DWG Activity Report for Jul-Dec 2013

In the second half of 2013, DWG handled approximately 100 cases (see attached list). Some cases are quickly identified as non-issues, but many require detailed investigation and communication, the blocking of users and/or the reverting of edits.

The second half of 2013 was largely "business as usual" for DWG, meaning a steady flow of small-time copyright violations, unsuitable imports, newbie mistakes, and territorial disputes. The amount of automated or semi-automated edits is slightly on the rise; a common pattern is someone downloading a world-wide selection of objects tagged "X" through Overpass, "fixing" it in JOSM, and re-uploading. Current policy mandates that, unless the user in question actually inspects every single changed object, they must discuss their edit with the community beforehand. In the medium term, we will have to improve automatic detection of such unwanted mass edits, and perhaps find ways to channel the enthusisasm of these users into areas where they can actually be useful.

Apart from the "usual" things, we also did a lot of work redacting very old imports in mostly South America, where boundary data had been imported years ago from sources that were incompatible with our license - a fact that often required a lot of communication to establish in the first place.

Another notable case that required considerable discussion and involved the OSMF management team was that of a mapper who removed data that he deemed to be illegal in his country, and after the local community decided to keep the data, threatened to report individual mappers to the police for their mapping. It was resolved that irrespective of the legal situation, such threats are unacceptable and people issuing such are not welcome in OSM.

Following is a list of cases in which DWG was involved during the second half of 2013. This list is not necessarily complete, but almost. (In the case of territorial disputes the country listed is either the country Nominatim reports the activity was in or the country the user believes the area belongs to and does not represent a DWG decision on the dispute.)

Month Country Topic
Jul 2013 France undiscussed import
Jul 2013 Italy undiscussed import
Jul 2013 Germany conflict; autocratic user
Jul 2013 UK mass translations to Lithuanian
Jul 2013 worldwide bad edits / vandalism
Jul 2013 worldwide abuse of OSM messaging system
Jul 2013 Europe erroneous mass-retagging of highway=road
Jul 2013 Japan territorial dispute
Jul 2013 USA bad import
Jul 2013 Uganda user asking for policy clarification
Jul 2013 Hungary user asking for policy clarification
Jul 2013 Denmark foreign user ignoring local rules and does not communicate
Jul 2013 Norway beginner making mistakes and not communicating
Jul 2013 Moldavia naming conflicts / automated edit
Jul 2013 Germany commercial mapper making bad edits to railway stations
Jul 2013 France undiscussed import (INSEE)
Jul 2013 worldwide user using questionable road name sources
Jul 2013 Germany new user making mistakes
Jul 2013 France bad import
Aug 2013 Japan territorial dispute
Aug 2013 Japan territorial dispute
Aug 2013 Japan territorial dispute
Aug 2013 Belgium Un-discussed import
Aug 2013 Czech Undiscussed import
Aug 2013 USA DMCA complaint
Aug 2013 USA new user making mistakes
Aug 2013 Ukraine violation of data protection rules
Aug 2013 worldwide erroneous mass-adding of is_capital=country
Aug 2013 France mass-spellfixing of names
Aug 2013 Iran bad import
Aug 2013 South Africa mass-simplification of lines with side effects
Aug 2013 Brazil bad import
Aug 2013 Nigeria bad import
Aug 2013 worldwide un-discussed mass edits
Aug 2013 Germany import with unsuitable license
Aug 2013 Brazil bad import
Aug 2013 Brazil bad import
Aug 2013 Canada spam
Aug 2013 worldwide mass addition of "notes"
Aug 2013 India un-discussed import
Sep 2013 USA Undiscussed imports
Sep 2013 Japan territorial dispute
Sep 2013 worldwide imports with unsuitable license
Sep 2013 worldwide buggy software placing nodes at 0 0
Sep 2013 Luxembourg un-discussed mass edits
Sep 2013 Brazil problematic edits
Sep 2013 Ukraine spam
Sep 2013 USA notes feature misuse
Sep 2013 UK new user making mistakes
Sep 2013 Ukraine imports with unsuitable license
Sep 2013 Latvia fictional data
Sep 2013 Romania conflict; autocratic user
Sep 2013 Russia fictional data
Sep 2013 Ecuador import with unsuitable license
Sep 2013 Bolivia import with unsuitable license
Sep 2013 Philippines use of copyrighted source
Sep 2013 Germany conflict; autocratic user
Sep 2013 France mechanical edit
Sep 2013 Jordan un-discussed import
Oct 2013 Denmark un-discussed import
Oct 2013 Poland bad import
Oct 2013 UK fictional data
Oct 2013 Brazil use of copyrighted source
Oct 2013 Italy imports with unsuitable license
Oct 2013 Netherlands un-discussed import
Oct 2013 Netherlands consultation re. address import
Oct 2013 USA appeal from blocked user
Oct 2013 Israel repeated deletion of military areas
Oct 2013 Norway un-discussed import
Oct 2013 Russia use of copyrighted source
Oct 2013 Indonesia un-discussed/buggy import
Oct 2013 wordwide un-discussed/buggy import
Oct 2013 UK use of copyrighted source
Oct 2013 USA un-discussed import
Oct 2013 Balkans disputed border
Oct 2013 worldwide mass retagging of boundary ways
Oct 2013 worldwide unwarranted translations
Oct 2013 Bolivia import with unsuitable license
Oct 2013 worldwide undiscussed mass edits
Oct 2013 UK new user making mistakes
Oct 2013 Philippines bad mechanical edit
Nov 2013  UK new user editing data to fit "a game he plays"
Nov 2013 South America  import with unsuitable license
Nov 2013 Italy use of copyrighted source
Nov 2013 Jamaica new user deleting "unneeded" objects
Nov 2013 Madagascar use of copyrighted source
Nov 2013 USA fictional edits
Nov 2013 UK new user deleting "unneeded" objects
Nov 2013 UK fictional edits / continued vandalism
Nov 2013 Canada careless mass import
Nov 2013 South Africa un-discussed/buggy import
Nov 2013 Russia vandalism
Dec 2013 USA dispute
Dec 2013 Cyprus naming dispute
Dec 2013 France GPX trace taken from copyrighted source
Dec 2013 USA bad mass edit
Dec 2013 USA bad mass edit
Dec 2013 worldwide Bitcoin spam
Dec 2013 Spain un-discussed/broken import
Dec 2013 USA use of copyrighted source
Dec 2013 Western Sahara dispute
Dec 2013 UK use of copyrighted source
Dec 2013 USA complaint about incorrect data
Dec 2013 Germany use of copyrighted source for notes
Dec 2013 wordwide un-discussed mass edits
Dec 2013 Romania user making mistakes and unwilling to learn