Diggin’ Into Discogs Data: 8 Million Single and Album Releases in the Database

Recently, Discogs hit the 8 Million Release milestone. That means more than 8 million singles, EPs and album releases across all physical formats, like vinyl, CD and cassette catalogued in the Discogs database. This is huge. Our database has nearly doubled in size since I began working at Discogs just 3 years ago. This is, of course, thanks to our passionate community that’s growing at an equally impressive rate! In this Diggin’ Into Discogs Data post, I’d like to explore the growth of the database, as well as peek into the latest 1 million releases to see any large term trends that are shaping the future of the database.

Just looking at total release growth, we are seeing an ever-increasing growth rate since Discogs began over 15 years ago. This is very exciting to see, and I’ve estimated that we’ll hit 9 million single and album releases catalogued in the database by the end of September 2017.

Take a look at how quickly single and album releases on the Discogs database have grown:

line graph depicting the year on year growth of the Discogs database of single and album releases from 2001-2017

Instead of looking at total submission growth, another way to view this data is to look at monthly submissions over the years.

Volume of release submissions to the database has increased every year compared to the same month of the previous year:

Graph depicting yearly and monthly volume of submissions of single and album releases to the Discogs database

2016 marked the first year where we had over 100,000 new releases added into the database for every month of the year. This does not include drafts, spam, or deleted releases—only accepted releases!

And of course, we’ve grown the size of our community which certainly helps us achieve those kinds of numbers.

Here’s a look at how many unique contributors have helped build the Discogs database with single and album releases over the years:

graph depicting the growth of contributors submitting single and album releases to the Discogs database

This rate of growth is pretty outstanding, and I can’t wait to see what 2017—and the next million or so single and album releases—will look like.

One guess is that that CDs and cassettes will continue to take a portion of the format pie. Vinyl is still by far our most prevalent format submitted to Discogs, but cassettes have been steadily growing in format share since the 1st million releases submitted to Discogs. If you’re one of the submitters worried about digital submissions mucking up the database, rest assured that the percentage of digital submissions has stayed at a fairly constant percentage over the years.

Here’s how the different release formats stack up against each other:

Graph depicting percentage of single and album releases submitted to the Discogs database by format

If you’ve ever used the Explore page on Discogs, you may have taken a look at the Most Collected Releases on Discogs. Albums at the top of the list include, as expected, Random Access Memories by Daft Punk, Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd, Thriller by Michael Jackson, and more. The most collected album releases for the most recent 1 million releases, however, looks a bit different.

Here’s the top 10 album releases:

The most collected album releases by Discogs users over the past year, depicted in a graph

Note: the duplicate Radiohead entries are just different pressings of the same album. Here are the most collected album releases in clickable list form, so feel free to check them out!

We’ve added another 1 million releases to the database in less than 1 year. That statement amazes me each time I read it. I hope you feel the same. Cheers to everyone involved in making the Discogs database what it is and make sure you keep contributing! We’ll be at 10 million in no time.

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1 Comment
  • Feb 5,2017 at 6:40 pm

    I sent in some suggestions for improving the way “collections” feature works, but no reply for many, many weeks. Same suggestions apply equally to the database itself. I find the classical side of the database harder and harder to use because items are being listed under performers/conductors when they should be under composer; there is no consistency. What is the point of being anal about different pressings/issues of a recording if the basic logic of entry point is not upheld? In the non-classical side of the database I find items entered under performer (correct) but then those items being listed under series instead of actual titles, e.g. early John Fahey albums. There is no logic to this and it is very unhelpful and unprofessional. Definite and indefinite articles have filing values when in a proper database they would not, e.g. when filing “collection” items by title. If nothing is done the database will just become more and more unworkable …

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