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Bing Imagery Offset

Posted by bhietsch on 21 July 2020 in English.

One of the most common mistakes I find from new mappers is using Bing Imagery and not accounting for the offset. Admittedly, I was making this mistake for a long time before I realized that I had been messing up roads, houses, etc. that were already perfectly in place. Since learning about that, my preferred imagery sets have been ESRI Clarity (old sometimes, but very clear) and NAIP (blurry sometimes, but pretty new).

What puzzles me is why Bing is the default imagery choice when using iD. It’s not a big deal if it’s being used to clean up what would otherwise be a TIGER desert, but when trying to use it in an area dense with features (e.g. a university), it becomes practically useless. Even if new mappers go through the tutorial, they’re probably going to stick to whatever the default is until they get their feet wet, or like me, assume that Bing was made the default because it’s the best choice!

This is problem is well known and acknowledged on the Bing Wiki, so why hasn’t iD already set ESRI or something else as the default?