Discogs and the First Impressions: Information Architecture Recommendations
Lynda Clause, Kay Lee, Elspeth Mckee, Matilda O'Neill, and Alex Willis, 2023 Showcase
: Discogs, short for discographies, is a free, crowd-sourced physical format music database that also functions as an online marketplace,connecting buyers and sellers, for items such as vinyl record albums, cassette tapes, and compact discs. It is a globally prominent online platform that provides detailed metadata about myriad types of physical format music. Additionally, the site is commonly used for the appraisal of collections, as well as identifying specific musical artifacts for libraries and archival collections. It is home to a vibrant community of users who contribute crowd-sourced metadata as a pastime. To achieve a more user-friendly design, our team undertook extensive user research to gain a better understanding of users and how they utilize the site. These include a series of interviews and card-sorting exercises. We evaluated the desktop version of the site, conducting a content analysis with an emphasis on the home page. Discogs is popular and has a devoted base of music enthusiasts as core users, but there is room for improvement. Based upon our content analysis and user research results, we are providing a series of recommendations that will improve the user experience.
Lynda Clause works in Interlibrary Loan and Reference at a state library commission, and is pursuing her MLIS from San José State University. Her library work is informed by her experience working at bookstores, video stores, and Twisters Records & Tapes. Lynda is interested in information architecture and how the organization of information affects interpretation of its meaning. She has a collection of physical format music.
Kay Lee hails from Los Angeles, California. As a special session student pursuing her degree in Master of Library and Information Science, she is interested in both the traditional and nontraditional library and information science pathways. She has a professional background working in human social services, providing diverse populations within the community with the necessary resources. Some of her pastimes include visiting Disneyland, exploring botanical gardens, dancing at raves, learning about productivity applications, and advocating for basic human rights.
Elspeth McKee received her BA in Linguistics at the University of Maryland and began her library career at the Library of Congress. After receiving her MLIS at UCLA, she worked for an ILS vendor, a public library, academic libraries and special libraries. She is currently a Post-MLIS student in Web Programming and Information Architecture at San José State University. Her scholarly and professional interests are metadata, taxonomy, user experience and electronic media.
Matilda O’Neill had an extensive career as a grant writer and grant manager in non-profit organizations and government agencies. She presently works in software development. She is currently pursuing her MLIS from San José State University with a focus on information architecture, user experience (UX) design, and emerging technologies.
Alexandra Willis is an MLIS student and public library worker who lives in Alberta, Canada. Alexandra finished her BA in Anthropology from the University of British Columbia Okanagan in 2020, and since then, has pursued library work. Alexandra is interested in metadata schemes and information architecture and hopes to transition to an information management field.