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Android app beta testers?

Hi all!
I've been working on an Android app to access LyricWiki lyrics and am planning to have a really basic version done in a week or two (I am only able to steal a few hours at night to work on it here or there).

If you have an Android device and would be willing to download an .apk file and load it onto your device, please let me know (send me your email address, please) and I'll let you know when the beta is out.

As far as the beta goes, you can give as much or as little feedback as you'd like... just be prepared for a small handful of emails (one for each beta release, probably an email when we go live with a final version on the marketplace, etc.).

Let me know :)
-Sean Colombo 22:33, January 6, 2011 (UTC)

Cool experiments ... we want your feedback :)

I spent some time with the Content team at Wikia and we thought of some fun experiments that could make the site better. We'd love your feedback on them!

  1. Having some sort of "fan" section on artist pages. This would be for less structured data about the artists: tour dates, quick bios, slideshow galleries (Wikia has a cool extension for that), rumors of upcoming albums, etc.. Here were some possible ideas:
    • Have the bios be at the top of the page before the discography (essentially to the left of the infoboxes).
    • If these sections were built to be bigger, then maybe they should go below the discography, with a link to "jump down to bio below" or something.
    • As an experiment, we're going to be doing these for 3 artists ... check 'em out and let us know what you think or chip in: Britney Spears, Ke$ha, Katy Perry.
  2. Turning 'Top 10 lists' extension on. This would let people make personal lists like "my favorite 10 songs of 2010", "The top 50 best lyrics from the 1950s", "Most Romantic Death Metal Lyrics", etc.. We already have lists on the site, but the Top 10 Lists extension makes them a bit easier to make & significantly better-looking.
  3. Main Page polish - our Main Page is quite functional & awesome, but could use a little polish to look better. We're planning to add a slider to see if that helps promote certain pages that the wiki community thinks are important. What are some pages you think we should be promoting first?
    • Since the Grammy's are coming up, we'll probably link to a Grammy's page.
    • In general, the most popular artists of the moment would be a good default to fill the other slots.
    • To see how cool the sliders look in action, check out Mad Men Wiki
    • Do you think it makes sense to make the iTunes Top 10 in the main part of the page have pictures next to it? It should be easy for me to make that happen automatically after I finish some code I'm writing. Seems like a good idea to me... thoughts?
  4. Contests! There are occasionally contests on certain wikis and they've tended to generate a lot of excitement & bring in new users. One issue that occurred to me is that the contests are usually US-only (since it's dumb to spend $58 to ship a $20 gift-card to someone in Dubai ;) - that kills the budget for other contests) ... Anywho: LyricWiki is a very international wiki & we're also smart. Therefore, I think it makes sense for us to figure out a way to make the contests international. If you have any ideas on how to pull this off, please put them below. Here's one of my ideas:
    • If the user is in the US, give them an iTunes card, if they're in a Spotify-legal country, give them a Spotify Pro certificate online.
    • Do something like give them a Grooveshark VIP account (I _think_ that's global?)

So, look out for these fun experiments (which will stick around if they work out)... and if you have any thoughts on the above, please share! :D
-Sean Colombo 23:52, January 10, 2011 (UTC)

Just a head's up: XD1 (and possibly some others) from the content team will be helping out on LyricWiki. Among other things, they might be adding images that will be unused for a while, whilst they work on making PhotoGalleries (eg: for one of the three test pages mentioned above) or other things. They are good with wikis but probably unfamiliar with LyricWiki's specific rules & might need some guidance at first.
Thank for the help!
-Sean Colombo 01:44, January 25, 2011 (UTC)

The artist info is up on Britney Spears and so is the experimental Fans page. They got us off to a good start & gathered cool info... hopefully we can adjust it to fit better with the site & be more easily extensible to other artists (probably should have more CSSed text instead of images of text... make templates for things... etc.). But the layout is just a guess too... if anyone has cool ideas for these new pages, just jump in and do them! :)
Hopefully we can change the pages to the point that we think they're really cool & will get ppl to stay. One random idea: maybe the link to the fan page should be a button in the Infobox instead of a random "click here" text link?
Also... let me know what you think of the Fan pages in general... are they cool? are we doing them right? what could we do better?
-Sean Colombo 22:58, February 7, 2011 (UTC)

Shocked Will every page get such a big space above the actual content? We are a serious lyrics page and not a cheap gossip rag. Do we need pinkish buttons and slideshows of lesbian-kisses? Sceptical By the way, the twitter RSS feed is broken... Does any feed on this project work 24/7?!? - Chris 23:06, February 7, 2011 (UTC)
Will every page have a big space? Not if we don't want them to! :D ... I share the desire to have a minimal amount of space above the article before the discography starts. Also, I don't think the news feed makes sense on the artist page itself (especially if there is a Fan page)... but I do think it'd be cool to have some basic biographical info about artists (which we could expose through the API, ideally).
How does this sound? A == Background == section (or some similar name) at the bottom, and just a "Jump to Background [down arrow]" link at the top (possibly in the Infobox)?
Yeah, RSS feeds always seem jank on here... not sure what's up with that... will look for a bug case for that & file one if there isn't one yet.
Anyone got CSS/typography skillz they could use to make those buttons into pretty-looking text? ^^
Thanks for the feedbackz,
-Sean Colombo 23:31, February 7, 2011 (UTC)

YouTube videos on lyrics pages

A very common request I hear is for youtube videos to be embedded on pages. The community has already done a great job of finding videos for a ton of songs. One challenge of embedding them might be that it could get in the way of the lyrics themselves. I think we have a good solution now by putting them off to the right (in line with the badges.. the same width as the badges).

Here are the three example pages that I tested on:

I think it makes sense to also keep the link in the footer. Thoughts?

Does that look good? Perhaps it would look better below the badges? Personally I think it's good where it is, but if you have strong thoughts either way, let me know.

Just wanted to see what everyone's thoughts were... then if it seems like a good idea, we could just have a bot scream through our pages and add the new link.
-Sean Colombo 01:18, January 12, 2011 (UTC)

I like the idea and having it among the badges looks good imho. But the necessity for another template is irritating as it leads to duplicit information (and yes, I aggree it should be kept in the footer). Nyoxi 02:30, January 12, 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm. The only way I can think of to do it w/out a template at the top also is to teach the <lyrics> tag to go back and fetch the wikitext of its entire page, then parse that to try to find the "youtube = " from the SongFooter. There are a few drawbacks to that:
  1. Have to have the tag load the page-content (which is a little slower)
  2. May be confusing because looking at the wikitext in approx. the place where you'd expect the video wouldn't show you any wikitext of how it's being generated (so you wouldn't necessarily no where to change it). This is probably a minor problem (like the first).
  3. The only way to change things would be for me to change the code in the lyric parser-tag each time (so the community would have to wait for me each time instead of having the power to make the changes on their own).
None of those are deathly bad, but I don't like the last one very much since it slows down innovation in the future (if the community decides they want to improve something). Maybe there is another way to do it w/o duplicate info? Maybe we should just deal w/the duplicate info? Hmm. If we do end up having the extra embedding template at the top, we could probably have bots keep the top and the bottom in sync fairly easily, I think.
Additional thoughts are welcome. Right now, I'm leaning towards two templates.
-Sean Colombo 01:01, January 14, 2011 (UTC)
Unsure about YT vids on pages for various reasons.
  • (+) Looks better and brings attention to our "service" of searching the YT vids
  • (-) Videos are taken on and off YT all day long. A dead link doesn't make the project looking poorly maintained as much as a dead embedded video does
  • (o) We should only allow official music videos for embedding and the others (f. e. song + slideshow + lyrics) only for linkage. I don't think these Windows Movie Maker videos are ones to embed
  • (o) Will there be any way to be notified of removed vids?
About the problem: Why not make the embed template set a variable for the songfooter as with Wikipedia badge?
Chris 22:54, January 14, 2011 (UTC)
  • That's a good point about the maintenance problems of making sure they're always there. Perhaps we could have a bot or cron-job which goes and checks the videos against the YouTube API to see if they're still up? That seems like a good way to make sure we get broken vids down in a timely manner.
  • If Windows Movie Maker vids are the only available (which is the case for a lot of indies who don't have budgets for full-blown videos), personally I'd prefer that to not having a video at all. For songs which have both types of videos, I think that's okay someone can only find a bad video & the community eventually decides to replace it with a better one.
  • Ah! Clever w/the variable idea.
-Sean Colombo 23:51, January 14, 2011 (UTC)
Not too many responses yet, but I think once the change is more visible (or watchlist emails start working again :P) more people will help us polish the experience. Here's a proposal for now:
  1. We start botting to move the youtube ID from the footer to youtube embed tags. Anyone anxious to do this? If not, I'd be happy to bot it up soon.
  2. We figure out a good way to make the SongFooter template fallback to a variable which gets set inside of {{youtube embed}} the same way that the {{wikipedia}} does it.
  3. In the coming week or so, someone makes a bot which checks our YouTube videos to make sure they're still active and takes care of them (deletes them?) if they're gone. Anyone have experience with that already? If not, I can take a stab at it.
Seem reasonable? :)
-Sean Colombo 01:51, January 15, 2011 (UTC)
Also, Chris: which template sets the 'wpsong' variable? I see {{SongFooter}} use it, but I don't see {{Wikipedia}} or {{wplink}} use it.
-Sean Colombo 03:22, January 17, 2011 (UTC)
That would be {{WP-Song}}, which was created for use on song pages because {{Wikipedia}} didn't fit in nicely with the other badges. 6×9 (Talk) 06:56, January 17, 2011 (UTC)
Ahhh, cool. Thanks, 6!
I updated {{youtube embed}} to set the 'youtube' variable and updated {{SongFooter}} to use that variable if 'youtube' isn't provided. When I get a chance, I'll try to make a bot to start making changes.
-Sean Colombo 22:17, January 17, 2011 (UTC)
ÜberBot has started to update songs to have the new {{youtube embed}} instead of the parameter in the footer. There may be bugs in the way he's doing it - he tries to put the {{youtube embed}} below other templates that are known to need full width (such as {{Song}}, {{TranslatedSong}}, and {{WAY-Parody}}) but that almost certainly doesn't cover all the templates. For now he's running at one page every 30 seconds so that he doesn't cause too much damage if it turns out he's doing something wrong. If we don't see any problems for a few days, I'll speed him up. You can keep an eye on the changes here: Special:Contributions/ÜberBot
-Sean Colombo 21:11, January 18, 2011 (UTC)
Instead of looking where to put it below it might be better to check for the presence of any song badges (which, hopefully, are all shown in this category) and, if present, put it directly above them, else put it directly above the lyrics tag. This might also be a good strategy for the SOTD badge. 6×9 (Talk) 21:29, January 18, 2011 (UTC)
Hmm, good idea. Rewrote it. Now it hould appear above any of the badges listed on that page (or just the <lyrics> tag if none of them are present).
-Sean Colombo 21:49, January 18, 2011 (UTC)
Next to Chris I'm also not 100% excited about all u2bes embedding idea, but if ÜberBot started this process already, it would be desirable to include at least minimal validation of links being embedded. I don't think that page "Weird Al" Yankovic:Amish Paradise looks better now with such a 'video'. Eliminating dead-links or private/banned video's shouldn't be a problem for ÜberBot, using youtube api (responsing "Private video" in this case).
But what about all the rest u2bes, majority of which aren't real videos as such - just audio tracks, composed together with some set of pics (often very lowbrow pics, btw)? If I had a joice possibility, I'd like to have only minimized audio track control for such 'video', embeded on a page, maybe with optional possibility to maximize it to u2be video player control...
--Senvaikis (talk) 13:00, January 19, 2011 (UTC)
That'd be a cool idea to let us specify some videos to be audio-only. Anyone know of a way to do that?
-Sean Colombo 19:14, January 19, 2011 (UTC)
Btw, have you noticed some strange behaviour (periodical pseudogrowing) of Category:Invalid YouTube Link? Simple touching clears it again ('ve made that procedure twice today, over 40 pseudomembers on the last touch-cleaning). I suspected that may be somehow related to the process started by uBot, but page edition history doesn't confirm such assumption. 6? --Senvaikis (talk) 22:06, January 19, 2011 (UTC)
Probably the usual problem of variables and categories not playing nicely with each other. SF now checks not only for |youtube or |video parameters but also for yt variable, and if any is found calls {{YouTube}}. The latter checks if string length of id is 11, else it puts the page in C:IYL.
If the variable is not set it evaluates to an empty string, in which case {{YouTube}} isn't transcluded. But apparently it is parsed anyway, and while the page is displayed correctly (without C:IYL) the server somehow gets confused and adds it to the category. Next time such a "ghost" appears it might be worth checking whether it also shows up in Category:YouTube/Song. 6×9 (Talk) 22:21, January 19, 2011 (UTC)

(...Unindenting). Though this thread's grown enormously, wanted to ask ÜBot again - recheck the positioning (Leonard Cohen:First We Take Manhattan) and validation (Leonard Cohen:Democracy) of embeddements. tia --Senvaikis (talk) 15:54, January 24, 2011 (UTC)

The first one was my fault (in a way) since I advised Sean to put video above any badges, I didn't tell him to check whether those badges are positioned properly first :-)
I had to remove the youtube variable from {{SongFooter}}, since it caused Category:Invalid YouTube Link to grow, shrink and re-grow randomly. It's a bit weird to have the embedded video and a link to the same video on youtube anyway… 6×9 (Talk) 19:01, January 24, 2011 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Additional comments to Democracy: don't know how does it looks on your computers, but on all 3 my boxes embeded control displays only message "Embedding disabled by request. Watch on YouTube." And indeed - the same video, disabled on LW page, is available on YouTube site for all my boxes. Then I checked this u2be feed with youtube api and found very interesting node in it's response: <yt:noembed/>... hth, --Senvaikis (talk) 19:09, January 24, 2011 (UTC)
@6:Yes, the reason of IYL growing remains unclear for me too, but not the shrinking - just senv/lwt used to touch this cat periodically, shrinking it that way...:). cheers, --Senvaikis (talk) 19:47, January 24, 2011 (UTC)
The initial moving of youtube templates is on "N" right now. My current plan is to write code to check the validity of youtube links as a separate task for ÜberBot. Thanks for reminding me Senv.... I don't want to put it off too long. Is there a category which tracks all songs with YouTube videos? I thought there was, but don't see it in the footer of the page or in {{SongFooter}} or {{Youtube}}.
Thanks for that tip about <yt:noembed/>!
-Sean Colombo 01:55, January 25, 2011 (UTC)
YouTube/Song, it's set in {{YouTube}}. 6×9 (Talk) 05:36, January 25, 2011 (UTC)
Returning to "only-audio" player option: we can't take only audio stream, but we can hide video part of player control using simple css or js (see an js-driven example). If {{youtube embed}} had a second parameter, determining the type (video/audio only) of control, that'd do the trick imo. cheers, --Senvaikis (talk) 20:49, January 25, 2011 (UTC)
See some tentative c:Y/S stats. --Senvaikis (talk) 15:19, January 29, 2011 (UTC)
Short heads up: before making further changes to SongFooter etc., we should wait for the queue load to be 6 digits again (currently 11.5 million pages in the queue, like each page 6 times). Last 3 days development (note that Y-axis isn't 0-based). - Chris 15:16, February 16, 2011 (UTC)
Wait… If a page that's already in the queue several times is re-built, won't it get removed from the queue completely, or at least skipped the next time it comes around? Because in that case it would be better to make any further changes now as long as most of them will have to be purged anyway. 6×9 (Talk) 15:26, February 16, 2011 (UTC)
All purge-jobs for a page are removed as soon as the first job for that page is done, that's true (I think the SQL query looks like DELETE FROM Queue WHERE page_id=$page_id). However, with that queue load, changing templates back and forth isn't sensible. For example, I think the youtube variables from {{youtube embed}} for {{SongFooter}} might have worked out if we had waited long enough until the queue is done and down to zero. You cannot tell whether a change really didn't work out until the queue is ready. - Chris 15:40, February 16, 2011 (UTC)
Actually, even though the documentation says it removes duplicates, I'm pretty sure that's not the case for one of the two types of jobs (the slow type). Since jobs are now stored in RANGES of id's to purge, I don't think it can do that (I didn't see anything in the code that goes through to slice up other ranges to take out the overlap). I wrote some code last summer to go through and remove all duplicates from the whole queue, but didn't get a chance to run it against our queue before it caught up. Might be worth trying it again.
Anywho, since we're so behind, I don't see any drawback to making changes now anyway. If the job runners aren't going to purge Cee Lo until Thursday, then when it's Thursday, they might as well generate the page in a completely-fixed way instead of what we have now. It makes sense to me to do the changes as soon as we know what we want to change. We can use action=purge on specific pages to test them and just do our best to get the job queue to catch up.
-Sean Colombo 03:00, February 17, 2011 (UTC)

Old search was bad, new search is worse

As an example, I just searched for "Rivers of Babylon", a song that has been recorded by many artists. I got 8 results and none of the results included a link to a lyric page. The first result is to an artist page that contains a dead link for the song. If people come here looking for lyrics and that's how the search function works, they won't be coming back again. --Jomidi 01:45, January 13, 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, our search has serious issues. When I search for "Rivers of Babylon" I get lyrics pages as the top links. If you search now, do you get the same thing I got, or still get a link to an artist page at the top?
Very strange. Please let me know what you get.. thanks!
-Sean Colombo 00:51, January 14, 2011 (UTC)
Now I get what you got, but I wouldn't call the results ideal. There are six sets of lyrics to the song on this site that I know of, but search returns only two lyrics pages. Every page on the site whose title contains the words "rivers of babylon" should be in my search results. At least six such pages aren't being returned. There may be more than six.
This is a great site, but it's pretty much useless if the search function doesn't return the page I want if it exists. If I were looking specifically for the Steve Earle version of the song (which exists on the site), I'd leave and go to another lyric site when I didn't see it in the search results.
I hate to think of all the people that don't use the site because they've searched for lyrics and not found what they want when, in fact, what they want exists on the site.--Jomidi 01:35, January 17, 2011 (UTC)
Ick. The unfortunate fact is that this both 1) needs to be fixed and 2) isn't easy to fix. Moving this conversation to my talk page so I don't lose track of or forget it. Please update there if you have more feedback.
Thanks for the feedback,
-Sean Colombo 22:02, February 1, 2011 (UTC)

GracenoteBot doing his thing

That wiley rascal is at it again. Adding, changing, deleting, and restoring. Feel free to keep an eye on him to make sure he doesn't get out of line ;)
-Sean Colombo 00:53, January 14, 2011 (UTC)

Caps Check

So I'm curious- how does a song come off the Caps Check list? Other than being moved if it didn't match the policy? Might make it easier to get through to the ones that really need help if the ones that don't need it are out of the way. NYCScribbler 21:54, February 1, 2011 (UTC)

If you're referring to Caps Check, that didn't work out – somehow, every page ended up in that category, and while purging removed the false positives, after a while they crept back in. I removed the responsible code a while ago; eventually it should clear out by itself. Best just ignore it :-) 6×9 (Talk) 14:47, February 2, 2011 (UTC)
I'm running external code that works with the API to find at least Latin script based songs that do not comply with LW:PN. The last run however was 29 August 2010. Run 6 was always auto-aborted in the middle of category C. My dumpfiles do not reveal the reason. I'll try it once again though. However there are many pages to be merged by hand. Furthermore even the non-Latin based songs are recorded and we might be able to identify them, as most artists should have there name romanized in parantheses. Still sad that Delphi does not appear to be able to handle UTF. Still testing/trying/working on it... - Chris 23:57, February 2, 2011 (UTC)

What are the conventions for handling guest artists?

Elvis Costello#Other Songs has Elvis Costello:Adrian, which is weird, because it's the same lyrics as Eurythmics:Adrian, which is definitely and only written by Lennox/Stuart (the Eurythmics), but indeed Elvis does sing on it. I modified both song pages to add the attributes fa=Annie Lennox|fa2=Elvis Costello, but I have some questions that aren't addressed by the FAQ.

  • Presumably the criteria for listing a song under a performer is if he or she sings its lyrics, but where do you draw the lines? Michael McDonald sings background vocals on a bunch of Steely Dan songs, but they're not listed on his page. Other songs explicitly feature an instrumentalist like Slash, do you add such performers to the song? Do you list these songs under Slash?
  • Based on the wikipedia:DRY ("Don't Repeat Yourself") principle, surely you don't want to duplicate identical lyrics on separate pages "under" (as in "following a colon") multiple performers?! I would have thought the Elvis Costello page should just have a link to Eurythmics:Adrian, maybe using a {{featured on}} template that produces
    Is a featured artist on Adrian by Eurythmics
    Yet e.g. Michael McDonald#Other Songs has a lot of similar repetitions, duplicating a bunch of The Doobie Brothers songs under Michael McDonald, and stupidly(?) the Michael McDonald:Songname pages don't even indicate that the songs all come from Doobie Brothers albums. Is this an accident of automation, or a policy?
  • Hmm, Michael McDonald:What A Fool Believes does a redirect to the Doobie Brothers song. That's another approach, but I think my proposal to indicate on his page that he's singing on a Doobie Brothers song, with a direct link to the The Doobie Brothers:What A Fool Believes song, is better than a redirect.

What you/we ought to be doing is use the wonders of wikipedia:Semantic MediaWiki to put a [[Featured_artist:Elvis Costello]] property on the one song page under the main artist, and then each artist's page can query for all the songs on which this artist is featured. For some value of "ought", of course ;-)

Thanks for thoughts and suggestions, and pointers to existing discussion and explanation. -- Skierpage 03:57, February 12, 2011 (UTC)

Yes, most if not all of what you're seeing goes in the "accident of automation" category. Many of the lyrics here were originally scraped from other sites by a bot program, and sometimes, those sites have incorrect artist names and/or song titles. And you're most likely to see those having ended up under Other Songs, since they haven't been assigned to an album (because they can't be).
The preferred way to handle an incorrect artist name and/or song title is by redirecting to the correct page -- that's what should be done with any songs listed on Michael McDonald's page that are actually Doobie Brothers songs. Unless he redid them for a solo album, in which case they should stay and have the {{Cover}} template added (plus the name of the album, and so on and so forth). That's also what should be done with the Elvis Costello page for "Adrian."
Since the fa= template results in the specific label "featured," I definitely wouldn't use it in the case of Michael McDonald singing backup for Steely Dan -- since this is really supposed to be a lyrics site and not necessarily a complete encyclopedic discography and biography, I think the question to ask is, would anyone be trying to look up, let's say, "Reeling in the Years" under Michael McDonald?
I'd also say to not put Annie Lennox as a "featured artist" on any Eurythmics songs -- it's redundant, since she's a member of the band. (Same deal with Michael McDonald on Doobie Brothers songs.) But I think Elvis Costello definitely would count as "featured" on "Adrian."
For someone who only plays an instrument on a song, I'd say they'd only count as a "featured artist" if they're seriously featured, such as having a bunch of guitar solos, for example (would probably be the case with Slash). Otherwise, they can just be listed in a "credits" section underneath the lyrics.
As for listing someone's "featured" appearances on their artist page, I believe the best way to do that currently is with the collabs= parameter within the {{ArtistInfo}} template -- see Cat Power, which I recently edited, for an example. Cat Power doesn't use it, but ArtistInfo also has parameters that allow for showing that someone is a member of, or a former member of, a group -- so on the Michael McDonald page, you'd merely indicate there that he was a member of Doobie Brothers, rather than listing every Doobie Brothers song he sang on. (ArtistInfo is fairly new, so you may see many artist pages still using an older template, {{RelatedArtists}}, which doesn't provide as much information.)
I don't know anything about Semantic MediaWiki, so I have no opinion about that.
Hope this all made sense to you. I'm happy to clarify further if necessary (or someone else may chime in with a second opinion on some of the things I've said...). Trainman 08:07, February 12, 2011 (UTC)

Our confusing system of help pages

Hi there, I don't know if I'm the only one, but with LyricWiki being such a complex project with many specialities it's a logical consequence that we have to have a lot of help pages. But: they are all somewhat "incomplete" and I feel like they are scattered across the whole project and it's hard to find them all. So I dream about a new project for me, as all mass edit tasks I could perform with Greasemonkey currently seem to be done for me so far: donating LyricWiki a new help-page system, with more structure and unified appearance. This does not mean I will like erase everything we have and then rewrite all the help pages completely. I just thought about gathering all the help pages together and then order them into a more intuitive way.

At the moment, we have so many different pages, all about some of the help topics, but none of them gathers them all:

  • Help:Contents + its subpages - General overview about editing, also some very specific information; partially overlapping with some template documentations
  • Help:Advanced - A forgotten page, not up to date (basically created 3 years ago Punched); very specific, much overlapping with other non-helppages (which I can't find atm)
  • Help:FAQ - Just very few very specific questions, could be enhanced by more periodical updates
  • LyricWiki:Help Desk - Should be the place where people ask about editing
  • LyricWiki:Site support - Sounds like a helppage, but it's intended to contain how to support the site. Yet, there is a complete Help:Contents... again? Sceptical Weird!
  • LyricWiki:Helpcenter - My approach of creating a base for all helppages; just a demonstration, not working the desired way, not as effective as I hoped to, is it? What do you think about the method of "click-the-fitting"? Unsure
  • LyricWiki talk:Community Portal - Usually just for feedback, but a wild mixture of feedback, talk and questions Lost
  • LyricWiki:User preferences help - Umm, yeah, currently a spam page, but maybe needed (?) Sceptical
  • LyricWiki:Job Exchange - Help with edits you can't do alone (works great lately, more than 30 requests in the last month, trend (hopefully) upwards, will be enhanced and continued, I think? Smile)
  • Place to report bugs - missing so far Blush
  • Many questions on (admin) talkpages and the corresponding archives, which is nothing bad, but some of them might be worth to be gathered together into the help Smile
  • Template documentations - not always present as subpage (or none doc at all), not unified, some badly connected to the concerning helppages Furious Templates names and usage isn't always intuitive as well (Cover + Covered/Cover2), but that's another point
  • Category:Help - Pretty useless at the moment, seriously. Please compare description to content. Lol

If you agree to my plan to recreate a more unified and less splitted/scattered/confusing help system, I would start

  1. to unify template doc's first. What do you think about the way like I thought off for {{SongHeader}} (the "better" {{Song}} template Wink) to link the attributes to the sections?
  2. to rebuild Help:Contents' subpages, likely with the use of the installed extension "TabView", so we need one page for "Formatting" and then have tabs for Artist/Album/Song etc, so we needn't put hundreds of links down into the lowest level of subpages.
  3. find (or even better create) some example pages as reference for how pages should look like (we could use my test-artist "Big The Boss" and his made-up discography).
  4. gather/sort information from other help- and talkpages and sort them into the FAQ or the Help where sensible.
  5. improve internal system of categories collecting helppages.

Are you in? - Chris 00:35, February 15, 2011 (UTC)

Proposal: make this a REAL lyrics website.

Ladies and Gentlemen of The Interwebz, there are thousands of Lyrics websites over there; and this is not much better than them. I have a proposal to make this a Lyrics Wiki to Rule Them All. Wanna know?


Most musicians talk about important stuff in their lyrics. Stuff that not everybody knows. The entry for Welcome to the Jungle could add information about Las Vegas. Yellow Submarine could tell you something about opium in India. Black_Sabbath:Paranoid is ranked as Gold Star. It could tell you that the song was composed in 20 minutes because the album was considered too anti-war by the producer. That kind of stuff would add value to the site. For example, Compare Iron_Maiden:The_Trooper with this Iron Maiden web. They give you 4 paragraphs of history about the Crimean War and a poem by Lord Tennyson. That makes you understand the lyrics' full meaning. I know that most american music that reaches my country is "teenagers in love" with flat simple lyrics; but surely there must be a few good songwriters left over there; so this benefits everybody.

It would make a huge difference.

Regards, Anonymous 15:15, February 17, 2011 (UTC)

Hey, first about Iron Maiden: you are comparing us (a collection of 1.1 million songs by more than 40,000 different artists) to a webpage specialised on Iron Maiden. That is like comparing the wikipedia article about planes to Boeing's archives of all their blueprints! Of course we do not have that density of information. How could we?
"It could tell you that the song was composed in 20 minutes because the album was considered too anti-war by the producer."
That's interesting, though I don't know what the one has to do with the other, and I also wonder where you get such information. Furthermore I doubt this information helps to understand the song's meaning.
Yet we do accept if not encourage to provide additional information whenever we have it, for example here or even a complete page here. I cannot remember any case where we had ever deleted relevant additional information on purpose. Therefore feel free to add the annotations section to every song you like!
Regards, Chris 16:04, February 17, 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Chris... if you're passionate about additional info or annotations, get to it :) Here are a couple more examples of pages that have decent additional info:
Please jump right in and start sprucing up pages you'd like to, and as you add more Additional Info, it might start a trend :)
-Sean Colombo 18:41, February 17, 2011 (UTC)
Ok, I've signed up. I'll start with some international bands --Abaldrich 01:09, February 24, 2011 (UTC)
Thank you. Smile - Chris 17:45, February 24, 2011 (UTC)
With regard to annotations, I think there should be a difference between these lyric pages and the Wikipedia song pages that they're linked to. I wouldn't be so interested in production notes of the songs here so much as lyrical meaning. Of course, I'd have to also suggest that these annotations have some reference requirement. Sounds fun, but a lot of work. Redrkr 00:54, February 25, 2011 (UTC)

Insensitivity! (case insensitivity that is)

Because we use MediaWiki, we have case-sensitive titles. This leads us to tons of redirects and very specific naming conventions. However, this also makes it unnecessarily hard for people to search our site (even using the API or the LyricWiki Android App).

My question is this: do we have any real need to allow two pages with different capitalization to exist? If not, we could usher in a new age of freedom on LyricWiki :P ... all capitalization could be how it is in the original song/album/artist and we could just make the site prevent duplicate names that vary only by capitalization.

We'd have to write an extension to enforce this, but it could be done and we could probably merge all of the existing conflicts in one night (assuming there aren't any VALID reasons to have two pages differ only in case).

This strikes me as being worth it even if an artist were to release the same song w/different capitalization, it's probably worth having a disambiguation page for that song rather than to make our whole system case-sensitive.

Can anyone think of a reason NOT to do this? Any thoughts in favor of it?

-Sean Colombo 22:39, March 12, 2011 (UTC)

Does the system not only prevent pages from being created but also redirect differently capitalized pageviews to the one page?
  • "THiS iS a WeiRDLY CaPiTaLiZeD PaGe" is created
  • "This is a Weirdly Capitalized Page" is blocked
  • "This is a Weirdly Capitalized Page" is called
Does it silently lead the user to the existing "THiS..." page then? Otherwise songs could never be found again... - Chris 00:11, March 13, 2011 (UTC)
Good eye ;) ...yeah, we could definitely do auto-redirects in the same general way we do "Implied Redirects" now. In addition even though "This is a Weirdly Capitalized Page" is blocked from creation, you could "move" (rename) the old page TO be that page if desired. Both of those cases should def. be covered.
It's kinda frightening that this seems like such a good idea... we might actually have to do it! Oh nos! ;D
-Sean Colombo 01:38, March 13, 2011 (UTC)
Won't moving to a differently capitalised page cause trouble? Because we'd end up with two pages, only one of which would be allowed. So the system would have to detect whether only caps are changed, and only in that case not leave a redirect behind.
But that would also break any links to the original page… unless links were made case-insensitive as well, so for example [[aBbA]] would link to ABBA without an explicit redirect.
Other than that, I see no major problem, and it would simplify a lot of things. — 6×9 (Talk) 08:45, March 13, 2011 (UTC)
"we could definitely do auto-redirects in the same general way we do "Implied Redirects" now."
I don't know if I'm forgetting about something, but how shall this be performed? Is there a way to perform ci database searches? If not, the system would have to cover all possibilities, which is approx. "2^length" possibilities for each title: abba, abbA, abBa, abBA, aBba, aBbA, aBBa, aBBA, Abba, AbbA, AbBa, AbBA, ABba, ABbA, ABBa, ABBA
You cannot perform 16 searches for "Abba", until you finally find "ABBA". And this is only 4 letters long. Imagine a search ‎on "Watch Tower Bible And Tract Society:Sing Praises To Jehovah (1994)" - this is 50 alpha-chars = ~ 1 quadrillion possibilities... - Chris 15:42, March 13, 2011 (UTC)
I would most likely be accomplishing this stuff by adding another column to the "page" table which has a case-folded version of the title. This would make moving, preventing duplicates, and auto-redirecting all pretty straightforward.
- Sean (can't get tildes to work in this box on my mobile, lol) Sean Colombo 20:15, March 13, 2011 (UTC)
Well, despite the fact that I generaly am agains such stuff and I require capitalisation everywhere, in this situation i think it complicates things more then helps. So I do support this proposal. I just hope it won't mean that we drop the naming rules completly (only some will become suggestions and not rules maybe). Either to avoid complete capitalisation anarchy and also to give guide in situations when the correct capitalisation isn't known (e.g. cd cover with all names in upercase or some such).Nyoxi 20:29, March 16, 2011 (UTC)

It looks like it's worth taking a shot at this. I've started a technical todo list here: User:Sean_Colombo/Case_Insensitivity. Please let me know if I've missed an obvious case that we should be covering.
-Sean Colombo 00:17, March 27, 2011 (UTC)

Yay! A bunch of the most popular banned songs are coming back!

It appears that Gracenote got licensing for a bunch of popular artists that had previously been on the takedown list such as Queen, Aerosmith, and Michael Jackson.

GracenoteBot is churning away, adding back what he can. If there are pages that have been modified since they were added to the takedown list, he often can't automatically revert so he adds them to Category:Restorable_Pages_Needing_Attention which will probably be growing a decent amount over the next day or so and might need some extra love.

I'm pretty pumped to have these back :D it's like Christmas in March!
-Sean Colombo 03:06, March 14, 2011 (UTC)

Quick note: I ran a bunch of update files and then ended up being run more in parallel than in order. This caused some songs to go off the takedown list, then back on and vice-versa. Basically, GracenoteBot is going to have to start over from yesterday so he may be making some confusing edits. Long-story short: he may appear confused, but everything that happens from right now going forward should be correct.
Sorry for the confusion!
-Sean Colombo 03:23, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for good news, Sean! So, the answer to my question is: "restorable"? --Senvaikis (talk) 14:00, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
@ all (not everyone can be that firm in all the terms as we are): when GNB took down the pages it protected them. Now, that they are to be back, most pages will not have been changed since the takedown, but some might. In order to not destroy any changes, GNB will not revert its changes, because that'd revert all changes made inbetween, too. Therefore, the page is put into the "Restorable Pages Needing Attention" category.
Senv: from what I got, I think yes Smile. Let's see what Sean's about to tell us.
Sean: Yay, MJ is back! - Chris 17:41, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
(edit conflict)@Chris: seems 6 has a different opinion... --Senvaikis (talk) 18:31, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
Responded to Senv on GNBot page.
LWChris: If we also get Tool and APC back, I think I can die happy ;)
-Sean Colombo 18:22, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
Some stats about current situation in RPNA:
87 songs are still protected (though containing {{gn_restore}}). Lwt didn't touch them for a while. Remaining 133 lyrics could be restored to pre-gn state, but 127 of them have accented chars, thus simple restoring is hook-aborted by spam-filter. So, Lwt did all what it could atm - restored remaining six unprotected & unhooked songs ;). Actually Lwt would be able to restore all these songs lyrics to other, taken from GN, value. But I'm not sure about legitimacy of such "restoring".
Any thoughts? --Senvaikis (talk) 11:00, March 17, 2011 (UTC)
Those protected pages with restore template which I checked were re-protected, but gn_restore wasn't removed. So I'd guess the way to handle these would be to remove said template. Correct, Sean?
Accented pages: overwriting all of these with GN versions wouldn't be a good idea, because not all GN pages have correct accents – some have "flattened" lyrics with ascii characters only. But if lwt can check for presence of non-ascii and only overwrite in such a case, that should be fine. — 6×9 (Talk) 14:36, March 17, 2011 (UTC)
...and you are sure - any problems with GN:EULA? --Senvaikis (talk) 16:05, March 17, 2011 (UTC)
As far as I can tell, copying any amount of lyrics from the GN namespace anywhere else on LW should be fine, since it's not "copy[ing ...] to any third party". Didn't GNB originally intend to create main NS pages for any added GN page anyway? — 6×9 (Talk) 18:10, March 17, 2011 (UTC)

Album of the Week

Why has the same AOTW been on the front page for ages although there are other nominations in the queue?--91.49 22:28, March 14, 2011 (UTC)

Because the user who cared about the nominations left LyricWiki and we haven't found someone yet who is willing to do this job weekly. - Chris 22:28, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
Then wouldn't it be better to at least remove the current AOTW from the front page until someone comes along who takes care of things again? It looks rather stupid IMHO if the same AOTW appears there forever.--91.49 22:49, March 14, 2011 (UTC)
Was my proposal, too. I'll ask again to remove it. - Chris 20:30, March 17, 2011 (UTC)
I'm taking care of AOTW currently. If you want to nominate an album, go ahead. :) - hard4me 23:37, November 25, 2011 (UTC)

Add more than one artist to a song


I would like to know how I can add more than one artist to a song. I can't find the answer in the FAQ. For example at this song: Duck Dich (Juice Exclusive). They are four single artists, but I can't name one by one in the description. So how can I do that? - (Optikus 17:17, April 1, 2011 (UTC))

The way you made it is correct. Now create a page for the combined artist, put the song into the Other songs section and put the Collaboration template on it. And that's basically how it's done, as far as I know. - Chris 23:07, April 1, 2011 (UTC)
Well, thank you. But that is not really the thing I meant. I meant something at that code: {Song|Name Of Artist|star=Colour}}. So that you can read: "This song is performed by Jonesmann, Blaze, Criz & Haftbefehl. Is there an opportunity to do that? - Optikus 11:48, April 2, 2011 (UTC)
This is, as you stated correctly, impossible, because the template has nothing like artist2 parameter or so. See this song how it's done. It's the easiest way to provide a link to both artists. - Chris 12:24, April 2, 2011 (UTC)
Ok thank you. So I will do it that way. By the way, will the template be changed, so that it will be possible to add a second or more artists? - Optikus 15:03, April 2, 2011 (UTC)
No I don't think so, because otherwise the code will get very complex. Single links but all together for Album, ARTIST keyword, SongFooter etc. - that's too complex compared to the number of pages that system would be useful for. - Chris 18:10, April 2, 2011 (UTC)
Well, I understand. Thank you. - Optikus 18:38, April 2, 2011 (UTC)
You can use the "featured artist" parameters, |fa=Second Artist| fa2=Third Artist parameters to {{Song}} to append "and features Second Artist and Third Artist". You still have to pick one artist to "own" the song. I guess the other artists could have redirects to it. This quickly devolves into "How can I show all songs on which "Third Artist" performs?, to which the one true best answer is the Semantic MediaWiki extension. -- Skierpage 20:55, April 2, 2011 (UTC)
Well, I don't think so. I have used the featured artist parameter very often here. But sometimes you can't use it because nobody featured the other. It is simply a collaboration as Chris said it. So I have done it that way. Nevertheless, I thank you for answering. - Optikus 12:58, April 3, 2011 (UTC)
To Skierpage: The problem with SMW is that it is computationally intensive and its database operations produce a lot of load to the servers. Even for smaller wikis than LW the load exceeds the performance limit of Wikia's servers to run fluent and without lags. The link-web of millions of pages is just too complex for SMW.
Anyway I don't see the necessity to use SMW when there is Special:WhatLinksHere. A search on Lil Wayne (you may need to filter the namespace and set the limit to 500) also throws OutKast:Hollywood Divorce as result #142 for example, which is a song where Lil Wayne occured as featured artist. - Chris 13:27, April 3, 2011 (UTC)
Don't dampen my idealism with practical issues 8-) I don't want to hijack this heading, but the key idea of SMW is to explain to the wiki "Why is the link Lil Wayne here?" and "Why is the value 3:42 here?". WhatLinksHere can't tell you. At least templates capture the information until computers become powerful enough. Cheers -- Skierpage 20:57, April 3, 2011 (UTC)
*giggles* Sorry, I tried really hard but I just can't keep that comment any longer: It's fine that the wiki knows why Lil Wayne's linked, but nobody else would ever make profit of it or even find it out here, because the servers would crash all the time with that amount of pages and data... Lol eehhrrg, fail Wink - Chris 02:41, April 26, 2011 (UTC)

Try out Live Chat on LyricWiki?

I've been working on the Live Chat system for Wikia for a while, and it's up and running on a few wikis now (mostly the ones that requested it. If you are logged in, there should be a button in the right-rail to join the chat on any of those wikis, such as Glee Wiki.

We have an IRC channel right now, but a very small minority of people have IRC or are willing to install it just for one room. I think it's worth a try to flick on Special:Chat for LyricWiki and see how it goes.

Does anyone see any problems with trying it out? I'll probably flick it on tomorrow (Monday) if there isn't a reason not to.

-Sean Colombo 23:33, April 24, 2011 (UTC)

LyricWiki Admin Log April 26 11 - The day before yesterday, BM informed us on a new engine the page got, hopefully attracting more people to sector Charlie Hotel Alpha Tango which lately had some problems due to underserving. The new engine isn't an externally developed model type but a derivative of the special page superclass. As recent maintanance work is managable cadett Chris had some time on his hands to perform a simple engine test on the new machine in the sector. But today, the engine room reserved for the new machine is still empty or not functionally attached to the rest of the page. The boardcomputer at the entrace throws an error 404 not found. Captain Sean was informed, we'll see if is able to activate the machine again by the end of this week with his ÜberHax keystrokes. We don't know what it'll lead to, but there's no turning back.

Chris 03:00, April 26, 2011 (UTC) with Star Trek

Chat engaged ;) look on the right rail for the entry-portal -Sean Colombo 07:20, April 26, 2011 (UTC)

New Sidebar Element Being Tested


I wanted to give you a heads-up about a new sidebar unit we are experimenting with on Wikia. We've been looking again at our Answers websites, and have just redesigned them to have a similar look to other wikis, and to make it easier to match the theme to a similar regular wiki.

Next we would like to point people toward a wiki’s corresponding answers site via a box on the right hand rail of the wiki, similar to the Recent Activity box.

This box is a bit like the the Answers widget we introduced last year, but is simpler and just shows a list of questions recently asked or answered on the corresponding answers site, much like one would expect to see on “Wiki Activity” if one were actually on the answers site. For this test, the box would only show to logged-out users.

We've chosen wikis with plenty of activity and an Answers wiki on the same subject - ut if we've chosen the wrong Answers Wiki to link to please let us know. If you are logged out, and see the “Recent Questions” box, feel free to give us your feedback! --daNASCAT WikiaStaff.png (help forum | blog) 18:49, May 4, 2011 (UTC)


When it comes to remixes, there are no guidelines (at least that I could find) spelled out. The biggest issue is that I, as a contributor, do not know if each remix should always/never have its own page or if its difference from the original is a factor (and if so, how different a remix should be in order to have its own page). I've had conflicting answers to this question - Trainman says different remixes can have different pages even if lyrics are only slightly different, but Ssmodk says there should only be one page. Personally, I think (at least as a general rule), each version of a song should have its own page regardless of how similar it is to the original lyrically since iTunes/Amazon/Musicbrainz/whatever will typically recognize each version as a separate song and since it prevents people arguing over which set of lyrics belongs on the page. Is there a consensus on this? IAmTheClaw 10:47, June 13, 2011 (UTC)

Another approach is to compare the different version's suitablility for the goal of LyricWiki: to provide lyrics to sing along the songs. Then a remix needs its own page as soon as it's becoming difficult to keep track where you are. For example, if there's one line at the end repeated once more because the fade out is slower, I'd not create a page for that. But just today I resurrected the Paul Oakenfold Remix of Elvis Presley's Rubberneckin' because the lyrics have a completely different layout and order. It's impossible to keep all that in mind. This is how I do it, but I can't tell what's the "wanted" rule. We'll have to ask Sean. - Chris 01:20, June 15, 2011 (UTC)
At least with the remixes I encounter in the industrial/EBM genre, remixes generally have a different order, but differ much more in the instrumental aspect than lyrically. It's also not uncommon to encounter a remix that has added lyrics (typically samples rather than actual vocals, though). There's even one I know of that changes the main lyrics from generated speech to actual vocals (and in a different language). And them there's the matter of original versions having different mixes by the same artists, with all of them having parenthetical notes (Suicide Commando is pretty notorious for this). IAmTheClaw 01:35, June 15, 2011 (UTC)
I think, musicbrainz should link to work, not recording. Work is relatively new entity in musicbrainz, describing song composition that can have multiple recordings. Usually one work has one lyrics. Work can be associated with multiple recordings of the same song in different albums of artist, remixes and covers. --08:49, June 5, 2012 (UTC)

MusicBrainz "release-group" in AlbumFooter?

If this sounds like something you're interested in, please join the discussion on MusicBrainz release-groups in LyricWiki Album footers.
Thanks! :)
-Sean Colombo 23:45, June 13, 2011 (UTC)

I posted a new proposal in the discussion to allow linking only to release groups (and to mass-convert all existing release MBIDs). What do you think? TarkinTor 23:03, June 15, 2011 (UTC)

ÜberBot is gettin' down to biznass

He's been getting antsy and wanting to make more stuff! He's starting another small batch, but as always there are lots of things that aren't perfect since he's a robot (he may be creating pages which are just variants of CORRECT titles that we already have, etc.), so if you have the time/inclination, please keep an eye on ÜberBot to help keep him coloring in the lines ;)
-Sean Colombo 04:52, June 26, 2011 (UTC)

Just had a peek at his batch. Some characters, like the typographic apostrophe, seem to be garbled (like Elvis Presley:Your Love’s Been A Long Time Coming) --BryghtShadow talk works 20:38, June 26, 2011 (UTC)

Searching namespaces

So I have a yen to redirect things that a bot can't catch. One typo I've noticed is the use of ` (that little key up on the left side of the average keyboard) instead of ' (over on the right). Is there any way to search for a page whose name contains that character? (Or any character/set of characters, really.) NYCScribbler 01:55, July 20, 2011 (UTC)

Using accents or smart quotes instead of apostrophes is one of the most common "errors", besides to the special quotation marks. My AutoFix script fixes these: ’´`‘ to ' and „“”«» to ". However this applies to the lyrics, not to the page titles. You could use the API with list=allpages and filter the output with something like grep. Can you do this or shall I provide you with a formated list (tell me how you need it then)? Smile - Chris 05:09, July 20, 2011 (UTC)