Digital releases: Merging? / Long country list? / Just [Worldwide]?

between giant lists of countries and seemingly meaningless barcodes it’s near impossible to discern the differences between digital releases without looking at links/annotation/disambiguation


I love hearing about new improvements when they actually are that. And there have been some. Like, I’d love there to be a excluding country option. So, we could say Worldwide, except the United States, etc. Because that’d be much less likely to change over time. But, I think marking them currently as Worldwide when major countries are excluded is bad data and should be changed. However, because it’s digital, it’s just distribution. Yes, physical releases that are mailed directly by the artist and/or label on official websites most of the time actually are marked as Worldwide, if the site says they will ship to anywhere in the world. It’s really no different here to me than that. Wherever you live, if you can purchase or stream (without a redirect) that release, than it was released in your country. The main difference between many physical releases has more to do with small details today, i.e. manufacturing plants, pressing, etc. Digital just doesn’t have those constraints, therefore they are available in more countries.


This is not directly related to my above comments. Do we have consensus regarding whether or not we should update release event lists on existing digital releases? I am double checking some digital releases with atisket and finding discrepancies. Some have United States as the sole release event, but atisket shows it’s available in 47 countries (links below). Do I update the releases or leave them as is? I’m kind of stuck deciding, but if we lean either way I’m pleased with doing that.

You update them. That’s why you may see a lot of merges between a list with 200 countries and just the one that had US for example. That’s people updating and then merging so that they don’t sit there and add 200 countries for example. But make sure that the phonographic/copyright labels match and barcodes, if they don’t I’d double check barcodes against ISRC search or other sources to make sure that the new release isn’t just backdating the date to original release (very common on digital releases), but if they still have the same iTunes, Spotify, Deezer links, etc. by all means you can update it.


It used to be very difficult to find out where a release was actually released without checking every geo in the iTunes stores and making sure they were valid. That’s part of the reason you see so many releases with just 1 country release. Now we have the ability between a-tisket & jaxsta to double check countries.



Want to update release events of a release to reflect the amazing a-tisket. Don’t feel like checking 197 countries to find out which 2 countries are missing? Don’t want to copy paste the correct release date 150 times?

Well, that makes at least 2 of us!
That’s why instead of copy pasting whole nights I made a little userscript which can be used with the a-tisket site & MusicBrainz.
It will put a “Copy Release Events” button under the “Release Events” header which will copy all the “Countries where available” and the selected date.
On MB it adds a “Bulk paste Release Events” button under the “Add Release Event” button which will first clear the list & add all the countries listed on a-tisket (can take a few seconds in case of a long list).

Sounds like music to your ears? Then get it now from !
Disclaimer: very bèta :slight_smile: .

My apologies if this is the wrong topic for this, but when I was looking for reasoning to wether add 207 countries or Worldwide & searching for a userscript to bulk change release dates, the most “recent” posts from agatzk & tigerman325 (who made me aware of this in Edit #84514941 - MusicBrainz) were the ideal context for this.


Holy Bleep!!! I’ve been wanting this for years!!! And you did it for both the original & the mirror!!! This rocks.


I can’t get it to install via Tampermonkey :sob:
Whenever I click the link, it just displays the raw code. There’s no install button or anything.

The problem is the file extension, it needs to be .user.js for the userscript managers to be able to detect the script, not only .js.
You can still installl it by copying the code and creating an empty new userscript with Tampermonkey to paste the code into. Admittedly that’s not as comfortable, but it works until @texke has fixed the GitHub repository (and the direct link in this forum topic).


Thanks. I managed to get it to install that way :sweat_smile:

This needs to be placed somewhere prominent so other userscript programmers don’t make the same mistake.

Good to know, changed the filename & link above to .user.js.
Users with the .js file should get the updated version automatically.


I just noticed a problem with the script: if I set a release’s release date as empty (value 0), the script will parse that as a “0-0-0” value for each country, which the release editor warns is invalid.

A bit late but here is a hypothesis:
What if a conflict leads to the exclusion of a country by (major) labels (and other foreign companies)?
Lots of new releases won’t be available after that date.

Speculation: Some time later old releases are retroactively made unavailable en masse.

spoiler alert

Isn’t an easier solution to have a Shops section of the database that can better keep track of the areas that these stores supply to? Maybe a wiki page of some form that can keep track of these changes? When territories are added, when they are suspended, and so on?

Curious - does this mean if someone adds a 2005 Digital Release from Spotify today, will that still include Russia in the list as it was released in Russia in 2005? Or do we only get “today” data when adding a digital release?

I assume that releases made today will just not include Russia. Then in three years time when there is a leadership change and everyone runs back to selling stuff to Russia again there will need to be a bulk edit of all release to add a Russia 2025 date?


Yeah, I’ve always knew this day would come. Of course, on digital releases countries shouldn’t be removed just because they are no longer there, because they were at the time. Digital releases are a mess anyway as when adding for the first time it’s a “what countries are they in today” by a-tisket, whereas many releases aren’t correct on the actual release date for each country because most of those countries didn’t even have iTunes/Spotify/Deezer on those release dates. @IvanDobsky is correct. But that’s been the issue all along with digital releases. This is why I’ve always wanted a single release date on digital and then just list the countries that have it without a date. Much like Jaxsta does. I wonder if sites like Jaxsta will remove Russia & Belarus from their distribution lists, etc. That might be one way to see, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they remove them there as well as they might change their distribution lists to reflect where there are today. I notice they remove all releases that are no longer available.


Excuse me if this has been pointed out before. I can’t help help but notice that often the only “excluded countries” I see are islands and not just any islands. Usually it’s one or more of these in any combination:

  • South America: :falkland_islands: Falkland Islands (fk)
  • Northern Europe: :svalbard_and_jan_mayen: Svalbard and Jan Mayen (sj)
  • Eastern Africa: :british_indian_ocean_territory: British Indian Ocean Territory (io)
  • Oceania: :cocos_islands: Cocos (Keeling) Islands (cc) :christmas_island: Christmas Island (cx) :norfolk_island: Norfolk Island (nf)
  • Polynesia: :cook_islands: Cook Islands (ck) :niue: Niue (nu) :tokelau: Tokelau (tk)

Taking a closer look almost half of them are part of a bigger country (in MB context):

:british_indian_ocean_territory: British Indian Ocean Territory is apparently already ignored by editors.

That leaves us with:

Two of them (:cook_islands: Cook Islands and :niue: Niue) are in a formal association with another state, namely New Zealand, which BTW is an “included country”. The two remaining countries don’t look as independent either:


Just for clarification: I agree with that and didn’t mean to imply to remove it retroactively (unlike some editors who instead blanket interpret the lack of all countries as status “withdrawn” which I find problematic if the reason is unknown).

My concern is rather, if the speculative scenario becomes true, that editors might blindly copy-paste the country list (whether for lack of knowledge, by mistake or even deliberately) onto either old but not yet added releases or while editing an existing release.

Edited to add:
Actually this is already a problem for new releases where Russia (and Belarus)
are no longer included.

What will happen to the releases that were originally “excluded” assuming they are retroactively included again?

That seems probable given that Jaxsta is supposed to use the same metadata exchange protocols as distributors and digital service providers. It’s unfortunate to see them remove releases.


For the record, most of these islands were not linked to a country prior to December 2021, when I requested the links be added.


to add to this, i’ve had two releases so far where these were the only excluded countries:

  • Central America: :costa_rica: Costa Rica (cr) :guatemala: Guatemala (gt) :honduras: Honduras (hn) :nicaragua: Nicaragua (ni) :el_salvador: El Salvador (sv) :belize: Belize (bz)
  • Polynesia: :cook_islands: Cook Islands (ck) :niue: Niue (nu) :pitcairn_islands: Pitcairn (pn)

album 1 / album 2
(italicized the ones addressed in chaban’s post)

they were both distributed through distrokid, and i have my doubts that the artists did this manually for only these releases… especially considering the first artist released this worldwide just a couple weeks ago.

are these legitimate release events? and does anyone know why this is happening / have this happen to them too?


Looks like Russia and Belarus are retroactively removed from old releases.
If that’s what is indeed happening, good luck with data maintenance: