Should the "urban/rural" priority be removed and all submissions treated equally?
Wayfarer prioritizes low Wayspot densities areas over high Wayspot densities areas. This has created incredible disparities between regions. Your submissions/edits can complete within 2 days or 2 years. You could choose not to ever review or use an upgrade if your turn around time is incredibly fast or you could be forced to review and earn upgrades because nothing completes within a "reasonable" amount of time. A reasonable amount of time is not waiting 2 years. Submitters in low Wayspot density areas have the advantage of all their submissions, title edits, location edits, description edits, and photo edits reviewed faster and in a timely manner. Meanwhile, those submitters in high Wayspot density areas not only have their submissions at a disadvantage, all their edits are also have very little priority and will also takes years. It's created a massive have vs have not situation. Would the situation be better if there was no priority and all submissions/edits were treated equally? Even if it made all submissions take weeks to complete, would this be better than having some people wait years? And wouldn't this also give motivation for people in rural and suburban communities to also try to review and have reasons to use an upgrade? In areas where "nothing" is completing, this has created the perception that Wayfarer doesn't work or requires too much work. Meanwhile in areas where everything completes in days, why should they bother to review other than altruism? There needs to be parity between these two areas. There shouldn't be one area that gets all the advantages and another that has none.
Honestly, I feel they need to get rid of all the coal first and see if that results in faster turn arounds for reviews in general.
It's not coal that lets things languish for months and even years though, it's not being shown to reviewers at all. Coal slows things down but isn't the cause of some nominations takings hundreds of times longer to resolve than others.
I think the idea is to make rural areas playable. If an urban area takes a long time to get a new POI but has plenty of POIs in the meantime, they don't need a new one anytime soon. I wouldn't say rural areas have any particular advantages, especially when superficial issues like pedestrian access often hold them back.
I'm not saying 2 years is appropriate, at all of course. That's grossly out of line. Niantic can and should improve that, but not at the expense of what little rural areas currently get. And I'm sure there are urban POI deserts that are adversely affected too. But again, Niantic can improve that timeline without further hurting rural areas.
Few things to add to the post above.
Rural areas have less submitters, less reviewers and less Waypoints.
As said by you : "There shouldn't be one area that gets all the advantages and another that has none"
As rural areas are heavily disavantaged, having them prioritized is just justice.
Don't forget that 'coastal areas' are also highly prioritized.
Due to the algorithm based on L9 cells, any of you should know the system will prioritize areas (cells) with lower Wayspot density. Since coastal areas have fewer land mass if divided by the cells, the system will treat those areas to be prioritized even if they have higher Wayspot density per land mass. Sydney CBD should be a prime example of this.
Rural areas that happen to exist in the same S2 cell as an urban area can get shafted as well, the rules don't even necessarily help them.
I've also seen poorer neighborhoods of cities become dead zones due to this as well which is a shame. Since they're so close to areas with tons of spots, they don't get many POIs through, which creates a vicious cycle where nobody plays so nothing gets submitted.