"Missing" Roads in Queensland

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"Missing" Roads in Queensland

cleary
I do not reside in Queensland but I visit parts of the state regularly and collect information which I can add to OSM.

In recent times a proliferation of unnamed roads has appeared on the map with edits usually titled "Missing Roads in Queensland" or similar. I have communicated with a couple of the people, providing specific instances of observed errors, but the problem appears to be continuing and spreading.

It appears to be people who have never visited Australia and who are part of an organised team. They are using satellite imagery and adding ways that are usually tagged as highway=unclassified. It is almost as if the team members have a quota of edits to be achieved and are not being careful in the quality of their edits.

Not all the additions are errors. I have noted about three added roads near Blackall Qld to which I have been able to add names. Some of ways are private roads which I have re-tagged as highway=service and access=private, if I am confident that is the case. The majority of the roads (perhaps as many as 70%) appear to me to be fences that have been mapped as roads. Most fences in rural areas have cleared spaces on either side of the fence and, to the unfamiliar eye looking at satellite imagery, they can appear to be dirt roads. Sometimes there may be a track alongside the fence but it usually barely navigable and strictly used only by the owner for fence maintenance - often even that would be difficult. In some instances, in the vicinity of areas I have surveyed, I have been confident in retagging the non-existent roads as fences but there seem to be many roads appearing in unpopulated areas of Queensland that I have not visited.

While the errors may have been made by armchair mappers acting in good faith, the accumulation of non-existent roads is a long term problem for the map. Further, some of these "roads" are being mapped in quite inhospitable terrain and could lead a naive driver to serious problems.   In my experience, if I don't have a name for it, it probably isn't a public road.  It is not until one visits an area and then looks again at satellite imagery that one can learn to interpret that imagery.

I am posting my concerns in this forum to raise awareness and in the hope that it may put pressure on these over-enthusiastic mappers to restrain from mapping non-existent roads.  




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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Phil Wyatt
What sort of response have you had from the people involved?

Could you give us a couple of examples?

-----Original Message-----
From: cleary [mailto:[hidden email]]
Sent: Wednesday, 11 December 2019 10:34 AM
To: OpenStreetMap
Subject: [talk-au] "Missing" Roads in Queensland

I do not reside in Queensland but I visit parts of the state regularly and collect information which I can add to OSM.



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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Mateusz Konieczny-3
In reply to this post by cleary
Have you already left comments on their changesets?

Are their accounts listed as being part of organized editing group?

If not and they are actually part of an organised team then it is something that they must fix
- see https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Organised_Editing_Guidelines

11 Dec 2019, 00:33 by [hidden email]:
I do not reside in Queensland but I visit parts of the state regularly and collect information which I can add to OSM.

In recent times a proliferation of unnamed roads has appeared on the map with edits usually titled "Missing Roads in Queensland" or similar. I have communicated with a couple of the people, providing specific instances of observed errors, but the problem appears to be continuing and spreading.

It appears to be people who have never visited Australia and who are part of an organised team. They are using satellite imagery and adding ways that are usually tagged as highway=unclassified. It is almost as if the team members have a quota of edits to be achieved and are not being careful in the quality of their edits.

Not all the additions are errors. I have noted about three added roads near Blackall Qld to which I have been able to add names. Some of ways are private roads which I have re-tagged as highway=service and access=private, if I am confident that is the case. The majority of the roads (perhaps as many as 70%) appear to me to be fences that have been mapped as roads. Most fences in rural areas have cleared spaces on either side of the fence and, to the unfamiliar eye looking at satellite imagery, they can appear to be dirt roads. Sometimes there may be a track alongside the fence but it usually barely navigable and strictly used only by the owner for fence maintenance - often even that would be difficult. In some instances, in the vicinity of areas I have surveyed, I have been confident in retagging the non-existent roads as fences but there seem to be many roads appearing in unpopulated areas of Queensland that I have not visited.

While the errors may have been made by armchair mappers acting in good faith, the accumulation of non-existent roads is a long term problem for the map. Further, some of these "roads" are being mapped in quite inhospitable terrain and could lead a naive driver to serious problems. In my experience, if I don't have a name for it, it probably isn't a public road. It is not until one visits an area and then looks again at satellite imagery that one can learn to interpret that imagery.

I am posting my concerns in this forum to raise awareness and in the hope that it may put pressure on these over-enthusiastic mappers to restrain from mapping non-existent roads.




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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Andy Townsend
In reply to this post by cleary
On 10/12/2019 23:33, cleary wrote:
> In recent times a proliferation of unnamed roads has appeared on the map with edits usually titled "Missing Roads in Queensland" or similar. I have communicated with a couple of the people, providing specific instances of observed errors, but the problem appears to be continuing and spreading.

Looking at the history list for Queensland now, it seems to be
"Microsoft Open Maps team".  The good news is that each of the first
four that I looked at has been replying to changeset discussion
comments; the bad news is that they have all had to have problems
pointed out to them.  There are also edits in (at least) WA and Victoria
as well.

If they're "making the same mistakes repeatedly" then please do raise it
with the DWG ([hidden email]) so that we can persuade them not to.

With regards to "organised editing",
https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Microsoft currently links to
https://github.com/Microsoft/Open-Maps (not that there is much detail
there).  There should be an entry at
https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Organised_Editing/Activities which
points to a wiki page that describes what they are doing, but there is not.

Best Regards,

Andy (from the DWG)

PS just a bit of background about how I got from the report in the
previous email to this info (may be obvious to many people but just in
case it isn't)

The OSM history viewer
https://www.openstreetmap.org/history#map=6/-24.336/148.920 shows recent
additions in southern Queensland.  There's low enough volume here that
the "Adding missing roads in Queensland" changesets stand out.   Click
through from there to one of the mappers shows a description of "Member
of Microsoft Open Maps editorial team".  Click through from there to
"edits" and then to one of their changesets; click "Changeset XML" shows
something like https://www.openstreetmap.org/api/0.6/changeset/78222324 
(that's one of mine, actually).  Copy the "uid" value and use it at the
end of a URL for one of Pascal Neis' services gives
http://resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-discussion-comments?uid=61942 , which
shows all the comments that users have left on their changesets - it's
useful to see what other people are saying and whether they are replying,



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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Mateusz Konieczny-3



11 Dec 2019, 01:03 by [hidden email]:
On 10/12/2019 23:33, cleary wrote:
In recent times a proliferation of unnamed roads has appeared on the map with edits usually titled "Missing Roads in Queensland" or similar. I have communicated with a couple of the people, providing specific instances of observed errors, but the problem appears to be continuing and spreading.

Looking at the history list for Queensland now, it seems to be "Microsoft Open Maps team".  The good news is that each of the first four that I looked at has been replying to changeset discussion comments; the bad news is that they have all had to have problems pointed out to them.  There are also edits in (at least) WA and Victoria as well.

If they're "making the same mistakes repeatedly" then please do raise it with the DWG ([hidden email]) so that we can persuade them not to.
Also in case where new paid mappers keep making the same mistake that was pointed out to other
mappers due to insufficient training from company hiring them?

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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Andy Townsend
On 11/12/2019 00:10, Mateusz Konieczny wrote:
> Also in case where new paid mappers keep making the same mistake ...

Any mappers that "keep making the same mistake", actually.

Best Regards,

Andy



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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Greg Lauer
In reply to this post by Andy Townsend
Myself (and I believe Andrew Harvey) met with some of the Microsoft Open Maps team in Wellington at 2019 FOSS4G SoTM last month.

I will forward the email trail to the team and ask them to review and get back to the list with a solution.

I believe the Microsoft team did try and meet with DNRM when in Brisbane but have not had any feedback on the outcome.

Cheers
Greg

> On 10 Dec 2019, at 18:04, Andy Townsend <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> On 10/12/2019 23:33, cleary wrote:
>> In recent times a proliferation of unnamed roads has appeared on the map with edits usually titled "Missing Roads in Queensland" or similar. I have communicated with a couple of the people, providing specific instances of observed errors, but the problem appears to be continuing and spreading.
>
> Looking at the history list for Queensland now, it seems to be "Microsoft Open Maps team".  The good news is that each of the first four that I looked at has been replying to changeset discussion comments; the bad news is that they have all had to have problems pointed out to them.  There are also edits in (at least) WA and Victoria as well.
>
> If they're "making the same mistakes repeatedly" then please do raise it with the DWG ([hidden email]) so that we can persuade them not to.
>
> With regards to "organised editing", https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Microsoft currently links to https://github.com/Microsoft/Open-Maps (not that there is much detail there).  There should be an entry at https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Organised_Editing/Activities which points to a wiki page that describes what they are doing, but there is not.
>
> Best Regards,
>
> Andy (from the DWG)
>
> PS just a bit of background about how I got from the report in the previous email to this info (may be obvious to many people but just in case it isn't)
>
> The OSM history viewer https://www.openstreetmap.org/history#map=6/-24.336/148.920 shows recent additions in southern Queensland.  There's low enough volume here that the "Adding missing roads in Queensland" changesets stand out.   Click through from there to one of the mappers shows a description of "Member of Microsoft Open Maps editorial team".  Click through from there to "edits" and then to one of their changesets; click "Changeset XML" shows something like https://www.openstreetmap.org/api/0.6/changeset/78222324 (that's one of mine, actually).  Copy the "uid" value and use it at the end of a URL for one of Pascal Neis' services gives http://resultmaps.neis-one.org/osm-discussion-comments?uid=61942 , which shows all the comments that users have left on their changesets - it's useful to see what other people are saying and whether they are replying,
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Talk-au mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/talk-au

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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Mateusz Konieczny-3
In reply to this post by Andy Townsend
11 Dec 2019, 01:27 by [hidden email]:
On 11/12/2019 00:10, Mateusz Konieczny wrote:
Also in case where new paid mappers keep making the same mistake ...

Any mappers that "keep making the same mistake", actually.
In this case I thought about something
slightly different

- mapper #1 from specific team makes 
specific mistake, is informed about problem
and stops doing this, changes job

- new mapper #2 from specific team makes 
specific mistake, is informed about problem
and stops doing this, changes job

- new mapper #3 from specific team makes 
specific mistake, is informed about problem
and stops doing this, changes job

(repeat several times)

I think that in such case their employer
can and should be blamed for systematic
mistakes due to their poor training.

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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Australia mailing list
In reply to this post by cleary

Thanks all for raising this issue! We are going to take a quick pause on our work in Queensland to take stock on this and make sure we’re going about this properly.

 

  • Some concrete examples would be great, we’re currently reviewing our team’s work to identify reported issues. We’ve got 3 reports from Cleary @ 10/25, 11/11 and 11/12. All these 3 issues have been fixed and we are paying more attention since then. We haven’t got any new reports, so we will re-check our edits. Once again, please send us more examples if you have.
  • We’ve updated the wiki on organized editing projects – this is our bad, and we’ll do a better job keeping these up to date. We added this project and will make sure that this is kept up to date.

 

To address a few other topics brought up in the thread (and hopefully to assuage concerns about our team):

 

  • We prioritize quality edits above all else and can guarantee we do not have edit quotas to fill.
  • We actively QC our edits to OSM, but this is not to say this process is bulletproof. We are continually appreciative of keen eyes and local knowledge like yours to hold us accountable and push us to continue improving the way we do our work.

 

We’ll be following up, but don’t have all the answers at this moment. We want you all to know we take these criticisms seriously and will take steps to address any issues we can identify and avoid any potential future missteps.

 

Best Regards,

Nemanja Bračko


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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Australia mailing list

Hi!

As it has been a month since we got this report at talk-au, we wanted to make a follow up to inform the community what were the results of our internal check.

We had revised our edits and changesets regarding added fences as roads, in the area of QLD. We’ve noticed that three (3) of our editors made total of 17 misleading edits in period of October 14th – October 21st. They had marked fences as a road network. In just 4 of these 17 cases it was absolutely clear that was a fence. We checked 2,653 edits in total. Misleading edits were corrected.
It is 0.6% false ratio in this case. Rest of the edits were without any issues.

We have high standards when it comes to the quality of our edits, and we do not have any quantity quotas, so we are focused to the quality over quantity, but mistakes happens. We are constantly improving our processes and every area has its own specifics, so we are learning these specifics. In the future if you see any edit that is potentially misleading please let us know.

We just wanted to inform the community what were the results of our internal check.

Appreciate the support and looking forward to more collaboration.

Very best regards to you all,
Nemanja

 

 

Od: Nemanja Bracko (E-Search)
Poslato: četvrtak, 12. decembar 2019. 08:17
Cc: [hidden email]
Tema: Re: [talk-au] "Missing" Roads in Queensland

 

Thanks all for raising this issue! We are going to take a quick pause on our work in Queensland to take stock on this and make sure we’re going about this properly.

 

  • Some concrete examples would be great, we’re currently reviewing our team’s work to identify reported issues. We’ve got 3 reports from Cleary @ 10/25, 11/11 and 11/12. All these 3 issues have been fixed and we are paying more attention since then. We haven’t got any new reports, so we will re-check our edits. Once again, please send us more examples if you have.
  • We’ve updated the wiki on organized editing projects – this is our bad, and we’ll do a better job keeping these up to date. We added this project and will make sure that this is kept up to date.

 

To address a few other topics brought up in the thread (and hopefully to assuage concerns about our team):

 

  • We prioritize quality edits above all else and can guarantee we do not have edit quotas to fill.
  • We actively QC our edits to OSM, but this is not to say this process is bulletproof. We are continually appreciative of keen eyes and local knowledge like yours to hold us accountable and push us to continue improving the way we do our work.

 

We’ll be following up, but don’t have all the answers at this moment. We want you all to know we take these criticisms seriously and will take steps to address any issues we can identify and avoid any potential future missteps.

 

Best Regards,

Nemanja Bračko


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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Andrew Harvey-3
Thanks for the diligent report Nemanja.

On Tue, 14 Jan 2020 at 23:54, Nemanja Bracko (E-Search) via Talk-au <[hidden email]> wrote:

Hi!

As it has been a month since we got this report at talk-au, we wanted to make a follow up to inform the community what were the results of our internal check.

We had revised our edits and changesets regarding added fences as roads, in the area of QLD. We’ve noticed that three (3) of our editors made total of 17 misleading edits in period of October 14th – October 21st. They had marked fences as a road network. In just 4 of these 17 cases it was absolutely clear that was a fence. We checked 2,653 edits in total. Misleading edits were corrected.
It is 0.6% false ratio in this case. Rest of the edits were without any issues.

We have high standards when it comes to the quality of our edits, and we do not have any quantity quotas, so we are focused to the quality over quantity, but mistakes happens. We are constantly improving our processes and every area has its own specifics, so we are learning these specifics. In the future if you see any edit that is potentially misleading please let us know.

We just wanted to inform the community what were the results of our internal check.

Appreciate the support and looking forward to more collaboration.

Very best regards to you all,
Nemanja

 

 

Od: Nemanja Bracko (E-Search)
Poslato: četvrtak, 12. decembar 2019. 08:17
Cc: [hidden email]
Tema: Re: [talk-au] "Missing" Roads in Queensland

 

Thanks all for raising this issue! We are going to take a quick pause on our work in Queensland to take stock on this and make sure we’re going about this properly.

 

  • Some concrete examples would be great, we’re currently reviewing our team’s work to identify reported issues. We’ve got 3 reports from Cleary @ 10/25, 11/11 and 11/12. All these 3 issues have been fixed and we are paying more attention since then. We haven’t got any new reports, so we will re-check our edits. Once again, please send us more examples if you have.
  • We’ve updated the wiki on organized editing projects – this is our bad, and we’ll do a better job keeping these up to date. We added this project and will make sure that this is kept up to date.

 

To address a few other topics brought up in the thread (and hopefully to assuage concerns about our team):

 

  • We prioritize quality edits above all else and can guarantee we do not have edit quotas to fill.
  • We actively QC our edits to OSM, but this is not to say this process is bulletproof. We are continually appreciative of keen eyes and local knowledge like yours to hold us accountable and push us to continue improving the way we do our work.

 

We’ll be following up, but don’t have all the answers at this moment. We want you all to know we take these criticisms seriously and will take steps to address any issues we can identify and avoid any potential future missteps.

 

Best Regards,

Nemanja Bračko

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Re: "Missing" Roads in Queensland

Mateusz Konieczny-3
In reply to this post by Australia mailing list



14 Jan 2020, 13:53 by [hidden email]:

We just wanted to inform the community what were the results of our internal check.

Thanks for checking, fixing found problem and reporting what happened!

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