Wikidata item for Single RG - Single, Song or both?

I did some poking around at Wikidata, and here’s what I found:
Wikidata Single (Mamma Mia / Intermezzo) (there’s a number of Mamma Mia “singles”/“release” entries in Wikidata, but not as many as Musicbrainz has)
Wikidata - recording of Mamma Mia
Wikidata - song/work entry for Mamma Mia

While there’s a link from the single to the recording, and a link from the recording to the song/work, there aren’t links in the opposite direction. I get the impression that the opposite-direction links aren’t possible in the (current) Wikidata schema. The Wikidata schema is more easily changed (on a technical level) than the Musicbrainz schema, but they do have a political process around getting schema updates accepted that I haven’t bothered to grok.

Also interesting is that they don’t seem to differentiate well between “release” and “release group”. The above mentioned single/“release” (Mamma Mia / Intermezzo) has a “release of” link to another “release” entry, Mamma Mia, which is serving as a release group.
There’s a “release group” item in their schema that appears to have been added this year: Q108346082, but the “political process” I mentioned may still be in progress as regards getting it used.

This is the missing link, the track: Mamma Mia - Wikidata

It’s currently not allowed to link MB tracks to WD tracks, but in Wikidata we link to the MusicBrainz recording ID.

For anyone interested I can strongly recommend the Entity Explosion extension for visualizing MB<>WD links, it’s a great help:
Chrome: Entity Explosion - Chrome Web Store (
Firefox: Entity Explosion – Get this Extension for 🦊 Firefox (en-US)

For Firefox only there is a second alternative: Wikidata:Tools/Wikidata for Firefox - Wikidata


It’s possible, but discouraged (not just for music, but in general), one of several reasons being that we want to avoid having to update and maintain statements in more than one place.
While this is desirable from a data maintenance perspective, it can surely make it less readable for humans. Several userscripts (gadgets) are in place to help with this, including one specifically made for music editors that will display two-way relationships in the UI. Anyone with a Wikidata account feel free to hit me up and I’ll explain how to enable them.


We do, but as you rightly point out it’s a fairly new practise and not at all well built out. For single releases in particular some work has been done, but the numbers are still in the low thousands. Hopefully this will dramatically improve over the next few years.

Italian Wikipedia is the biggest Wiki to routinely feature articles about the actual singles. Here is an example:

Corresponding to Wikidata at: Malatia / Non partir - Wikidata


Just create a Wikidata link if it’s not created already. We don’t need Wikipedia links ever. Creating a Wikidata link is super easy. Every time I see a Wikipedia page link and no Wikidata link, I just add the Wikidata link or create a new Wikidata entry. Take less than a minute.


This is just wrong, IMO. We shouldn’t add WIkipedia pages if Wikidata exist. If something isn’t correct on the Wikidata. Fix it there.


This is why I don’t think there needs to be a different Wikidata for songs vs. singles linked. Super rare that you see a Wikipedia article that is different for the Song vs. Single. I personally have never seen any harm in linking a single to the song. In the rare occassions that there actually is a separate entry, just link the appropriate one. By moving a link to the song Wikidata link for the Mama Mia single to the song (which has 0 links to Wikipedia), caused all this. Was it not really fine before? I think it was. It’s ok, IMO, to have Wikidata linked to 2 different MB entries.


Yes and linking to work and release group is more convenient visible than to work and recording (as I think I read in some of the posts here).

I’m not involved in Wikipedia but that seems extremely unlikely to happen. Where Wikidata is meant for machine consumption and aims for granularity, Wikipedia tries to provide overview, with an emphasis on readability.


I should have been more clear – while opposite-direction links are possible in general, I don’t believe the current Wikidata schema provides opposite-direction link(/property) types for these particular relationship/link types. Probably, because, as you said (If I understand you correctly), it’s discouraged in general. In other words, there seems to be no property-types that allow you to provide a link path from a Song to a (or multiple) Recording or from a Recording to a Release.

It sounds like you’re not reading the entire thread here. If you want to make this argument effectively, please address the issues brought up here, in particular the cases where people want to provide links to Wikipedia pages from a MB release-group or release page, but the wikidata entries don’t get the job done.

(Not really sure if this is what you’re suggesting, but, as a general warning:)
Uninformed hacking at Wikidata to make stuff on Musicbrainz work better is rather like the people that hack at Musicbrainz to make stuff on some other website (recent example: work better. If you’re going to work on a community-maintained site, you should be doing it according to the customs/rules of that community, not according to what makes stuff come out best on some other website.


Thinking about this some more, it seems to me that a key question that has not been explicitly asked is:

Is the only purpose/use for adding Wikidata links to Musicbrainz to get a Wikipedia page to show up in Musicbrainz?

Maybe it would be worth having two types of Wikidata links in Musicbrainz – one a “Wikipedia wikidata” link and one a “this is the 100% correct wikidata item for this Musicbrainz item” link.

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I told him he was making too many files but he ignored me. I agree with everything said, there is next to nothing on Wikidata that is not also here (at the moment). As for me, I could work 24-7 forever and still have plenty to do, so duplicating work is the last waste of time I would want to get involved in. Wikidata is trying to have release groups, releases, and works, like another website… what for?? Just created exponential more work and short-circuited inspiration. Oh well.

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Anyone can add WIkipedia links to WIkidata. It’s not hacking. It’s how it works. If there are Wikipedia links to the single than just add them to the Wikidata page about the single. That way they are here on MB or anywhere else that uses Wikidata. The point of Wikidata links is for this very reason. To link all the different WIkipedia articles to one place so that you don’t have to add 20 Wikipedia pages, just 1 Wikidata page.

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You totally miss the point of the discussion here. The case what to do if there is no Wikidata entry is not even being debated.

The point is that sometimes there is a Wikipedia article (e.g. You're Still the One - Wikipedia) that is both discussing the musical work (like for example the song You're Still the One - Wikidata) and the single release containing this work (like for example the single You're Still the One - Wikidata). As an Wikipedia article that makes sense. There are many articles like “XYZ is a song written by A. It was originally released as a single in YYYY”.

The Wikidata song entry is currently correctly linked to the work on MusicBrainz. Likewise the Wikidata single entry is correctly linked to the release group.

The problem now is that the Wikipedia article can only be linked to one Wikidata item. And it is linked to the song, not the single (which again makes sense, because the article is primarily about the song). But that means the release group cannot derive a Wikipedia link from the linked Wikidata item.

If we still think the Wikipedia article is relevant for the single and useful to have (which it is IMHO) it makes sense to me to add the direct link to that article. And that is exactly how this is currently being done for the example.


Yes. I get that. But I don’t think we should link to Wikipedia pages directly as a work around. We should just link all to the song instead of the single. If there’s no difference in the Wikipedia articles, than linking to a Wikidata link with zero Wikipedia links is just not helpful. This is why probably over 90% of single release groups & the works the single represents have the same Wikidata link. In the rare occasion that there actually is a different Wikipedia article for the work than the single than we can edit that on a case by case basis, but I see no point in linking to a Wikidata that doesn’t allow links to the page it represents. I’d much rather have a Wikidata link that might not be 100% correct if it links to all the singles instead of many WIkipedia links because the Wikidata is to a song that has no links.

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This seems to be some of the core issue. But I don’t see why Wikidata cannot jump ahead of Wikipedia and add links to the same Wikipedia page on both Song and Single wikidata pages. Wikipedia will never split those pages as there is no point as it rarely makes sense to do so.

It is impossible to have a one to one mapping between everything. Most songs are just not that important and only makes sense when talked about as part of a single. If Wikidata would link to the combined Wikipedia page that would solve much of the problem for MB. And I believe it would make the Wikidata page richer too as it is “correct” data. If a Wikidata Single page points to a combined Wikidata Song and Single page then the reader will still learn the details they need. (And we have barely skimmed over B sides)

The puzzle then is getting Wikipedia to add multiple Wikidata links for their combined pages.

Wikidata is representing raw data links for computers to read so has to link to the correct parts of Musicbrainz. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia for humans to read. I doubt music is the only area that one to one mappings between the two are not possible.


One thing to note about this - most articles aren’t being written about a fantastic piece of work. They are about the recording that sold 50million units, and then they give a little blurb about the writing.

*I am still not a fan of corrupting our data because someone else has corrupted theirs.

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I think that workaround is worse. This is cross-linking the wrong entity types. If you link the MB single to the WD song you claim that both are representing the same thing. Wikidata is a database of structured content, with each data item representing some very specific thing. It is not just a mean to link to Wikipedia article.

Please see also @Moebeus answer:

I find it strange that some here claim that we should not compromise on our data, but then the proposed solution is doing exactly that by linking to wrong entities.

Exactly this!

I am not sure on which side of the argument you stand, so just my general 2 cents on that. The issues discussed here are not caused by “corruption” in the Wikidata entries. If there is wrong data there it of course needs to be fixed.

Also adding a Wikidata link to the correct entity is not “coruupting our data”. Nor is adding a Wikipedia to the correct entity. Adding a wrong Wikidata item arguably is.


I still don’t think we should ever link a WIkipedia article. But, I think we all agree about Wikidata not allowing the same Wikipedia article to be linked to 2 Wikidata’s is the issue. I’d prefer linking to the wrong Wikidata over 20 Wikipedia articles, but I can see why some might not like that either.