back to article Google accused of vandalising OpenStreetMap

Google has once again been accused of underhand business tactics, this time by OpenStreetMap. The not-for-profit organisation published a light-on-detail blog post alleging that Mountain View was "moving and abusing" the mapping outfit's data. However the very same post appears to have been completely debunked by an OSM …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whatever happened to 'do no evil'?


    1. Oninoshiko
      Thumb Down

      I don't know, ask the OSM guys.

      Libel sounds pretty evil to me.

      1. Grease Monkey Silver badge

        Libel indeed. Should Google choose to sue and OSM can not provide some pretty solid evidence then they would be in serious trouble.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          How is it libel if the edits were made from within Google's IP space, which no one seems to be denying.

          Why is Google messing around (in a bad way) with OpenStreetMap, a competitor to their own Maps service anyway?

          Someone's been on too much of Google's artificially flavoured juice methinks... Or are they now puppeting with The Register's commentards too?

          1. Anonymous Coward

            And since when does a small number of edits done from within an undoubtedly ginormous IP pool indicate an intentional, company-wide policy of attacks?

            Plus, if Google were going to do something evil, don't you think they'd do a better job of sabotaging OSM using far too few edits to cause any harm, but ensuring that they were found out almost immediately? Evil or not, Google isn't incompetent - certainly not on THAT level.

            This doesn't pass the sniff test. The simplest explanation is -not- that this tiny little spit of edits is the result of a coordinated campaign to... very gradually reduce OSM's credibility, but done in an absurdly obvious way?

            It doesn't make sense.

            But, hey, everybody's gotta have a company to hate, and I guess Google is yours.

          2. Oninoshiko

            The libel is that is is a consorted attempt at industrial espionage from google. It is likely libel because OpenStreetMap's OWN SYSADMIN said it didn't look like any thing of the sort.

            Maybe before accusing me of being a shill, oh person unwilling put your reputation behind your allegations, you should have actually read the article.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              A shill? I said no such thing; I said you were wrong. And I'm not entirely sure what you mean by 'person unwilling to put your reputation' etc etc. I'm not making any allegations at all, unless you consider my failure to be persuaded by your arguments an allegation.

              I suppose there's the bit about Google being your pet whipping boy, but I don't think there's much one can do to put one's reputation behind a slightly rough internet forum ribbing.

              I also suppose that it is possible that I completely failed to understand your post. In that case, I either issue invective pertaining to your writing skill, or bow with mea culpa, and hope my reputation survives.

              1. Oninoshiko

                Re: David W

                I was responding to an Anonymous Coward (a "person unwilling to put their reputation"), not you. elReg's forums really should give an indication of which post you are responding to, but alas.

                You and I both seem to be of the opinion that OSM is in the wrong here. I think you must be confusing me with someone else (maybe the the AC I was also responding to?), because I cannot find anywhere (in this thread anyway) where you said I was wrong.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whatever happened to 'innocent until proven guilty'?


    1. NumptyScrub

      Innocent until proven guilty

      died a while ago, when habeas corpus got trampled in the war on terror. It was also never actually that relevant as regards public opinion; people or organisations who are already reviled will be assumed to be in the wrong, regardless of (lack of?) evidence.

      Would I be correct in recalling that in order to get put onto the sex offenders register, you only need to be *accused* of (or tried for?) a sexual offence, rather than actually found guilty? I may well be wrong, but tbh it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It died when the guilty began using the extra time to plan a PR response.

  3. Owen Carter


    Some interesting details emerging about one of the three authors of the OSM post; eg: :

    "Steve Coast founded OpenStreetMap and works for Microsoft in Seattle. "

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      What about the other two authors?

      Nice ad hominem there Mr Carter, you seem to do as bad as you accuse others of doing.

      1. Owen Carter

        Err... An ad hominem would be if I'd pointed out an irrelevant fact; I don't think that is the case here.

        The article was submitted by Coast, not by either of the co-signatories; It's not unreasonable to assume he is the principle author.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          nerd repy


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