There are some situations where sortnames are useful, which is why we want the ability to store them, but it's rather annoying being repeatedly forced to copy the name to the sortname, so I don't think we should be requiring users to enter them.
Current stats of how many sortnames are the same as the name:
- 48.5% of artists
- 50.2% of artists where the name matches /^[ -ž]+$/
- 13.0% of artists where it doesn't (due to the guideline where sortnames are supposed to be latin)
- 97.6% of labels
- 91.6% of artist aliases
- 96.9% of label aliases
- 97.3% of work aliases
- 99.7% of area aliases
- 77.2% of place aliases (this is an anomaly due to the low number of places we currently have and the high number of Japanese ones I've added)
Only the main artist table has a significant number where the sortname is different. I think it would make sense to stop requiring users to enter sortnames for non-artist entities and if they leave the field blank, automatically use the same value as the name.