[Tagging] Feature Proposal - RFC - landuse=governmental

Martin Koppenhoefer dieterdreist at gmail.com
Sat Nov 24 22:42:44 UTC 2018

sent from a phone

> On 24. Nov 2018, at 16:20, Allan Mustard <allan at mustard.net> wrote:
> I don't think OSM should be in the business of writing its own dictionary and defining terms independently of the rest of society.  That's a slippery slope.

it is not exactly the same as a dictionary, but similar, in osm there are key value combinations, in language there is context, or sometimes also ambiguity.

> If a bank is a bank, it's a bank.  If it is part of the banking system and is regulated as a bank, it's a bank. If we want to differentiate retail banks offering services to consumers from other types of banks with an additional tag, that's great--but that doesn't mean banks that offer different types of services are not banks because the OSM wiki says so

The tag amenity=bank is not for all banks, it is only for the subset of retail banks. If the tag doesn’t apply it does not mean that the object is not a bank. We are not making up a tagging system for banks (at least not yet ;-)), there is already one, and in this (simple) system the amenity=bank tag is only for banks offering retail services. You could see it as an additional tag to another (currently implicit) tag for all kind of banks.

There is no strict necessity to group things into coarser groups and refine them with additional tags. Natural language for example often has specific terms to avoid longish explanations and combinations, rather than frozen water we can say ice. If you tag a tree you must not also tag that a tree is a plant and plants are a kind of lifeform.
But if you want to be specific you can add a species tag. 
There is not one “natural” system to describe the world, there are infinite possibilities. Where to draw the line (which tags to choose as “main” tags) is a decision that has to be taken and we generally trust in the crowd to do what is “best” for the scope (map data). The actual osm tagging system is the result of this process.

You can find more information about  “duck tagging” in this wiki article, based on an original writeup by Richard Fairhurst https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Duck_tagging

Cheers, Martin 

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