[Tagging] landuse:illegal and illegal:yes/no

Peter Gervai grin at grin.hu
Wed Mar 9 14:11:52 GMT 2011

On Wed, Mar 9, 2011 at 13:52, Steve Bennett <stevagewp at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Tue, Mar 8, 2011 at 10:00 PM, grin <grin at grin.hu> wrote:
>> http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Proposed_features/illegal

> 1) "illegal" is not really a category of things. It's an attribute,

Yes it is. If proposing an attribute should have a different form,
please advise.

> and its meaning varies - here it seems to primarily convey a sense of
> "informal". For example, in most places, dumping rubbish *anywhere* is
> "illegal". An "illegal rubbish dump" is really just an informal
> rubbish dump - and it's as illegal as anywhere else.

But is it not anywhere else. It is not intended to signify potential objects but
real, existing ones.

If you mean you have to label every other illegal rubbish dump as illegal, then
yes. :-) The proposal does not intend to advise of recording every
illegal objects
around but make it _possible_ to label them _if_ someone intends to map them.

> Similarly for
> cemetery - this really describes an "informal cemetery". The legality
> is not really of major interest to users of the map. They just want to
> distinguish between an official cemetery and something else.

The main problem is _what_to_call_ the object which is an informal cemetery?
I am not in favour to create twice as many tags just to have a formal
and informal
object... You shouldn't call an informal cemetery "cemetery", because
it is not,
as well as illegal dumps as "recycling"... et cetera.

> 2) landuse=illegal just seems broken. "This land is used for illegality"?

Idea has been revoked. I'm for area=yes; illegal=yes if it is indeed an area.

> 3) If your primary use case is environmental damage, it would better
> to focus around that. "hazard=domestic_waste" would be much more to
> the point, and could be used without having to find out whether the
> rubbish is actually "illegal" or not. If rubbish regularly accumulates
> on the side of a river, it's probably not "illegal" as such, but is
> the same kind of environmental problem.

You suggest to create a new tag for every illegal activities, like
illegal dumps, gates, fence, ponds and rivers, and god knows what.
Right now I do not have the time to go through all tags and keys and
see which ones could be applied, but a random check popped up a dozen.
I don't think it's a good idea to create a parallel one for them.

As for the particular advice hazard=* is a draft, and it do not seem to
convey the same context as you suggest; it seems to exist as a warning
to a dangerous object for passersby while a waste dump is not a danger in

> So, for the tags you suggest, I propose alternatives:
> illegal=waste_disposal -> landuse=refuse (or whatever it is), informal=yes

No such key exist (documented), obviously. And it's a separate tag again.

> illegal=squatted_property -> landuse=residential, owner=squatters

Impractical as it completely leave the phrasing to the editor, which is
cultural-dependent... I see its merits, but the specifics are not right.

> illegal=graveyard -> landuse=graveyard, informal=yes

Informal? I tend to sense "informal" means something different to you, could you
please kindly direct me to the wiki page describing the intent behind

In my opinion there is a well defined difference between an informal
(not officially
founded/approved) graveyard and an illegal (unlawful) one. First one
is pretty common
in small villages while the other ought not to exist at all. (At least
not here in

> illegal=barrier -> barrier=fence, informal=yes
> illegal=deforestation -> landuse=farmyard, informal=yes

Deforestation as informal farmyard? Ermmm...
I imagine half of Argentina being informal farmyards. ;-)

Thanks for the input,

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