Make the My Identifications tab operate the same way as the My Observations tab

URLs: user ID

Description of need: When you view your observations you have the option of viewing in a variety of formats (map, gid, species, etc), but when going the “Your Observations” tab you are limited to only a list type view. This limits user functionality and experience (eg, seeing the geographic locations of your identifications, sorting and filtering your identifications, etc).

Feature request details: It would be nice to be able to view your identifications using the same options as you have when viewing your observations. Specifically, the option to have “Your Identifications” viewable A) on the map B) as a grid and C) by species. Retaining the current list format is also fine to keep as an option, but it is limiting as it currently stands, and the inability to view in different formats is a bit frustrating.

While this is similar in some ways to the following feature request, Search and filter identifications, it varies in several ways. It it more focused on the GUI aspect and overall use rather than being limited to just the searching function and it helps to simplify and unify the user experience. In addition, if this feature request were to be implemented one of the results would to to also fulfill the Search and filter identifications at the same time.

As an aside, it might be nice to add this as a filter option. It would assist in finding people who are experts in the biodiversity of a particular region when searching for assistance in a particular location."


This can be done via a URL edit, but most users don’t know about URL edits, let alone how to use them and what can be done with them. The fact that this can be done via a URL edit indicates that it should be relatively simple to implement.

Replace “userID” with your own user ID in the following URL:

observations and identifications are very different things conceptually. let’s not mix them up. if you want a “my identifications” tab, it should return identifications. if you want to return observations, then you could request something like “my identified observations”.

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The “My Identifications” part is for identifications you have made for other people’s observations, not for your own observations.

At present, without editing the URL (as provided in the example) you can only see the identifications you have made as a list, you cannot view them on a map, and you cannot sort or filter them.

The point of the feature request is to be better able to track, view, and sort the identifications you have made for observations that are not your own observations.

This also affords the opportunity to see what areas someone is knowledgeable in and may assist in communication and raising more observations to research grade.

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by “my identified observations”, i meant “observations identified by me”. (my earlier label was not precise. so re-read my earlier post using the more precise label.)

my main point remains the same. you need to make the proper distinction between observations and identifications. they are not the same thing.

i understand generally what you’re requesting, and i’m not disagreeing with the general concept. but building new functionality for identifications is not really a small thing.

if you want to map observations by others which you have identified, then you can do that in the current observations page using &identified_by_user_id=[you]&not_user_id=[you]. you’re right that it’s not obvious to most people that you can do this with URL parameters, and i’m not necessarily against adding something in the filters menu for that page to make this easer to do.

in general, there’s not really a distinction between locations when it comes to identifications vs. observations. so you can get away with leveraging the existing observations screen to do things like mapping.

but when you move on to something like filtering for taxa, there is potentially a big difference between the observation taxon and the identification taxon. so you have to have something entirely different to properly filter identifications by taxa (and by potentially other things that are identification-specific).

there is an existing page (ex. that allows you to find identifications using a very basic set of filters. there is also the API, which provides more filter options but has no UI other than third-party options (ex. neither of these existing options are anywhere as nice to use as something like the observation search (Explore) page. so i definitely think that something like Explore for Identifications would be nice to have, but it’s not clear whether that’s what you’re asking for.


It is not new functionality, it is making existing functionality that is only accessible via URL edits easily available to everyone, not just those who know of and know the specific and often cryptic functions available via URL edits.

The link I provided ( this does pretty much exactly what this feature request is and once you make the necessary URL edit to use it for your the identifications you have made for others you can filter it in exactly the same manner as you do for your own observations.

The link you provided ( does not. Your URL just goes to a list, that cannot be viewed on the map, cannot be filtered, sorted, etc, it’s basically just the same thing as what currently exists in the “My Observations” tab, and this is at least the second feature request asking for changes to that that would enhance the functionality and user experience.

there is also the API, which provides more filter options but has no UI other than third-party options

This goes back to two of the key aspects of this feature request (just add API to URL, and even fewer users know how to use the API), and the second portion is the GUI aspect, so, you’ve provided specific examples of why this feature request is needed:

As I said, in the request, most users don’t know about URL edits, let alone how to use them and what can be done with them.

i definitely think that something like Explore for Identifications would be nice to have

An Explore by Identification option would be interesting and good to implement, but that’s not what you linked to, you linked to a request for Top Identifiers of said taxon. Neither of those are this request, both are substantially different, and the latter (Top Identifiers) already exists and is easily accessible via the GUI (search for Taxon, click ‘Identifiers’ tab), although you can’t view those results in the map without URL editing.

it’s not clear whether that’s what you’re asking for.

I’m not sure how much more clear it could be., I’ve laid it out now, with specific explanations three times now, with specific links 2 out of those 3 times.


i’ll say it one more time, and if it doesn’t sink in, then i give up…

observations are not the same thing as identifications.

most of what you’re describing in this thread is an implementation of what would effectively be “observations by others which i have identified”, and there’s nothing wrong with that kind of request. but let’s be clear that that kind of implementation doesn’t really address what was described in the other thread that you referenced:

take a look at the Identifications tab ( or Identifications page ( again, and compare them to what the Observations page ( shows. they’re all similar, but look closely, and you’ll see that the Observations page lacks some of the fields shown by the Identifications tab/page, and the records are sorted differently. why do these differences exist?

try filtering for a particular taxon in the Identifications page, and filter for a particular taxon in the Observations page, and you’ll see the records returned are also potentially very different (beyond the differences in the fields displayed and the different sort order). for example, compare vs why does this difference exist?

using the /v1/identifications API or Identifications page, you can easily find your maverick IDs. try doing that in the observations screen. can you accomplish this in the observations screen at all? why or why not?

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I never said they were, and I’ve repeatedly made the point that this is not the same sort of request as the other feature request. This was discussed with iNat mods prior to making this feature request so that this was clear in advance. There is overlap with it, but it is not the same sort of request, if it were this would have not been approved and the confusion expressed here would not be happening.

Like I said, there was a discussion with mods prior to posting this so ensure that the purpose behind it was clear, and some of the specific points of divergence that were discussed in that conversation were specifically included in the text of this feature request in order to ensure that it was clear.

Unfortunately, this back-and-forth has likely completely derailed this feature request and destroyed any chance it had of getting off the ground, despite the fact that is something that’s sorely needed.

the feature request needs to be refined. this is one of the reasons for having a discussion, right?

it’s fine to propose doing something based on, but it should be clear that that approach will not:

… and it should not really be characterized as “My Identifications” because it’s really “(observations) Identified by Me”.

that’s all i have to say.

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It is literally called that on the existing tab page. It is the language that is already being used on iNat!

If you don’t like that, then you can make a request to have it changed.

As for fulfilling the search and filter options, it does so.

I tested it before making the feature request. In that link (or use your own user name) go to the “filters” portion and they all work just fine, and if you need to filter by taxa or location using the “description/tags” filter field allows you to do that.

At this point you’re arguing over things that are already established in the how iNat works and what th already established and in use terms are, not over the feature request, which is clear.

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because that tab is currently showing identifications. if you’re going to modify it to show and filter for observations, it should not be characterized as “my identifications”.

EXACTLY! It is showing the identifications you have made for others, and it is called “My Identifications” on the page. It shows the observations others have made that you have contributed an identification to, and it is only available to view as a list.

The entire point of this is to be able to view that, the currently existing “My Identifications” information (a term that is already in use), in the same sort of GUI as you view your (or other’s) observations.


Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think it would also fulfill this request to just incorporate the URL parameters ident_user_id= and not_user_id= as two more choices in the Filters GUI for Explore.

Only difference I guess is that it would display the current observation ID on each observation, instead of your specific ID like the Your Identifications page currently does.

Unfortunately new feature requests for Explore are not currently being accepted since that whole interface is undergoing redesign. (Maybe the above parameters are already planned for incorporation…)

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I hope the issue with the map controls and observations list obscuring much of the map rather than being pushed to the edge is fixed when it is redesigned. I know that’s been a topic of discussion and requests for a very long time now.

I think it would help to clarify with an example:

Say there was an observation that four people had identified as Eristalis arbustorum, but you identified it as Eristalis tenax. So the community ID is E arbustorum but you have a maverick disagreement.

In your proposed page, would you want this to be found by filtering for E arbustorum or E tenax?

With the current set up via the URL it would be the former.

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I’d assume that it would be by whatever the community ID is.

If I couldn’t find it because of a difference in community vs personal ID I’d filter by genus rather than specific species.

Having the map view would also help in cases like this. When you’re first making an ID on someone’s observation you see where it is on the map, but as it currently stands when you go looking for one of your past IDs you don’t see them on the map, so you don’t have that as a memory assist. Being able to see your past identifications on the map would make it much easier to quickly sort through/overcome these types of issues.

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Yeah, it’s a nice link to use, so why not have it in easy access? Plus map is very useful.


OK, so what the URL currently does. I agree it would be nice to be able to access this more easily than at present, and it should be easy to implement. But this would have to be in addition to the current ‘My Identifications’ tab, not instead of it. Otherwise we lose the ability to look through our actual IDs.

Personally my preference would be to be able to search on an ‘Explore’-type view for my actual IDs - but as @pisum has been saying, that would require new functionality.

I never suggested that it be done instead of, in fact, in the feature request I specifically make a point of keeping the existing format as well as implementing this request:

Retaining the current list format is also fine to keep as an option,

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Right, I’m with you now :) and have voted for the request. I think it would be an improvement. As I’ve said above I’d go further, but I think staff have said they’re not thinking of that at this time - but this request is a nice manageable improvement, and I see why you have suggested it,