That depends on the size of the place. In the case of a large place, like most national parks, excluding something doesn’t make sense. if it’s a tiny community garden, it does. The issue really is that the random-point-within-square model is problematic because then you can infer where the observation is located if the obscuration rectangle barely overlaps the boundary of the place at all. But that’s a function of how iNat obscures not something that makes it impossible to include observations in a place. I think there are probably creative ways to improve on that, but no easy solutions.
seems like we need a broader conversation of what and how to obscure. I personally have become worried about this issue because current and proposed actions really reduce the ability to see things that don’t have any credible risk. When something is truly a collection risk, like a rhino or a super rare orchid or something, it’s important to be extra careful.
I think we should consider tiers of obscuring, perhaps. Also, consider finding a way to base obscuring based on risk rather than rarity, which is a little harder but would be a lot more effective.
imho the last thing iNat needs is to stop being a useful conservation tool. That concerns me more than poaching risk really, though i think we still need to carefully consider that. The biggest cause of ecosystem-level collapse which drives most extinction is habitat loss and associated issues (invasive species, fragmentation climate issues associated with fragmentation, etc), not poaching. Poaching only harms a few high profile species and while that’s certainly important, if we trade poaching for habitat loss we still lose those species, and a lot more too. Most species being driven to extinction by poaching have already been severely been impacted by habitat loss.