Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Put More Beer Bars on the Map

As I mentioned last year, I've added Beer Mapping's POI files to my GPS (and if you don't like the acronymicality, that means I've loaded files with all the American brewpubs, breweries, and beer bars listed on Beermapping.com into my car's navigation computer). It works well, and I use it a lot. I've been using the site more often, too. BeerAdvocate has more listings, but I find Beermapping's map functions much more useful for what I do: travel for beer.

But I've found a problem: outside major cities, the coverage of beer bars gets pretty thin. I've been adding a few, and I'd like to urge you to do the same. It's quite easy: just search the database by name to see if your fave local (or not so local) beer bar is in there. If it is, add a quick review. If it's not, add it: all you need is the name, address, phone number, URL, and whether it's a brewery/brewpub, beer bar, or beer store. Submit it and unlike some "other sites," the adds go online within a day or so.

Yeah, it's like work. Yeah, you don't get paid. But you know? This is what things were like back in the day. We told each other about bars with good beer because there wasn't another way to do it. Now there are ways...but Beermapping delivers a different -- and for some uses more valuable -- product.

They're working on other applications too. They have a mobile app, and they've integrated Twitter (something I have yet to do...and don't really intend to). There are other mapping tools in development. I figure the least I can do is add some bars to the database. Why not help out?

11 comments:

Adam said...

Great idea Lew. I've thought the same thing. Get out there and show the love. Hey maybe we could get Mr Brew Lounge to upload his spreadsheets into that thing some how.

John said...

Heck, I've just been waging a personal war to make sure all the breweries/brewpubs in New York(outside of New York city and Long Island) are in the system. Now you want me to start working on beer bars, too?!

Lew Bryson said...

Stop crying and get to work, John!

Chuck Bonfig said...

It seems like it takes them forever to update though. I added locations weeks ago and have yet to see them pop up.

Lew Bryson said...

Maybe things got better, Chuck: I added four or five yesterday and they're up today. Give 'er a try. (Jonathan, you seeing this? Priority?)

Jonathan said...

It's not easy approving locations, especially when we don't want every bar that has one tap of PBR and three bottle selections on the map. We have to do a bit of research via google, reading reviews on other sites (if a location makes it to BA or RB we'll approve automatically. Breweries/Brewpubs go on automatically too). So there is a bit of a job on my end making sure locations should be on the maps.

Chuck: you submitted locations a little over a week and a half ago. I am still going through your submissions (approved some of them this morning) and will hopefully have gone through them all in the next day or so.

Lew: to answer your question; yes, I do give some submissions priority. If I know the person who is submitting or if they have submitted numerous times in the past, their submissions get "fast tracked" because I learn that I can trust the locations they submit.

Keep submitting, I'll try my best to catch up with the backlog over the next few days.

Lew Bryson said...

Holy crap. Honest, detailed, and timely. Are you sure you're running a rating website?

Anonymous said...

Um dude, like I'm like lazy, can't someone smart do some cool upload thingy from beer Advocate or Ratebeer?
ok maybe not lazy, but i can add my few 10's but not 100's, and certainly not the 1000's...
that would come from either of them

dave

Lew Bryson said...

First, Dave, that'd be stealing. Seriously, and I do take this intellectual property thing pretty seriously (since that's how I make my living). Second, it's probably not thousands: BeerMapping is pretty good in cities, where most of the beer bars are. It's out in the 'burbs and the small towns that the coverage is thinner. So...do your 10s. The 1000s are already there.

Bryan said...

I submitted a couple from while I was out in Tucson at the beginning of the month. So far no approvals though.

BahHumBrew said...

Anonymous dave (and others),
I felt the same way about entering reviews; Until a couple years ago when I discovered beermapping.com just before a trip to the NC, SC and TN. After using beermapping before (to plan) and during the trip (to find), I decided it's important to give some data back for other users. I started with a few reviews and then some pics.
Now it's a big part of all my trips. Wherever we go, I use the maps to find and experience locations we haven't visited before. I haven't seen any other brew site that is as useful or responsive to users. Jonathan added the POI downloads and many other features in response to user requests.
So, I could use everyone's help. I'm sure there's a great beerbar (or maybe even a new brewery or brewpub) out there that I'm going to miss out on unless someone lets the beer mapping project know about it.
I've got another trip coming up next month and I'm looking for the best stops...