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Forums: Index > Article Content > When to use the "first" option in a song template box

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In our song template, we have an option to add the first or earliest known appearance of a song when it's a song that has been done more that once. I can't remember if we decided, as a community, how to handle it. When do we use it and when do we not?

I thought we were using it the same way we use the first and eka templates, but maybe I've been confused about that. Should we use them? Is it worth taking out of the template? β€”Scott latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 13:41, 20 December 2020 (UTC)

I thought it was there for insert pieces, like the way we track sketches with the EKA template. But to me, there's a difference between a song that really is intended to be used once vs. an insert song they intended to rerun. The grey area I guess is songs done a whole bunch of times like "Sing" or "I've Got Two," but something like "Tugboat Song" was intended just for the one episode and just happened to get reused in a few episodes later on. - Shane latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 16:31, 20 December 2020 (UTC)
Okay, so the "first" denotes the first appearance of that exact version of the song, not counting remakes. Making it inapproproate to use on "Little Things" (for example) because that film was never repeated and the later occurances of the song are different performances. I'm cool with that if everyone else is. β€”Scott latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 17:12, 20 December 2020 (UTC)
I can see why we wouldn't want to use it when the songbox is adjacent to the article text which often describes it's first performance, when we feel like we're restating information. Some song pages have Performances table sections, as opposed to just article text, and there's a greater case for including the "first" in those instances, because otherwise readers have to scroll to that section to learn when a song first appeared on the show. Not that we usually take mobile into account, but on mobile view, the songbox is positioned above the article copy. It's particularly important to note the first performances of songs like "ABC-DEF-GHI" at the top, and I contend that whenever it's not mentioned in the first paragraph, we use the "first" in the songbox. β€” Jon latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 13:39, 17 January 2021 (UTC)
Yeah, I thought the whole reason why we had it at all was for a quick visual reference. Hunting through the text of the article gets tiresome. And feels inconsistent when we're doing it for some and not others. β€”Scott latest?cb=20200820192427 (talk) 13:48, 17 January 2021 (UTC)
To me, the main reason not to include it would be not merely because a song debuted in a street scene rather than a stand alone insert or whatever, but as noted by Shane, if the song was only written for a specific storyline/episode and never used again except when the same episodes were repeated. In the early seasons, a lot more material that basically would count as inserts happened on the street instead, especially in shows with no real story at all. So for myself, that would be the only stipulation, just like we don't include a source in the song box for "Couldn't We Ride" or anything else originating in a Muppet production, because it's redundant (and also fits what Jon said, it's generally stated in the first sentence or paragraph). "First" doesn't apply for only usage of a song (maybe debatable if a song is redone in a story years later, but I wouldn't have an issue with that). Even "Bein' Green," though used often outside the street, has a first because that was the very first usage (if it had been used earlier on Ed Sullivan or something, then that would complicate things, and for something like "Octopus' Garden" which was first done on Sullivan, it's a cover song and we don't First those anyway).
Looking at the earlier discussion here, I can't find anything where anyone suggests that songboxes be removed if there's a performance section. That's a major change that should always be discussed first, rather than "I don't think we need this" and mass changes (it took me some combing through the edits to even figure out why it was missing from "I Don't Want to Live on the Moon" and the like). The edit summary for "ABC-DEF-GHI" cites "The People in Your Neighborhood," except the lack of a first in the box had nothing to do with performance lists. It's just nobody ever added it when the song box template was changed, in part because ekas were used mostly for specific versions and I don't think we had the information we do now to pinpoint a first usage. So it was an oversight assumed to be intent. -- Andrew Emoji-drool.gifAdminsig.png 19:21, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

If we want to go by "frequently used song not originating in an insert" (i.e. "Sing" or "What Makes Music") to have a First in the template, I can deal with that, while "song originating in street scene, then used occasionally since" (i.e. "Walkin' Down My Street") should not. - Oscarfan (talk) 20:41, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

That feels like a good line of demarcation if necessary. (I hadn't responded before, so I just addressed that and the latest batch of box changes, which seem to have happened independent of the earlier discussion.) -- Andrew Emoji-drool.gifAdminsig.png 21:40, 17 January 2021 (UTC)

If it's okay to use the first template in the song box as well as in the rest of the article, should we do that for The People in Your Neighborhood and One of These Things? - Antsamthompson9 (talk) 2:33, 18 January 2021 (UTC)

PIYN was made for inserts, so yes, I think it should go in the template. "One of These Things" originated in the first episode, so it seems kinda odd to use it like that. - Oscarfan (talk) 03:21, 18 January 2021 (UTC)
"One of These Things," again I don't think it was intentional (just the result of sorting out "Three of These Things" and so on). The first aired use was the first episode but first known use period was one the test shows which we don't use for first boxes (the format doesn't allow for it anyway). So I agree it just makes sense to make that one an exception. Basic rule of thumb, bring up for discussion any changes to boxes rather than just going by one or two pages that happen to omit it. That way everyone's on the same page. -- Andrew Emoji-drool.gifAdminsig.png 04:08, 18 January 2021 (UTC)