I am astonished that “suddenly” (maybe not really, I have not been active in OGF for several weeks) some neighbouring countries of Kalm disappeared: Vinnmark and the old western part of Pretany.
I understand that a collaborative project like OGF is in a constant change and that mappers leave the project—and thus their countries are “lost”. In the case of Pretany this is not very relevant for me, as (unfortunately) I did not work very much within “my” regions next to its former western border.
With Vinnmark, the situation is much different: The former owner once asked if other people would help him to map his country. I offered my help and so I put much effort into designing the general layout of the southern part of the country next to Kalm and Ventria. Now, all this work suddenly disappeared from the map. I’m sad and even angry.
Don’t misunderstand me: Of course such a step might be necessary from time to time in OGF. And I’m sure that I will find a good solution in cooperation with the new owner of Lentia. But: At least the owners of neighbouring countries should be contacted before such an important step of replacing a whole country (or removing a large part of it, in the case of Pretany) is being taken. Even though there may be one specific owner of the country, the respective mapping might have been developed in close cooperation with the owners of neighbouring countries.
I hope that we will find a good solution in this case—and that for future cases there will be a better communication of such steps.
Comment from zhenkang on 5 September 2020 at 04:16
Well there are like major changes in West Uletha these days. I suggest contacting admin about this
Comment from stjur on 5 September 2020 at 07:01
The territory of former Vinnmark was a collaborative project owned and moderated by a particular user. The user has had 1 year of complete inactivity and only a handful of edits over the last 4 years, the territory has not been edited in by anyone in a year either, which is why I’ve withdrawn the territory during my time as moderator of West Uletha. Collaborative project moderators have a certain responsibility over the projects they manage and the mapping that’s being added to them. I couldn’t have message every user that has worked in this territory to take back their part of the mapping, there was no official list of participants and letting multiple users decide what’s theirs in a piece of common mapping would only create conflicts. The users should have noticed themselves that the collaborative project they participate in has been dysfunctional the last 4 years, moving their mapping to their own territories themselves if they wanted so. According to the OGF rules, when a territory changes owners, they are allowed to keep or remove the existing mapping as they wish.
In case of Pretany, the owner has decided to decreased their territory in size and has moved mapping from their old territory to the new one. Of course mapping on your side of the border has remained and will be eventually completed, when the territory finds a new owner.
As much as I wanted to have all West Ulethan mappers on board with everything that was changing in their continent, I am only one human and that was one entire continent. Apart from the initial discussions of the general outline of the changes, which all have been discussed publicly over user diaries and wiki, I only was in touch with users directly affected by changes (or those interested in giving their opinion), and still it took me one and a half years to find solutions everyone involved was ok with. You having the special status on the site but, at the same time, openly admitting to becoming almost inactive on the site, I have avoided making any changes that would affect your territories geographically or culturally.
I hope you undestand, Stjur.
Comment from joschi81 on 5 September 2020 at 10:45
Thanks for your detailed reply, Stjur. I understand! I see that it was hard work - and regarding Vinnmark, my “lost” mapping is (unfortunately) within the OGF rules. Other solutions would make the life of OGF admins even more complicated.
I know that the very few edits in recent months (or even years) don’t put me into a very strong position regarding discussions of further developments in Western Uletha. I don’t have a good solution at the moment. One solution would be to move my mappings to my own server and free up the territories of Kalm, Garlis, Ventria, and Erfeldia for users who have more time for OGF. My own server would “wait” for me to come back once my private situation allows me to invest more time into geofictional mapping again without disturbing other users.
However, I still have the feeling that many users would be said to “lose” my countries, even though there’s practically no progress these days.
Unfortunately, finding a solution for this conflict is not easy.
Comment from ADB52 on 6 September 2020 at 11:17
It is one thing that a territory changes ownership.
It would be common courtesy, I would think, for any incoming owner to contact their neighbouring territory’s mappers, particularly when their new country used to be collaborative. Like joschi81, I have done a fair bit of mapping in the area of Vinnmark adjacent to my territory, Utterland. Not that it was such high quality, but to find it all suddenly gone was a bit of a shock.
Comment from Lithium-Ion on 6 September 2020 at 21:09
Some of the former mapping in Vinnmark, at least the cities has been preserved, like here : https://opengeofiction.net/#map=14/56.7869/45.5231 so perhaps some of your mapping remains?
Comment from joschi81 on 6 September 2020 at 22:39
@Lithium-Ion: No, my mapping has not been preserved.
But (@all): I took a deep breathe and now I have the feeling that a country where people are actively mapping is much better than a “dead” one. And I even think the new layout of the border region in “Ex-Vinnmark”/Lentia is of greater value! So I already did some new mapping within the Lentia/Kalm border region—and I saw that Squizie3 had pretty good ideas (and mapped some proposals in Kam using proposed:natural=water etc., what a brilliant idea of proposing things to other users!). :)
Comment from Squizie3 on 21 September 2020 at 22:09
Sorry for the drastic change that happened to former Vinnmark, I had absolutely no idea that it used to be some sort of collaborative territory when I first deleted everything I didn’t want to keep. The former user didn’t map for more than a year and I knew it was marked as an owned territory rather than a collaborative one, so I was completely unaware. But maybe, I could’ve contacted my neighbours before starting to wipe it anyways. I’m obviously still learning, this is the first (and planned to be the only) territory I own. Luckily, I’ve since had good conversations with both Joschi and ADB52 and will plan to keep doing that about bordering regions, so we can have seamless looking landscapes across borders.
Lentia is also a collaborative project, so everyone following the basic guidelines of OGF:Lentia will be able to contribute once the project is fully set up, including neighbours off course. This takes a bit more time than expected though, so currently it’s not yet fully set up and it will still take some time. I’m happy to say that I already had much interest in the project, and hope this project will keep going for a very long time.
I hope you all can understand, and I look forward too for further collaboration about our bordering regions. And thanks Joschi for the compliments in your last post ;)