No Feedback for Improvement

Yesterday was my first time submitting a nomination for a PokeStop. I spent a lot of time writing up a very nice description but found myself having to figure out what word was being banned. Something in the description kept getting banned. There was no feedback or specific details as to WHAT was being banned just that SOMETHING was triggering it. Finally figured it out and was able to submit. Today, my nomination was rejected. Was told it could have something to do with the title, description, location, photo, or a combination of any of those. Again with the ambiguousness. No feedback as to WHAT SPECIFICALLY did not meet the criteria, so I have nothing to go on for improving my next submission. I thought this would be a more enjoyable experience, contributing to the community, and knowing I did my part as a fellow Wayfarer. It would be more helpful as contributors if we could get some actual feedback to help improve future submissions. All this has done is confuse and demotivate.


People here will likely be happy to provide more advice than you want (perhaps some that you don’t want to hear, too) if you feel like sharing your nomination.

That would be fantastic. Here is the submission:

Screenshot 2024-06-06 103430

It’s hard to read the sign from that screenshot, but it may be a better focus for your primary photo. Trailheads without clear markers are difficult nominations.

Looking at your text, since that’s what the rejection was for, my main feedback would be to ignore what the game tells you to talk about in supporting info, and instead focus on how this is a great place to exercise, socialize, or explore. While it tells you to use words like Pokéstop and Trainer, actually using these words isn’t the best idea because Niantic doesn’t let different departments talk to each other.

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Hello, first of all good going with submitting your first nomination! :slightly_smiling_face:
I’m sorry to hear you went head-first into the mindnumbingly DUMB badword filter in Wayfarer. There is never any way of knowing what will set it off, and many here have struggled with trying to find out what word in their perfectly fine text was supposed to be a “bad” word.
The thing is it takes bad words from all languages, more or less, and even words that are vaguely similar to them in spelling etc!
There have been many protests about this, but unfortunately, these problems have never been addressed by Niantic’s team.
So the best we can do is to try and find out what the “bad” word is and replace that word - often with something less precise, which will obviously take from the overall quality of the nominaion. Alas… :upside_down_face:
I’m so sorry to hear your nomination got rejected! I can totally understand how discouraging that is, especially when you don’t even get a more specific explanation to what went wrong.
If you’re up for sharing the nomination, like someone already suggested, I’m positive many here will try and help solving the mystery, and maybe suggest other ways to present the nomination that will help it succed if you decide to re-submit.
Last but not least, I will say that Wayfarer takes time to get into. There are many ‘grey zones’ when it comes to acceptance and rejection criteria and it all takes a good deal of practice.
I really hope you’ll try again to submit more nominations, and please don’t let this experience completely demotivate you from exploring and having fun with Wayfarer. :heart:


Ah, I see the reasons you listed are probably from an “our team” email. You should also check the rejection reason that shows up on the website.

You’ll almost certainly need different photos, as this sounds like it was probably an AI reject.

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Wow, and just like that, I already feel a 180. Very quick, kind, and supportive responses! Much different from other forums for sure.
Thank you @NvlblNm I will try to take different photos and resubmit!
Thank you @NejanticID for the motivation. I will try again!


This is what I see for the rejection reason:
Screenshot 2024-06-06 104807

Does the sign have information about the trail? It’s a bit hard to read with the angle of the photo. If it does, I’d definitely submit a photo that is more centered around the sign.
The text seems fine to me btw. I take it the part from “This stop helps…” is the supporting information?
And just a small bit of advice: Remember that if your stop gets approved, it probably won’t just become a PokéStop - it may also make it to one or more other Niantic games! So in general it’s easier to refer to it as a Wayspot (it’s just that some reviewers are picky about this, lol).

If it says ‘the team’ reviewed it, it may be the review bot that made a fool of itself again. It seems to prefer certain things over other, not really an expert there. But if you feel this really does deserve to become a Wayspot, you could always Appeal it.
Good luck!

Thank you, yes “This stop helps…” is the supporting info.
I did not know other Niantic games use these spots as well! Makes sense now that I think about it though. Ok, I will rewrite to make it a more general “Wayspot”
Appreciate the advice!


Hello and welcome! Yes, as mentioned above this is not so much a “reviewers not giving you constructive feedback” problem but more of a “your nomination not passing some automated filters” problem. You will see as you go further that nominations rejected by the community do show rejection reasons, but these are not always super helpful either. It is best not to get discouraged by that and for example to ask for community advice as you did, especially when starting out.

The photos have been addressed above and I have not reviewed the location or anything other than what is visible in the screenshot, but one further piece of advice I would give here is moving the sentence that suggests looking the trail up out of the description and into the supporting information field, where you can also provide a link with proof for the reviewers’ convenience instead of suggesting to Google, as the onus to provide evidence is on you, the submitter. If you have only used the Pokémon GO interface to submit and write your text, be aware that you can see and edit your nomination on the Wayfarer website before it goes into voting, which also makes it easier to include links etc.

And indeed as also has been suggested above, get rid of the Pokémon GO-related terms, they are not helping the nomination in any way and can be distracting. I know the wording in Pokémon GO is confusing, but “there are no Pokéstops in the area” is not an eligibility criterion (advice on focusing this section on Wayfarer criteria has already been given above as well).

Good luck!

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Thanks for the info and advice! This has all been very helpful. I will proceed with the suggestions provided from all of you!


I’m sorry things got off to such a rocky start.

If I am remembering correctly, the first problem you encountered was that there was an URL link in the description. The error messaging needs to be improved there, so that you can at least tell whether to scan for a naughty word or for an actual web link.

The second problem may have been making reference to in-game material, as others have mentioned. You were instructed by the game to explain your potential Pokestop or Gym, but the Wayfarer Criteria forbids mentioning game-specific terms. We are not supposed to beg, implore or cajole for more spots.

You have chosen a potentially viable Wayspot. I think the others have offered some solid advice that may help you to get it accepted.

@admins : Please feed these issues back through the impermeable barrier to the Pokemon Go group. They’ve been told before. There is no immersive experience permitting role-playing while nominating Wayspots, and we should not be advised to explain our nomination in Pokemon terms.

They add insult to injury by failing to educate us to maximize our chances of improving our own games. Everyone begins under a cloud of misinformation.

New explorers are needlessly thwarted and frustrated because nobody at headquarters seems capable of maintaining overview of messaging and communications.


We don’t know exactly why ML rejects some photos, but my best explanation for some of them is that it doesn’t understand what the subject of the photo is. So in your image, it just looks like random sidewalk to the machine. We see this with large patches of grass, things that look like street, etc. You have to give it something to “recognize.”

It reminds me of the time my niece was born. My parents rushed to the hospital to hold the baby and take photos. I asked them to show me photos of the baby and what they showed was a photo of my parents seated on a bench holding a wrapped bundle. And my dad was like, “look at the baby!” I was like, “that’s a photo of YOU holding a baby-shaped blanket. I see no actual baby.” You gotta get in the baby’s face and take a photo of the baby.


That is such a great analogy!

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It is!

From now on I’m going to put a baby in all my Wayspot submission picture.


Please make sure you can see the face!

For people whose minds work too literally, this is a joke. Please don’t put photos of babies in wayspots.