Talk:Key:post box:type

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Why is the box form mixed with function in the same tag? Can't a "meter" post box be mounted in a wall or on a pillar? I don't know, probably few countries seperate boxes for stamped and metered mail.

Also notice the page links to the Proposal page, but that proposal was abandoned and never approved. So why was this page even created (or proposal promoter to proper page)? Aceman444 (talk) 23:52, 10 October 2015 (UTC)

I have the same issue with the meter type. It might be true that boxes for meter mail have one and only one specific shape in one region of the UK, but for an international project like OSM it is necessary to come up with more generic names. Meter is not a physical style. How should meter be translated into other languages, as "for meter mail" or as "big cubic box"? --holgermappt (talk) 20:16, 14 October 2015 (UTC)
Well I for one map these as pillar Node 3741077489 (XML, iD, JOSM, Potlatch2, history); there is another key post_box:design=* which specifically allows one to describe the many different designs of pillar boxes, but largely used for the distinctive Penfold octagonal pillars. There are almost certainly franked mail boxes set in the walls of some post offices in UK (the post box shown above may have replaced just such a wall box). Also note that all 4 values are in use in France (, where most post boxes will be lamp types. I have also used this tag IIRC in Spain & Argentina. SK53 (talk) 20:03, 24 October 2015 (UTC)

Making this work outside the UK

This tagging appears to have been created without much international input, and does not really work in the rest of the world. So how do we fix this? We can't have values like "pillar", "lamp", or "wall" be exclusive to the UK, because other countries and postal services also have post box types that are mounted at pillars or walls. But making postbox rendering dependent on the country the postbox is in is also not a good solution - not only does it put unnecessary burdens on renderers, there might also be, say, UK-style postboxes in continental Europe for vanity reasons. Considering all this, the only viable approach seems to be the use of country (or perhaps postal service) prefixes, e.g. UK:pillar, DE:pillar and so on. What do you think? --Tordanik 13:56, 22 December 2015 (UTC)

I think the key is designed to have a unique value for each size/shape/mount/aperture combination. Maybe even colour and material can be added. So there will be a large number of values if the whole world is considered. Why distinguish between UK:pillar and DE:pillar if they look the same? If they don't look the same, then they get different values. If a post box that looks like the UK pillar type is found in Germany, then it is still of type pillar, i.e. there is no need to prefix it with UK:. --holgermappt (talk) 17:13, 22 December 2015 (UTC)
Of course, that's what I meant. It should not be about where the postbox is (as you said, a UK 'pillar' postbox does not change when you carry it from the UK to Germany). I probably did not express that clearly enough.
I also agree that there should be a unique value for each style of post box. My question was about how we go about defining that large number of values, while still avoiding name conflicts. One of the easiest solution for avoiding name conflicts would be the aforementioned prefixes like "UK:" (again, those would not be about where the postbox is, but simply be part of the name for that postbox style). But that's not necessary if we just get creative with the new names, so I'm open to various solutions. --Tordanik 11:26, 23 December 2015 (UTC)
I think most boxes associated with walls are mounted on the wall, not set into a wall worldwide. So perhaps wall should mean both. (And maybe have an extra tag if wishing to differentiate,) Jidanni (talk) 10:27, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
A couple of comments. This is meant for the gross form of the post box and does not imply a separate value for each variation: the relevant tag for this is post_box:design (see remarks about Penfold above). I have seen & mapped pillar post boxes in Poland, France, Spain, Argentina, Great Britain and Ireland. The usual post box in France is a lamp style box, but there are true pillar boxes. Wall post boxes are integrated into the wall not merely attached to them. Many boxes attached to walls will be lamp style boxes. The tag post_box:mounting can be used to clarify exactly how the box is attached to a substrate. This is mainly used in the UK with lamp boxes which are usually mounted on a simple metal pole but numerous alternatives exist. I needed this tag for a particular type of post box common in one area of England. The post box type is a typical wall box, but it is encased in a simple brick pillar.
I would particularly plea not to re-formulate the meaning of a tag which works and is in widespread usage. If possible I will add further examples of boxes from different countries in the 3 principle formats.
Be clear that the tag works already across many countries. SK53 (talk) 10:37, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
I agree with SK53 above. I would expect the pillar, lamp, and wall post_box:type values to map over reasonably well to most other countries. Roughly: it's a pillar box if it's free-standing and sits on the ground, it's a lamp box if it's designed to be mounted on a post or wall, and it's a wall box if it's designed to be mounted within a wall. Obviously countries may not have all these types, and may be possible to have some additional different types as well, in which case it should be fine to introduce new values as required. If you want to distinguish between different styles of box with the same post_box:type, then post_box:design is probably the key to use. (I could see a argument that the post_box:design values -- including the ones we use in the UK -- should have county pre-fixes to ensure they're properly interpreted.) Rjw62 (talk) 11:48, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

"wall" should also include boxes mounted *on* walls as well as within walls


Here we have a

  • Public telephone
  • Maibox (for the public to send letters)
  • Mailbox (for the shop owner to receive letters)
  • A circuit box and lighted sign for the public telephone
  • A house address (172).

All are mounted on the wall, not embedded within the wall.

Who is going to dig a hole in the poor shop owner's wall (too thin already) to mount this stuff, when a couple of screws will do?

I suppose this is the case in most of the world.

Anyway, how shall I tag this mailbox?

Compare Key:lamp_mount

wall: the light is attached to a wall.

Jidanni (talk) 15:35, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

Relay boxes

Relay boxes (vs. Collection boxes) are not for use by the general public, and thus need a separate category. Jidanni (talk) 23:02, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

Three kinds of boxes: [1]. Jidanni (talk) 08:00, 18 September 2017 (UTC)