This is a working draft to update our ReleaseStatus definition and wording. For the currently approved and official styleguide, check the page in the official documentation.
Guidelines for Release Status
The type should apply to most of the tracks on the release. It's OK to have a couple of tracks that do not fit the release type, as long as the type applies to the release overall.
- Status: This is an OfficialStyleGuideline. (This is also a work in progress and there is a ReleaseTypeRestructuringProposal).
List of possible Release Status
- Any release officially sanctioned by the artist and/or their record company. (Most releases will fit into this category.)
- A give-away release or a release intended to promote an upcoming official release. (e.g. pre-release versions or releases included with a magazine, versions supplied to radio DJs for air-play, etc).
- An unofficial/underground release that was not sanctioned by the artist and/or the record company. This includes unofficial live recordings, pirated releases, and custom burnt compilations. In the latter case, we do not sanction entering custom compilation CDs (homebrews) into MusicBrainz, as this information has little relevance to anyone besides the creator. One of the challenges in this system is to identify the "real" bootlegs from the homebrews.
- A pseudo-release is used at one end of a TranslationTransliterationRelationshipType. It allows us to retain and link to useful translation/transliteration info until NextGenerationSchema allows us to display the info in a better way.
Q: What's the status of a BonusDisc?
My take on this is that the release status should be the same as the release it came with. So a bonus disc with an official release should be marked Official. The release type has to be judged from the content - I've seen releases, eps, singles and compilations as bonus discs. --ZeroGravitas
- I think it should be determined as if it is a separate entry. Live releases are Live, Remix releases are Remix, bonus discs with just a few tracks, e.g. different versions, are probably best categorised as Other. --Zout
Would it be possible to tighten up the definition of "Official" to read something like "A release sanctioned by the legal copyright holder(s), usually including an artist and their record company, with the product being available for retail sale"? With pretty much anything officially released by a record company, there is a profit motive. Lots of mp3s are only semi-official, as they are available for free from various websites, evidently without the various copyright holders' specific permissions, but with little likelihood of a lawsuit. I would include such semi-official freebies as part of the "promotion" category. --ArtySmokes