[Tagging] The current problem with tagging

David Earl david at frankieandshadow.com
Sun Oct 18 15:08:13 BST 2009


On 18/10/2009 14:53, Anthony wrote:
> On Sun, Oct 18, 2009 at 8:32 AM, David Earl <david at frankieandshadow.com> wrote:
>> On 18/10/2009 12:01, John Smith wrote:
>>> That's a good point, having some kind of API for tags would make it
>>> possible to have translations with very little extra effort from a
>>> programming point of view.
>> Indeed. See my message from earlier this month:
>> http://lists.openstreetmap.org/pipermail/talk/2009-October/043340.html
> 
> I'd go further than that, and only allow tags marked as "experimental"
> (for instance by prepending "X-") to be used without an open
> discussion and approval by a team of experts.  There are some really
> ugly inconsistencies in the OSM tagging scheme, and without expert
> help these inconsistencies are going to get worse and worse.

The discussions over the last few months indicate a lot of people feel 
there needs to be a more formal tag approval process.

The problem is there is an equally strong feeling from another camp of 
people who think exactly the opposite, that tagging should be a 
completely free activity which converges on solutions by consensus and 
popularity. (I get the impression most such contributors have stopped 
even trying to take part in discussions, and just get on with it. Many 
won't have subscribed to this list).

Which is why I am seeing if we can find a middle way: one that makes 
tags more accessible and manageable in automated fashion, but doesn't 
limit people's freedom to innovate and suggest by example.

David





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