Topic: Allow importing pending edits into Picard?
It currently takes two weeks for new edits to be approved and finalized. This waiting period obviously makes sense for the purpose of ensuring the database isn't corrupted by spurious and poor-quality changes, which would affect everyone.
At the same time, I think it would be extremely useful to allow people the opt-in choice of tagging their files with pending data for a release instead of the settled data: It's difficult to tag files manually with all of the tags that Musicbrainz updates, and two weeks is an agonizing wait time for simply importing updated tracklists and metadata into a tagger like Picard.
Being forced to wait two weeks also creates the possibility that people will get caught up in real life and totally forget to come back and retag their files for, say...a couple years. You could say that's their problem and their loss, but what if they already submitted AcoustID edits for the previously incorrect track list? I did this last night for the first 2/3 of a disc's track list that looked correct at a glance (it wasn't), recognized my mistake, and fixed the broken track list today. Now, my AcoustID's may be attached to the wrong tracks for at least two weeks, depending on what other piece of metadata/key they're tied to...and longer if I forget to come back, retag my files, and resubmit the AcoustID's for the right tracks in two weeks.
Is there any way to view and delete or cancel AcoustID edits, BTW? I submitted the correct AcoustID's for the right track numbers on the disc, but it turns out the original tracklist skipped some titles that I had to insert after submitting AcoustID's. Now, I'm not sure whether the AcoustID's will stick with the original track numbers (which would be correct in my case) or be bumped down along with the titles I moved down (which would mess them up).
MusicBrainz has a great strength in its quality control process, but it also has a usability weakness in that - as far as I know - nobody can make their own decision to use newer unapproved edits. (I'd love to find out I'm wrong and just missing the dark corner of the website that gives me the option though.) To draw a parallel, it's like people being stuck for ages with buggy software that made it into Debian Testing, without being allowed the option of just upgrading to Debian Sid. ;)
I have no idea how difficult it would be to implement on this site, but allowing users the fine-grained ability to selectively import data from recent unapproved edits (especially our own) would drastically speed up our tagging process and eliminate frustrations. Done right, it would also allow us to correct mistaken AcoustID edits faster.
Finally, I think adopting this suggestion would encourage more users to submit edits in the first place: As it stands, if we want to tag our own music without a two week wait period, we have to edit our tags manually for releases that are incorrect in the MusicBrainz database...so once we're done with that, we're going to be a bit burnt out and unlikely to want to duplicate that work on the MusicBrainz site. (I have personally neglected to update the database a number of times for this reason.) Allowing people to do the work all in one place (the MusicBrainz site) and immediately import our new changes into Picard should result in more people deciding it's worth the trouble to contribute.