[Talk-us] Steady increase in the number of mappers in the US

Serge Wroclawski emacsen at gmail.com
Fri Jul 19 23:07:39 UTC 2013


On Fri, Jul 19, 2013 at 12:56 PM, Kai Krueger <kakrueger at gmail.com> wrote:

>> We need publicity!
>
> Yes! Publicity is in my opinion one of the biggest things we need and should
> try and work on as a group.

I wish this was the case, but it's not. I'll elaborate.

> Looking at the data, it is clear that when ever
> there was significant publicity on OSM, the number of editors (particularly
> new ones) has shot up, at least for a while.

Unfortunately our long term trends aren't effected by this.

> While local mapping events are great and important, they probably only
> manage to get a handful of new mappers if at all. Having an article in a
> news paper or significant blog on the other hand is likely to get many more
> new mappers.

When I was in DC, t the Washington Post to covered MappingDC. The
Washington Post is not only the largest paper in DC, it's one of the
largest newspapers in the United States, but the result of the story
was that we got a few signups to our list, but we saw no increase in
our events, and no one came to a mapping party saying they'd heard
about us from the newspaper.

Similarly, when the Washington Post covered the local DC hackerspace,
we had two people stop in at the space (only two!) and neither of them
joined.

> So perhaps instead of setting targets of that we want to achieve X number of
> active mappers in a certain time frame, we could set a target of aiming to
> have Y articles about OSM in the press and Z talks / booths at conferences
> by then.

I love publicity, but what's really important to us is sustaining
community members and mapping activity.

> Those targets are much more tangible than the number of active mappers as
> how any given action will effect that number is rather more speculative.

It's not born out by the numbers in my experience.

- Serge



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