Benches on a Trail

icygloomkitten-PGOicygloomkitten-PGO Posts: 9 ✭✭
edited August 6 in Criteria Clarifications

I am looking for clarification for the eligibility of benches along a trail. There is a paved trail that I frequent, which is 12 miles long. There is nothing along this trail except for signs when it is intersecting a road, mile posts, and a bench every 1/2mile to 1mile. It is my opinion that these benches functionally serve the same as trail markers, and encourage you to walk/bike further. I often think to myself, "I'll turn around at the next bench," or "I will take a rest at the next bench." They serve as a marker to make me walk a little further than I otherwise would. However, I know my opinion may not be that of Niantic's, so I am seeking clarification. These particular benches only have plaques stating the boy scout troop that made them and the company that donated them; they are not memorial benches.

Should I continue to nominate these, or are they entirely ineligible? I have nominated 2 so far, both of which were rejected.

Edit: I found this in the 3.1 Release Notes: "We know this will introduce more possibilities within categories like ‘generic businesses’, potentially benefiting smaller communities that may only have a generic, but still locally important, business. Or for seemingly common objects like benches or phone booths, which if out of context/rare within it’s landscape, are actually pretty cool objects to explore."

I would argue that these benches, which are each at least 1/2mile apart, are "out of context/rare" within the landscape of a pretty empty hiking trail. Opinions?

Thanks!

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  • LukeAllStars-INGLukeAllStars-ING Posts: 4,589 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Benches are ineligible, no matter if they are on a trail or not.

  • icygloomkitten-PGOicygloomkitten-PGO Posts: 9 ✭✭

    Not arguing at all, but can you link me to where it says benches are ineligible no matter what? I am very new.

  • icygloomkitten-PGOicygloomkitten-PGO Posts: 9 ✭✭
    edited August 6

    Edit: Added this to my original post.

    I found this in the 3.1 Release Notes: "We know this will introduce more possibilities within categories like ‘generic businesses’, potentially benefiting smaller communities that may only have a generic, but still locally important, business. Or for seemingly common objects like benches or phone booths, which if out of context/rare within it’s landscape, are actually pretty cool objects to explore."

    I would argue that these benches, which are each at least 1/2mile apart, are "out of context/rare" within the landscape of a pretty empty hiking trail. Opinions?

  • Cowyn2016-PGOCowyn2016-PGO Posts: 365 ✭✭✭✭

    Words matter a lot at wayfarer. Benches usually are "Not eligible" but that is Niantic not the same thing as as word you chose "Ineligible". Ineligible in wayfarer refers to the Banned List. You will not find benches on the banned list. They generally are not eligible because they dont make good places to explore/gather/exercise with is the eligibility criteria.

    HOWEVER, there are exceptions. A series of benches that are artisitic might be explore, or who serve as a pin for a view might be explore/gather.

    Trails are a very interesting case, because Niantic is super lenient on trails hence the bazillion trail marker threads on these forums.

    From the November 2020 AMA, the first after the 3.1 update:

    The new criteria lists hiking trails and biking trails as eligible examples under a great place for exercise. Are there any additional requirements for these locations to be eligible (e.g. survey markers, trail signs or other man-made objects)? Do they need to be named trails or paths?

    • While this criteria is much more inclusive than before, there would still need to be some sort of visual indicator of the Wayspot. This is because you're dropping a pin on the map and since trails are long and linear, you'd want to direct players to a safe location somewhere along that trail that's easy to find and safe to access. This would apply to trail markers, survey markers, trail signs, etc.

    Notice the word: Etc. IMO: You could make it a case as a pin for the trail.

    Could try something like Rest Stop along Trail X for title.

  • Melurra-PGOMelurra-PGO Posts: 349 ✭✭✭✭

    I think benches are very normal to see along hiking trails, and because of that, you may encounter difficulties in convincing reviewers to accept them.

  • X0bai-PGOX0bai-PGO Posts: 1,336 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Benches are ineligible subjects in Wayfarer.

    I personally am not opposed to your interpretation - that a bench on a trail serves a purpose similar to, or even better than, a trail marker - but Niantic disagrees. Benches are considered generic objects that do not meet criteria.

  • WheelTrekker-INGWheelTrekker-ING Posts: 2,657 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I would say that this is pretty acurate. A bench isn't inelegible, and a plain bench along a trail will be an uphill battle against all the people that dislike trails markers and benches,

    @icygloomkitten-PGO be ready to get several rejections, you'll have to create an almost perfect description and supporting info as many people will instantly reject it as 1*, if you're able to find something else to nominate or you can manage to get some trail markers added it might be easier than going for the benches.

  • X0bai-PGOX0bai-PGO Posts: 1,336 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited August 7

    Yeah, “ineligible” is a deliberate overstatement on my part. There is a narrow theoretical band of bench acceptability, which is so slim as to be totally impractical. Your average reviewer sees a bench every few nominations and is so keyed in to rejecting them on sight that they just won’t go. There is no precedent for using them as anchors for a trail so putting that in supporting is not going to get them through.

    I strongly encourage everyone to respect everyone’s time and make a habit of not nominating benches.

  • icygloomkitten-PGOicygloomkitten-PGO Posts: 9 ✭✭

    Yeah. The only trail markers on the trail are at each mile, and the only signs are at the parking lots. I walk my dog here everyday, and it has a special place in my heart. Since it isn't ineligible, I think I might try. It's up to reviewers to decide if it meets acceptance criteria, but I haven't seen anything explicitly stating that benches are ineligible. It's literally 3 benches in a 2 mile portion of the trail. They're boy scout projects, if that makes any difference (maybe the slightest).

    Thanks for your input!

  • Cowyn2016-PGOCowyn2016-PGO Posts: 365 ✭✭✭✭

    Suggestion:

    Title: Rest Stop along the X trail 1

    Description: This bench area is a rest stop along the X trail. Stop for a brief rest before continuing down the trail.

    Sec Info: This is a rest area the boy scouts created to serve as a break along X trail. As trails make good places to explore and exercise, this rest stop will serve as encouragement to continue down the trail. Any links to maps/official info about trail would be good too.

    Make sure that the trail is in the photo to make it clear you are nominating not just a generic bench

  • Elijustrying-INGElijustrying-ING Posts: 1,582 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @icygloomkitten-PGO

    is there something on the bench that says it was part of a project or a website with that info?

    it might help

    I’m about to submit a bench (actually it’s a group) they don’t look ordinary and at first glance they look the same . But each is actually a work of art with a plaque and specific reference on it. It would be good to draw peoples attention to this background - I’m optimistic 🤦‍♀️🤪

  • Cowyn2016-PGOCowyn2016-PGO Posts: 365 ✭✭✭✭

    @X0bai-PGO

    I put bench in the title "Ice Cream Bench" and was actually the fastest acceptance I've ever had. It actually came back 6 hours after another acceptance that I had submitted 2 days earlier. The thing being the earlier one was something I thought was a slam dunk easy acceptance as it was a giant pavilion at an apartment complex. So it was more of a slam dunk, then my slam dunk :> Of course the bench looked like an ice cream sundae.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    "We know this will introduce more possibilities within categories like ‘generic businesses’, potentially benefiting smaller communities that may only have a generic, but still locally important, business. Or for seemingly common objects like benches or phone booths, which if out of context/rare within it’s landscape, are actually pretty cool objects to explore."

    While the bolding is mine: it is from https://community.wayfarer.nianticlabs.com/discussion/9512/wayfarer-3-1-release-notes-new-criteria-darkmode/p1

    And while it is HARD to get benches through, the more these topics come up and the better people make the submissions maybe it will slowly change the acceptance criteria of the community.

  • icygloomkitten-PGOicygloomkitten-PGO Posts: 9 ✭✭

    Well, I submitted 2, but they were immediately pulled into Niantic voting, so I didn't get to add my detailed explanation of why I think they should be approved, unfortunately.

  • ForzaComo-INGForzaComo-ING Posts: 100 ✭✭✭

    I have appealed two sets of benches which both got rejected by Niantic.

    The first one is a permanent picnic table on a nature trail. It has no fireplace, but has a guestbook and trail map in a mail box (visible in the supporting image).

    The second is a scenery spot / picnic area at a hilltop of another nature trail. Yet again permanent and marked to all possible maps, but without a fireplace.

    So according to decisions by Niantic, benches do not make good wayspots even if they are located at scenic points or when they hold a function of a "trail marker" by encouraging the hiker to explore he trail further from one wayspot to another.

  • sogNinjaman-INGsogNinjaman-ING Posts: 3,219 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I'd say Niantic have correctly reviewed these last two photos.

  • X0bai-PGOX0bai-PGO Posts: 1,336 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I’d say, as a general rule, benches are coal and nominating them will only clog up the review queue for legitimate nominations. Submitting fewer benches makes the world a better place for everyone.

  • Elijustrying-INGElijustrying-ING Posts: 1,582 ✭✭✭✭✭

    You might stand a better chance with first one, still not easy.

    the trail map and visitors book sounds as though it might add something extra and a lot might depend on what this is like.

    personally I like the different nature of the benches as it is clearly all part of the natural ethos of the trail and area.

    Is there a website about the trail especially mentioning this point?

    As mismatched location is there did you do a photosphere to show where it is?

    The view in the second one looks stunning. But the bench is common. Is that a footbridge in the picture?

    is this marked as a viewpoint

  • ForzaComo-INGForzaComo-ING Posts: 100 ✭✭✭

    The first one: the box was visible in supporting image. It is like 5-10 meters off so I couldn't include it to main photo. I didn't take a photosphere. Me and my phone are bad with those. They do have a map with the picnic area "Taukopaikka" marked into it. The URL was included in the supplemental info:

    https://www.omakotiliitto.fi/jasenyhdistykset/suomen_omakotiliiton_varsinais-suomen_piiri/kaanaan_omakotiyhdistys/kaanaan_luontopolut

    The second one: yes, the view is amazing over the village and out to the sea. No footbridges there. They didn't have a website when I submitted the place, but now they do. The picnic area and the scenic point are marked there:

    Yes, I could nominate both again (or third time). The 2nd would require some travelling though. But that's not important for me to get those approved, I just came here to toss in my few cents to the criteria discussion.

    I have several other approved and disapproved picnic tables also, but these two were the ones that I appealed and Niantic rejected.

  • Cowyn2016-PGOCowyn2016-PGO Posts: 365 ✭✭✭✭

    This was an appeal accepted by Niantic & It goes to show there really isn't a lot of clear cut even by Niantic Itself.

    Your 2nd Photo Was about a Vantage Point which is Explore Worthy, using the table as the Anchor

    My photo is about a Picnic Area which is Gather Worthy, using tables as as the Anchor

    About the only difference IMO is my tables look newer/more attached to ground. It saddens me to see Niantic use the "Generic" line which is my least favorite comment ever because it could apply to just about every Gazebo/Pavillion I see in the games. So why is it so applied to benches but not those, maddens me.

    @X0bai-PGO just for fun at the bottom is a approved bench that sailed through.....

    ----------------


    eastwood picnic area

    Clinton Township MI

    ACCEPTED

    2022-04-03

    Description

    picnic area with permanent tables and grills at eastwood apartments

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Side note not all benches are generic (icecream store is a seperate way spot)


  • The26thDoctor-PGOThe26thDoctor-PGO Posts: 909 ✭✭✭✭✭
  • Archis0815-PGOArchis0815-PGO Posts: 8 ✭✭

    For the Seconds one, suggest the spot itself instead of the Bench because the value of this place is the spot and bot the Bench.

    For the first Photo, i do Not understand completely the rejection. The value in this place is the resting point


  • ForzaComo-INGForzaComo-ING Posts: 100 ✭✭✭

    The second one was actually nominated as a "view point" (utsiktsplats). The table and benches just are placed on this viewpoint and they were also a way to anchor the viewpoint into a specific location.

  • Cowyn2016-PGOCowyn2016-PGO Posts: 365 ✭✭✭✭

    You gave the pictures, and I had translated the title. But you didn't give a translated description/supplemental. I am curious what you wrote in both.


  • X0bai-PGOX0bai-PGO Posts: 1,336 ✭✭✭✭✭

    If the point of this response is ‘this is the standard for getting a bench approved; if the bench isn’t like this, don’t submit,’ then we are on the same page. If the point is ‘the acceptance of this ice cream bench proves eligibility for literally billions of indistinct, non-unique benches around the world,’ then not only are we in disagreement, I’d say you’re walking into outright dishonesty: encouraging people into submitting coal.

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