User:Freso/Open Source Days 2013 talk

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The IMDb of Music: Introducing MusicBrainz


When Gracenote purchased the user-created music database CDDB and changed the license terms to require the very users who had created it to pay for access to the data. A few projects stepped in to fill the void left by its loss and to provide free music metadata to those who wanted it, a project called MusicBrainz among them. Today, MusicBrainz is considered the leader when it comes to open music data, and is used by many diverse entities: streaming services (Spotify,, 7digital, etc.), music labels (Universal Music UK and Music Kickup), news/public service organs (the BBC and the Guardian), universities (Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona and Queen Mary University of London), media players (VLC/VideoLAN Client, XBMC, AOL's WinAmp, and more), and many others (including Google and Amazon).

But what is MusicBrainz? Why was it started and who's behind it? How can you help them? And most importantly: how can you use their awesome data?


Frederik "Freso" S. Olesen (or just Freso) is a geek of many trades, having been involved with MusicBrainz since 2006: entering and editing data, participating in the creation of MusicBrainz policy, translating, and coding for both the MusicBrainz server and various auxiliary/related projects.