Also when the page is for a hugely popular route or mountain, I think there should be some higher standard for what is needed to ‘own’ the page. There are obvious examples of meeting this standard on some of the highest rated pages... the Mountaineer’s route on Mount Whitney is a great example of the type of page a popular route should have. The route is well described and an excellent and thorough resource.
I haven’t figured out how to address when members feel they have the right to own pages with such a high profile without putting the necessary work into it yet. Should an elf decide? They may be reluctant to make waves. But doing nothing does damage to the site. It would be best if higher levels of effort could be put into the highest profile pages. Not a skeleton page like we often see.
Usually these owners see no downside to keeping possession. It is typically handed behind the scenes. But perhaps if it were discussed openly things would be different? Let’s try that…
Brian Kalet some contributions of mediocre quality, but he also has the Avalanche Gulch page for Mount Shasta (by two orders of magnitude the most popular route on California’s second or third most popular non-urban peak) and the West Buttress page for Denali (also the most popular route by orders of magnitude on one of the most difficult of the seven summits).
I contacted Brian Kalet recently about taking over the Avalanche Gulch page. I have done the route 4 times in several seasons and have a track record on the mountain. His response was to add me as an admin so that I could improve the page for him. Ok in some situations but I am not so sure in this one.
Brian has held both these pages for years. And both pages are in poor shape for their high profile. Neither one had been updated for two years before I mentioned the issue... just a collector's item it seems. So it's not as if he simply hasn't gotten to it yet. And neither of these pages were his originial submissions. They were aquired by him after someone else released the page, and much of the content is a previous owner's.\
Brain climbed Avalanche Gulch once, eight years ago, and hasn’t returned since. I was surprised by his attachment to it, as he lives in Colorado and the page isn’t actually his (it was submitted four years before he became a member). The route information is sparse and not accurate. It is not adequate information for the type of visitor who usually looks up this page on SP and goes to that route. They cannot print off the page and use it as their resource on the mountain.
The distances are not accurate and the crux (getting through or around the Red Banks) is not detailed AT ALL. The owner does not even have any images contributed to the page, and none from a climber’s view that help provide a picture of the route or the crux. There is poor and missing information on camp locations, and almost no information on the different seasons. There is nothing to prepare someone who is trying to use this page for actual help on the route. It is only decoration… only taking up space.
Two thirds of the page is simply comments made by other members!
And then there was this line:
As of 2005, you have to self register at the Bunny Flat Trailhead and pay $20 cash or check if planning to summit.
2005?!?!? He has since edited this section so has to hide how out of date it was, but it is still inaccurate! He’d know that if he still went there!
So why is the owner so stubborn on this? Why hold a page like that? As stated… it is one thing if it’s your original work, or 1000s of people are not looking to utilize it yearly, but this is neither of those. I don’t know if it is just being lazy or just doesn’t care. Perhaps selfish?
Similarly with the West Buttress. I can easily rattle off dozens of members who would be happy to pour many hours into improving the page and making it a fantastic example for the site, and making it effective for the 100s of people looking to utilize it every year and the many 1000s on the site and site visitors that would be entertained by reading about the route. This could and should be a spectacular page, and there are many members willing to do it.
But here again the page is weak. There is a picture of the mountain, the route statistics, a very crude map, a gear list, and some links to better resources. Absolutely no attempt is made to interest people in the route or prepare anyone adequately for visiting there. The page has no point. On an obscure peak this may be determined to be adequate, but not on Denali's West Buttress.
I am not sure what will come of this, but perhaps in at least some cases awareness of these situations will lead to a better outcome than what we have so far here. As is, I feel that this do-nothing process is being counterproductive to the site.
If the owner doesn't want to put the effort into the page for years after acquiring them, why adopt them, and why hold them?