Rethinking the [dialogue] guideline

(This was posted by @reosarevok on behalf of @CatQuest, whose old browser is no longer supported by Discourse so they couldn’t post themselves.)

I think it’s time to rethink how the [dialogue] artist guideline works.

This is a very old guideline that even predates the NGS (Next Generation Schema) release in 2011 (so, it’s older than artist credits!). It got changed from “use [dialogue] no matter what” to “use [dialogue] only if artists aren’t credited on the tracklist” but I feel it’s still outdated.

For starters, there’s the problem that people are still interpreting this guideline as “no matter what the liners say, use [dialogue] if speaking dialogue appears on an (otherwise) music release”, such as Release “ひだまりスケッチ×ハニカム キャラクターデュエットCD Vol.3 乃莉&なずな” by 乃莉 (CV: 原田ひとみ) & なずな (CV: 小見川千明) - MusicBrainz - but even if a CD just says (dialogue) on the back with no credits, what if the booklet gives the info about who speaks in it? what if it’s otherwise fairly well known and easily confirmed?

What about releases like https://musicbrainz.org/release/1cd70624-ac4a-4761-91e1-c93d461d54b2 ? Since the “behind the scenes” tracks aren’t exactly “audiobook/spokenword”, does that mean they are not allowed a recording/track artist?

The actual guideline says right now:

“Used for tracks which consist solely of dialogue, and which aren’t credited to anyone on the release tracklist. For example, the “Royale With Cheese” discussion from Pulp Fiction would be correctly assigned to [dialogue], not to “John Travolta & Samuel L. Jackson”, since the tracklist has no artists for that track”

But I disagree with it. If we know who actually performed here, why not use these as credits? Yes, they can be added as performance relations, but why not at least have them as recording artists?

I’m aware of that this will create “more work”, but right now we have edits removing the speaking artists and replacing them with [dialogue] because that’s what the guideline says (such as Edit #81260027 - MusicBrainz). What’s wrong with having the actual spoken actors/performers in these cases? At least for the recording artist, should we not set the actual artist and fix errors?

Previously (before we could combine multiple artists in one credit) it made sense to avoid creating an “artist” of “Derrick Leadingrole, Ginny Loveinterest, Murray Maniac Actor, MrMan McFamous, Tabitha Voiceactingstar, Carl Villainguy and Pete Otherguy” and replacing it with “[dialogue]”, but I don’t think it does anymore.

So, what do you think about:
a) always using the artists as track and recording artists instead of [dialogue] if known.
b) always using the artists as recording artists instead of [dialogue] if known.

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