How can I get illegal trails removed from maps?

asked 13 Oct, 07:17

Runner4790's gravatar image

Runner4790
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closed 14 Oct, 08:10

SimonPoole's gravatar image

SimonPoole ♦
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Tracks and paths, even if private are useful. If you were travelling along a path looking for a turning knowing that you had to pass a private one before you get to the one you planned to use could save you from taking the wrong turning.

(13 Oct, 19:16) andy mackey

I would somewhat agree but they could be marked as illegal to discourage usage. But then again if they weren't on the map in the fist place less people would be inclined to take it.

Several other mapping website agree and have removed the Routes that use the Illegal trails since they can not remove the trails themselves.

(13 Oct, 20:30) Runner4790

but they could be marked as illegal to discourage usage

For the avoidance of doubt, as InsertUser has already said, OpenStreetMap data supports a large number of access tags including "private", which would seem to be appropriate for some of the paths and tracks that you are referring to here.

(13 Oct, 22:53) SomeoneElse ♦

The question has been closed for the following reason "Topic has morphed in to a discussion about policy." by SimonPoole 14 Oct, 08:10


OpenStreetMap maps what's there whether legal or not. While you can delete items others may re-add them at a later date.

If there are legal restrictions on who can use a feature then you are probably better off adding access restrictions to discourage software from sending people down them.

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answered 13 Oct, 07:54

InsertUser's gravatar image

InsertUser
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A more general site on how access restrictions are handled in OpenStreetMap https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:access

(13 Oct, 08:59) TZorn

@TZorn I think I pasted the wrong link, yours is the one I'd meant to use.

(13 Oct, 09:11) InsertUser

In a California State Park it illegal to be on non-marked trails. According to the park officials there is no reason for those to be here and they create environmental damage to the park we spend a lot of time putting up "no access signs". with the trails on maps it encourages the usage. OpenStreet does not make it easy for parks to manage or restrict individuals from adding illegal trails. I also think individuals are not making the trails but the software that OpenStreet uses populates these on their maps.

Several other mapping website agree and have removed the Routes that use the Illegal trails since they can not remove the trails themselves.

(13 Oct, 20:33) Runner4790

I also think individuals are not making the trails but the software that OpenStreet uses populates these on their maps.

Definitely "citation needed" on that one I think :)

(13 Oct, 22:49) SomeoneElse ♦
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The help site is not intended nor suitable for drawn out (policy) discussions and arguments. Please move the discussion to the US mailing list or other suitable venue.

(14 Oct, 08:09) SimonPoole ♦

You might also want to consider politely contacting the mapper of the trails. It's always good to know the reasons why something is done before coming to a concrete opinion. It could even be that you are both partly correct in your opinions.

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answered 13 Oct, 09:28

BCNorwich's gravatar image

BCNorwich
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BCNorwich, In a California State Park it illegal to be on non-marked trails. According to the park officials there is no reason for those to be here and they create environmental damage to the park we spend a lot of time putting up "no access signs". with the trails on maps it encourages the usage. OpenStreet does not make it easy for parks to manage or restrict individuals from adding illegal trails. I also think individuals are not making the trails but the software that OpenStreet uses populates these on their maps.

Andy, I would somewhat agree but they could be marked as illegal to discourage usage. But then again if they weren't on the map in the fist place less people would be inclined to take it.

Several other mapping website agree and have removed the Routes that use the Illegal trails since they can not remove the trails themselves.

(13 Oct, 20:29) Runner4790

In a California State Park it illegal to be on non-marked trails. According to the park officials there is no reason for those to be here and they create environmental damage to the park we spend a lot of time putting up "no access signs". with the trails on maps it encourages the usage. OpenStreet does not make it easy for parks to manage or restrict individuals from adding illegal trails. I also think individuals are not making the trails but the software that OpenStreet uses populates these on their maps.

(13 Oct, 20:29) Runner4790

The help site is not intended nor suitable for drawn out (policy) discussions and arguments. Please move the discussion to the US mailing list or other suitable venue.

(14 Oct, 08:08) SimonPoole ♦

See the wiki page about social paths. It has been abandoned but did leave with the recommendation to tag them as:

highway=path access=no informal=yes

To which I also add a description=* tag with my comment about it. There are at least a few data consumers/map renderers that will either not display these paths or will display them in a distinctive way to indicate they are not to be used. Well, not to be used in the general case though some search and rescue teams I know of want their maps to show them and will include them in their searches (emergency response trumps a general rule of no access).

To the point @Runner4790 makes about it being illegal to use these trails within a California state park, the above proposal came out of that problem in a park in the SF Bay area. The issue is that OSM maps what is on the ground but the agency managing the property may not want what is there to exist and is probably actively trying to remove it. For example, when I do volunteer trail maintenance, we block access to those “social trails” with brush and logs and try to obscure them as best we can. But if we remove those trails from OSM then someone will add them back. So I actually map them and trust that the data consumers will look at the informal=yes and access=no tags and not render them. Then, with time, the trails will become overgrown and the problem will go away.

p.s. If our trail maintenance crews manage to fully cover the “social trail” then I may map it as abandoned:highway=path or demolished:highway=path (see life cycle prefix tagging). Again with a description=* tag. A reason for leaving the way in OSM is that older aerial imagery and GPS tracks may lead a remote mapper to add the trail back in. But, we hope, if there is a way there tagged to indicate that there was once a path there and it is now gone then OSM mappers will know to leave it alone.

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answered 14 Oct, 01:25

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stf
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edited 14 Oct, 01:36

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question asked: 13 Oct, 07:17

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