[Osmf-talk] Directed Editing Policy

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Tue Nov 21 09:33:06 UTC 2017


On 21.11.2017 10:00, Helge Fahrnberger wrote:
> This policy most likely will be ignored by SEO mappers (what else would
> they do). Yet it could discourage the plethora of constructive and
> valuable mapping. Activities that we should encourage instead. 

There's of course people mapping with "bad intentions", putting their
commercial interest before all else, creating tons of sock puppets to
add marketing text to OSM, etc.; this policy is not going to cure that,
but at least it makes it clear that rogue SEO edits are unwanted. A SEO
company that wants to engage with OSM on OSM's terms would find valuable
guidance on how to do that in this policy, although of course a specific
"ethical SEO how-to" (which this policy does not try to be) would go

Then there's mapping with "good intentions", and this comes in two
sub-categories: "badly executed" and "well executed".

Badly executed, well-intentioned mapping causes problems; not only
broken data that needs to be repaired, but also emotional distress in
the existing community who feel that someone is ruining everything they
worked for. (Which of course is never true - but if you have followed
some of the recent cases where e.g. a group of students were let loose
on a city in Canada, the emotional response is undeniable.)

The number one goal of this policy is to help well-intentioned mapping
activities to become "well executed" rather than "badly executed". This
is a good thing for everyone involved - it doesn't do you any good if
you run an event that later goes down in local OSM history as a failure
that caused unnecessary work for everyone. We all want these things to
be a success.

To that effect, the policy requests that you explain what you're doing
on a Wiki page - thinking ahead has never hurt anyone. The policy
requires there to be a link between a map contribution and the
project/activity - something that's already done by most people through
liberally used hashtags. It also suggests that you think about who will
clean up if your mappers should accidentally cause damage - certainly
that is also something that we all want.

The policy isn't there to "discourage" anything, except perhaps

Could you give an example (even if hypothetical) of an activity that you
believe is discouraged by the policy, but that we should encourage instead?


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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