I wanted to write something about a new feature we implemented. It’s a field for artist’s personal description.
Our goal is that the information on VocaDB is both accurate and reliable. Because VocaDB is a database specifically made for singing synthesizers, those synthesizer voicebanks are given more attention than on other music databases. If it’s known that the song uses a specific variation of a voicebank (such as Miku V4X Sweet), we want to display that information whenever possible. The problem is that often the exact voicebank isn’t mentioned anywhere officially. The artist might say that the voicebank used is “Hatsune Miku”, or possibly “Hatsune Miku V4X”, but you can clearly hear that it’s the English voicebank. Even worse, the artist might not specify the voicebank at all. Obviously this is a problem that has existed since the Crypton Appends were created for Vocaloid 2, but it’s only getting more complicated with V2, V2 Append, V3 and V4X versions of Miku out there. So what to do?
There has been some discussion about the intention of the different PV types.
The current policy is that the “original” PV type should be used for the first authorized PV for a particular song. In this case authorized means that the person uploading the PV had permission to do so. The reason for this requirement is that original PVs are promoted as official, and displayed separate from reprints and “other” PVs. Promoting PVs that use content without permission as official might insult the creators of original content, which in turn makes VocaDB look bad, so we want to avoid that if possible. We’re doing this to support the creators, whether they’re doing it as a hobby or professionally.
This guide aims to explain every part of creating new song entries.
First part is to check if the song is not indexed to the database yet. This guide assumes that you already have some song to add. Checking if the song is already in the database is easy – just use the search. If song has really generic name and there are various search results, you can always open the song submission page and paste the link to the first (“URL to the original PV”) field. If the song is added already, the site will alert you with a red box on the right corner. Prefer using original media sources (NicoNico in most cases) to prevent duplicates, for example pasting the reprint doesn’t always return to warning message since it might not be added to the entry.
VocaDB allows various types of medias from original songs to drama PVs. To view all types with an explanations, visit the wiki page.
Editing form (http://vocadb.net/Song/Edit/xxxx) opens up after submitting the creating form (http://vocadb.net/Song/Create).
First page / Creating form
First step is to add media link (Currently supported services: Youtube, NicoNicoDouga, SoundCloud, Vimeo, Piapro and Bilibili). to the first field of the page. If the song is from other media services, leave the field blank and add it as a link on the second page instead.
If the added link is from NicoNicoDouga, the site will automatically attempt to add the title and artists to the entry. This feature works usually really well, but should not always be blindly trusted. Remember to check that the artist and the title are correct.
At this point, it’s possible to also add a reprint if there is any available. Reprint is uploaded by some third party to other media sources (usually from NND to Youtube). Note that if the video is not the same as the original video (subtitled video / custom PV) it should be added as “other”- media type on the next page.
Using the name-fields and Song type -box are explained later.
If you can’t find artists from the first page artist search, it’s likely that they haven’t been added yet. Main artists involved should at least be added to the database, if they’re not indexed yet. Remember to add the vocalist(s). You can specify artist roles at the second page.
Second page / Editing form
After submitting the first draft, the second page opens. There are four tabs total.
Tab #1 – Basic info
The first option, original language for those who have selected display language as original. If the title gets translated, the dropdown-box type indicates which version should be shown for those users.
Remember to read the tooltips (blue question marks) if you haven’t already.
Primary name (Tooltip) :
“If the original name is non-English (for example Japanese), or if the language of the name is unknown, input that into the Non-English name field. If known, input the romanized name as well. If the official name of the entry is in English, or there is a known English translation, input that into the English name field
Note that you do not need to copy the missing names from others. The system will substitute those when needed. For example, lacking a romanized name, the system will automatically use English
Additional names can be entered as aliases. See more in the guide.”
Aliases (Tooltip) :
“Aliases are additional, commonly used names for an entry. Most of the time they are not translations of the primary name, although well-known translations can be added as aliases. Aliases can be in any language.”
The purpose of the Notes (Description) of the song entry is to provide additional information on the song. If the input is non-english, it can be translated as an another field.
If the song is derived work (cover, remix etc.), change the song type and add original version to the entry. Again, if you can’t find original version from the search, it likely needs to be added first. If there are too much search result, use quotation marks ( “song title” ) to narrow it down.
Duration value is automatically generated provided that there is supported media added.
Such as off vocals, artworks or other song-related links can be added as an external links. Links related to artist only belong to the artist entry.
“Draft = entry is missing crucial information. This status indicates that you’re requesting additional information to be added or corrected.
Finished = The entry has all the necessary information, but it hasn’t been inspected by a trusted user yet
Approved = The entry has been inspected and approved by a trusted user.
Approved entries can only be edited by trusted users.”
Tab #2 – Artists
It’s encouraged to add all the artists involved (lyricist / illustrators / etc.). Remember to create artist entries for those who aren’t yet indexed. It’s good to add as many proper links as you can find for the artist entries. It’s possible to credit artist here without adding an entry, but those “custom artists” are reserved for those who are not involved with ~vocaloid or they have no links or information enough to create a separate entry.
Supporting artists are artists with minor roles such as backup/chorus singers, although there are sometimes other possibilities to have supporting role in songs.
If there’s only one person responsible for making music (composition, arrangement & voice manipulation) there’s no need to specify roles for them. For other artists, if the artist type differs from song role, the role should be customized (for example if lyricist-artist does an illustration for a song).
Tab #3 & 4 do not really require additional explanation.
Final part after saving the submissions is to check that the information is correct on the song page. Commonly used tags are added automatically from NicoNicoDouga, but it’s good to check them too.
Unknown Vocaloid artists
Sometimes it’s hard to find information about a particular artist, especially if all you have is the name and no leads such as mylist/twitter, or the linked profile is deleted. If the artist in question is a Vocaloid user and it doesn’t look like they’re on VocaDB yet, you should add an entry for that artist, but leave it as draft. Generally this is better than adding the artist as just a name (extra artist) for the song/album as it allows linking songs/albums by the same artist together.
Always try to find as much information about the artist, if at all possible. Often just Googling with the artist name, or mylist/twitter/other profile name is enough to find a blog or twitter channel. Remember, quality over quantity: it’s better to add a small number of well-researched entries rather than a huge number of songs with missing artists. Researching artists can take a lot of time, but it gets easier as your learn the techniques. Of course, knowing Japanese or using the appropriate tools helps a lot.
If there’s multiple unknown artists for a single song or album, you can credit them as extra artists, but in that case be sure to leave the entry status as draft and add the Entry_missing_artists tag.
Also remember that whenever you’re crediting an artist by name you need to specify the roles.
After the previous post, a few people offered to help with the moderation/reviews. Thank you for that. While I obviously can’t promote anyone new to moderator status right away, there are some basic things that everyone can keep their eye on. So you can start with that and we can look into promoting you to a full moderator later, we still have demand for those.
Make sure you’ve read the guidelines page on the site, as well as the guidelines on the wiki. I also wrote some articles on this blog. At the moment, most of the guidelines are on the site, but all new guidelines are added to the wiki, because the wiki is easier to maintain when it comes to documentation. This also means the help pages on the site might have some outdated information, I’m sorry about that, I’ll need to update those parts or move them to the wiki. If there happens to be some conflicting information, the information on the wiki takes precedence.