they may be working on renewing (or not)

And then there’s Edit #87300648 - MusicBrainz which I don’t understand at all, since a real edit note was not provided.


How about if that release was removed from all streaming services, not just Spotify?
Here’s a release where this was the case. It has since been superseded by three separate releases with (formerly) region-specific bonus tracks, issued by the artist’s management company.


@reosarevok : We’re going to need some Style guidance here:

What should the status be on an album pre-release single track release after the album is released?

  1. Withdrawn
  2. Promotional
  3. Official
  4. ???

I’d say if in doubt, we should always err on the side of “Official”, which is the most neutral option. I’d only use “Withdrawn” if the intention is fairly clear.

I’d say “I hate all my music and I want nobody to listen to it” is pretty much “Withdrawn” though :slight_smile: Some classical composers do that, and basically say “this work I wrote as a teenager or whatever shouldn’t be performed anymore” - of course, people will play it once they’re long dead if they’re now popular and famous and they start having “LITERALLY ALL X EVER WROTE” boxsets made :slight_smile: But there’s a clear intention.

If, for example, the situation was “I can’t be bothered to deal with music anymore because I don’t get enough money out of it to compensate the time I dedicate, so whatever, I’m dropping my bandcamp and stuff” I’d probably keep it as Official.


@reosarevok, I have made an addition to the Style/Release doc with a summary, do you want to review?

Anyone else who’s keen please also pick it apart. I make no pretense of staying neutral so please balance it out!


Examples: Neil Young, and Black Dresses (to stop a song from being used in TicToK videos.)

So… Breaking news: Bandcamp is getting bought out, and I’ve already heard one artist talking about boycotting Bandcamp, and deleting all of their music from the platform.


I forgot to say that I transcluded this!


Am I doing it right? I figured this seems like a clear enough case of a digital release being replaced with a different one, rather than the usual vanishing for seemingly no reason.