I just got my 1,000th Waypoint Approved, AMA
Today marks the day where I hit a huge personal milestone in my Pokemon GO/Ingress career of getting a total of 1,000 Waypoints successfully approved, and I figured I'd share my achievement here and be open to talking about the experience.
A little about me, I'm a day 1 PoGo player (level 50 now) who picked up Ingress in late 2017 to help the small town I was going to college in get more Pokestops. A friend and I played in Ingress to hit level 12 together so that we could get to work on making more Waypoints. I finally got my first Waypoint approved on June 20th, 2018. During the remaining time getting my undergraduate degree, I was able to add about 20 Pokestops to the town (it was way harder back then because I was learning and the OPR review community was really harsh and slow to review). Since then, I have graduated and been around a lot giving me plenty of opportunities to explore and contribute more Waypoints across 11(?) states. I've helped contribute to building 2 communities of players who are Wayfarer-literate (where I went for my undergraduate degree and where I am for my graduate degree). Fast forward to today, waypoints #999 and #1,000 were both from the park where my girlfriend and I had our first date.
I'd have to go back and look at all the waypoints that I have made, but of them, my top favorite was from when my girlfriend and I were driving through Scranton, PA, and I was able to somehow get first dibs on submitting the "Scranton Welcomes You" sign from "The Office", which is on permanent display in the Steamtown Mall. (Waypoint info here: https://imgur.com/a/vuLf2ip)
So, anyway, AMA and happy exploring/reviewing!
Congratulations on your 1,000th approval!
Thank-you for helping make the game more enjoyable for many people as well as help bring attention to new areas for explorers to discover.
now for the next target 🤪
What’s your average turn around time?
Well done. Niantic need people like you....... 😉
Congrats! That’s a life quest
Congrats! Way to help out the gaming communities! Up for a race to 2k?
What has been your favorite own nomination so far?
I hit my 300th 2.5 weeks ago & thought I was the man. No sir. You are the man!!!
Meanwhile.... Yesterday I finally had an approval of a submission I did all the way back in September by slamming an upgrade onto it. Until that moment it wasn't even in the voting phases, while the ones I submitted last week were. Feels like I am the only one in my area ... Owait, every vote I cast is for a town minimal 70km away. Oh and wait, Pokémon Go doesn't even see my town as a location while we have 70k citizens but apparently the S2 info of neighbouring farmers village with 10k living is so big it covers my entire play area.
Three years of submitting, I am at 4 approved. Long way to go to meet your Mike stone. Keep at it champ!
Average turnaround time varies wildly. I've had it take almost 2 years for some. The ones that put my over the top for 999 and 1,000 were processed within 12 hours after I took them off hold to finalize the description.
Lol, sure! What is your count at? Reaching 2,000 is definitely going to be a lot harder since I've covered a lot of the easy areas (and the cost of gas is skyrocketing).
As said in the initial post, my top favorite is likely the "Welcome to Scranton" sign at the Steamtown Mall. I'm a fan of the office and that is likely the most globally-recognized object that I have submitted. A few runners up include Office-related wall art at Cooper's Seafood in Scranton, a trio of artistically-designed outhouses in a nature preserve, and about a dozen Civil Rights-related objects in Selma.
Do you know other people who play near you or in those areas? I'd highly recommend you encourage them to get on Wayfarer and review to help push things through. If the people know each other well enough, doing a video call on Discord/Zoom makes the process a lot more fun.
Oh I know, the gas prices are making it tough! Right now I’m at 1,215 but I’ve got around 260 in backlog. It could be years before they shake loose.
How do you manage to find so many potential wayspots?
Well, the most important thing you can do is find people in your community that review and nominate. They’re gonna be your Yodas. I had great Yodas, and as well as teaching me pretty much everything, they kept my expectations realistic. That’s important. The next most important thing to do is read the criteria through and through several times. Then review for awhile and look at how people do their nominations. See what helps you be able to give it as many stars as possible. Once you’re good at all that, and have read through the criteria many times, keep doing it because they add and subtract occasionally, you’ll start to be able to just look at things and know if they’re valid or not. There are a lot of basic and commonly accepted categories, but you can find some unique and interesting stuff, and if you understand the criteria you’ll be able to explain how the things meet criteria in your descriptions. Oh and do photospheres with the Google street view app for them every chance you get. The extra stars on location help and are worth it.
I have a mere 317 accepted wayspots, but I can tell you what I've done. Mostly at night while watching TV, lol.
Sometimes the best thing to do is literally walk. While walking in a park you may find a Time Capsule or dedication plaque you never knew was there. While walking in town you may find a mural or statue you never knew was there. While walking around a church you may find a bell or a fountain you never knew was there.
To expand on that, denominations like Catholics have different beliefs involving church decor. Some are very bare bones, but Catholics and a few others love statues, sculptures, fountains, and murals. While most churches have a variety of valid things like sports fields, fellowship halls, and GaGa Ball courts, prayer gardens, and whatnot; most Catholic Churches are a goldmine of valid POI.
Another search method that can efficiently yield good results in these times of ever rising gas prices is cruising through the photo sections of Google pins of places like restaurants. They often have murals, statues, and fountains. So do some office buildings. When you find one thing in a place this way, you often find other valid things people didn’t take a selfie in front of.
If it’s tricky to get a pic with no people in it, try going to places right as they open. If it’s a business, you can ask them if you can take some pictures inside and put them on their Google pin. They’re also often open to letting you do a photosphere for “attracting business” reasons. You’ll be surprised at what kind of access you can get if you just go up and ask.
Great tips, @Losifer026-ING !
Everyone, please, if nominating things at places of worship - make sure you name them properly. "North Angel" and "South Angel" are not acceptable if they are Michael and Gabriel. If you don't know what a statue is, take a pic and ask here, or a friend/relative, or in a local group. Don't insult the owners of a location you want to host your game.
1,000 is no mean feat. Congratulations! I wish there was some sort of leaderboard to see who has the most approved wayspots. In Agent Stats (Ingress score tracker), there's a Portals Discovered stat but I am not sure if they include nominations from Pokemon GO.
Not everyone has the liberty of being Catholic and somewhat smart. I think two months ago someone posted a mural called "Religion mural." and called Jesus a "bearded man" alongside Mother "Mary Mckinnon". There was a statue of Krishna at a local temple and it was called "Buddha Statue". The owners can't be insulted if they aren't even aware of the game. That's what edits are for. :P
Edit: Changed my mind.
The Ingress portals discovered stat doesn’t include approved nominations from your Pokémon Go account even if you use the same login and you can see both in your wayfarer account. It would be cool if they did though. I can see good reasons why they could or wouldn’t do it since the POI are something that links the games. But if they keep them unlinked it would be nice to see the stat on the Pokémon Go side for the nominations you get approved from that account. I’m not sure if they don’t want to do that for the same reason they took the Seer badge away in Ingress; which was allegedly people nominating tons of coal trying to get badge ticks.
When it comes to works of art, if there’s no label or plaque that informs you as to who made it or what it is it’s fair to take a few liberties in naming and description; but it’s better to ask someone there who might know. Sometimes an image search can help you learn more about what it is and what it’s about because in art and music there are always similar things, representations, and symbols. Nothing is really new or original. There are new and different takes or spins on things; but everything has some degree of appropriation from somewhere. What makes things interesting and unique is how an artist combines what they know of their predecessors works and techniques with their feelings and experiences; none of which are actually new to the human experience either. That also helps us understand and feel art in our own ways because it’s a visual or auditory form of communication. Another way to look at it is that it’s like a recipe passed down through generations. It won’t ever be identical to how your great, great, great grandma made it for a variety of reasons, often because each generation has probably made tweaks of their own; but it’ll still be special in its own way.