Issue I'd like to mention

I’ve just caught a “it might be this” Deutzia just before it scrolled off the plants carousel (which lasts longer than the all organisms one), which had no agreements before I added one. This looks like one that “should” have graduated to the “Help with” carousel, rather than disappearing into oblivion, even if the observer had 4 stars. (And in general, it doesn’t matter how expert you are, there’s a frontier of your expertise, and an “it might be this” shouldn’t automatically be a likely ID.)


I’ve noticed several people have not selected their ID suggestions from the drop-down menu lately. (I’ve done it myself quite a few times!).
Wouldn’t it be possible (fairly straightforward, even) to programme the system so that IDs that were free-typed, instead of appearing to be accepted, just generated a message along the lines of: ‘Please select your chosen identification from the drop-down menu’.?

There’s a few places where the user interfaces needs to be improved! Selection of species is one, another is tags - but there’s more!

I’d like to mention that in some cases the name may not be in the dictionary…
is an observation I have made and revisited to confirm the ID. Others have added comments and agreements, but until it is in the dictionary.
So warning/alert when a name is free-typed is a good idea, but I would not want to be denied making a post because the technology is not up to it.
There will be instances where an ID can be made to subspecies, perhaps newly described in the refereed taxonomic literature, but not yet in the dropdown.
So not a blanket rejection of free typed IDs please, as that could stifle the interests of some of us.

there are plenty of Freetyped IDs in the UK Community that have reached fruition (become Valid with agreements) since the 2022 recode. The Code, devised by Chris Valentine, ran through all the UK Community Invalid IDs (call them what you will) and, ONLY where the name was subsequently correct, actually amended (validated) them and linked them to the Browser.

Many of those (not all) are now carrying the likely banner because a few of us swept back and moved or added agreements. Some remain because the name is still not accepted by the NHM Dictionary, which still prefers another or a synonym. who knows, taxonomist may think them wrong anyway.
Some of those, specially in the Global Community are locked by agreements, which will be a serious barrier to any eventual ‘correction’

This facility (of coding correction) is not available for any of the Global Observations where the free-typed name still stands, with or without a Likely Banner. They will remain ‘invalid’ as far as the browser is concerned and, precisely because we have added agreements, may well NEVER see the light of day. NOT all those freetyped names are correct either.

Whilst I have proposed (a few times) having Holding IDs (freetyped) in a different form to the normal ones, nothing has come of it. I also proposed that freetyping be allowed but agreements to them not. VERY few people will understand why but those who do, spent frustratng MONTHS trying to shift Lkely Banners

I have never understood why users feel they have to force an ID that brings all the associated problems rather that adding, say, the valid Genus with notes, together with the tag that will bring Coders and interested users back to them (absent1) As in

There are plenty of examples of success and failure, most of the failures are in the Global Community because the Dictionary is vastly out of date and wholly inadequate.

The Post-u-link and its sister here
are still not seen in ANY other Observations of Pulmonaria (there are four) and so, in theory at least, are not seen by anyone. That is a great pity.
Pulmonaria australis (Murr) W.Sauer
The 2023 Global Dictionary Pulmonaria australis (Murr) W. Sauer | COL

Not sure I fully understand all the above issues. But it sounds as if the tech guys need to sit down with some of the people who understand the taxonomic issues and agree a way forward. Most of us are content to follow the system as best we can without necessarily understanding all the complexities.

It’s a pity you cannot DM people - I understand the reasons (safeguarding and avoiding trolling etc) but it would be nice to be able occasionally to message someone other than by sticking a comment on one of their observations.

1 Like

Rather than start a new thread, I’d like to mention an old chestunut - the peculiarities of iSpot’s mapping issues.
I have got used to ticking the ‘hide exact location’ box whenever I want to put in an accurate GR.
But I came across a variation of this problem today. I had an observation of some aphids on a flower. I posted the aphids and copied the coordinates so that I could create an association between the two observations. But, try as I might, I couldn’t get the software to accept the coordinates. It was quite bizarre to watch as the numbers I had typed in randomly appeared and disappeared. Whoever is replacing Chris, this is one area where I think some resolution would be very helpful to many of us.

I think Associations MUST be at the exact same Location and NOT hidden
I have left comments in one

I have found that if you use the map pin method the pins need to be close together but do not have to be at the exact location. It is something like 10M on the ground for the association to work.

yes, turned out to be simple (I still don’t like it)

but the location has to be very nearly the same. Makes sense really.
Cat playing with mouse, Fox in the henhouse, Thrush with a slug, Child playing conkers - get it?

1 Like

But why cannot I type in the exact figure for the coordinates?
It offered me several other sightings to associate, which I must have made in the same area over the years.

I honestly believe it MIGHT be to do with you Hiding the Campion (Unhide it for a trial)
I found the whole thing simple so you might have an error with references

Your advice worked, Derek. I had to un-hide both observations and then do the association. Once I had done it, they stayed associated after I had re-hidden the exact location. What a palaver! I won’t be doing that too often.