If i understand correctly, the MetaBrainz community are trying to go down a more community based route with things; certainly a lot of talk about ListenBrainz about and a bit more of the folksonomy and genre feature usage.
As part of this we encourage people to try and submit genres to the various elements we have in the database, which I’m all for. However I have found a possible fatal flaw.
Let’s say we have a fictional track called “A Prelude to Love” by Mr Singerstein. This track is very popular but mildly decisive in the music circles. It plays on Top 40 radio, so some people may tag it as pop. But those who know Mr Singerstein’s other work consider it to be Pop Rock, and are extremely picky that all of their music by Mr Singerstein is classed as such as they consider the genre Pop to be too broad for his work, and prefer to reserve it for say… ABBA.
The common folk who enjoy this song, tag it as Pop. This enrages the hardcore fans who downvote Pop, and upvote Pop Rock. Finally the fans win, because they’re the ones who are mad enough to care about this (stick with me folks) and so the genre tag of Pop is now completely removed from “Prelude to Love”.
But a common folk person comes along and goes “Pop Rock??”, nah I don’t go that deep and comes back and tags it Pop again. Thus the cycle resumes, and the war rages on.
Me, the devils advocate, says well “Prelude to Love” is actually both Pop and Pop Rock; and if you have set your Picard up properly it should only pick the genres you voted for. However it doesn’t stop someone from coming along and removing the genre they disagree with, without giving a reason.
This is my issue, by bug to bear, that someone (anyone) can come along and remove the genre I feel that fits an element without saying why.
Once a genre is added, its added. It can then be upvoted or downvoted depending on how others feel in the community. But if the rating is at 1, and the editor downvotes it to 0 (thus removing it) they should then be asked to give an edit note to why, something like “ABBA really isn’t considered to be Hip-Hop in any part of the world, so I am removing it”.
Can be an auto-edit, just gives some kind of possible paper trail and stops any possible malicious intent / back and forth wars on genres