[Tagging] The endless debate about "landcover" as a top-level tag

Christoph Hormann osm at imagico.de
Fri Jun 8 11:55:00 UTC 2018

On Friday 08 June 2018, Peter Elderson wrote:
> Agreed, but on this list discussion is in order, right? And here I
> didn't see  anyone "desiring an authorative top down tagging system -
> derailing the community processes" .

Much of the conversation in this thread has been very dysfunctional from 
my point of view with a lot of dogmatism on the side of of the 'key 
systematics fraction' and insistent refusal to look outside the own 
filter bubble and to accept the existence of other valid world views.

Citing once again from Andy's earlier mail:

> The tagging list does occasionally fall into the wiki-hole of trying
> to tell people how to map rather than communally deciding the best
> way to map something (including by looking at how people already
> do).  In any situation where you're trying to suggest that "everybody
> else is wrong" you need to get over it, and OSM in particular has
> thrived where other similar projects failed simply because people can
> always find a way of expressing a particular concept - they can
> create a way of representing it themselves without a "domain expert"
> creating it for them first. There may well be a concept out there
> waiting to be mapped that needs a "landcover" tag (and it might be
> "municipal greenery"), but it's not grass or trees.

There is a fine line between having a passionate opinion about something 
and being so convinced about the righteousness of your cause that you 
drift into dogmatism and intolerance.

> At what usage level of a tag would you say a rendering proposal is
> appropriate?

Historically absolute use numbers have not been a significant criterion 
for decisions in the standard style if to render a certain tag.  Tags 
have been added to rendering with less than a hundred uses and tags 
have been rejected with more than 100k uses i think.  Of course every 
maintainer is free to base decisions on any criteria they see fit.

> At what usage level should it be documented on the wiki 
> pages?

Any tag that is deliberately used by mappers (i.e. that is not a typo or 
vandalism or similar) should be documented on the wiki.

Christoph Hormann

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