Do we need a "Talk" or "Editor Notes" tab?

Hi folks, I created a ticket requesting a “Talk” or “Editor Notes” tab for most major entity types:

But I wanted to start a discussion here and see what people think. The problem is that often times there are real world scenarios that don’t translate cleanly into the MB database structure and so require some level of interpretation. Other times the information that does exist is confusing or incomplete and an editor makes a judgement. This often comes with research and reasoning from the editors, sometimes even debate, however there is no good place to store this currently.

Offered solutions:

  • This forum. Problem here is that this forum is not considered stable. People don’t have confidence that information here will be preserved. There is the further issue that there is no connection between a given MB entity and a forum discussion. A new editor wouldn’t think to look here if they had a question.
  • The wiki. Problem here is it is not clear that the wiki is for this purpose. Others have cast doubt on its long term health as well. Regardless, there is still the same issue as above, how would a new editor know to look on the wiki if they have questions or concerns?
  • The edit comments. Problem here is that the comments are specific to each edit so if the reasoning is relevant to a series of 50 edits, you either copy and paste it to each one or link the original edit comment, but even so if the reasoning is more complicated than discussing a specific edit it is awkward at best and difficult to reference. This is how most reasoning is preserved now. It has the added issue that if someone has a question or concern, there really isn’t a way to raise it with the subscribed members without creating an edit in first place. At best it is a stop gap.
  • The annotation field. This has also been suggested, but it appears to be encouraging using this field for cross purposes. If the annotation field is meant for descriptions and additional information about the release then adding editor notes there doesn’t make sense in outside contexts. For example, if someone is pulling the annotations from MB for their application, and it has notes about how the data was input into MB, it would be out of place and irrelevant to them.

Let me know what you think. This can’t be the first time and idea like this has been floated so I’m hoping to get a historical education too. :slight_smile:


Yeah, I often ended up using annotations this way in cases where I’ve done extended research. For example:


I believe all entity types can have annotations, using the “Add annotation” link in the right sidebar. Only releases have the annotation field available in the Edit page though.

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I use annotations for two completely different things: editor notes (“I will clean up CD 2 on this release in the future”), and factual information I didn’t enter properly in the right fields (complex set of recording dates, complete setlist of a 2-hours recording of a broadcast concert). The second kind I’d like to be copied in Picard, not the first, so having a separate “Editor notes” looks like a good idea

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Thanks I see that now. I’ll edit out that limitation!

Like @loujin I use the annotation field. It is a free text area that keep the current message. A talk page would allow for a discussion to be kept and both sides back and forth, but that then makes it harder to see what the final solution was.

The discussion can happen in the edit notes. Just had a release like this were research was needed to refine some details, and a neat summary could be added to the Annotation but the messy discussion is then referenced with a link from those notes ( )

During that discussion and the research I had a little note in that annotation that it was “research in progress” while the details were evolving.

I’ve seen Annotations also used to set “rules” for how cat numbers can work on a Label, or better details about that artist. The Annotation is very good for keeping a summary of a discussion without cluttering it with the back and forth of the discussion.

Edit comments are the talk, annotation is the agreed message.


If we put the descriptive things first, before the various discussions, I’m already fine with using annotations for these.

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Sounds like the general consensus here is to use the annotation field as a general notes field for any purpose and then have some kind of “Talk” page where discussions can occur between editors independent of the forum.

If that’s right, I agree with this.

Well, we already have edit notes and Annotation.
If one day we get a Talk tab, I wish we remove Annotation after migrating its content to Talk tab.

But I do prefer annotation, it’s on the same page, no one can miss it, if any. And we already have it.

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You know what might help a lot? An automated feature that would flag edits on an entity with a lot of notes and/or votes. Like, you could click a link that says “significant edits” and it would show you the edit history organized in order of response level. I’d say make it a feature of the edit history, but I think it should be more obvious than that, where someone would be likely to see it and go “that looks important, I should click on it.”

You can currently do a search by number of a particular kind of vote, but you can’t search by total votes in general, and you can’t search by number of comments.

Another thing that crosses my mind is a way to see related edits when you’re entering an edit. One of the nice features of this forum is how it pulls up possibly related posts when you’re entering something. If you were getting ready to, say, change the artist credit on a recording, and you could see all the other edits that affected the AC on that recording, that would be very cool and probably helpful. Also probably challenging to implement. :slight_smile: But even if you were entering an edit, and there were a sidebar of “here’s the edit history for this entity”, that would be better than nothing.

Added tickets because it seems like something could be done with this without requiring a lot of new functionality:


Agreed. I’ll refine the ticket I made to be about a Talk tab specifically and link back to this discussion.