Trails and Trail Markers and Etc

Trail markers are often generic, mass produced items. Signs with names or even plan signs with just a colored triangle.

But, Trail Markers were explicitly decided to be eligible under the “Explore” and “Exercise” Criteria. That the trail itself resulted in physical exercise and markers in the distance could also encourage exploring farther down the trail.

I’d like to make the argument, and hopefully Niantic will confirm the argument, that Trails are inherently eligible and that any items that are distinct along the trails serve the same purpose as markers (identifying a specific point along the trail) would also make a good way spot.

Whether that item is a rest stop, a bench, or something else, it would accomplish the same Niantic Goal. In fact, when Niantic first declared trail markers eligible they also said “Etc” in list of items that promoted moving along the trail.

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What does any or something else along the trail include?

That’s sort of what I’d like to Niantic to Clarify.

For me the answer is anything “Distinct” that could reference a specific location along the trail. It serves as the physical anchor for that spot of the trail, and it’s eligibility is because the trail itself is eligible and promotes both exercise and exploration. And that’s why Trail Markers were made eligible.

However, there are 2 subcategories.

  1. Man-Made Objects.

Benches, and obvious spots along the trail that the government paved out a rest stop. That bench that says “Sponsered by Eagle Troop 254” might not meet criteria anywhere else. But along a trail, it does. There was an awesome post from a mother defending such benches on trails as the only reason she was able to push her stroller, get her young kids (who played), and elderly mother, to make the trek to the next bench/stop. That it was essential for her or disabled people to have that goal spot to move to.

  1. Natural Features

Less obvious would be Distinct Spots that someone could find based on a unique identifiable natural feature. In old nomination forum someone posted a man-made asphalt trail without markers in a complete flat/no tree green area. with a giant 4 foot rock. For me that rock wasn’t movable and was distinct, I could tell a buddy to meet me on trail at that rock. But including natural-distinct identifiers might be too much for Niantic/Reviewers.

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Here’s an appeal I had accepted. I don’t know if the “Bike Route” sign was essential or immaterial to the appeal

Clinton River Spillway Bike Trail entrance from Tucker Park

Harrison Township MI

ACCEPTED

2022-08-03

Description

Entrance connecting the Clinton River Spillway Bike Trail to Tucker Park

Location

26980 Ballard St, Harrison Twp, MI 48045, USA

Supplemental Information

This is the entrance to the Clinton River Spillway bike trail from Tucker Part. A good connection between both a named trail system and community park. The Clinton River Spill Way Trail which is part of a very large trail system called the Michigan Freedom Trail. This link is to the map (can google Michigan Freedom Trail map if you dont want to click link) https://mitrails.org/library/magazine_pages_pdf/328%20-%20Freedom%20Metro%20Trail.pdf you will notice in the bottom right in red lettering the “Clinton River Spill Way Bike Path”. This is a good POI linking both a trail and park together.

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A lot of trail markers in my local area have been getting removed lately which we have spent quite some time into submitting all because The Wayfarer team said they were great nominations…

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We really need some robust country-specific clarification on this, so much confusion surrounding what is eligible, particularly when Wayfarer staff send conflicting messages and people are threatened and punished for using their best judgement.
Ambassadors are well placed to aid in understanding local communities and the differences across cultures so could be used here to provide better insight.

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Me too :slight_smile:

Totally agree and I posited the benefits of alternative trail placemarkers for differently-abled players on the aforementioned thread…
However, I’d be careful what you wish for… Several recent proverbial “storms” whipped up by solitary staff forum comments come to mind :grimacing::sweat_smile:

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I read that whole topic. Not once did any of the people who questioned it get a response. It was so strange and confusing especially as it was out of the blue and the criteria havent changed.

It’s honestly terrifying that something within the criteria gets that kind of comment on the forums and people start getting warned that they’ll be banned for submitting similar items, sometimes for submissions from a year ago!

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Hi

I’ve got a question to trailmarkers esp. in the netherlands.

1 If you zoom a good step out of streetview, the netherlands is a small country.
2 How we all learned, trails are loved by a great amount of the there living people (and there guests, friends …).
3 As a result of 2 the amount of trails and their markers should be high (knows anyone how much trailmarkers in the netherlands exist, all together?) in relativation to 1.
4 S2 Level???

Now to my question:
If all trailmarkers would be nominated and hypotacally get accepted, could this comes to a problem to a) 4 and b) to be able to get POIs that be no trailmarker (because the map is to full)?

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What happens to the wayspots once they are used in the games should not be a concern for Wayfarer. It is up to the games to decide what to take from wayfarer not for Wayfarer to limit what it can have available.
Every country or region has its own quirkiness of something they have a lot of or very few, but Wayfarer is global. So the guidelines have to be broad to allow for a large range.
It really should not matter if in one country there are multiple trails to follow via markers or a mural every few metres. Each point should stamd on its own.

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Thank you @elijustrying

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Actually i just hope that Trailmarkers are more accepted in Votings again, as we have a fresh Forum and maybe an official would state here that they are indeed egliable. That would be great, the turmoil from the last Forum made my Marker Nominations getting denied by obscure reasons, just by the fear to be banished for approving them i guess.

In Germany its mostly a symbol, an arrow, and the name of that trail on either a metal sign, or a permanent sticker on an official roadsign like Bycicle path or similar.

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We get the same problem in Belgium, lots of trail marker were refusedby the community, and when we appeal the decision, it’s a 50/50 from Niantic team… We have lots of different trails mark in Belgium, even cities have their own, which often include wabsite for the total path, but even when the link is in the submission, it get a “no” for the submission.

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Most of my trail marker appeals:

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The nomination in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as it is a regular trail marker which looks highly mass-produced.

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The nomination in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as it is a regular marker which looks highly mass-produced.

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The object in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as it is a regular sign which has no significance.

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The object in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as it is a regular sign board which is mass-produced object.

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The object in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as it is a regular sign.

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The object in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as it is a normal sticker which seems temporary and highly non-permanent.

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My appeals are more like 50/50 between the same reasoms you’re getting, and being accepted. So I think maybe the appeals team dont know if trail markers are eligible either :sweat_smile: I should note that these are similar signs for the same trail getting different responses.

I submitted a lot of Trail Markers last year, that are part of a Biking Trail, that starts and ends in the Town Center and has a length of approx. 33km. All those Trail Markers are getting removed and I start to question why this is the case? According to Niantics BluePrint what makes a got POI, it says that Hiking and Biking Trails are elegible nominations and that they should be accpeted if the meet specific criteria, what they do. Public Government and Tourist Information are providing information for that specific Biking Trail. So why all of a sudden Niantic made the decision to remove those Trail Markers? I would like to get some information why that is the case.

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And if thats the “Route um Oldenburg” Trails, that are preciscly the ones that are rejected here at my space, for ominous reasons.