Public profiles on “How did you contribute to OSM?”

by Pascal Neis - Published: November 16th, 2017

The web page How did you contribute to OpenStreetMap? (HDYC) provides individual detailed information about project members. Some time ago, the page has been revised, that member profiles can only be accessed, when users logged in with their OpenStreetMap (OSM) user account. This feature has been implemented, after a long and important discussion about “protecting user privacy in the OSM project”. The complete German discussion can be found here. However, I don’t want to continue the discussion here. I still support that any information, which are available about contributors, should not be hidden in project data dumps, APIs or on webpages. In my opinion, information such as contributor names or ids and modification timestamps are essential for doing quality analysis and assessments to protect the project against e.g. vandalism or unintended map edits.

Anyway, after the last modification, which required the mentioned user login on HDYC, I got positive and also negative feedback. Most negative feedback concerned that profiles are now hidden and not public anymore. But because contributors want to show their mapping efforts, I implemented a new feature, that profiles can be accessed without a user login on HDYC. So, if you want that anyone can access and see your OSM profile, just add a link to your HDYC profile on your OSM profile page. Similar as you did this maybe already for your OSM-related accounts (see blog post). The tool-chain checks the profiles of every contributor, who has been active within the last 24 hours.

Additionally, the HDYC web page got several small updates. The overall ranking has been switched to more meaningful recent country rankings. The “last modifier of” amounts have been temporary removed/replaced by detailed numbers of created and modified way elements. The changeset table now also contains some really useful hints about used words in the changesets comments and hashtags and their amounts. This feature has been requested by a German contributor, thanks “!i!”. Most of the displayed numbers should be updated on an hourly basis. Only the activity areas and information about changesets are “only” updated every 24 hours. Some numbers also contain links to further statistics such as detailed information about recent changesets, ranking lists of a country and commented or discussed changesets. Overall I tried to highlight further efforts and activities, such changeset discussions, related accounts or roles, and not “only” raw mapping element amounts.

Thanks to maɪˈæmɪ Dennis.