If an observation is clearly identifiable at least to kingdom (like completely obvious that it is a plant or animal) but is a duplicate, does adding a disagreeing ID of “state of matter life” to prevent a duplicate from reaching RG count as an intentionally incorrect ID that should be hidden? Is this allowed?
What exactly do you mean by “duplicate”? Are you aware that iNat encourages observations of the same individual at different times and/or by different people?
I’m aware of that, I mean like the same exact picture is posted twice by the same person, and an identifier IDs one of them as state of matter life, while disagreeing with a correct ID, just to keep from having both be RG, is the identifier violating the community guidelines here by making an intentionally wrong ID? I’ve seen this mentioned and flagged multiple times, but I’m not sure how it is dealt with
There has been mention of making a DQA category for duplicates (see post; no clue if any progress has been made or if the idea was nixed). That being said, you shouldn’t misuse current DQA options (see post). I know you are asking about a different action, but it’s similar in nature.
From the community guidelines:
Duplicate observations. They’re not ideal, but they’re usually due to oversight or bugs. Politely ask people to remove them but if they don’t, it’s not a big deal unless it becomes a habit.
In my opinion, disagreeing to Life when an observation can be IDed to a finer level should not be done, and is in violation of the guidelines. I think it is reasonable for other people to flag IDs like this, and, as it is an intentionally incorrect ID, I think it’s reasonable to hide.
This is despite my personal hatred of duplicates.
@tiwane and I have settled on this?
I leave a comment - with the duplicate obs no and the relevant iNat link.
But I don’t add an ID. I have tweaked my copypastas to fit. I am haunted by 4 year old obs where I followed guidelines with an ID of Plantae. Still Plantae 4 years later, when another identifier makes a second attempt.
(And I wait hopefully for iNat to find us a better and workable solution one day)
I often make two identical observations when I find a gall on a plant. One is for the plant and the other is for some unknown lifeform which is causing the gall to form. It could be a bacteria, mite, wasp, moth etc.
My first Observation post on iNat (meaning, I was completely new to it), I posted the three images as three different Observations. Or rather, I should say, blame iNat because I didn’t know it would do that.
I came pretty close to accidentally doing it again just the other day.
So, presuming I’m not the only idiot in this world, it seems that accidentally posting multiple observations of the same thing is unfortunately easy to do. That then would explain why I see multiple Observations of the same thing.
Whether this statistically effects the whole of the observations for that taxon is generally negligible.
That is perfectly fine, especially if you remember to ID one observation as Plant X and the other one as Gall Y. Then identifiers don’t get confused.
When I run into duplicate observations, I ID one to the finest level possible, mark the other as “No evidence of organism” and leave comments describing why I took those actions and what the observer should do to fix the problem on both of them. I don’t agree with IDing as “Life” because it’s not accurate - in my mind, “No evidence of organism” fits the situation better.
Please don’t do that, there is definitely evidence of an organism.
There is, but it has already been documented in the observation which I identified and otherwise left alone. The second one creates inaccuracies if considered evidence of an organism.
Duplicate observations can be a burdensome issue for identifiers and data users. Most users don't mean to upload duplicate observations and they typically stem from errors or a misunderstanding that observations should include only a single photo. If observations are flagged, they become casual grade, so many users will flag duplicate observations when they come across them (Select "Other": with comment "duplicate"). This is not officially sanctioned by the iNaturalist staff, but unfortunately no other tools have been provided to address this common data issue. Please only flag the observation if you have informed the observer that it is a duplicate. Of the two or more duplicated observations, the recommended one to flag is the newer one, or the one that is more incomplete (e.g. missing a date, location, or has fewer IDs/comments). See related discussion on the forum.
Exact Duplicates (same photos): This observation appears to be the same as another observation you have uploaded. I have flagged this as a duplicate. In the upper right corner of the observation page, you can click the downward arrow next to "Edit" and choose "Delete." Thank you!
Near Duplicates (same organism but different photos): It looks like you uploaded another observation of this organism at the same time. It's recommended to combine the photos into a single observation rather than to add separate observations of the same thing. I recommend deleting this one and adding the photo to the other observation. Thank you!
[link to other observation(s)]
Thank you for copying this to the forum. Am I correct in thinking this is a new addition to the Frequently Used Responses page in the Help documents?
No, it’s not a new addition. It has been there for many years.
Oh, interesting! I guess I missed it before. Thanks!
You are welcome!
As this seems to come up a bunch, maybe for those bothered by duplicates you could make a project that tracks duplicates for future deletion/DQAing when the feature? Currently, observations like https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/192235097 become a mess from this DIY moderation by false ID.