Possible error in the mass retagging of natural=cape to place=locality in Hawaii

While randomly looking around, I noticed a mass-edit where all the “points” were changed from natural=cape to place=locality about an year ago over the entire state of Hawaii. It seems his definition differs from what is defined as a cape since most can be considered a cape by definition on the wiki.

I have mentioned this in the OSMUS Slack and they directed me to make a topic here for further discussion and on whether to revert the changeset. (Though I wouldn’t know how to do a revert if that needs to be done)



I looked at a few of the nodes that were changed, and all of them seem to fit both the definition given on the OSM Wiki, as well as Wikipedia. The the mapper who made the change is using a different source for the definition of a Cape, they should start a discussion. In any event, this is obviously a mechanical edit, and should have been discussed first.


This edit was wrong IMO. These are properly capes, and I can only assume there’s mistagging for the renderer going on here. Case in point is Kaʻena Point, which is a location that even casual visitors to Hawaii might visit. It’s a mile+ hike down a rocky shoreline to a rocky piece of land sticking out into the water on the northwest corner of Oahu. This is a cape in any definition. I mean, you could argue that it’s a “place with a name but no people” but I think under the duck test, clearly a cape.


Just looking at the top location in the list, I see…
Node: ‪Waiakanapo‬ (‪21500268‬) | OpenStreetMap and Node: ‪Waiakanapō‬ (‪7727247543‬) | OpenStreetMap

These are obvious duplicates… one from GNIS, and one from PGS. The copy added by PGS was actually tagged “natural=cape” by another editor, manually with iD. Despite what the edit comment says, he apparently didn’t change “GNIS” capes to localities, but instead just blindly changed them en masse.

His previous edit, Changeset: 127070325 | OpenStreetMap, was more of the same.

There’s also the simple fact that “point” is a synonym for “cape”, so…

I think it is safe to revert it at this point…

To be honest, I’m not sure what that would entail and if I do it (definitely haven’t done a revert before let alone something bigger like this), I will likely cause more issues haha. Might be better if another person makes the change.

Revert performed in Changeset: 146233212 | OpenStreetMap


As one of the original taggers for capes in Hawaii (I did a few and user Антін Сартенченко did most of the others), I feel that this change is indeed warranted.

Makapuu Point was my first case because it wasn’t in OSM, and it is a fairly well-known point in Hawaii. When I couldn’t find “point” in the wiki, I used “cape” instead. At the time, the renderer did not show capes, so I added place=locality as a temporary attempt to get them to render (yes, I know). Funnily enough, this is the same tag that was later used to replace “cape”, and is the subject of the revert here.

Unfortunately, while the revert fixed the capes (and happily, nowadays the renderer shows capes without place=locality), it has also created some problems. Any place=locality has been replaced by natural=cape, with some unfortunate outcomes. One example is Koko Marina. This is clearly not a cape.

Thanks - I did my best on a best-effort visual scan, but by all means correct any points I got wrong.

Done. I think I hit most of the obvious ones, but there might be a few stragglers.