A 2008 experiment by Google, called Google Map Maker, has finally been given the death certificate by Alphabet, Google’s parent company. But don’t worry, the company also says that most of its best features have been moved to Google Maps anyway.
Map Maker was originally a crowdsourced effort to help Google Maps improve its accuracy and functionality. Though the idea was great, the lack of proper moderation led to a slew of problems, including spam, hacking and obscene edits.
In an article on TechCrunch in May 2015, this was reported:
“But in more recent months, the tool has been instead used by some to upload inappropriate content to Google Maps – like the recent prank which added an image of the Android mascot urinating on the Apple logo, for instance.”
As a result, Google Map Maker was shut down temporarily on May 12, 2015, but came back three months later with limited functionality. It is now officially pronounced dead as of March 31, 2017.
But much of Map Maker’s functionality has already been brought to the main Google Maps app. Google enumerates them, as follows:
- Add a place
- Edit info about a place
- Share more details about a place
- Moderate edits
- View the status of your edits
- Edit road segments
Google will keep adding new editing features, and is incentivizing contributors that help improve the Google Maps experience through a program called Local Guides. You can earn points, unlock rewards with those points and even gain early access to new features that drop to Google Maps.
To join the Local Guides program, click here.
For more information on how Local Guides works and others in the community operate, go to Local Guides Connect here.
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