How can I access the hidden coordinates of sensitive species?

Modified on Mon, 04 Dec 2023 at 11:30 AM

The best way to do this is to create a traditional project or a collection project (turn on trust for the latter) and persuade observers to join and trust the project. More information on projects can be found on our Managing Projects page. The observer has to join your project and choose one of the "Yes" options for the project curators to access the hidden coordinates

Another method to obtain these coordinates is to have the user trust you, which they can do via the Manage Relationships link on their Account Settings page. If they trust you, you will be able to see all of their private or obscured locations.

Finally, you can work toward making the relevant conservation status not automatically obscure observations of the taxon in question. iNat curators can do this, but we advise them not to do so before consulting with some relevant stakeholders, e.g. observers and identifiers of the taxon or scientists and conservationists with experience with the taxon. If you are that kind of scientist or conservationist, you can work toward making a clear, accessible, authoritative, and persistent statement that the cost of obscuration (e.g. to conservation work) is greater than the potential cost of coordinate disclosure (e.g. poaching). When done, flag the taxon and cite the URL of your published statement, and describe again why you think the taxon should not be obscured on iNat.

If you have permission to view hidden coordinates of an observation in your project, you should be be able to see those when you go to the observation and when you download a CSV file of observations in your project. For the latter, look under the private_latitude and private_longitude columns.

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