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Is it appropriate/acceptable to mark villages and other populated places on the map without visiting them or knowing their name?

I am involved with mapping in Tanzania. Factors such as imports and improved imagery availability have improved road coverage on the map. However, especially in rural areas there are no villages or other indications along these roads.

I would like use available satellite/aerial imagery to mark presumed villages/settlements and ask contributing volunteers (ex. HOT projects) to do the same even when the name of the place or the specific classification is not known. I see this as helping to show where things are along the road making the map more complete, providing on the ground surveyors with information on where they might go to get more data, and having less impact on contributes than asking them to map buildings. What I don't know is how acceptable this is for OpenStreetMap since the name of these places would not be known until someone visits or another data source becomes available and because the initial classification may be inaccurate (hamlet identified as village, etc.).

asked 04 Jun '16, 20:44

vossad01's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

I think that if you can clearly identify a (largely) residential area from the imagery, there's nothing(*) against tagging it landuse=residential because that's what you see. I would caution against using a place=village or similar tag since you don't know enough for that, and I would also recommend that you only use landuse=residential where you are, from your knowledge of regional customs and building structures, sure that you are actually looking at a residential area. Do not assume that residential areas in Tanzania look the same as residential areas in a western country.

(*) of course it is always better to map in an area about which you have intimate knowledge but I do understand that it feels more adventurous to explore the unknown while mapping.

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answered 04 Jun '16, 21:11

Frederik%20Ramm's gravatar image

Frederik Ramm ♦
accept rate: 23%

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question asked: 04 Jun '16, 20:44

question was seen: 1,916 times

last updated: 04 Jun '16, 21:11

NOTICE: is no longer in use from 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum