Hints for beginner editors

I’m not sure how hard this would be to add, but has there ever been discussion about displaying additional UI to beginner editors to gently steer them in the right direction as they’re getting started?

I’ve been trying to spend some time reviewing beginner edits and leaving notes (and my own edits if I don’t get replies) when I see issues. There are some mistakes that seem to come up frequently, particularly when adding releases:

  • Unset release group type
  • Unset release status, language, and script
  • Track titles containing “feat.” or “ft.” instead of artists being properly credited
  • “Of”, “The”, “A”, “In”, etc. capitalized in the middle of English track titles

If the UI displayed a little box with a “Did you really mean to do this?” message and a link to the corresponding part of the style guidelines, it might help new editors get up to speed more quickly and reduce the amount of work for voters.

The implementation may be a bit tricky, although maybe the message could just be displayed with a “Yes, I really meant to do this” checkbox when the user clicks the Next » button, or all potential issues could be listed on the final confirmation screen.

I suspect that there are some frequent voters (*cough*@chaban*cough*) who could suggest additional common issues that they see. :slight_smile:


I believe that’s been on the table for the big MusicBrainz redesign, I know I’ve seen something like that in some of @aerozol’s mock-ups at least

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Thanks for the tag, I’ve linked this thread in the redesign epic.

Would love to see more discussion and ideas around this! I have a vague idea of having a better help wizard (the help text/boxes/links on the side), potentially a ‘beginner mode’ toggle, making fields bigger and clearer… but it will be “a while” until I try collect it all and do a mockup.

There’s a bunch I like in your post there @derat, keep it coming.

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an idea actually, we could have an interactive walkthrough which introduces new editors to several features. another open project I’ve contributed to, OpenStreetMap has one for their default editor iD, and it has you do some of the essential steps on a dummy map (i.e. not the live data)

(and yes, OSM is the provider for Place maps on MusicBrainz)


This one I’m working on.


In fact, I already did suggest a couple UI/UX improvements. But as long as the React conversion isn’t finished yet new features aren’t much of a priority for MB.

Here are a couple release editing related tickets that are still pending:

And here are some that were already implemented:

  • Unset release group type
  • Unset release status

These can be tricky. As we’ve learned they shouldn’t be left blank if possible but we wouldn’t wan’t them to be blatantly incorrect either.
Import scripts and tools have some logic to determine them but sometimes it’s wrong or left blank due to uncertainty.

Notably the Discogs import script often leaves them blank.

Not to mention there are still open discussions when a type or status applies and when not.

language, and script

Especially release script is often left blank presumably because people confuse it with lyrics and so they leave the latter blank and set the release language based on the lyrics language.
Also, some import scripts and tools set it to English+Latin by default (a-tisket and Bandcamp importer are the main culprits).

Maybe more info bubbles would help?
See also https://tickets.metabrainz.org/browse/MBS-9552

Although there is still trouble with multi language + multi script.

Track titles containing “feat.” or “ft.” instead of artists being properly credited

Notably MBS-10858 which reo already mentioned.

Other release related fields where I’ve often seen errors (not only “beginners”):