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DTStudy: A Proposal

Joe Offer 25 May 02 - 12:39 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 25 May 02 - 12:42 PM
DMcG 25 May 02 - 12:42 PM
Malcolm Douglas 25 May 02 - 01:13 PM
Ebbie 25 May 02 - 01:23 PM
Joe Offer 25 May 02 - 01:33 PM
wysiwyg 25 May 02 - 01:38 PM
Dead Horse 25 May 02 - 03:32 PM
Joe Offer 25 May 02 - 04:07 PM
Malcolm Douglas 25 May 02 - 04:49 PM
Dicho (Frank Staplin) 25 May 02 - 05:31 PM
Malcolm Douglas 25 May 02 - 05:38 PM
Naemanson 25 May 02 - 06:16 PM
Joe Offer 25 May 02 - 10:25 PM
Liz the Squeak 26 May 02 - 05:10 AM
pavane 26 May 02 - 05:54 AM
Malcolm Douglas 26 May 02 - 07:58 AM
Jon Freeman 26 May 02 - 08:18 AM
GUEST 26 May 02 - 09:38 AM
michaelr 26 May 02 - 01:27 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 26 May 02 - 01:43 PM
McGrath of Harlow 26 May 02 - 02:03 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 26 May 02 - 02:26 PM
toadfrog 26 May 02 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,Ed 26 May 02 - 04:31 PM
Joe Offer 26 May 02 - 04:48 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 26 May 02 - 04:52 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 26 May 02 - 04:58 PM
GUEST 26 May 02 - 05:11 PM
Joe Offer 26 May 02 - 05:25 PM
McGrath of Harlow 26 May 02 - 05:26 PM
MMario 26 May 02 - 05:40 PM
GUEST,And Toto too! 26 May 02 - 06:01 PM
GUEST 26 May 02 - 06:13 PM
Jon Freeman 26 May 02 - 06:30 PM
GUEST,And Toto too! 26 May 02 - 06:41 PM
McGrath of Harlow 26 May 02 - 06:43 PM
GUEST,Ed Pellow 26 May 02 - 06:52 PM
Jon Freeman 26 May 02 - 07:05 PM
GUEST,Ed Pellow 26 May 02 - 07:16 PM
Dicho (Frank Staplin) 26 May 02 - 08:15 PM
Jon Freeman 26 May 02 - 08:44 PM
Malcolm Douglas 26 May 02 - 08:46 PM
Jeri 26 May 02 - 09:30 PM
GUEST,And Toto too! 26 May 02 - 09:58 PM
GUEST,And Toto Too! 26 May 02 - 10:03 PM
dick greenhaus 26 May 02 - 10:30 PM
Joe Offer 26 May 02 - 10:43 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 27 May 02 - 12:45 AM
Hrothgar 27 May 02 - 04:26 AM
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Subject: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 25 May 02 - 12:39 PM

In the thread on Any Old Iron, somebody noted that this English music hall song has a @Irish classification in the Digital Tradition. In another thread, somebody else noted a couple other songs that were incorrectly classified as @Irish. I've often thought it might be a good idea to go through the Digital Tradition and check our category listings and cross-references and other data, and to correct lyrics where needed.

Here and there, people have taken potshots at the Digital Tradition, complaining that the database hasn't been updated for a couple of years. People get frustrated because Max or Dick hasn't done this or that. People say they've offered to help, but they get no response.
Well, I suppose it would be wonderful if Max and Dick could do everything we want them to do, but they can't - and we have no right to expect them to.

However, we have this Forum, and we can do with it what we want. What I'd like to suggest is that we undertake a systematic review of the Digital Tradition, to supplement and correct what we already have. I'd also like to set up a system for indexing all the lyrics e have that have not yet been included in the Digital Tradition.

I'll start a DTStudy thread today, so you can see what I have in mind. I think we should have one (and only one) DTStudy thread for each song, and that each thread should be edited like a PermaThread, so that it becomes a permanent reference for that song. I know our usual policy is that we don't copy-paste DT lyrics and post them in the Forum, but I think I'd make an exception in this case. I'd start the thread with a copy of the lyrics, links to related threads and related songs, and a copy of the Traditional Ballad Index entry for the song, if there is one. Then I'd leave a blank second message for a working correction copy of the lyrics. I think we also have to fit the tune in somewhere. Then I'd open the thread for comments, corrected or alternate lyrics, and discussion. I think anybody should be able to start a study thread, with the understanding that the thread will be edited and the format should be fairly uniform.

I'd like to use this "proposal" thread to solicit ideas for this review. I have a pretty fair idea how to start - Alan Foster and Malcolm Douglas gave us a great example in the threads on the Penguin Book of English Folk Songs. My main concern is how we should systematize and index our review. Any ideas?

-Joe Offer-
27 July 2002

OK, we've had some experience with DTStudy threads, and they seem to be working quite well. I'm reluctand to do extensive editing on the threads quite yet, because I'm still not sure where we should go with this, and I'm working out some technical stuff with Pene. Let's keep playing with the idea and see how if develops.
For now, here is the format I would like to see. If there are variations, I'll probably edit things to keep them standard.

The thread title MUST contain the title DTStudy:, with a colon and no spaces - (generally) followed by the song title as listed in the Digital Tradition. The first message should begin with the following tag, which you may copy-paste:

<font color=teal size=-2>This is an edited DTStudy thread, and all messages posted here are subject to editing and deletion.<br>This thread is intended to serve as a forum for corrections and annotations for the Digital Tradition song named in the title of this thread.</font><hr><h3><a href=/threads.cfm?Title=dtstudy&age=25000 target=new>Search for other DTStudy threads</a></h3><hr>

After that, the first message should have the lyrics as posted in the Digital Tradition (right-click on the lyrics entry page and do a "view source," and copy-paste the entire text, beginning with the song title and going to the end - omit the garbage at the top).
The first message should also include the Traditional Ballad Index entry, again done by a "view source."
It would be nice to have the first message include links to other threads on the song. If any of these elements are missing from the first message, I'll add them, so don't get overly worried about following format.

The second and following messages should contain commentaries, links, background information, and corrected or alternate versions of the lyrics and tune. I will delete or move off-topic messages.


When I finally get around to editing the study thread, I may leave the original DTStudy thread intact, and create a new summary document, which may or may not be in the format of a thread.

Any comments or suggestions?

Thanks for all the good work Mudcatters have done so far of the DTStudy threads. I've had a lot of fun with them.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 25 May 02 - 12:42 PM

Sounds interesting, Joe. Let's try it. I try to help. Not too good on most attributions, but I can help more specifically on the Gaelic ones.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: DMcG
Date: 25 May 02 - 12:42 PM

Excellent idea Joe. Its time WE did some of the work around here.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 25 May 02 - 01:13 PM

I'm certainly up for it. I've already posted a lot of additions and corrections in the "Tunes Wanted  threads, for example, in the hope that that would be an easy place for anybody updating the DT to find them. Editable threads are a must in this case, as people will certainly post bizarre theories and wrong information!

Each one will eventually need the accumulated background information edited into a concise and coherent form, too. I'd have liked to have been able to do that with some of the "Penguin" threads; and indeed with quite a lot of discussions where -for example- information (often wrong) is repeated over and over...


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 May 02 - 01:23 PM

Great idea. Does this mean that when the song becomes 'perfect' that the thread will be removed, that only the conclusive part will be kept? Or will the discussion become part of the permanent threads?

I'll be reading- and wherever I can help, I'll try.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 25 May 02 - 01:33 PM

Oh, no, Ebbie - I can't imagine deleting the threads. I think they should provide supplemental information and references and linbks that won't appear in the Digital Tradition. Take a look at what Malcolm and Alan Foster and Ed Pellow did with the Penguin Book of English Folksongs.
That brings up another question: when there is already a significant thread discussing a song, should we use that as the DTStudy thread?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: wysiwyg
Date: 25 May 02 - 01:38 PM

I think those listed in the "Origins Of" thread plus any Malcolm has noted, as he described above, should be the first round.

And I have a question. Say you are doing a Supersearch on a term like @spiritual. Will it give you all the DT entries for that keyword PLUS all the forum songs where someone has tagged them with that keyword right in the thread, either a harvestor passing by or the poster? Because if that is so, think of how searchable by category the forum songs would be if these were routinely applied. If there were a list of keywords WITH SHORT DEFINITIONS to draw on....

Have we ever estimated the number of songs posted in the forum? Caramba! If that resource could be quantified!

~Susan


Hi, Susan - Right now, the SuperSearch doesn't work very well on the Digital Tradition categories, like @spiritual. You can do a category search in the blue DigiTrad search box. Pene Azul is working on a solution to the problem SuperSearch has with categories.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Dead Horse
Date: 25 May 02 - 03:32 PM

Love to see how you (we) guys get on with sea shanties:-) Seems like a good idea otherwise, but a hell of a job to nail a definitive version to most folk music - the folk process being what it is. Lots of luck, and I'll be most interested in developements.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 25 May 02 - 04:07 PM

Well, Dead Horse, I sure hope we don't find "definitive versions" of most folk songs we have. If they're traditional, we should have a number of versions.
Nonetheless, I think we can make corrections on spelling, mondegreens, and source information. I'll like to eliminate all the zeroes that come from scans of songs like "0h Susanna."
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 25 May 02 - 04:49 PM

Exactly. A lot of DT files are transcriptions from revival records, full of mis-hearings and omissions, and with missing, inaccurate or completely wrong attributions. Where the song is traditional it can often be traced to a specific source and the proper credits for collector and source singer added, and any changes made noted. Before anyone starts on about the much-abused "folk process", I'm not suggesting that changes made to traditional songs by revival performers are necessarily invalid, but that wherever possible we should be able to show what their source was, and what changes they have made. This gives others the option of going back to a genuinely traditional form of the song, and is far more useful for serious enquirers after information.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
Date: 25 May 02 - 05:31 PM

I looked at what has been done with the Penguin book and couldn't resist adding a version pointed out by Malcolm Douglas to "As Sylvie Went Walking." Thread 17057: As Sylvie

Which brings me to this suggestion. Post random discussion to one of the existing threads if possible, and keep the DT threads for the songs and their variants and the "verifiable" documentation- or at least the more likely stories. We can speculate and digress to our heart's content in a pertinent thread without adding clutter to the key DT thread.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 25 May 02 - 05:38 PM

The "DT" threads will be edited, as the Permathreads are, so there should be no harm in concentrating any necessary discussion in them, provided everything irrelevant is eventually deleted and the whole edited (ideally) down to a single, readable summary. This might protect some of the poor old threads from getting loaded up with permanent junk, as so often happens when they are revived a year or more on.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Naemanson
Date: 25 May 02 - 06:16 PM

I like it. I don't know what I may be able to add but I will be reading them and commenting when I can. Bravo to Joe O.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 25 May 02 - 10:25 PM

I'm exploring a couple of methods. I started a DTStudy thread on DTStudy: ABDUL ABULBUL AMIR, and got some good responses and brought in some of the best information from other threads.
Then I thought of Oleanna, but we already have a very solid thread that says everything that's needed about the song. I added a DTStudy message with the DT lyrics and the Ballad Index entry. I suppose I could even rename the thread DTStudy, but I dunno about that.
I think I may add DTStudy entries to the Penguin threads, too - since Malcolm and Alan and Ed have already done so much.
Suggestions?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 26 May 02 - 05:10 AM

Are you going to cross reference with tunes too, for those of us who have one tune with 17 different songs/titles, or one song with 6 different tunes??

You do realise what you've started here, don't you?

Best of luck with it, and I'll help you by not putting any more daft suggestions in, or trying to be useful!! I mean, I can't even do a blue clicky, what use would I be?? (unless you want a computer illiterate to help you road test ease of use for incompetants?)

LTS


Certainly, we should cross-reference tunes, Liz. I think we should use these threads as systematic studies of every aspect of a song.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: pavane
Date: 26 May 02 - 05:54 AM

The 'original', or earliest known, versions of many 'folk' songs are actually printed broadsides. Examples such as Black Velvet Band, All around my hat, Loch Lomond, William and Diana (on which Villikens & Dinah was a parody), Warlike lads of Russia can all be found in the Bodley Ballad collection.

Should we add references to these as well?


You betcha. We certainly DO want references (and links to references), but I think we need to see all versions of a song, all in the same thread. That should make it a lot easier to make comparisons. If at all possible, we need to see dated transcriptions of the earliest versions of songs - that helps a lot when considering copyright matters. In fact, I think I'd like to see postings of most of the versions cited in the Traditional Ballad Index (as long as there are significant differences).
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 26 May 02 - 07:58 AM

I add references to broadsides, where relevant, and I think it would be a good idea; the Bodleian site is consistent and (so far) even links from a couple of years back still work. They don't mind you doing it (if I've understood their coyright page correctly), though I usually add a link to their home page, too, as a courtesy and to help people who are new to it.

Tunes: one of the problems with the DT at present is that some files have more than one tune, often with no clear indication as to which belongs to the text given. When adding tunes, I'd suggest that we stick to those which we know belong to texts which we have, except where we have texts the tunes for which were not noted.

When tracing "missing" tunes, I've sometimes provided English or Irish variants for songs collected in Canada, for example, but only where no tune was recorded in the book from which the DT text was taken and I can't find a close regional variant that does have music. I try always to be very precise about where it came from, and to state clearly that, though the tune may be close to the one actually used, there is no evidence that it actually is.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 26 May 02 - 08:18 AM

Excellent idea Joe. In some ways, it is running close to an idea I started here where the idea was that people could submit a song with a detailed write up but I gave up with due to lack of interest. On the other hand, this is happening in Mudcat itself which I believe is better and more info should come through as well as some interesting discussion.

I doubt very much if I will be able to add anything (I'm not particularly knowlegable) but I still wish to thank you for starting such a positive move.

Jon


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST
Date: 26 May 02 - 09:38 AM

The DT is the backbone of this site, and the reason most people found the forum and joined as members. I sent lyrics and added verses to several songs and non of them got posted. One reason I'm just a guest and no longer a member.
Much better to post lyrics here and sumbit them to public review and correction. That way, they're available to everyone immediately, and the process of refining and correcting can take place before they get picked up by the Digital Tradition. The time for complaining is over. If you post it, we'll work on it - and we'll also make sure it gets indexed in a way that people can find it. If you see a song that needs work, start a DTStudy thread. Post the DT version of the lyrics in the first message, and then post corrected and alternate versions in subsequent messages. We'll edit it into something workable.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: michaelr
Date: 26 May 02 - 01:27 PM

Excuse my ignorance - I'm sure this has been explained elsewhere - but why is a song that was printed as a broadside not a proper folk song?

Michael


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 26 May 02 - 01:43 PM

Joe - your's is GREAT IDEA.

If I may "piggyback" on it? Perhaps, one of the mirror sites - i.e. ragtime could be a MUSIC ONLY forum and the mainstream universal portal could be mudcat.org

The advantages would be
A. No B.S. to wade through
B. No newbies with hurt feelings
C. MUSIC Threads would be posted for three or more days
D. The gathering, winnowing and gleaning would be contained.

There is such POTENTIAL for the original dream of Susan and Dick to develop into the modern day equivalent of Vance Randolph's work.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 May 02 - 02:03 PM

More often than not the only way into the Mudcat is through ragtime, so I don't think that idea would work, even if I agreed with it, which I don't. I value the open forum a great deal, for all the problems from time to time.

However I think this is a really promising initiative, and it'll be fascinating to see how it develops. Threads which delve around into the origin and meanings of songs have always been the most fascinating, I feel.

As the number of DT Studies grows, I hope there'll be some way of clicking to a catalogue of them with links.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 26 May 02 - 02:26 PM

There is a NEED for an academic area. One that is legitamatly recognized and follows the procedures of good research but is open to the gathering of the oral traditions.

While Max would consider the decline of his cafe to begin with the heated discussions on the Irish Question and an Armalite Thread which led to my banishment as a member....I consider the decline of the DT to be found about the time of the "healing circles" "womanly wiccan discussions" and general sophmoric flattulance threads which had not the vaguest connection to music of ANY sort.

A sandbox is needed for the cats, and an area with table, quill-ink-paper, is needed for the collectors.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: toadfrog
Date: 26 May 02 - 02:55 PM

If you are going to establish a bunch of perma threads, best to have them all listed in the same one, so that it is possible to find them. Otherwise, they get lost.

Gee, Gargoyle, how do we decide what "good research" is? I guess we could limit posting rights to Malcom Douglas and Bob Bolton, but I'm not sure I have absolute trust even in those guys.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 26 May 02 - 04:31 PM

Excellent Idea Joe.

One query, with them being editable 'permathreads' would you have start them all?

Or could I start one, let you know and have you turn it 'perma'?

Ed


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 May 02 - 04:48 PM

Good point, Ed - I think anybody should be able to start a DTStudy thread. As I said above, the thread should start with a copy of the lyrics from the Digital Tradition. We'll edit the thing as time goes along. Also, I think that anybody should be free to post summaries or corrected lyrics - we'll collate the corrections and put them in more permanent form toward the tip of the thread.
Somebody asked about indexing - the DTStudy threads will all show up if you put dtstudy or dts in the "filter." I haven't figured out what to do about threads like "Oleanna" that I added a DTStudy message to. I suppose I could rename the thread, if finding them in the Forum Search gets too cumbersome. Otherwise, I could use a different monicker for study messages in threads like that. What do you think.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 26 May 02 - 04:52 PM

"Good Research"?

Notation of sources. i.e. book, record, tape, production, artist, date, publisher, page etc.

Oral Tradition - Who, What, When, Where

ie. While I (who)was hiking the Appalacian Trail in the vicinity of Baxster State Park, Maine (where)in May of 1999 (when)there were two chaps from Tennesee (who) that sang the following lyrics to "Gimme Crack Corn" (what)

ie. My mother used to sing this song, of the birds and the kittens, which is from her childhood in Nebraska in the 1920's however, I believe it perhaps came from her mother who is from Indiana, (Wabash) circa 1880.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 26 May 02 - 04:58 PM

GREAT IDEA JOE!

Would it be possible to login dirrectly to the study threads only - i.e. http://mudcat.org/dts

Thereby, skipping the temptation to give aggravation to the assembled MC congregation of and keeping focused on the contemplation of musical notation?


Yes, it is possible, Gargoyle. You use the Filter, but set it up as a link that does the same query every time. I can figure it out if I work really hard at it, but Jon Freeman and Pene Azul can do it in an instant. I always get mixed up typing queries.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST
Date: 26 May 02 - 05:11 PM

That's a good idea, Garg

But you know as well as I that it won't happen

Shame...


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 May 02 - 05:25 PM

Well, if people don't do "good research" in these "DTStudy" threads, I think people should question them. That's an important part of this - documenting our sources of information. It WILL happen, if we challenge people to do it.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 May 02 - 05:26 PM

Well, everyone seems to agree that it's a good idea. But wouldn't it be a good idea to stick to discussing it and refining it, rather than drifting into another philippic about how the Mudcat's not what it used to be and so forth.

Couldn't that be saved for a different BS thread, and this one remain focussed on this initiative?


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: MMario
Date: 26 May 02 - 05:40 PM

So - regarding tunes - a DTSTUDY thread could be started on say: Londonderry Air; or Villikins and Dinah, collecting links to various lyrics to the tune and or variations on the tune?

Likewise if in a DTSTUDY thread there is a common tune normally used for the lyric but someone can document it being sung to another tune then that (second) tune could be linked in?


Exactly, MMario. I forgot to tell you that I assumed you will make sure there are tunes in every study thread.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,And Toto too!
Date: 26 May 02 - 06:01 PM

An excellent idea, Joe O. I also agree with Gargoyle, that we should have a totally separate space at the Cafe dedicated to it. Otherwise, we still have to wade through all the juvenile wisecracking "humor" bullshit that always seems to ends up taking over the serious music discussion threads.

Also, I am uncomfortable with the idea of taking lyrics from other people's websites & posting them here. That is a big no-no among researchers. We should refer people to the other sites with blue clickies, web addresses, etc. If you don't set it up that way from the gitgo, in an effort to empress others, I think we'll end up seeing Lesley's Contemplator site cut and pasted into the DTStudy threads, which really undermines that person's hard work.

Much harder work than has been put in over the years at DT/Mudcat to maintain a quality product. So careful, careful in that regard. Don't step on the toes of others who have and are continuing to do a tremendous amount of work to create and maintain very high quality lyrics sites. We don't have the right to steal their work, just to pick up the slack for DT/Mudcat not maintaining their site over the years. I know that sounds harsh to those who love this place, but that is the bottom line. Max, Susan and Dick haven't maintained their resources over time. And it shows, especially in comparison with the other really high quality lyrics sites.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST
Date: 26 May 02 - 06:13 PM

And Toto too!

Please tell me where these "other really high quality lyrics sites" are.

I'd be grateful for some links

Thanks in advance


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 26 May 02 - 06:30 PM

Yes Joe, no point in drifting in this thread. Are there any ways would be supporters like myself who can not add much/anything in terms of knowledge but would wish to help the project assist in any way?

Jon


You're quite good at collating information, Jon. You haelped a lot on the FAQ. You also know more about songs than you admit to.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,And Toto too!
Date: 26 May 02 - 06:41 PM

Guest--they are referred to all the time in Mudcat threads. Some can be found via the links on these pages.

No other site has beaten the quantity of lyrics in the DT. But many have consistently beat the quality of the product, it's accuracy, etc. More and more we see people stealing from the better quality sites (this happened very recently in regards to the theft of info from the Cantaria website, or perhaps from Dick Gaughan's links page to Abby Sale's Happy Archive, regarding the song "The Sick Note". BTW, Abby's and many other sites do clearly state:

"Copyright - all rights reserved".

People are frequently going out onto the web and using search engines to find the answers to questions asked here, returning to Mudcat and providing answers from other websites, without any credit to the original source who initially did the research.

Is it any reason Abby refers to Mudcatters as "duffers" under those circumstances?


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 May 02 - 06:43 PM

Keep it simple. One step at a time.

The idea of steadily correcting errors and gaps in the DT, and having accurate infotrmation attached to the songs, and using the goodwill and varous expertise of Mudcat members to do that seems a very good idea, and it should be enjoyable and interesting seeing how it works out.

But any idea of trying to have some separate elite forum of the knowledgeable doing it all just strikes me as... not too good a way of operating.

Whether a folksong variant comes from a book or has been put on to a website somewhere, I can't see much difference.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,Ed Pellow
Date: 26 May 02 - 06:52 PM

Jon,

I personally think you could offer a good deal of help, particularly in terms of your database expertise.

I however (think) I understand your reluctance to 'step on toes' in which case, probably not...

Ed


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 26 May 02 - 07:05 PM

Ed, I'll state my case quite simply in case there is any doubt.

Tech wise, factually there are far better than me around here but I will still try to throw in my pennys worth and wil help in any way I can on that score. I am a big believer in trying to make the best of our collective resources as well as (perhaps contary to opinions based on some of my posts) totaly in favour of seening Mudcat make the best of what we collectively have on offer.

Project wise, I really do see this as a plus - both for MC now and for the future and again will help if I can. I do not have the excpertise to play a leading role on this one but I think we do have many capable people.

Lets all club together and see if combined efforts can make Joe's proposal a reality.

Jon (In positive mode)


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,Ed Pellow
Date: 26 May 02 - 07:16 PM

Agreed, Jon, with pretty much everything you say.

Hey I might even renew my cookie *grin*

However I can't see how this can work properly within the current thread structure. It'll just get really messy and impossible to maintain.

I too would (will) be happy to help in anyway I can

Ed


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
Date: 26 May 02 - 08:15 PM

This be tackled systematically, by group of some kind- Child, or even simply alphabetical groups?
Joe mentioned the work by Alan and Malcolm on the Oxford Book of English Folk Songs and a start could be made here- it might be a good test because mostly only one version is given, and there is much to be added (see recent additions to thread on "As Sylvie Was Walking," 17057: a href="/thread.cfm?threadid=17057"> Sylvie . Songs of the same cluster could be grouped and referenced. Also verses of "Sylvie" cross over to "Green Grow...", etc.
Another group is the thread with histories, started by George Seto and Katlaughing, also, I think, mentioned above.

I am trying to recall examples where a song or critical information has been taken from a website and not credited. I can't so they must be few. A clickie or an acknowledgement of the website, usually both, appear in the Mudcat postings I can remember. For the thread on "Any Old Iron," I didn't mention a site with a garbled version that has Derby Kell changed to Darby Gel but no one would seriously quote that site.

I agree that there is little point in re-doing a good site such as Contemplator. On the other hand, some primary sources of material such as the Bodleian collection will have to be used (and many of the broadsides are hard to read and should be reproduced in fair copy).

Material post-1920 should be left for the time being unless directly related to an older version. This might save a lot of argument about copyright, etc. There is more than enough older material to chew over.
Finally, I agree with McGrath that there should not be two separate threads. There will be questions and speculations as the thread develops; unnecessary material can be edited out of the "definitive" version.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 26 May 02 - 08:44 PM

Yep Ed, I too have my reservations in terms of structure but who knows? I certainly don't.. and my inclination is to say "just go for it"...

If needs must, with this one, on the understanding that all comes back to MC, I am prepared (with the help of Pip) to create another sort of Annexe (ie small site with a DB) to build on and let Joe take the helm if the structure here doesn't work out.

Jon


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 26 May 02 - 08:46 PM

Sources should always be properly acknowledged, and where a text is copy-and-pasted from another website, that site should be identified and a separate link given to the original file and to the home page; any source or background information should also be included. (In the absence of such, the material is probably suspect and oughtn't to be kept). Having said that, a good deal of "sharing" of resources goes on; material has been copied here from Lesley Nelson's site, for example, but she has in her turn drawn on material here. My experience of Cantaria is that it suffers from just as high a proportion of inaccuracies as does the DT; and the majority of sites holding texts for traditional songs credit no source of any kind and give no information at all.

One large, UK-based site occasionally referred to here has simply copied the content of other sites (including the DT), without acknowledgement and in most cases without the background information that makes sense of the material. At present the tune files there are in Noteworthy's native format; to my mind about as useful as a chocolate teapot, though I know that many people like it. That particular site is primarily, however, an attempt to sell the material on CD.

There are honourable exceptions, of course; Susanne and Henry's songbook contains meticulously compiled background information, though in the main from sleevenotes, and Robokopp has improved vastly over the last year or two, now including source information and tunes in many cases where it formerly did not. There are, as we know, other, more specialist sites as well, where proper academic rigour is applied; Bruce Olson's and Greg Lindahl's for example.

There is no reason at all why we cannot develop a genuinely useful and reliable information resource here. The threads will have to be carefully (and ruthlessly) edited, and their existence prominently flagged on the main Forum page; information given without proper source references is unverifiable, and should usually be removed. The "uncritical inclusion" policy that has traditionally pertained here has perhaps now outlived its usefulness; time to get serious about getting it right.

Just the editing looks like too big a job for one person, but I don't know how we might get round that, short of assigning threads to specified individuals.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Jeri
Date: 26 May 02 - 09:30 PM

Click to read DTStudy threads only.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,And Toto too!
Date: 26 May 02 - 09:58 PM

Thanks Jeri! It would be SO much nicer, easier and clearer to have it that way. Bravo, and hats off to you.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,And Toto Too!
Date: 26 May 02 - 10:03 PM

And might I also suggest you get Guest, Philippa on board? Now there is a person single handedly contributing to the betterment of DT, with barely a Mudcat member noticing. No posting of threads looking for peer recognition or permission, nothing. Just goes ahead and makes the contribution.

Sort of humbling, isn't it?


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 26 May 02 - 10:30 PM

Sounds great to me. DigiTrad started out with two things in mind: 1, to develop the world's best songbook, and 2. to provide a record of what people are singing (NOT just listening to.)

I've been providing attributions when I have them, and adding whatever notes I'm capable of adding, but it would be wonderful to have some pooled info and expertise to bear on the process.

BTW, attribution --especially as to who originated the song--is very difficult. That doesn't mean we shouldn't try, it just means that we should be careful. Copyrights are often misleading and often flat-out lies; so are record notes. On the more cheerful side, DigiTrad has been--and will be--under continuous review, and is open-ended for addenda, corrections, attributions and whatever.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 May 02 - 10:43 PM

Dicho wondered if this should be tackled systematically. I thought so at first, but now I think maybe we should just make a haphazard start on a few songs that strike our fancy. I started a few so people would get the idea - feel free to do the same with some of your favorites. I know we won't have much on recently-composed songs, so maybe they can just go at a few DTStudy messages in an existing thread on the song. Still, I'd like to eventually review every song we've got.
Once we get a few hundred studies done, them amybe we can work out a system.
I think it could be a lot of fun.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 27 May 02 - 12:45 AM

I am amicable


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: A Proposal
From: Hrothgar
Date: 27 May 02 - 04:26 AM

Great idea - especially having the threads in one area! Onya, Jeri!

Dick, I agree with your point about copyright, but if anything is copied or drawn substantially from somewhere else, the reference should be cited. Whether the party you copy from begged, borrowed, or stole it is a matter for that party's conscience (or lawyer).


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