How to contact the person / group running a MapRoulette challenge?

Hello everyone!

A user has been been complaining about the results of a MapRoulette challenge, claiming the results being destructive.

How can the user get in contact with “Expedia Group OSM Contributions” (MapRoulette)?


First: It is pretty bad you can not find this information (easily) on the MapRoulette site, I tried but could not find it within some minutes. I think that should be fixed.

Still it is relatively easy to find with a search engine:

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Looking better on the MapRoulette site I see that with each challenge you can have a “Conversation” but for Fix deprecated/incorrect tags on historic=* features there is already a comment from some hours ago.

It is good to give people/organizations enough time to react.

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Thanks for the hint! That’s actually both the challenge and the user :grimacing:

I recommend opening issue on their bug tracker then.


Thanks for pointing me to the documentation, it looks good and it is good to have. After some searching I found also that it is pretty easy to contact the owner, at least if you are on the right page.

I did review why I could not find the information and that is because the three dot menu is there only for a task part of a challenge (example), but on the challenge itself (example) where I would expect it in the first place.


The documentation is incorrect. The screen that I get after clicking that link does not match There is no “three dots in the corner” to click. There is literally no way to find out details of the person who created the problem without signing in to MapRoulette and trying to “take part in the challenge” (which you can’t do if the damage is done and the “challenge is complete”).

More generally, this isn’t the first time that people have abused MapRoulette for this purpose, and it isn’t the first time that the people behind MapRoulette have been asked this sort of question - the evidence would suggest that the people behind MapRoulette are happy with the status quo (that it be used is a “mechanical turk” for performing automatic edits without discussion with the OSM community).

Edit: grammar (my excuse is the dreadful Discourse UI)


For completeness, the useful bit of that page is this:

“… please get in touch with us by sending an email to Please include a link to the offending Challenge in your message, along with a short summary of the issue you encountered and what you have done to try and resolve it.”

I would also suggest emailing OSM’s Data Working Group at so that they are aware and can take any necessary action, which in the first instance would probably just involve talking to the various parties concerned.

** for completeness, I’m a member of that group

I think the challenge description should describe specifically what is actually done, something generic like “retag deprecated history tags” without specifying which tags are selected for retagging, is not sufficient.

For the avoidance of doubt, a mechanical change of tag X to tag Y needs to be discussed as per Obviously some tag changes can be done using only aerial imagery / Mapillary / etc., particlarly where the features are large, and in those cases the changes aren’t mechanical at all (and not a problem), but where the change is mechanical, it’s important to discuss the change before doing it.

if a “mechanical” change means changing a tag without assessing the situation individually for each thing, then I don’t think we should have this at all via map roulette, it could just as well be an automatic edit and not waste precious time of map editors.

I took time to look into the comment made that triggered this topic and did put my findings on the Conversation tab of the challenge. Yes, you have to log in on with your OSM credentials on Maproulette to view it, but logging in makes sense I think.

Also that information is available for this challenge I found, see for instance this task.

I am far from sure this is the good/best way to discus things but the good news, for this case, is that all information is there.

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thank you for the pointer, it would be better if this information was already accessible from the task overview page, not requiring to actually start the task (maybe I just didn’t find it?)

Appreciate the discussion around this, apologies for the incorrect links on the OSM wiki.

There was no deliberate intent to “vandalize” features, we aimed to correct some confusing or mistagged features as discussed in the OSM Wiki. We work with good intent per OSM values, and our own Corporate values. We only aim to improve the map for all users.

“Expedia Group OSM Contributions” is the name of the project our challenges are under, to be able to see the admins of that project or see who created the challenge on the challenge homepage itself sounds like feedback for MapRoulette?

Please note this escalated outside U.S. working hours, so I was unable to respond sooner.

I will take up further discussion with the Data Working Group, and I will be updating the challenge description with additional information, reviewing the 20 or so remaining tasks, and reverting any mechanical edits within that challenge.

For reference, I am the contact person for Expedia Group’s OSM edits, you can also reach out to us directly, the email address on our OSM profiles is the best way to contact us. You can see our list of users here:

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Hey all, thanks for the insights.

What I am taking away from this is that there should be a more obvious path in the MapRoulette UI to contact the author of the challenge.

I created a project on the MapRoulette GitHub to collect some of the existing issues related to this topic.

I very much welcome any help with this: discussing the existing issues, creating new ones if you feel that is needed, and most importantly, getting the actual development work done.

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I also opened a new ticket to make the link to the MapRoulette challenge in the changeset comment mandatory. This way, someone who comes across a changeset that was the result of a MapRoulette task will always be able to refer back to the Challenge in question.

Together with the other planned improvements, this should improve the communications flow between people inspecting changesets, and MapRoulette challenge makers.

Please comment and contribute your ideas and opinions to the GitHub issues mentioned in this thread.


Thank you for accepting criticism, acting on it swiftly and making OSM better, @mvexel !


Maybe, this requested feature Optionally add task URL to changeset comment could also be useful to provide more detailed information to changeset inspecting users.

Good to have things up on github but I am not so sure that most people have a github account. I think that I better like to communicate non-technical things in a forum like this.

On github

I have a github account but on github you get developers, but for things like improvements you need also others, i.e. non developers.

That brings me also on the Conversation part of the challenge. I did not get a notification when @PCarew_EG did add a comment so I guess that the user that started the Challenge Conversation also did not get one. I did just send him a message so he knows and also pointed him at this topic.

I do not think it is wise to improve the Conversation part of the challenge further or add a forum to MapRoutelette but instead I would like to have these conversations here on the forum. It would be nice if the Challenge would indicate in which topics in this forum the challenge is discussed (if any).

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