- First Go to ‘Menu,’
- Click ‘Settings. ‘
- Go to ‘Account & Login‘ and simply.
- Click ‘Delete Account. ‘ Online: In your dashboard.
- Click ‘Delete your account.
That is the question that was posed to me. It’s straightforward, right? We show you all of the Wazers who are nearby on a map, and we tell you about traffic jams where they’re located. You can’t delete them from your phone; it’s not an option in iOS at least. And then sometimes we highlight things like speed traps or construction zones (more on those later). But how do you get rid of these items? These entities? They seem to be immortal. Even when you drive far away from them, they just reappear as if by magic.
It doesn’t make sense, right? I mean really – there were no accidents at this spot last week! Or perhaps there was; but no one reported it or changed the description, so it’s still sitting there as if in limbo.
The thing is: Waze doesn’t make sense. It’s a free app that tries to keep you from having an accident by using the collective intelligence of its users; but then how can it be that not only does it appear to suffer from a chronic inability to correct map errors and problems with routing choices, but also sometimes the data we get back from people seems just plain wrong?
If someone reports seeing something on the road ahead – i.e., something like a traffic jam (which isn’t really what happens…) – why do we feel compelled to report that as well? We’ve all seen construction zones before in our lives, so why does the Waze app seem to think that we need to be warned of them when driving down the highway? It seems like this would cause problems; as if people might become overly cautious or confused in how it works.
Or how about this: one guy said he had a flat tire, but then he didn’t say what the problem was exactly – it just left us with an impression that something bad happened and we needed to know about it to stay safe. Why couldn’t he have just reported that he saw a cat crossing the road ahead? I mean, really! And also there’s this feature where you can report speed traps nearby (maybe they’re not always active). How is that useful? As opposed to just being able to click on a map marker and report that the speed limit could be lower or something? Maybe they even have an excess of construction zones around them, but we never get to see that because it’s filtered out.
And then there’s also this: my daughter fell asleep at the wheel one day and I drove off the road. We made it home just fine, but now there are all these fake Wazers who think I’m drunk or something all the time! How is that possibly safe at all?
It seems like it might cause problems in some situations; especially if you don’t know what kind of data is going to get back from people about you. This makes me wonder – how does Waze know what to show you or not? Well, I mean – sure enough: if we can only see data that comes back from other users who are around us then it makes sense that maybe there are people out there who don’t want us to see their reports at all.
But how does this work? How is it decided who sees what else and when? Why isn’t the Waze system more transparent about these things? And why can’t we just delete something like a fake speed trap report (to take one example) and get rid of the item forever from our list of notifications; so that no one will ever be told about it again even if they do drive past the exact same spot in future days or weeks?
Regardless of these questions, one thing we know for sure is this: Waze can (and does) let you report on more than just traffic or road conditions. For example – I’ve seen reports on accidents, new construction zones, and even things like ramp meters ahead. If there are no such things actually present when someone says they saw them in advance then it seems crazy to think that maybe the same kinds of errors might happen with other types of data as well; maybe even causing problems for the users?
I don’t know – but anyhow…that’s not really what I want to talk about today; although I guess it does have some bearing on my topic. What I really want to talk about here is this behavior we have: a) to report on things that aren’t actually there; and b) the strange way in which this is expressed through Waze itself. And I want to try to come up with some answers of my own as well.
When we use Waze, it’s not just about seeing what’s around us or providing information for other users – even if that was its original purpose. Somehow I think we take on another role too: the one where we become self-appointed silent observers of the roadways (and the rest of our surroundings); almost like anonymous detectives who silently roam around looking out for criminals! Or maybe more likely – these days at least – like politically alert citizens who are out for justice and disturbances!
I mean, we’re not actually doing this in some official way or anything – but I think whenever we do report something (anything) to Waze then at least on some level it feels like we are. And if you don’t feel that way then maybe you are different from most people who use the app; because as far as I can tell from my own experience – and from talking to other Wazers about this issue – they all seem to feel the same way too. But what is it that makes us act like someone out of one of those spy movies? Let me answer that question for you right away: our desire and curiosity to know just why things are happening the way they are!
What I mean here is that there’s a general curiosity that seems to drive us (at least in part) to want to report more than we should. Now I know this is partially because Waze encourages us with items like the Red Dot or even blue lines at locations where reports are said to be “hot”; but still – it seems as if we’re sort of super-charged by the ability to play detective here and be on the lookout for something suspicious!
There are certain types of things though – like red lights and speed traps which have become so common through repetition that now they seem almost normal; especially here in California. So maybe you don’t always feel like reporting on them anymore…but then again, sometimes you do. It really depends on a lot of subjective things. And so even the same person can feel differently about reporting on something at times, depending upon what’s going on in their personal lives as well as how they’re feeling that day, or maybe just because of the weather and all kinds of other random factors.
1. First Go to ‘Menu,’
2. Click ‘Settings. ‘
3. Go to ‘Account & Login‘ and simply.
4. Click ‘Delete Account. ‘ Online: In your dashboard.
5. Click ‘Delete your account.
Slow swipe up on the screen to open a menu. Tap Waze and then swype it off this list to close it.