I'm starting to lose the purpose of being an editor

I don’t know if this belongs here, so sorry if this kind of post isn’t allowed. Maybe it’s depression kicking in, but I just feel like I devote so much of my time for MusicBrainz and I’m starting to wonder why. What is the purpose? Do my edits really matter? Who is going to find this information about a random k-pop group I added useful one day?

This is not criticism towards the existence of MB, it’s me as an editor who’s starting to feel like nothing that I contribute to really matters. Do you guys have any advice? I do like organizing things, it kinda itches a part of my brain, but maybe I should use my free time for things that are more “important”.


Honestly, looking after yourself is the most important thing, and maybe a break would be a good idea? I have taken a few over the years.

For myself I’m currently trial running ‘scan and enter one release every evening, when I’m home and have time’. That plus my Bandcamp subscriptions. I’ve hidden my MB subscription emails for now.

I can also recommend joining the unofficial Discord, which has a ‘looser’ community feel - arguing about style being the main interaction with other editors can grind me down sometimes!



It may not seem like there is a big impact with editing especially as it seems like very few sites/programs that use MusicBrainz data mention it. But I think it helps a lot.

And for what it’s worth, as a KPop nerd, I personally appreciate your contributions and the work you have done. As silly as it sounds I always look forward to seeing you working on a new artist as you do such a thorough job on the releases you add.

What do you use MusicBrainz for? related topic that might be worth a read for why others do the work on here they do. (In fact I will go update my post)

But as aerozol said, best to take care of yourself first. It’s your time to decide what is the best use of it. And also +1 for joining the discord. Several other KPop editors in there already.


Take a real-world holiday of some form. Change a routine. Get outside away from computers\phones.

Like many editors, I can spend way too many hours on here editing stuff no one sees, no one votes on, and never a thank you. But I know someone out there in the years to come will reference some of my research.

One problem with this place is it is really rare to get a “thank you” or any kind of positive feedback. This means that one negative comment where someone piles in and screams about using the wrong apostrophe, or making one small error somewhere due to not knowing a guideline had changed. Those negatives bite and can hurt.

This place can be full of negatives at time, but they are the noisy minority. The silent majority love your work. I may not have a single bit of KPop in my collection but I really appreciate the dedication it takes to dive all in on a subject. You’ll never know how many people read and use the data you have added - but they are out there. You make more people happy than you realise by your work answering odd little questions, or simply allowing them to tag their music.

Like you I have that itch to get things organised. Sometimes I use MB editing like some kind of weird meditation when my head is having a bad day. The sense of achievement from fixing the discography of an obscure artist is quite high. I also have the fun of learning something (and ending up with a pile more CDs from EBay… :grin:)

By taking a break from this place you can return refreshed.


A “thank you” button is one of the things I really want to implement :slight_smile:

But yeah, more generally, it’s fine to take breaks! (and if you take a break and still don’t feel like it, it’s also fine to move on and do something else). I haven’t done anywhere near as much editing as I used to recently, mostly just dealing with stuff I actually listen to rather than cleaning up all sorts of messes, and it made life a lot more chill - sometimes I still see a mess and fix it though, and that feels fun rather than annoying by virtue of not being all I do all the time.


Thanks for the advice, guys. I do like it here, so I’ll definitely keep that in mind.


I’ve gradually shifted from adding and editing music that I already own, to adding new artists and releases that are featured on Bandcamp Daily, to spending most of my MusicBrainz time trying to clean up disambiguation-less artists that have become dumping grounds for random credits.

I suspect that many of us feel particularly compelled to fix incomplete (or worse, wrong) data. There’s no shortage of that on MB, so it can be easy to fall into a trap of spending more and more time cleaning things up, even after I’m off in the weeds working on releases that have zero purchases on Bandcamp. Before I know it, hours have passed, my eyes are blurry, my wrist hurts from clicking on “Guess feat. artists” buttons, and I still have more tabs open than I did when I started.

I can only second other people’s advice in this thread: try to find a good stopping point and take a bit of time off from editing if it starts to feel less satisfying. Getting all of the world’s metadata entered correctly into the database is an impossible task, so just focus on whatever parts of it make you happiest.


I always listen to a lot of music when I’m working in the database, that definitely helps! Unfortunately, the predominant reaction that one experiences over time is more of a “no” than a “you did well” due to the system


You have a clear-cut case of burn out (possibly depression, but you can talk to a doctor if you think it is). Take a break. A week, a month, a year. However long it takes to regain your motivation. Even if it never comes back, you did a great service here. Interests change over time, and that’s OK too. :slight_smile: