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

I’m speaking about where the release is actually distributed to by the label. Whether or not it’s actually available there who knows. Might be but only to a small amount of people, etc. I understand your point, but that doesn’t negate the fact that if a release isn’t in the United States, UK, China, etc. they shouldn’t be marked worldwide. There are many releases that might be in every country, except the US (due to being under a different label, etc.), so that’s not a worldwide release. Also, a-tisket (which is how most digital releases are added now), doesn’t count countries that don’t have Apple Music, Spotify or Deezer. If all 3 of those combined have a release in all the countries they service, then it marks releases worldwide. It’s not every single country in the world. This helps with places like North Korea, as I don’t think they officially have Deezer there. North Korea just shows up because they list it on their API as having it. When it’s not on the list, it’s not counted towards the Worldwide or not question. Many editors want to see actual distribution lists. There are many releases in release groups that are distributed to different parts of the world. Might be on one label in Europe and another label for the rest of the world, etc. Moving this information from the country events to the annotation is what is desired, but as you see above, we’ve been asked not to do it on a massive scale yet, i.e. a script.


Tracking “release country” in terms of availability (even initial availability) seems like a fruitless task, as many have mentioned - even for physical releases.

It seems better to simply treat “release country” as “domestic origin of that specific release, if one is source-able”.

If one is not, or you’re unsure - leave it as blank. I second/third the notion that it should simply be unset for digital releases as a matter of policy.

I don’t think [Worldwide] makes any sense as a “domestic origin” - it only makes sense in terms of availability, which - as mentioned - is pointless to track since it changes so frequently and is categorically impossible for contributors to nail down in any useful way - so from that perspective I’m inclined to say it shouldn’t be a valid value, it’s literally no better than an empty value.


I’d like to bring up these two releases who are in dire need of cleaning up their release events’ list, except every time I try to I get “Gateway Timeout: 504” error instead:

Both are digital release which in some capacity used a-tisket in their editing. Furthermore, “Starboy” by the Weekend recently went through a release merger ( Edit #103355394 - Merge releases), hence the [Worldwide] event in addition to the individual countries.

It’s because Apple Digital Masters series is linked. Every release that has this linked is doing this now. I can usually get them to go through if I do ONE edit at a time. And then have to click submit around 3 times before it goes through. I really think that maybe we should remove this series. I don’t think series was meant to be used this way, so the system seems to not be able to handle it. I no longer link the series and just mention the Apple Digital Masters in the annotation.


Thinking about it again recently, what if we just renamed it from “[Worldwide]” to something like “[Multiple countries]”? It makes it a bit broader without being too specific, like how (hopefully) no-one reads “[Multiple languages]” or “Various Artists” as “literally every language/artist”.

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I don’t know about replacing [worldwide], but I’d be down for adding [multiple countries] as an option~


Don’t be surprised to see changes to Spotify country lists.

[Multiple Countries] sounds like a great solution to this “problem” (if one considers it a problem).

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countries will come and go, not just on spotify.
Any scheme needs a from date and a to date for when a country existed, e.g. West Germany

And they have been on the lists this whole time. They are not new to [ISO 3166-1 - Wikipedia], which is what all the APIs on distribution for Apple Music, Spotify, Deezer, Jaxsta, etc. all use. I know they show up on the not available list on those Sony releases on a-tisket already. Deezer has had both on their APIs for a long time.

Yes, they have been. ISO 3166-1 is a list of not just countries:

from wikipedia:

ISO 3166-1 (Codes for the representation of names of countries and their subdivisions – Part 1: Country codes ) is a standard defining codes for the names of countries, dependent territories, and special areas of geographical interest.

The point is that the existence of an ISO code doesn’t mean record companies recognize it as an independent state and therefore a Spotify market.

Agreed. That’s because record companies release / distribute / authorise streaming in one or more countries / economic trading areas (eg EU)

That’s effectively what Discogs (and lots of releases quickly imported via Discogs or the Discogs script) are doing. The overwhelming majority of these releases just take the origin of the label, which for many digital only labels mean the origin of the founder(s) of that label. However, I think I’ve seen some where it was the origin of the artist instead.

Another issue I’ve encountered are digital releases that are on Bandcamp, iTunes, Spotify and Deezer, quite a few got the Bandcamp one separate. here is an example where everything is the same, but the Bandcamp one’s got different but similar cover art. Should we leave that as is or merge and just keep both variations of the cover?


Yet another thing (I know, meandering away from the topic here), but a lot of Bandcamp releases don’t have catalog numbers. Discogs usually considers them implied when a physical release exists. I assume leaving them out usually isn’t done due to the label’s/artist’s wishes, but convenience. Evidence for that is the majority of these releases having a catalog number on other digital stores where that is a standard field to fill in (though I sometimes do see some form of barcode number as catalog number). Should we go with exact data (not catalog number, or two versions when it comes to releases on multiple stores), or what the overwhelming majority of users likely would want to see (the catalog number added)? The releases above are a good example, the catalog number is literally the title of the basically untitled release.

See the What should be added as a single release? and What should be added as multiple releases? guidelines if you haven’t already (and Proposed (unofficial) digital media guidelines for the long discussion that shaped the guidelines).

In this case, the different cover art justifies a separate release, and the absence of barcode 5056467359286 may as well (although it seems pretty arbitrary whether barcodes are included on Bandcamp pages, and I think that they’re impossible to find without looking at the page source).

Catalog numbers on Bandcamp are also tough. Sometimes they’re included in the album text in the bottom left corner of the page. Other times you can get them from the cover image, but that’s often just ripped from a physical release. Some labels like Warp put characters like CD, LP, or D in catalog numbers for different formats, but other labels reuse the same numbers. These kinds of ambiguities are unfortunately very common when entering digital media releases.


Not sure if it’s just me but the “Bulk paste Release Events” script stopped working for me. Clicking on “Bulk paste Release Events” only removes whatever event(s) there was/were but doesn’t add anything new. In other words, it only leaves the release events’ list empty.

I know many editors might think that the need for such a script is obsolete now that it’s more common to leave the release events of digital releases with no country specified instead of adding the dreaded long country lists. But I believe that it’s still very useful when something is released digitally to a small but related set of countries such as the North American big 3 (US+CA+MX), German-speaking Europe (D+A+CH), etc. Personally I noticed this not working while trying the following edit on an album released in the latter group of countries:

Edit #107517932 - Edit release

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It works for me, however, you have to select “all countries” on a-tisket before you click on it to make it work.

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It’s no longer working for me either now.

Worldwide is already being used for physical releases. I don’t think renaming it to “multiple countries” or similar will make things better on that front.
More so because it seems some people associate mail-order with “worldwide”:


I’ll check it out what’s wrong.
Edit: should be fixed.