Apparent use of unauthorised source for beach names in Australia

This has been discussed on Discord: Discord but I realised I hadn’t mentioned it here, sorry.

Somebody spotted that a group of ~30 users, predominantly British, have been adding names to beaches right around Australia, with no sources marked, but with those names apparently coming from, which is marked as being copyright, & which we don’t, as far as I am aware, have permission to use. (Incidentally, I have approached them 3 times, to different e-mail addresses, over the last few years to ask for permission, but have never even received an acknowledgement, let alone a reply :cry:)

Originally we thought there was only 1 person involved, & I deleted the names they had added to ~80 beaches, but then we found the rest doing the same thing, for a total of ~1800 beaches! overpass turbo

Unfortunately, the doubtful names will all have to be deleted, which then raises the question of how to do so?

Do we simply revert all of their changes, which is relatively simple to do, but which will delete the actual beaches as well, & possibly any other changes that have been made to them since; or do we go in & just delete the actual names from each one individually? To further complicate matters, some of the beach names have been added by local mappers, almost undoubtedly from local knowledge, so it’s not just a matter of deleting everything from that OT search.

Reverting all of them is something that I can do myself, but deleting just the names will require a group effort (or at least take a lot longer than I am able {& willing!} to devote to the task!).

So what would we like to do?


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It should be noted that the 1800 number is only for the beaches that have numbers or parenthesis in their names. So there will be more. I mentioned this in the Discord already, but we could as a first step delete just the names of the beaches that are at version 1.

This query looks up all the named beaches that are at version 1 created by the 34 identified users. It has just over 2000 results. Without the (if:version()==1) clause there are about 2400 results. Indicating that about 400 beaches would need to be handled another way.

I have drafted an email to Surf Life Saving Australia pointing out the situation and will see if they will grant us a waiver.

My first Q is: what did the mappers have to say about this?

If they have been made aware of the wrongful use of the data abd still continue to do so I believe a shot across the bow by the DWG is in order

A comment was left on the last changeset of at least 8 identified users, no responses so far, and one of them did actually delete their account following this.