We have several issues related to the behaviour of the “Split into separate artists” feature, and I am considering whether it should just be removed instead.
For those not completely certain of how it works, “Split into separate artists” is basically a combination of “Edit artist credit” (changing, say, “Foo and The BarBars” into “Foo” and “The BarBars”) and removal of collaboration relationships (“collaborator on”/“collaborators”), when they exist. This was added during the transition to the current MusicBrainz system (which introduced artist credits) as a way to easily deal with the existing collaboration artists that were required before we had this option (with only one artist per release, there was no other choice than creating “Foo and The BarBars” as an artist, even if it was a one-off collaboration). It only works for this situation - if the artist has any other relationships, it blocks the split tool (or is supposed to, see the part where it is sometimes buggy).
My feeling is that most of those old collaborations have been removed (admittedly there are still 7461 collaboration relationships left though, which seems like a lot) and it might make sense to just remove this option and use “Edit artist credits” to split new artists that need splitting, since most won’t have collaborator relationships anyway. But I might be wrong and other people might be using it very often. So I thought I’d ask here. Are you using this option? Would you miss it?
- Often (please keep it!)
- Rarely (wouldn’t miss it much)
- Never (let it go go go)
If we decide to get rid of it, I’d suggest having a community effort to clean up the relevant report a bit (keep in mind a lot of these seem to be named collaborations though, which should still exist) and then once that period is over (maybe a month) the option could be removed.
If a fair amount of people are using this option, but just to split artist credits (no collaboration relationships) then it could make sense to replace it with a shortcut of some sort to the Edit artist credit function, since that’d be basically what it is right now in that case.