Please remove the map pin from place names on the detail page.
Based on several recent posting here on these boards, it appears to once again be time to make a plea to remove the map pin found in front of place names on the detail page. As extensively discussed several years ago, when these were first added, there was the fear on the part of some, me included, that these map pins would place a mark of authoritative correctness to place names leading too many users here to think that a place name was only correct if that map pin was present and reinforce the common misunderstanding that only names currently on the standardized place name list are allowed in Family Tree.
Through the years have I have taught multiple people how to enter place names that are not, and may never be, on the standards list and they are usually amazed to learn that you do not need a map pin.
The fact that this misunderstanding persists is again demonstrated by the consternation and dismay being expressed on this board regarding the recent decision to shorten the names of US Territories, as the names of states and counties have always been shortened, and then use a common standardized name for both shortened names of the territories and states. Several people have expressed their frustration that "we are no longer allowed" to use the full name of the territory because then you don't have a map pin.
Too many people still don't understand that:
are equally valid and equally allowed in Family Tree and that if one wants to use the more complete and historically accurate full names that that is perfectly fine and does not violate any mythological genealogical "standard."
Getting rid of the map pin would get rid of the implied preference and the incorrectly implied greater correctness of the first.
My other plea is to return to the original style of the Place Name Edit box which always showed both the Displayed Place Name and the standardized version of that place name. The current practice of collapsing these two pieces of data if they are the same hides the fact that place names are always stored as two pieces of data, thereby obscuring the fact that the Displayed Place Name never needs to be identical to the standardized version linked to it. Having only one field also gives unwarranted authority to the standardized version and deceives people into thinking they are only allowed to used the standardized version.
Always showing this:
instead of this:
will remind people that these are always two different pieces of data and do not need to be the same.
Both the map pin and the collapsing editing box make it much more difficult for people to understand one of the most elegant and powerful features of Family Tree: that we can enter historically accurate place names in whatever style or format is required for any time period and any location anywhere in the world and still mark on the globe, via the linked standard, that location's best available latitude and longitude for the program to make use of in all of its routines.