Google Map Maker’s recent redesign has made it all the more simple and engaging for users to create and edit aspects of their local maps. It has caused quite a stir in the US since it’s release back in April 2011 and the rapid influx of user generated or “community” content had strained it’s capacity in the early stages of it’s release. This was largely due to the fact that all edits needed to be reviewed by Google’s staff before validation.
Take a look at this time-lapse video of how the map of Baghdad evolved…
The recent aesthetic redesign has also involved a restructuring in the way it validates community edits. Now, instead of having to review each edit themselves, Google now appoints some of the best contributors to Google Maps as delegated moderators. This has taken a bit of the workload off the diligent Google Maps team but not enough for them to release it outside the 180 countries that have access at the minute.
I for one can’t wait to get a look at it. It will open up a whole range of marketing opportunities for existing Google Places users who will be able to add boundary lines of their business premises, their own recommended directions and the simple fact that the maps will become more engaging will naturally bring more searchers and hence more potential clients in sight of their Google Places pages.
It can only be of benefit to local tourism as well given the ability to add scenic routes, bicycle tracks, places of interest and some more detailed info about the local terrain. This will make it a lot easier for tourists using their smartphones to see around without fear of missing any hidden gems known only by the locals.
So come on Google….let’s get Google Map Maker released this side of the pond!
Register over at MappingIE to get updated on it’s release.