Commons:Featured sound criteria

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A featured sound is a recording of a musical performance, an environmental field recording, a voice recording, or similar that exemplifies our very best work. In addition to the requirements for all sound files, it has the following attributes.

  1. Public domain / free license. The recording and its subject are available in the public domain or under a free license. For recordings of music, remember that just because the underlying composition is out of copyright does not necessarily mean the recording is as well.
  2. Recording quality.
    • The recording is of a reasonable technical quality for the period when it was performed. For modern videos, a minimum resolution of 640 x 480 is suggested. For modern digital recordings of music, a minimum bitrate of 128 kbps is suggested.
    • If applicable, the performance is of high quality. It is neither amateurish nor otherwise problematic unless the historical merit makes up for these. If the recording is of a natural subject, it should be a good representation of the topic.
    • The recording should be reasonably complete. For example, a recording of bird song should be long enough to give an idea of how it varies, and a recording of a piece of music shouldn't cut out suddenly half-way through a piece. Exception: A recording of a single movement or extract from a longer work is acceptable, so long as it can stand by itself, although the full work is still preferred.
  3. Caption. The description provided on the featured sound candidate page should be sufficient to clearly identify the subject of the recording, so that it may be used in the featured sound portal for that purpose. For music, this generally means at least the title of the piece, the composer, and the performer. If opus numbers or other schemes are in use for this piece, please include them. Unfortunately, unlike featured pictures, we can't rely on thumbnails to identify the file. Any language may be used (some sort of method for switching between languages will be sorted out later).
  4. Sound description page. The page contains an extended description of the file, including (as far as is possible):
    • (i) a brief description of the subject;
    • (ii) the date and venue of the recording, where known;
    • (iii) Background information, such as the company which released it, or the person who arranged for it to be recorded, in sufficient detail to put the recording in context
    • (iv) where known, a list of any editing that has been applied to the excerpt that was not in the original, such as noise reduction or click removal. Be aware that in some countries a restoration can gain a new copyright.
    • (vi) for a musical performance, the name and years of the composer (and the arranger, where relevant), the year of composition (and the arrangement, where relevant), the name(s) of the performer(s) or, for an ensemble, the name of the group and, where relevant, the conductor and soloist (where information is unavailable, such as for some historical recordings, provide as much as is known).