The following steps describe how to approve or reject a newly submitted encounter for inclusion in Wildbook for Whale Sharks. Sometimes encounters are added with incomplete or inaccurate information. It is best to leave these encounters as “Unapproved” until the submitter has been contacted and the information has been corrected.
To review a new, unapproved encounter for inclusion in the library, follow these steps:
1. Look at the new encounter in the View Unapproved Encounters view (login required) and ensure that the its thumbnail image was correctly rendered. If not, use the Reset thumbnail command on the encounter page to choose a photo to render a new thumbnail from.
2. Check to make sure that all of the photos submitted contain material appropriate for display. This is an important check to make sure that offensive material or photos showing inappropriate interaction with whale sharks are not displayed in the library. If the photos contain appropriate content and have enough information (scars, visible left- or right-side patterns in photos, or extractable spot patterns) to reasonably expect that the shark can be re-identified now or in the future, proceed to the next step. If the encounter contains offensive material, no photos, or poor quality photos, proceed to “Rejecting an Encounter” below.
3. Click on each photo one by one to view it in full detail. Note the presence of any distinguishing characteristics, such as scars, distinct spot patterning, or physical tags, using the pulldown list of keywords above each photo.
4. Check and edit the data submitted for each encounter as needed. For example, verify that the size estimate is realistic (30 feet versus 30 meters) and that the submitted comments contain appropriate language and good spelling.
5. Add the appropriate Location ID to the encounter and check any reported GPS coordinates for accuracy using the displayed Google Map.
6. If the content of the unapproved encounter is acceptable, click Approve to make the encounter visible to the general public once all of the above steps have been completed.
7. Check the TapirLink status of the encounter (true/false). The TapirLink policy is available here.
There are two reasons to reject an encounter:
1. The encounter does not contain enough information to uniquely identify the shark now or in the future, but it does contain some useful data such as date and location, sex, size, etc. that can later be used for trending and aggregate analysis.
2. The encounter contains offensive or inappropriate content. These encounters should be deleted permanently.
To reject an encounter, click the Reject button in the left-hand blue bar of the encounter. This will give you two options:
a. Click Save as Unidentifiable to preserve this encounter but not make it available to the general public. Note: Unidentifiable encounters can be re-approved in the future if enough data is later submitted to allow for a reasonable chance of identification of this animal. As part of the Unidentifiable rejection process, an email is sent to the encounter submitter informing him/her of the unidentifiable status of the encounter and of the insufficiency of data needed for accurate identification. Some submitters may have additional photographs that can be added to each encounter to allow for approval and public display.
b. Click Permanently Delete to remove this encounter from the Library altogether. Note: Deleted encounters can be restored by a Library administrator. If you accidentally select Permanently Delete, email webmaster at whale shark dot org and reference the encounter number that you deleted to have the encounter restored.
If you subsequently receive enough data for an unidentifiable encounter to allow for possible reidentification in the future, you can reaccept the encounter, moving it out of the unidentifiable status.
To reaccept an unidentifiable encounter, click Reaccept in the blue bar at the left of an unidentifiable encounter (a.k.a. a rejected encounter) to move it back to an Unapproved state.