PSA: "hidden" wayspots in Ingress are not brought into game

0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

Pokemon players have long been aware of one idiosyncrasy of the wayspot database -- that of "hidden" wayspots. Some wayspots were accepted into the database, but were not brought into the game due to "proximity" rules (ie. that they were too close to another wayspot already in-game, or that other wayspot occupies the same S2 cell). But if that "blocking" wayspot were moved or removed, then the hidden one is able to be brought into the game automatically.

However, this does not happen in Ingress. A wayspot can be accepted by Wayfarer reviewers but, being within 20m of another in-game portal, we instead only get a form letter stating (quote), "Your Portal submission has been reviewed and the community agrees that it meets the Candidate Portal criteria. However, we are unable to bring it online at this time since this candidate is too close to an existing Portal."

Unfortunately, @NianticCasey-ING, what happens when the "blocking" portal gets removed is ... nothing. The new valid wayspot remains in the database, but is not immediately brought into Ingress. This just happened today, when a "blocking" portal was removed from Ingress (the POI itself had been physically removed), and a previously-approved wayspot did NOT come in in its place, despite there no longer being any other portal within 20m.

Yet, these invisible wayspots are still in the database proper. This was proven in the initial POI-"seeding" phase of the newest Harry Potter game. There is a park in my city, where one of these "hidden" wayspots was brought into Wizards Unite, with instead the "blocking" portal left out of HPWU.

There will certainly be a (relatively) great many of these "hidden" wayspots that ought to have been pulled out of the ether and into Ingress. It would be very unfortunate if, in order to bring them into the game, it would require a fresh new resubmission. That has two fairly big downsides:

  1. Wayfarer is fickle with their approvals. Even with identical information, down to the same title, description, supporting text, and photos, a new wayspot submission is easily rejected.
  2. Even if accepted again, there would now be TWO copies of the wayspot in the database. Normally, changes made in one game (titles, pictures, etc) gets reflected in the others (eventually, at least on the part of the pictures, umm lol). But, as with the "hidden" wayspot I have above that is currently exclusive to Harry Potter, now it's possible for both wayspots to have wildly different titles and descriptions and so on.

I know that the backend Wayfarer team is currently working to improve the issues caused by moved/removed wayspots and their impact in "overloading" S2 cells for Pokemon Go. However, it should still be in all's best interests to also allow "hidden" wayspots to automatically appear in Ingress. Players would be more inclined to help maintain the database's integrity if they knew that a previously-approved wayspot could appear when a now-invalid POI is removed.



  • Sugarstarzkill-PGOSugarstarzkill-PGO Posts: 437 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I've never seen this happen, to my knowledge, these "too close" POIs just sort of disappear, cease to exist. HOWEVER- I know literally nothing about HPs spacing rules. I always thought Ingress' spacing was the most lenient, followed by HP, then PoGo.

    If this is incorrect I'm certainly curious to know more.

  • Gendgi-PGOGendgi-PGO Posts: 1,379 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I know you've reported similar before (Wayspots appearing in HP:WU that had been previously accepted but never synced to Ingress) which goes completely against the logic I personally have witnessed and the logic I assume is used by Niantic.

    However, for the sake of not arguing something that you have witnessed, I'll assume you are correct and that this situation has happened before and can happen again - previously accepted nominations that never were brought into the Ingress/Wayfarer map showing up later as there is some sort of data on such Wayspot saved on the backend.

    Personally, I think it would be irresponsible for Niantic to allow something to randomly show up on the map years after initial approval. Criteria & Guidelines change, so what was accepted previously may no longer be relevant. Businesses close or move, churches close or move, new roads get build, new infrastructure installed. What was a safe area to play/walk last year might now be a major highway. Yes, closed/relocated/unsafe would be reasons to update or remove a POI from the map, however a lot of people don't really consider it in their best interest to report invalid Wayspots.

    I do think your point is worth considering, though, just my thought on the matter. Maybe if something is removed and a previously accepted nomination could be allowed to re-sync it gets re-reviewed but with an expedited/lowered approval threshold.

    Side question about your experience with the Wayspots populating HP:WU - did they remain in the HP:WU game? Did they ever cross-sync backwards into Ingress? Do they show as potential duplicates in the area when new nominations are reviewed?

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    They ARE in the wayspot database. Case in point, that location I'd mentioned above.

    There is a park and playground, both within 20m of each other. The park is in Ingress but not HPWU. The playground was submitted and accepted by wayfarer/OPR, and is now in HPWU but not Ingress. It had gotten the "too close" acceptance email.

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The only-in-HPWU playground does not appear in Wayfarer when doing reviews.

    And the "hidden" wayspot (which in its current state MAY appear in future games like Catan, the same way as the "hidden" one that is only in HPWU) was accepted by Wayfarer on June 24, with the blocking portal only being removed today (June 29). Definitely not a years-old submission lol

  • Sugarstarzkill-PGOSugarstarzkill-PGO Posts: 437 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Very odd/interesting!

  • Hey there,

    Thanks for surfacing this, just want to make sure I understand the situation correctly:

    1. Wayspot 1 exists
    2. Wayspot 2 is approved but is too close to Wayspot 1 and results in a proximity error to be emailed
    3. Wayspot 1 is removed for some reason
    4. Wayspot 2 doesn't appear following Wayspot 1's removal

    If you have a "live" example of a Wayspot that has been blocked in this way, it'd be so helpful in looking into the configuration to make sure there's nothing else blocking it from appearing @0X00FF00-ING

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Correct. Wayspot 1 was the one just removed today via

    Wayspot 2 was an accepted “Downtown Community Garden” that was within 20m of Wayspot 1

    When W1 was removed, W2 did not appear. I resubmitted it again today from scratch, but that of course leads to a bunch of messiness (including that an identical submission may still be rejected; and that if accepted there will technically be a duplicate pair of wayspots in the database, one visible in Ingress and one invisible, either of which may get chosen for Catan or other future AR games).

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Just pinging @NianticCasey-ING ; curious to find out if you got either a “meh it’s supposed to do that” or a “gee that’s weird” response from the team. Or if you’re just frustrated at their general lack of response, same as the rest of us have gotten for years lol

    PS Happy Canada Day

  • gazzas89-PGOgazzas89-PGO Posts: 603 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Could you give an example of a way spot in hp that isnt in ingress? Preferably with pictures to prove it but even if not just a location, would be good to see for our own eyes

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I’m not normally in the area, it’s a long walk to get there by foot and ... it’s not fun riding the bus lately. And it’s not like there’s anything to see on the intel map.

    It’s just a rare set of circumstances that kicked in when the HPWU map was initially seeded. And it “may” still be possible to occur in the future, if multiple wayspots are approved nearly concurrently that are all in close proximity.

  • BrokkTheViking-INGBrokkTheViking-ING Posts: 5 ✭✭

    I'll see if I can dig up the details. I'm personally aware of two. One in California that fits this description. A portal did not migrate into HP because of density/restriction rules. A new submission happened in an adjacent cell that was within 20m of that portal. It did not show up in Ingress, but did show up in HP because it was in a different L17 cell.

    The second example does not fit this description though. It's in Athens. A new Fortress appeared one day with no other POI near it in any game. It's not sponsored. Just a typical painted electrical box submission. It's in HP and Pogo, but not Ingress. No idea why. Maybe, sometime in the distant past there was another portal there that got removed? I know that used to result in a black hole for new submissions too close to removed portals. Now with submissions being "accepted" that are within 20m, but not going into the game maybe something similar is going on with new submissions close to removed portals.

    Speaking of... I find it odd that Ingress submissions come back with "approved by Wayfarer, but won't go into Ingress due to proximity". Where a Pogo submission comes back with "approved by Wayfarer", but no mention of it not showing up in the game due to L17 rules or 20m proximity rules. It just doesn't show up at all.

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Minor update.

    I resubmitted the “Downtown Community Garden” and the fickle Wayfarer reviewers accepted it again, whew. The general area is much too densely populated for the other games, but it is now in Ingress as it was more than 20m from anything else.

    But @NianticCasey-ING maaaay want to get the Wayfarer staff to remove the “hidden” wayspot of the identical name, description, and photos from the database, or else risk the weird situation noted above where it’s POSSIBLE for the version NOT visible in Ingress gets seeded into other game(s), and thus any future changes/removals/etc cannot be reflected between both games.

  • AScarletSabre-PGOAScarletSabre-PGO Posts: 334 ✭✭✭✭

    I have a similar situation where I submitted a Wayspot (a courthouse) that in the review process got moved to within 20m of another Wayspot. There was absolutely no need to move it because the marker was on the courthouse but somebody thought it would funny to move it. Hopefully we don't then end up with two Magistrates Court Wayspots! I haven't been back to submit it again yet.

  • SerShaman-INGSerShaman-ING Posts: 7 ✭✭

    I'll raise the topic ...

    I have a similar situation. I wrote here:

    The only solution is to reapply?

  • 0X00FF00-ING0X00FF00-ING Posts: 423 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Yup. A new submission from scratch is your currently-only option.

  • LukeAllStars-PGOLukeAllStars-PGO Posts: 3,289 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I have a different situation:

    I moved a POI from one lvl 17 s2 into another (see: , all legit and not because of the s2 cell)

    so the s2 cell should get filled up new. But until now, no new Stop appeared. Thats very sad because the POI is the gigantic church, which is the main attraction on the location

    (Kirche Volksdorf:,10.165042&z=17&pll=53.650729,10.165042)

    I was hoping to get this POI in all games. Sadly, it doesnt happened yet.

  • 52cucumbers-ING52cucumbers-ING Posts: 197 ✭✭✭

    Yeah, this is true. And if you're submitting in an area with a limited number of reviewers be prepared for a struggle to get it approved a second time because people will remember reviewing it, see that it's back again and assume it was rejected the first time. So now they'll judge it harsher than the first time to not risk their rating.

  • Jtronmoore-PGOJtronmoore-PGO Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I. Your situation looks like the other red dot(poi) is already occupying that lvl 17 cell so in pogo it would not appear. In ingress if not within 20m it will appear.

    to thd main point of this if your nomination is too close to another poi and it doesnt populate in ingress frommy knowledge it does not exist. Ive re submitted nominations for buildings that were too close to another poi. Not abusing location just moving it from one spot of the building to the corner of the building and it was accepted and appeared. So if its not in ingress it wont get rejected as duplicate

  • LukeAllStars-PGOLukeAllStars-PGO Posts: 3,289 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The red dot is the old location of the Stop on the right. I edited it via the forum . The S2 cell has a POI but it is not in PGO.

  • Jtronmoore-PGOJtronmoore-PGO Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭✭✭
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