STYLE-2428: Step by step video (releases) guidelines thread

I imagine what a lyric video is, but what is a visualiser music video? Any example?

I have some links to some in an earlier post in the thread but basically it’s “a video for the music but where the video itself is a lot less important than the music and it’s just so you have something going on while you listen on YouTube”, from my understanding.


I’ve been adding videos to the site and I was holding myself to some guidelines I made up so I wouldn’t cause any trouble on the site.
After reading this topic I feel I was being to strict with my own guidelines, but I’ll post what I was thinking here in case it would help.

Note: I don’t think people should be held to these because their restrictive and not based on other Music Brainz Guidelines, this is just what I was doing.

  • First I didn’t know youtubers were allowed. I assumed you had to be published by a label of some sort.

But, since I’m labeling music videos not just for myself but for my friends, I did accidentally do exactly that

At the time my thinking was: This music video required a director. Basically I just thought it “felt” like a music video and the only quantifiable thing I can put my finger on is it had a director.

But I’m not sure if “having a director” is a good criteria for being a music video or not, especially when their are Music videos that “Feel” like music videos without a director, or when you can’t find a director listed anywhere

One song I did pass over for fear of not having a director was Oil by the Gorillaz. I don’t think it shouldn’t be on the site, I just thought it might cause trouble and I didn’t want any.

  • I didn’t do fan made videos because I thought that was outside the scope of the site, but posts above have me rethinking that.

Though I’ve seen/thought about some interesting edge case of “fan-made”.

One is a fan making something, and the artist deciding to post it or re-post it on their YouTube page. does this make it “Official”?

Another, very specific, one is this. according to my friend it’s a fan made music video for “Tame Impala - Borderline” and it “Feels” like a music video. Also if quality is called into question the band never made a music video for this song so would something be better quality then something that doesn’t exist? I don’t know I don’t have an answer.

Lastly their are videos with no official internet channels to be posted on and are primarily kept alive by archivists. I feel like these videos count because they where produced and used as a music video by the original artists (unless they where a hoax somehow) However when I did come across one of these videos I didn’t link the Youtube video to the music video page. I was worried I would cause problems for music brianz, the youtuber, or both.

That’s the end of the guidelines I was holding myself to, but reading through the topic made me think of some examples.

  • Sometimes their are short and long versions of music vidoes.

I listen to a few youtubers who do covers, and one thing I’ve seen them do a few time is they’ll post a short version of a cover and then a long one.

This can often be seen when doing a cover of an opening theme song to an anime, or some other show. The short version is the opening, the full version is the whole song.

Should both versions be allowed or only the long version?
And if only the long version, does that mean Intro and Outro videos of TV shows are also dis-allowed? I had actually assumed that intro outro videos where also outside the scope of the site, and I haven’t heard them talked about in this topic yet(or if they where I missed it).

That’s all I can think of, sorry if my formatting is not great.
have a good one.

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I also saw people discussing what a “Visualizer” is.

I don’t know either, but the person who made the “Oil” video for the Gorillaz claims to only do visualizers. so their Youtube page should be full of examples.
Or at least, examples of what they consider to be visualizers.

OMG humanity and internet… :thinking:

These take gigabytes of video streaming (think pollution).
They even look quite lame compared to 4k intros (yes, just four kilobytes including music).

Here is a video rendering of some best quite recent ones (21st century, I don’t know them, lol).
Visualiser people should just stop stack up gigabytes of no-added-value video streaming, or learn to do 4 kilobytes + audio rips. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

The summum of mankind musicianship artistic suicide of the fun to create, will be IA generated visualisers for IA generated music.


Ultimate Algorithmic Idiocy will be an AI generated reaction video to the AI generated visuals on top of AI generated music… :fire: :fire: :rofl: Someone will then sell an NFT to you so you can own it…

Need to have a new data field next to a recording - GigaWatts of power used to create. How many watts of power does a guy with a acoustic guitar use up?


I don’t think a (known) director is necessary for a music video. Especially in the era of early music videos, it was not common to name a director. In some cases it is impossible to find out.
There are also cases where there is no director at all. There’s camera, actor and editor. The plot developed between actor and camera and it was edited after that - no one in charge. (Not every music video is high art :slight_smile: )

Like you, I would not create fan-made music videos (whatever quality) or link fan-uploaded videos (for legal reasons).

And I do not create recordings for lyrics videos or visualizers unless it’s a piece of art itself - e.g.

PS: Actually, I’ve done very little of this so far, but I eventually will…



How about pixel-by-pixel AI-generated photos?

All these “funny kitten photos”… :wink:

okay then, how many watts of power did The Beatles use to create Srgt. Peppers? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

(that does have some good overly-specific-trivia energy tho…)

on the note of quality, I don’t think that should be the main factor as to whether it should be allowed in MusicBrainz… you may look at this video and think it’s just a guy lip syncing in his bedroom (which to be fair, it is). I see an early example of a viral music video on the internet, with many parodies and references to this day (even made it on South Park) (more info on the Know Your Meme article)

if someone wants to document that their favorite animator made an unofficial music video for a My Chemical Romance song, if an editor wants to add all music videos (official and fanmade) for their favorite artist, if someone wants to document one of their favorite compilation music videos from their childhood and they just recently found who actually did the music used in the Chicken Dance portion (bit of a personal example here… it was not the Blue Man Group as credited in the video), I believe we can make a place for that in MusicBrainz

edit: rewatching that personal example reminds me just how much music I was introduced in that one video, probably my introduction to Gorillaz, Queen, and Green Day, among others


you know… thinking about it again, I feel like official non-music videos could be allowed in MusicBrainz, at least as standalone recordings. we’ve already got equivalents from various DVDs and Enhanced CD releases (examples below from my collection), but I don’t know that release dates, thumbnails, and whatnot are as important for non-music (tho I would be okay with these being Other releases too, but I don’t expect many others will be on board with that)

I think if someone wants to document official music-related YouTube videos in MusicBrainz, maybe that could be an option, is all

something to also consider discussing at some point (tho let me know if this is off-topic, @reosarevok), how to split video recordings? I’m sure we can agree that audio differences mean different recordings (like the addition of diegetic audio between this video and that), but beyond that, we don’t have any guidelines or documentation yet

edit: made a new thread for more visibility


Certainly cannot be a factor in all cases at least… because this wonder is an official music video :sweat_smile:

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Reviewing the discussion above, I’m starting to reach the following conclusions:

Releases of music in video form, such as music videos and concert recordings, can be added as MusicBrainz releases as long as they fulfill at least one of the following conditions:

  • They’re an official music video, lyric video or visualizer made available by the artist or label, be it for purchase or stream.
  • They’re an official live video made available by the artist or label, be it for purchase or stream.
  • They’re a bootleg live video of a song or a full concert made available by a fan.

Minor video releases such as short teasers for a longer video and brief snippets of a live show should generally not be added as a MusicBrainz release, but they can be added as a standalone recording.

I am still unsure what to think about fan-made non-live videos. I can see the appeal, but having them in a filmography seems wrong to me - possibly standalone recording is the place to be?


I still think taking a queue from the remix guidelines is the way to go; to enter the video creator as the release / release group artist and the music artist as the track / recording artist. I forget if I linked it above, but I’ve already created one such video release as an example


My problem with that idea is that we start moving from the music artist being the recording/release artist to the video artist being that - but having the video artist as the main artist seems weird for MusicBrainz. That would seem equivalent to having the video director for the official videos then, which we don’t have.


I see your point…

lemme explain my logic tho using the above example… aimkid (the animator) is the artist who did the releasing, so it kinda makes sense to have them as the release artist (similar to the remix guidelines). aimkid did not make the music in the video, so that’s credited to 100 gecs (the music artist) on all levels (both recording and track)

if the video was released by the music artist (say, Bread by Anya Nami) or by their label (like Diggy Diggy Hole by Wind Rose on Napalm Records), then the release artist would be the music artist, of course

with how MusicBrainz is set up currently, that gives good visibility to official music videos and reasonable visibility to unofficial videos (i.e. they don’t clutter the music artists’ page, but are visible on the video creators’ page)

that said, I’m down for a different solution if you feel that’s too confusing (or perhaps even a change to how releases are displayed? idk). we probably shouldn’t be tagging for the renderer, if possible

if it’s holding up a decision on official videos, I’m fine leaving unofficial videos unmentioned for now tho~ (as long as they’re open for discussion in the future)

in the meantime, I’ve made a collection for the unofficial releases that do exist already~

Ok! Let’s do that for now, since nobody else seems to have any strong objections. Not sure what’s a good next step that won’t be too controversial, but possibly release date for these? So let’s try:

What should be the release date for a video release
For a physical release, this is obvious and the same as for a non-video release. Same for a digital purchase option.

For streaming, I expect the answer is “the earliest the video was made available on a streaming platform” (so, for example, if the video was on Vimeo first and then a few weeks later also on YouTube, we wouldn’t add a second release for that but would just use the original Vimeo date, as we would with multiple digital stores with different dates).

The only doubt I have is what happens with videos that were originally shown on TV or the like. Is that a release, and if so, of what kind? The broadcast guidelines use the date of the release of the CD or download, rather than the broadcast date. Should we do the same for music videos and not add a release at all for a TV broadcast, but only if and when they were available for purchase? I don’t know what that would mean for videos predating the digital era, or for things like live performances on something like Top of the Pops.

I personally don’t like the Broadcast style solution in this case, and think we should rather consider the air date as the release date, for multiple reasons

  • the release group date would show properly (if music videos get their own release group especially, but can apply in other cases, like a music video with no audio single), and that date can be retrieved through the API. basically, I wouldn’t expect Take On Me to show up as a 2010 release group, but rather a 1985 release
  • this would also properly set the recording first release date for different versions of a particular video (like the 2019 diagetic audio version of Take On Me)
  • lastly, it feels more consistent with similar data, specifically audio-only music recordings. a minor point, but consistency is good to consider

while yes, this is different from how I think we currently handle audio tracks (I haven’t seen a radio release for a song, for example), I think it makes sense with how videos are released

Top of the Pops is an interesting point tho, since that feels more like a Broadcast release to me (tho it might not be, I only briefly read the Wikipedia article several months ago). if we do treat these as broadcast releases, perhaps each music video and performance can get its own “track”?

I dunno, it’s an idea (tho I don’t know if I even like it that much, lol). if we do both, we could end up with duplicate releases for a video by itself and as part of Top of the Pops. might not be an issue, but still…

(or maybe I’m making things too complicated… I tend to do that, lol)

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