Some don't like that, and I really wish they'd suggest better rules instead of just complaining. I like the 'on the ground' rule. What other rule should OSM use for country borders? We need an clear rule that is objective that we can all agree on. So what should that be?
@rory The only thing I could think of is some kind of internationalisation layer for boundaries analogous to changing the language of labels / place names.
So you could opt for the Russian view of Crimea, the Chinese view of Tibet, the UK view of Gibraltar and the Indian view of Kashmir.
But I can't see it being practical to maintain.
Maps are always just models of the world, and can never represent the true state of it. OSM has solved the resulting issue of "truth" nicely with the "what you see on the ground" policy.
But by that rule, no nation states should be mapped at all (except for actuall walls/fences).
This model however would not fit most users needs. But when we're considering the users needs first, we should include /all/ users needs; so mapping multiple representations of borders would be necessary.
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