Isle of Man Mapping Party/Press Release

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Isle of Man Press Release


Press Release from

On 1st and 2nd September, the Isle of Man will see part of a global mapping revolution. Contributors to the OpenStreetMap (OSM) project are meeting on the Island with the aim of mapping as many of the Island's roads, footpaths and points of interest as they can.

The OSM project was started to enable people to use maps in creative, productive or unexpected ways. The use of traditional maps is hampered by legal and technical restrictions that severely curtail their use. The aim of the OSM project is to create free geographic data, like street maps, that can be used by anyone, anywhere.

OSM contributors will be driving, cycling, and wandering the towns of the Island with GPS (Global Positioning System) units recording the routes of as many of the roads and footpaths as possible and noting down details of amenities. The tracks recorded will be put online in the database where anyone in the world with access to the internet can browse, name, edit and use the data in any way they want.

Collaborative mapping is an emerging and rapidly growing activity that has developed alongside other activities like geo-caching, that is being driven in part by technology (cheap GPS equipment and online collaboration tools, like What makes projects like this one stand out is their ethos on knowledge production and ownership. Under open-source models the rights of authorship are de-centred and the ownership of knowledge is seen as a common resource that can be distributed and re-used. Opening up map making in this way has real potential to empower people to create their own knowledge and encourages re-use of cartographic resources in novel and creative ways.

The map data produced over the weekend will contribute to, one of the leading projects in the open-source mapping field. Currently, OSM has mapped a large number of roads in the UK and across Europe and the project is rapidly expanding into new territories. The aim is to complete the map of the Isle of Man to as great an extent as possible, allowing it to be used as a showcase to further promote the project and to help local organisations who could benefit from freely available map data.

As an open organisation with no membership requirements, we welcome the participation of anyone, young or old, who will be on the Isle of Man on the weekend of the 1st and 2nd September. Anyone interested in taking part in the activities should contact Dan Karran ( or Nick Black ( on 07835054292.

Further information can be found on the project web site

For more media enquires contact Nick Black at or 07835054292.