I think the question, "to Google, or not to Google," is almost irrelevant here, I only suggested Google in the first place because it was the only free option I knew of, but if we have learned anything from this thread so far, it is that, unless the integrity of the map can be protected from corruption, be it accidental, mischievous or down right malicious, all you have is a hi-tech graffiti wall.
The proposal I had been working on was based on a "public" Google map with very restricted "write permissions" maybe just a couple of trusted "collaborators". This would have protected the map against corruption and ensured a degree standardised formatting.
The drawbacks were:-
1, it would be separate from the forum but still very reliant on the forum.
2, with a limited number of people able to update the map, updates to the map would have to have been by either email or PM application. This would slow that the building of the map and probably mean a phased build.
I was prepared to volunteer to build and run this map but I certainly wouldn't have done so without the approval of Forum Admin.
Given that we now have an official map built into the forum I see no justification for an "unofficial" competitor. What I was planning could have been an asset to the forum but doing it in Google, would have been a bit of a bodge.
Question - Can anyone move someone else s icon on the Google map?? That's no good if it can be done!!!