MusicBrainz Web Design Revamp?

That is annoying. I guess displaying some album art would be the next best thing, it would make artist pages look more alive. Then the little album thumbnails next to the release groups to help people find what they’re looking for. Uerscripts can do this already but, in my opinion, you should be able to have these thumbnails without having to download a user script since this feature exists in most other music DBs.
The idea with the recent streaming/download links on the main RG page is to help people who are browsing the DB to find the most up to date links easily, but this might cause clutter as you said.


One question to ask is “who/what is the home page for?”

Indeed would be helpful to define the goal/target.

For instance can we imagine different displays depending if the user is already logged in or not? or the page should remain the same for all users?


I agree with the “who/what…” question.

I view MB as, first and foremost, a database, and a UI to add/edit that db. While the comments I made earlier are cosmetic improvements, I don’t need (or want, really) a slick, flashy website. The UI can be simple, as long as the workflow is logical and reasonably easy. And it’s easy to read. :slight_smile:

Not too easy — from the time I started using online music DBs, I’ve encountered so much garbage that had been entered by people who obviously didn’t know what they were doing, that I eventually concluded that none of them were reliable enough to be of any use. Call me elitist, but I don’t want MB to become so easy to use that just anybody will use it. MB’s peer review/voting process goes a long way toward assuring the quality of the data. Find ways to make that even more effective, and I think you’ll be doing well.


Second that top menu should be reorganized, some subitems don’t match the top-level name, many of them are rarely used by everyday users but might be helpful for newcomers, so maybe we can show different menu (or even different home page) for guests and logged-in users.
For guests, we show the information that’ll help them get to know MB, and for editors, we should show frequently used actions and more detailed information. TBH, the current homepage is not so useful for editors, a dashboard that can boost efficiency would be great.


Amazing @IvanDobsky! Thanks for the points. :smiley:

Thanks a lot for the suggestions! :smiley:

Makes sense and great points @tigerman325! :smiley:

Great point @yyoung ! :smiley:

I think when you are already a MusicBrainz user, you don’t use the homepage that much.
I always go to MB from an artist or a release (group) search.
It can be a browser search or a DDG !bang.

But when I go to a web site for the first times, I expect to understand the purpose of the web site from its homepage, without seeing any other funny stuff, there.

For me the most important things in the MB HP are…

I think the homepage is already perfect.


In my opinion, the current homepage is more suited to developers and contributors rather than database users and it is not clear how MB differs from other databases / encyclopedias.

Assuming that the main value is the completeness of the listing of the different releases, I would say a few words about the structure of the database, the difference between the releases, release groups, and so on.

In addition to that, categories of artists/publication groups by country/genre would help users who are interested in looking for details for some albums or inspiration for new ones. This structure, in addition to a mobile friendly version, could also help indexing by search engines, which is now not at its best now.


Thanks a lot for the suggestions @jesus2099! :smiley:

Would be great represent on homepage whole network of our music services (MB, LB, AB, CB, CAA, AcoistID), their goals and synergetic connection between them. Now to realize it you need to find link, read list of services (in inconvenient carousel) and my be go to site of each service to understand what “crowdsourced collection of acoustic information” or “open record of user listening habits” actually mean


Not for homepage, but i think musicbrainz site should more actively promote related MetaBrainz services. For example on pages of artist/release without AcoustID fingerprint or AB info show text like «if you have this content please submit it to AB/AcoustID». May be show artist/release popularity based on LB data (not shure about this).
Also we can suggest add genre if artist/release have no such information. Highlight holes in our data


I agree, but it would involve moving from the current use of tags to a hierarchy of categories for different musical genres.

To improve the DB, every week an album could be published in the home page asking to complete related information (different releases and so on).


Not necessary, but tree of genres better then unstructured list if we want suggest to user genres to chose. DB structure may be the same, we can keep tree of genres as only interface element.
Is there some commonly acceptable music genre taxonomy which we can use?

But this suggestion can be something like this


I’m an independent music maker/producer and I only use Musicbrainz [MBz] intermittently, once or twice a year, when I’m doing the rounds of all the on-line places where I have to register a new release (e.g. PPL, PRS for Music, Discogs, MBz…). For me, the clearest for data-entry are Discogs and PPL, and tied for most confusing and time-consuming are MBz and PRS for Music.

Typically, I log-on to MBz and I want to register a new release…

I want to see an obvious link to a straightforward, intuitive-to-use data entry form for common release types, denoted in widely-used terms (my guess is that almost everyone is releasing a single, album, EP, video, not a 'release group’…).

For me, coming to do data entry, the MBz interface is confusing at every turn. Too many reflexive loops occur whilst navigating the site. It’s hard to tell exactly “where” you are and thus what effect your actions are having on the database. The rules are verbose and therefore unlikely to be read in full or remembered by an intermittent user.

I sense from the convoluted structure of the site and prominence of esoteric rules that MBz has some of its origins in music collecting. I also sense that MBz aspires to completeness and accuracy…

I would respectfully suggest that whilst a collector may be an authority on releases in which artist or licensor interest has lapsed, with new music the authority is likely to be the person or label releasing it. If I’m an agent, committing time to register new releases, you may be assured that I’ll do my best to do it correctly. Please make it as easy as possible for me. I understand that some data-checking is necessary, but I’m not here to join the band of editors and I’m not interested in the esoteric voting system.

Overall, I’d say:

  1. Streamline data-entry by limiting the ways in which data can be entered;
  2. Offer clear, immediate feedback. ‘YES, THANKS’ if the entry is formally correct; ‘NO, YOU CANNOT DO THIS, DO THIS INSTEAD PLEASE’ if an entry is nonsensical in database terms;
  3. Make it all simpler to look at and easier to read;
  4. Make it so that the operationally-essential data-entry rules are 200-300 words in total and can be easily found and read.



one thing i’d really appreciate for the homepage is responsive design

if someone new hears about musicbrainz and looks it up on their phone, it’d be nice for them to see a page that doesn’t require horizontal scrolling


It would be strange to display front page nicely on mobile and not the entity pages.
As the front page inherits the global layout,
responsive design should be thought globally, no?

I agree it would be great if the site was responsive designMBS-3846.
Maybe edit pages could be excluded from responsive design if too hard to do.

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True. What is CB? Seriously, I’ve never heard of it. I didn’t even know other “Brainz” existed until years after I started on MB. CAA, is part of Internet Archives, but I do get your point.

Update: Oh. CritiqueBrainz. I see that on the list of topics here on the board. I’ve seriously never head of it. So, your point is very well taken.