gardener's picture

Automatic record submission

Could someone from the iSpot team clarify the position as regards records being automatically sent to the various recording schemes please?
I'd always seen iSpot in much the same way as in the post below:

"I'm not sure that a resource for county recorders was ever the intention of iSpot - at least not in the sense of something that directly provides records.
I've always seen it as being about helping one another with identification problems."
(David Howdon, November 2011

"An advantage of iSpot is that sightings are automatically sent to recording schemes"
(Comment made on FSC Biodiversity Fellows Group FB page March 20th)

Surely this should be something that people have the option to say 'yes' or 'no' to when posting observations?



Amadan's picture

Interesting point -

Why would anyone not want a record sent to a recording scheme?

gardener's picture


Because they already submit their own records and want to avoid duplication!

There is also the possibility that some/many users aren't even aware that their records are being automatically submitted and that doesn't seem entirely ethical

Amadan's picture

Understood now - thanks

I'm assuming that it isn't always easy to spot such duplications. Why is life never simple?

Ray Turner's picture


From the iSpot Terms and Conditions:
When you use iSpot, you create and upload content to the site - for instance, photos of wildlife, your descriptions of it, and messages to the forums. By putting this content on the site, you are saying that:
(a) the content is yours, or you have the permission of the owner to agree to this usage, and
(b) it's OK for us to use it to operate the site, and for our research, and
(c) it’s OK for us to use it to help research and conserve wildlife by passing on details of observations and identifications (but not photos) to others, such as the relevant recording schemes (e.g. National Recording Schemes and Local Records Centres.) We will only pass on your content to carefully vetted bona fide organisations, and will never pass on any personal information apart from your username.



DavidHowdon's picture

iSpot and schemes

Someone from the iSpot team will explain the position but I understand that schemes can now opt to receive the data from iSpot if they want to.

Schemes will need to be aware of the risks of duplicates (with slighly different locations) if they do opt in to this, but I guess those running the schemes will need to trade off between the advantages of getting the extra data, and the disadvantages those risks bring.

Provided they manage their databases well it would always be possible to filter out all iSpot records and get back to status quo ante.

I'm becoming persuaded (in part because some of the recorders from my society are making good use of iSpot to gather data) that automatic data sharing with schemes that opt in is probably a good thing (which was not my position back in November 2011).

Matt Smith's picture


Speaking as a "National Recorder", I would much rather have the details of a particular sighting arrive at my end twice, or 3 times, than not at all. Duplicate records are fairly easy to filter out, usually by a species / location / date search.

Getting records to into a scheme can be difficult - very few LRCs automatically pass on data submitted to them to National Recording Schemes - so assuming that if you send your data off in 1 direction it will work its way elsewhere is not often the case. The more data I see from any source, the happier I am.

Tachinid Recording Scheme

TRS Facebook Page!/pages/Tachinid-Recording-Scheme/376652392364707