This article helps our Volunteer Squad keep the database clean and consistent! It pertains to members who have Creator access and above. If you're interested in getting involved, read more about joining the Squad here. We'd love to have you aboard!
There are four fields where Subjects can be added to Database Items — Brand, Series, Related Subjects, and Autographed By. Read on for details on what type of Subjects should be added to each.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
An item's brand is the name of its product line or the manufacturer or distributor of the item, generally whichever logo/name appears most prominently on the packaging or the brand name that is generally accepted by collectors.
There isn't really an overall rule for what is considered an item's brand. It's often the manufacturer (for example, Funko or LEGO), but in some cases, a large manufacturer or corporation will have several brands that are divisions within the company rather than separate entities. For example, Mattel has many distinct toy lines like Hot Wheels, Barbie, Mega Bloks/Construx, etc. Even though items from those divisions are all owned and made by Mattel, rather than individual corporations, they are classified as brands instead of series.
Deciding what should be a Brand vs. a Series basically comes down to precedent (look at how it's been done on similar Database Items) and Editorial Judgement.
Customized items should have the customizer set as the brand, or use "Unknown Customizer" if the artist is unknown. More information on Customs here.
If you are unsure what brand to use on an item, ask for input in the Volunteer Squad Facebook group. If the brand still cannot be determined, use Unknown Maker as the brand.
A series is a grouping of products defined by the brand. The series name is usually listed on the item's packaging. Items may need to have more than one Series listed, for example a main series and a sub-series.
Subjects should only be added to this field if they have the Series Subject Type.
As the name implies, the Related Subjects field can be used to associate other related Subjects with the item. Examples are the make of a vehicle (like Toyota or Volkswagen), the character depicted, or an associated franchise.
We don't want to clutter the item page with too many links, so only add Subjects that are directly related. For example:
- On an R2-D2 figure, add the R2-D2 character Subject and the Star Wars franchise Subject, but not the Disney corporation Subject (as a parent to the Star Wars Subject, the Disney subject is far enough removed from R2-D2 that adding it to the item's Related Subjects doesn't really add value).
- On a Wayne Gretzky trading card, add the Wayne Gretzky athlete Subject and the team he played for (the Edmonton Oilers), but not the NHL Subject.
- An action figure of Neo from the Matrix should have the Neo character Subject and the Matrix film Subject, but not Keanu Reeves, the actor who played the character.
- There is no need to add every single character that is in a comic book or film (but main characters may be added).
- We also decided against generic Subjects like Farming, Military, or Transportation as they would end up with millions of entries.
If an item's Production Status is set to Autographed, a new Subject field called Autographed By will appear. The name of the individual(s) who signed the item should be added to this field instead of to Related Subjects.
Tips for Adding Subjects to Items
- Subjects can be added or removed from existing Database Items by editing the item (go to the Database Item page, click the Edit menu, then click Edit again).
- Make sure to add the right Subject in the right field when adding to a database item. For example, Indiana Jones is a Character, not a Series, and should go in the Related Subjects field. If a brand has a series of Indiana Jones items, the Subject for that series should have the official name as defined by the brand and be set as the Series subject type. If "Indiana Jones" is indeed the official series name it should have the brand name as an Identifier to distinguish it from the Character subject.
- If a Subject needed for an item needs appears to be missing, first search for it under different possible names. See the Searching & Filtering Subjects article for more information about how Subject searching works.
- If you still can't find the Subject, go ahead and add it! See the Adding and Editing Subjects article for instructions.
If you still have questions, feel free to post in the Volunteer Squad Facebook group for help from other Squad members!