Disambiguation and Annotation fields

There is a tendency for users to routinely add a biography to the disambiguation section rather than to the annotation section.

As far as I am concerned, the disambiguation section should only be used when there are two or more credits with the same name. Disambiguation refers to the removal of ambiguity by making something clear.

The annotation section is for adding notes. Maybe if the name was changed to “Notes” people might understand it better.


I agree “Notes” would be clearer for users.

I think the help text for the disambiguation field could also be clearer and specify that they should not be used for notes.


So we have to clearify how to enter information into the correct fields @catcat.
I moved the biographical info from Tor Åge Bringsværd from the disamb. field to the notes and you moved it back gain to the disamb. field.

That’s also my opinion. Do you think that it is better to add this info always to the disamb. field?
Could you please explain why?

IMO that was the correct thing you did

I am snooping over from MB soz :stuck_out_tongue:
But I think it’s a good idea to be consistent with disambiguations from the get go.



I agree. I don’t see the harm in preemptively having a disambiguation in case there is an artist with a similar name out there. It also helps people searching for a small description, as the disambiguation will help search results while the annotation will not.

On another note, I think there should be (on MB, BB, and hypothetical future projects) a “disambiguation language” and “annotation language” option. That way it can be a truly multilingual project where people from other languages can add notes in their language for other speakers of said language.

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Now that I’ve actually looked at Tor Åge Bringsværd I have to take back what I said earlier. I just completely misunderstood the „biographical info”; this is short and neat, suits exactly to the disambiguating section. My apologies.

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There exist multiple instances on MetaB where lists of creators or creations are presented to editors without sufficient differentiating info other than a disambig.
Disambigs, if present, would allow human users to work from the following list. Without disambigs present then human users are being served up pretty poor info.

List of creators:
A b
A b
a b
a B
A. B
A. B.
a b

Purely in terms of database accuracy: Humans who find inconclusive data and only care a little bit will just use any A B creator for their edit and then continue on their merry way. Whereas
A B (Scotland 1749-1789)
A B ( Botswana 1945- 1998)
AB (NYC 1940-2020) …
is more likely to have them choose the correct creator.
By having a basic disambig in place for a currently uniquely named creator it makes it more likely that when a new creator is required by an editor that they’ll not just lump the new data into a convenient generic A B pigeon hole, but will instead add a new creator entry.
They tell me that one day disambigs will be displayed automatically by the system - I have my doubts. But till then there are real benefits from us including disambigs.
For recording artists the following fields often produce a disambig with fairly good differentiating power:
role, genre, geo-location, time period
eg. AB ( classical guitarist, Uruguay 1947-2020)
I’m not clear what fields would work well on BookB.


That’s a really good point and I agree that it is a good idea to use the disamb. field for that purpose.
But then the description for this field has to be changed

Vollbildaufzeichnung 21.11.2020 102456

This description was the reason for the misunderstandings and the need for clarification.


Does anyone have a good suggestion for a replacement for that help text, and perhaps a slightly longer explanation for the guidelines?

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Not as easy as I thought because the kind of information added to this field is slightly different for entities like authors and work/edition.
For an author it is a “short description” and for a work/edition it is “additional information”. The intention is the same “simplify the search for the correct entity”.
But since I’m lacking accuracy in the English language (I’m not even sure if “simplify” is correct in this context it’s hard to find a good, short and precise replacement.
The guidelines should list at least 3 examples, it’s the easiest way to understand the meaning of rules imo.


“Short text to help identify or differentiate entities”



This one has my vote! 👏