Talk:Proposed features/illegal

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  • This does not seem a like a good idea to me. So we go out and find places where rubbish has been dumped illegally and mark it on a map. That now shows other people who want to dump rubbish illegally where the good places are to do it. Similarly with other illegal practices. Then there's the problem that because is shouldn't be there the authorities are likely to clear this up and so it will stop being an illegal site. I can't see much to commend it. (unsigned by chillly at 12:40, 8 March 2011 (UTC))
    Thank you for your feedback. I see what you mean but I guess you are not observing the question in real-life context. First, those people who dump trash illegally here around aren't quite the ones who query OSM db, nor they are expected to browse for places to dump trash, and frankly I'd be surprised if most of them could read at all. In other cases I do not see this very useful either, like surveying OSM to find an illegal graveyard? And it's not that people have to go out and find them, but we have several scattered webpages and photo sharing site groups for images and coordinates of these, so people do care and seem to need to do that. Then I know a few local groups who regularly try to gather information on these sites and try to clean them up (and it often involves kids from schools in groups!). So I believe your points aren't really valid in this case. --grin 12:40, 8 March 2011 (UTC)
  • Im against tags like this. OSM maps the world. It should not evaluate the things that are mapped. We are just collecting physical Information about real existing objects, not the meaning about their right to exist. Hadhuey 09:32, 13 March 2011 (UTC)
    • but we maped the opening hours, too. And even more unphysical Information. e.g.: The official IDs of the roads. Why we shouldn't map the official valuation? --Josias
    • Strange argument. When you tag oneway=yes on a highway, it has nothing to do with physics but only with a "legal" status. It is interesting for instance to distinguish in OSM the legal and illegal waste disposals imo. The way "how" we distinguish them is another discussion. --Pieren 16:26, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
      • There are "physical" signs for one ways an opening hours. Who is able do decide what is legal or illegel? Thats the view of a lawyer, a court or a political decision, nothing a single mapper can decide. If a cycleway does not fit the rules of a cycleway, but is designated. A court can still say: "Yes it doesnt fit the rules perfectly , but in this case its legal." This kind of discussion is wrong here. We just map a way, that is designated as a cycleway. Do you also want to check the building permission for every structure? Hadhuey 17:17, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
        • Please do not mix up what we do with what we have to do: nobody have to check legal status, you take it to the extreme. Any tag in OSM possess the possibility to attribute objects if it is deemed useful by the mapper. We also tag access=private or smoothness=impassable, which clearly go well beyond registering the existence of a physical path. The point is whether the tag is useful or not, and it's up to debate. --grin 12:37, 29 March 2011 (BST)

Bad idea as landuse value

I see no problem with illegal=* but I don't think that landuse=illegal is a good idea. You mix land usage and legal status. How do you figure out an illegal residential area ? landuse=residential;illegal ? I would prefer landuse=residential + illegal=yes or something similar. --Pieren 11:56, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

landuse=residential + illegal=yes.
The main problem is with cases like amenity=waste_disposal + illegal=yes, where people search for waste_disposal would find the entry. I'm not really confident with landuse and I'll break up the proposal into two because illegal=yes is pretty straightforward. But I am not sure about the other. Hmm.
On the second look it may clash with landuse=cemetery which is used instead of amenity=graveyard. Okay. --grin 08:38, 9 March 2011 (UTC)
if your proposal is just about illegal waste disposals and you don't want them to be identified like the legal ones, you should propose a tag like amenity=illegal_waste_disposal. --Pieren 12:16, 9 March 2011 (UTC)
But then create one for highway=illegal_road, traffic_calming=illegal_bump, barrier=illegal_fence and illegal_wall, power=illegal_minor_line, and I could walk over most of map features to cite examples from the real world around. It's like other attributes like abandoned=yes, disused=yes. On the other hand I see movements against such attribute tags: Talk:Key:disused#Move to deprecate. I cannot really decide. It is intended to be an informal tag but rendering it would be useful. Should I propose all tags prefixed with illegal_ as applicable, creating a dozen new keys? It seems to be rendering-friendly and database-enemy (in its classical, not OSM-specific way). --grin 12:59, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

The landuse part was recalled, thanks for the input. --grin 12:36, 29 March 2011 (BST)

Coverage and generality

Will this apply to anything that is illegal, or only things that are obviously and unambiguously illegal? Evil saltine 08:35, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

This is a rather rhetorical question. :-) It depends on the Mapper. I would say definitely to use a lax interpretation, to show to others that something is most probably illegal, either because it's obvious or because the mapper gathered information on it; in any non-obvious or ambiguous case it should be backed by note=* and/or url=* as explanation (like in case of a large area fanced off regardless of the court said otherwise, with a pointer to the webpage explaining or with a note with a few words about it). --grin 12:59, 10 March 2011 (UTC)
Why would something be tagged illegal if a court says it is not? Doesn't the court determine what is legal or illegal? Evil saltine 17:40, 10 March 2011 (UTC)
I mean the opposite: when the court decides it's illegal it is definitely is illegal, but sometimes it's just known (like a pond here around which is created by an illegal dam on a local stream) or obvious (like an illegal waste dump in the middle of a field). --grin 14:34, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

Annotation tag?

Would an annotation tag such as note=* or description=* suffice? It could contain prose describing a controversy; not only a prima facie declaration of illegality, but also why it's considered illegal (e.g. law or judgement citation). --goldfndr 10:45, 5 April 2011 (BST)

Just a description=* is very bad -- for example, imagine area mapped as waste deposit, with description that it is illegal. Most people will only see it as waste deposit area, without bothering with detailed description, and go throw more junk there. So note/description must only ever be used to add more detail, and never to CHANGE essential meaning. Which is also why "illegal=yes" as additional tag is bad (most people/programs won't process it, so it would make a illegal waste area seem legal). That being said, if there is a use case for this (which I'm not completely convinced), you SHOULD also add description after marking it as illegal (which one would prefer doing via prefix instead of special key, like disused=* does, eg. illegal:amenity=waste_disposal)

Illegal Landuse

In some of the large national park and reserve areas in Africa, any settlements are illegal by definition. They are created by people doing illegal activity, typically illegal surface mining. We have been mapping them as landuse=residential, which is what they are, however NGO's working with park officials have expressed concern that mapping them that way legitimizes the settlements. I think an illegal=yes tag would be quite useful as it could be used with the landuse=residential and the tag used for the mining sites, indicating they both exist on the ground and are illegal. Again, inside these national park/reserve areas it is quite easy to determine they are illegal because neither should exist in the area. --Bgirardot (talk) 09:55, 21 June 2017 (UTC)

Better to map the national park boundaries accurately & settlements within them which are against the legal code can then be identified. Tagging things as "illegal" is a complete minefield, there are probably many exceptions which would require reviewing the statute law. Furthermore in many countries illegal things are accepted because of corruption. There is also a real danger of stigmatising the poorest people on the planet who will often live in settlements which are not regularly contenaced by law: 'slum's, shanty-towns, bidonvilles etc. Far too much of a value judgement call than a regular observable on the ground issue. One additional point: illegal under which legal code, forests are being destroyed by Poland under changes in national law but this is contrary to EU law. SK53 (talk) 13:22, 21 June 2017 (UTC)
In our use case it is confirmed or the tags can be added by local people on the ground, no ambiguity. Probably no difference in validity than access=restricted tags that are posted on trails, roads, etc. by the park authorities.--Bgirardot (talk) 14:13, 21 June 2017 (UTC)