[OSM-dev] OpenID for OpenStreetMap?

Samat K Jain lists at samat.org
Tue Feb 15 08:22:39 GMT 2011

On Friday, February 11, 2011 12:10:42 AM Frederik Ramm wrote:
> The forum and help system can already use the standard OSM login. The 
> only thing where you need an extra login is the wiki.

Thanks for the clarification.

> The area where I see most potential benefit for OpenID is an use case 
> that has popped up on these lists at least twice: Third-party system N 
> has an existing user base who have logins at the site, and wants these 
> users to be able to make certain edits in OSM. Since N believes that 
> their users cannot be asked to go to the OSM site, sign up there, and 
> then use OAuth to permit A's application to edit the map, N is tempted 
> to use one single account to submit all edits under (to make it easier 
> for users).
> With a well-integrated OpenID/OAuth system, which we don't yet have, N 
> could act as an OpenID provider against OSM, redirect their users to OSM 
> once, where the user would only have to fill in a single web page that 
> says "yes, I am User U and I want to create an OSM account and allow N 
> to submit edits", and they're all set.

That's a very good use case!

> Other than that - even if I had a Google account, which I don't, I 
> would not want Google to know when I log in to OSM. I think that if we 
> should allow OpenID logins, it is also our responsibility to inform the 
> user about the privacy they give away by using it.

I agree (I don't use Google as my OpenID)… but of all the things users need be educated about, I can't see this as being high on the list. They're already using Google, *the* juggernaut of user profiling on the Internet; whether they know that a user logs into OSM is inconsequential to everything else they've already given Google. Using that same logic, we could argue that we shouldn't allow people with @gmail.com addresses.

We don't, of course; the point is users have a choice and are free to make it.

Samat K Jain <http://samat.org/> | GPG: 0x4A456FBA

All Bibles are man-made.
-- Thomas Edison (96)
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