Database Guidelines 10. Credits


Community discussion of potential new credit roles should take place in the official New Credit Roles forum thread.

Credit Fields

10.1.1. There are two places you can enter detailed credits on the submission. The Main Credit section:

And the Tracklist Credits section on each track:

10.1.2.Both the Main Credits section and the Tracklist Credits section contain the same information, just displayed in a different way. The same rules apply to both.

10.1.3. Role: The role should be selected from one of the standard credit roles, and should be chosen to match the credit on the release as closely as possible. If multiple credits are chosen to be entered, they must be separated by a comma and space, for example: Written-By, Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards.

10.1.4.Name: Only one name per field, apart from non-linked credits, where multiple names and non-standard punctuation are allowable (Written By, Artwork By, Other, Executive Producer).

10.1.5.Tracks: This field only appears in the main credits section. The Tracks field should not be used if the artist appears on all tracks. Leaving this field blank means the artist either is credited for all tracks, or it is unclear which specific tracks the artist is credited for. This field must use the same format as the track listing. Multiple tracks must be separated by a comma followed by a space. Groups of tracks are joined by the word 'to' with a space either side. Here are some examples:

  • Two or more tracks: A1, A3, B3, B4
  • Several adjacent tracks: A2 to A6
  • Mixed: A1, A3 to A5, A7 to B4, B8

10.1.6.You can enter the credits in whichever section is easiest and clearest to you. Generally, release wide credits (that is, credits that apply to all tracks) should go in the main credits section, but they can go in the Tracklist Credits section if, for example, they are writing credits and splitting them up would be confusing.

10.1.7. Please don't edit releases to move about credits between sections because of personal preferences, as this can lead to errors being introduced.

10.1.8. Please do not leave empty Credit fields behind. Only add as many as you need.

10.1.9. The credit guidelines are the same for all genres.

General Credit Rules

10.2.1.Credits for all roles in the Discogs Credit List go in the Main Credit section or the Tracklist Credits credit section underneath each individual track. Avoid splitting credits of identical roles for the same track(s). Extra information, such as studio locations, can go in the notes. Most credits are optional (you can see the required ones here).

10.2.2. Credit roles are taken from the credit list whenever possible. This list will probably never be fully complete, but at the moment covers most instruments and roles. Spelling should be adjusted to match the list. For example, use Vocals, not Vocal.

10.2.3.Box brackets [ ] should be used to give more detail to existing instrument families, for example: Bagpipes [Highland], Electric Piano [Rhodes]. Any reasonable description of the instrument or credit role is allowed in the box brackets. [Credited To] was sometimes used in the past, but is forbidden now, and can be removed if other updates are happening on the release.

10.2.4. In cases where there are duplicate credits for aliases of an artist, enter all the aliases. For example, for a track named "Artist & Artist's 'The Group' Remix", enter remix credits for both Artist & Artist and The Group.

10.2.5. Mastering credits etched into the run out groove can be entered as normal credits.

10.2.6. Please see the General Guidelines for the current list of required credits for a new submission.

10.2.7. Companies, businesses etc can be credited if they are directly given a credit on the release, for example; 'Design - Central Station Design'. Where the credit gives the company or business as a location, for example, 'Remastered at Abbey Road Studios', this is not appropriate for the Discogs credit system, but can be entered into the Label / Company section. Combined information such as 'Design by Joe at Virginart' (possibly abbreviated in some way, such as; 'Design - Joe@Virginart') should be separated - 'Joe' gets the design credits, and 'Virginart' goes in the Label / Company section. Usually, the use of the word 'at' (in any language), or the use of a symbol intended to mean 'at', implies it is not suitable for a Discogs credit, but can usually be entered into the Label / Company section. The credits listed on some releases ('Produced By' for example) can have two distinct meanings (the musical production of the recording, and the physical manufacturing of the product in this case). In the first instance, a credit is appropriate, in the second, it is not. Please ask in the Database forum if you need help to decide between them.

Adding Unlisted Credits

10.3. Roles or instruments that are not in the Credits List and don't belong to subcategories of existing listed roles should be entered using the common name (in English if possible) of the main family of the instrument, or the common name of the role, using the brackets to describe more detail if necessary (see below). If in doubt, lists and descriptions can be found on the Internet in such places as Wikipedia or by doing a Google search. When entering a role that isn't in the list, please use the submission notes to explain, and list the new credit in the Database forum thread. If possible, please include a short description of the role, and link/s to any supporting information on other websites.

Written By vs. Written-By

10.4.1. Written-By - This version of the Written By credit is linked. It is used in the same way as all other linked credits. Note the dash between the words: '-'; it is vital that the credit is entered in exactly this way.

10.4.2. Written By - This is a special unlinked role that can be used under two circumstances at the submitter's discretion:

  1. To add unlinked writer credit(s) where the full name is not known or unclear.
  2. In addition to the linked credit(s), in order to replicate the complete writer credit as it is formatted on the release. This allows the exact usage of formatting characters and artist name ordering to be captured, for example; B.Writer/A.Writer/C.Writer

10.4.3. The unlinked credit should not be used when the linked version displays identically to the unlinked version on the submission form. The Artist Name Variation (ANV) function should also be considered when deciding which credit should be used.

Existing Indexed Roles

10.5. An indexed role will be listed on its own section of the artist's page. For example: The "Remix" role will be listed under the "Remixes:" section of the artist page. The "Producer" role will be listed under the "Production:" section of the artist page. Any role that is not indexed will default to the "Appears On" sections of the artist page (for the time being).

Non-indexed, Non-linked Credits

10.6. Discogs has some non-indexed credits. These credits are not listed on any artist pages. If the name isn't in the database, no new artist is created. These cover all credits that we don't want to create a link and don't want to index, for roles credited on the release that are not musical or technical; for example, catering personnel, managers, drivers etc. All credits for human roles must go in the credit section rather than the Notes. The non-indexed, non-linked credits are:

  • Artwork By
  • Executive Producer
  • Photography
  • Written By
  • Other - Use the box brackets to define the role, for example "Other [Catering]". Never to be used for musical roles.

Credits From External Sources

10.7.1. Credits that do not appear on the release can be added only under certain circumstances. The (credible) credit source must be stated in the submission notes, and the credit must be labeled with [Uncredited] in brackets after the credit role. If other text is used in the credit brackets, the 'Uncredited' must have a comma separating it from the other text.

10.7.2. Credits should not be transferred between releases.

10.7.3. The 'copy to draft' function duplicates the release information including the credits, so a different version of the release can be entered. Please ensure that the credits you copy across this way are correct and valid. All credits that are not written on that version of the release should be removed.

'Thank You' Type Credits

10.8. 'Thank you' type lists should only be added to the credits if it is clear the person/s or group/s had direct involvement with the creation of the recording. General thanks, shout outs, hello's etc should not be added to the credit section, and can be added to the notes if required.

Cover Versions

10.9. There are no Discogs credits specifically to credit the original artists for cover versions. If the original composer/writer is credited on a release containing a cover version, you can use the relevant credit as appropriate, and the version will be linked from the composer/writers page. Cover versions can also be mentioned in the Release Notes.


10.10. If artists are sampled and receive a credit on the release, they can be credited as usual for their musical role. General sample information (for example, "Drums are sampled from the Led Zeppelin track 'When The Levee Breaks'") can be placed in the notes section.

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