Any editor can research and reply to an Update Request. Rank 1 editors will need to work with a more senior editor to review and close a UR.
The main objective is to resolve legitimate map issues -- not just to close URs. Be sure to take time to understand the issue, and ensure that the reporter has time to respond. URs may be left open longer if needed to properly resolve the issue.
Many URs require more information from the reporter to find a solution. This is understandable, since it usually isn't possible (or desirable) for the reporter to leave a full explanation while driving. To improve the chances of getting a response while the incident is still fresh in the reporter's mind, it is best to send an inquiry as soon as you see a UR that hasn't yet been addressed by another editor.
To improve your chances of getting helpful replies to your UR comments, use specific, personalized comments such as "Hello! Volunteer map editor responding - Last Tuesday at 5PM you submitted a map issue regarding wrong driving directions. Waze instructed you to turn right on W 40th Street, but you continued straight on 8th Avenue. What was wrong?". Be very cautious of any scripts which have options to automate your comments - do not allow them to automatically fill and send an entire comment. If you use automatically generated responses like "You reported turn not allowed", be sure to add the specific details most likely to solicit the answers you need.
Some Wazers see a response to their UR via the email address associated with their Waze account, and not in the Waze app itself. For this reason, it helps to let the reporter know they need to reply using the Waze app inbox, that email responses will not reach us. This can be kept brief, for example "Note: e-mail replies won't reach us, please use the Waze app inbox to respond." at the end of the message to the reporter.
The Northeast Region (NOR) largely follows national guidance with these exceptions:
- No editor "owns" a UR, we work as a team to investigate and resolve issues. However, if it is clear an editor is actively working on an issue with the reporter, etiquette dictates that you contact them before stepping in and resolving it.
- A reminder should be sent to the UR reporter if no response is received after the initial inquiry. The timeline of correspondence and closure follows.
The following timeline starts on "Day 0," which is the day you find a UR that has not yet been addressed by another editor.
- Day 0 (the day the first message is sent to the reporter): Use aerial view, street view, and the information in the UR to try to solve the UR. If you can fix the problem, do so, and thank the reporter for their help. If not enough information is available and you cannot identify the problem, respond to the UR asking for more information.
- Day 4 (4 days after the initial message): After 4 days if you haven't received a response from the reporter and you still cannot identify the problem send a reminder message for more information.
- Day 8 (4 days after the last reminder was sent): If you still haven't received a reply from the report, and you still cannot identify the problem, you may close the UR as not identified, leaving a message indicating that we did not have enough information to identify the problem. In this final message you may include the state's email address for any follow up information (where available):
- New Jersey - WazeNewJersey@gmail.com
- New York - WazeNewYork@gmail.com
- Pennsylvania - WazePennsylvania@gmail.com
- When leaving the e-mail address, request that the reporter put your editor username in the subject line so emails can be auto forwarded to you.
You are not required to use this email address if you don't wish to. However if you do use it, it is strongly recommended you register here: Waze NOR Email Subscription
- Example timeline:
- Jan 20, Initial request for more information sent by an editor
- Jan 24, no respond to initial inquiry, reminder sent
- Jan 28, no respond to reminder, problem closed "Not Identified"
Closing a UR as Not Identified
- If there is a cluster of URs and you can not figure out the root of the problem, consider leaving the URs open a little longer to see if another UR comes along to provide more information. This may allow you to solve them all or leave a map comment to track.
- Fix another issue in the area. While you may not have solved this issue, make sure we are always improving the map. A good practice is to make at least one improvement in the area (fix/add info to a place, update house numbers, add missing speed limits, etc) when marking a UR as Not Identified - this will help future proof the area.
- Special consideration should be given to URs that have comments, a problem identified, or reasonable Waze routes and/or user traces. In these cases, clusters can potentially form with similar information and the issue can be solved using deductive reasoning. In these cases it's always wise to consult with a state manger for guidance on closing the UR.
- Last but certainly not least, when in doubt, ask for a second opinion. A second set of eyes may help you identify an issue you missed.