If you are going to rate your music collection, you need to setup first a “list” of criteria you will use to accomplish the task in a coherent way. Create a simple 2 columns x 5 rows table with your favourite word processor and write some adjectives/rules inside it for every kind of rating. Using a table like this means that the ratings you will do in the future will have the same meaning of the ratings you did today or yesterday.
Here the criteria table I did for me recently:
As you know I use iTunes, but you can use this table with every other music management application that support 1-5 stars ratings (Windows Media Player, Songbird, Amarok, Banshee..). You can’t use it with Zune Software, because it has a very limited rating system (“No rating”, “I like it” and “I don’t like it”).
Download my iTunes Rating Criteria Table in OpenOffice format here.