[Talk-us] reporting Pokemon Go related vandalism

Brian May bmay at mapwise.com
Tue Jan 31 03:34:13 UTC 2017

Been following the thread - my two cents on what I'm seeing around Florida.

1) Seems like a major increase in new mappers and edits in just the past 
two weeks, and before that an increase overall since the pokemon / osm 
connection was publicized.
2) Many /most of the influx of new mappers are adding footways, parks, 
meadows, and water.
3) A decent number of are completely fake - 15%?
4) Some are a mixture of real and fake.
5) Most are small edits, like adding a few features in one or two 
changesets, but some are very prolific adding hundreds of features in 
many changesets.
6) Many edits are not very spatially accurate, but some are really great.
7) A few mappers are breaking every rule in the book and making really 
bad edits.
8) Overall its a net gain, but its a lot of work to try and review these 
edits, make contact, do reverts if necessary, cleanup, etc.

In some cases, I'm not sure what to do. For example, one mapper is 
really prolific, but just mostly wrong in they way they are mapping things.

Another case, looks like a mapper mapped a large paved area next to a 
road as a park, and named it whatever he wanted (he has also named many 
paths and lakes what appear to be fantasy / fake names). I asked him if 
there was really a park there and the reply was there was street art 
displayed there, so its a park.

Another mapper converted a section of a primary road running through 
South Beach Miami to a footpath and extended a park to cover it. The 
changeset comment was something like "making the park look more like it 
does in real life." Another mapper and I commented on his changeset, he 
didn't respond, I reverted and cleaned it up, and he appears to be doing 
more edits that are tied to reality.

Another one said "a park is here" and put the park over relatively new 
single family houses.

Overall, its really interesting to see such a large and focused group 
descending on (embracing?) OSM so quickly. So now I'm thinking how do we 
get large numbers of other sub-groups as interested in adding to the map 
as the pokemon people? Is this a one off random thing? Or is it possible 
to influence and steer large focused groups towards OSM? And at the same 
time provide enough guidance so these new groups are adding useful 
features to the map with a minimal amount of mistakes and fake features.


On 1/30/2017 7:09 PM, Will Senechal wrote:
> I do in fact know one of the areas that he edited quite well.  He 
> added "Mission Koi Pond" at a location that contained a large building 
> (shown on the Bing imagery) that I can confirm was still there 
> yesterday.  It is the site of Mission Neurology, at 890 Hendersonville 
> Rd #200, Asheville, NC 28803, see 
> http://www.mission-health.org/the-nervous-system.php#locations. I 
> would guess the edits are this person's home and work addresses, again 
> to try to cheat at Pokemon Go.
> On Mon, Jan 30, 2017 at 2:16 PM, Andy Townsend <ajt1047 at gmail.com 
> <mailto:ajt1047 at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     On 27/01/2017 22:49, ajt1047 at gmail.com <mailto:ajt1047 at gmail.com>
>     wrote:
>         On 27/01/2017 06:20, Will Senechal wrote:
>               I'll try to keep an eye on activity around here, and
>             will try to continue updating my area.
>         They've just "edited" again, and I've blocked in
>         http://www.openstreetmap.org/user_blocks/1169
>         <http://www.openstreetmap.org/user_blocks/1169> , so I'd be
>         grateful if people could keep an eye out for other
>         problematical edits in the area from other names too...
>     The Data Working Group have just had a mail from the mapper saying
>     that although the _previous_ ones were fake, their _last_ edit
>     http://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/45573753
>     <http://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/45573753> was actually
>     valid (and said "If there needs to be photographs taken I will
>     gladly"). I replied suggesting that they might want to post here
>     to explain what happened, and accepted their offer of photgraphic
>     evidence.  I have to say I'm still somewhat sceptical - the
>     features in http://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/45573753
>     <http://www.openstreetmap.org/changeset/45573753> were remarkably
>     Pokemon-friendly, and the "cars parked in something now mapped as
>     a duck pond" made it seem even more unlikely.
>     I'd be delighted to be wrong of course - it'd be great if this
>     really was someone trying to map real things (but perhaps not
>     making a very good job of it as this is their first non-fake
>     edit).  If anyone's in a position to check the validity or
>     otherwise of it please do (you can visualise the change in
>     https://overpass-api.de/achavi/?changeset=45573753
>     <https://overpass-api.de/achavi/?changeset=45573753> - some things
>     should be easy to spot like the stream
>     https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/469546360/history
>     <https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/469546360/history> "Glen
>     Meadows Subterrain Spring").
>     Best Regards,
>     Andy
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