View Full Version : Google redefined NJ's border

04-17-2006, 12:47 PM
So how much can you rely in the web for information, even "well respected" companies such as Google? Well it seems not very well at all. Back in October I e-mailed Google about an error in their map of NJ. It took several months to get a response, but they acknowledged the error and said they would correct it, but it would not be immediate. Well this is five months later now and it still is not corrected.

So you may be wondering what this error is that managed to "creep" into their map application. Well it seems as if Google did not particularly like that the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are in New Jersey waters. I mean, come on - every KNOWS that the Statue of Liberty is in New YORK right? I mean that's what New York keeps saying, thats what the media always says, everyone knows it right - so it must be true. Basically Google fudged with our border a bit, Hell are any of our politicians going to notice that when you look up Jersey City on http://maps.google.com that mysteriously our border CURVES AROUND Ellis Island and Liberty Island and that NJ has just lost part of our land? Hardly. Will the NJ media notice? Nope - why would they? Well do you think the New Jersey Ambassador from AboutNewJersey.com would notice - absolutely! :devil:

Here is the map in question....

This is the way it should be as is properly shown on MapQuest...

This was my e-mail to Google...

I have to laugh when I look at your map and border representation for NJ and NY. Why do you go AROUND the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island? That is NOT the border as much as you and New Yorkers would like it. BOTH the Statue of Liberty AND Ellis Island are in New JERSEY waters, not New York. If you want to be accurate, then you should reflect the border as it is, instead of taking it upon yourself to adjust New Jersey's border. Would an encyclodedia be very respected if they just changed facts because it didn't fit into their own opinions of what things should be?

Here is the link of the location in question...

This was their response....

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We apologize for our delayed
response. We understand your concern and appreciate your feedback
regarding the border represented between New York and New Jersey. We'll
use the information you provided about the Statue of Liberty and Ellis
Island being in New Jersey water to help improve the accuracy of the maps
on Google Local. Please note that we cannot guarantee that any corrections
will be made in the immediate future.

The Google Team

After checking in March to see if it had been corrected I sent this e-mail...

Dear Google Team -

I am surprised that after three months that the NJ/NY border has not been corrected. I feel that enough time has gone by to see if this inaccuracy would be corrected. I could understand no "immediate action" being possible, but here we are three months later since your response below and roughly 6 months since my initial e-mail.

Contrary to Google, or many people's feelings, Liberty Island, which is home to the Statue of Liberty, and Ellis Island are BOTH within NJ waters NOT New York. The NJ/NY border does NOT wrap around the two islands as you indicate on the map. I would really be interested in knowing WHY the border was even drawn this way, when no cartographer has ever drawn our border in this fashion.

Thank you -

I have yet to hear from them. The next step is to send in editorials to the newspapers.

If you wish to write to google - send your e-mails to - local-help@google.com and specify the "NY/NJ border" I would also recommend including the link in the e-mail so that they know exactly what you are referring to.

I've had erroneous information corrected on maps before. For instance - teh New Jersey Gazateer, which is a very good detailed map - especially if you wish to take backroads throughout NJ, left out the ferry routes between Liberyt State Park and Ellis Island and Liberty Island. They of course indicated the ferry routes originating from Battery Park however. They also misrepresented the Liberty State Park with several roads missing and other mistakes in the area. They thanked me for the information and said in the next printing it would be corrected. When I got the new map, it was and I was very pleased that they accurately reflected NJ and the ferry routes.

08-18-2006, 09:04 PM

Believe it or not, I successfully got Google to correct their map and PROPERLY show the border of NJ and NY. Liberty Island and Ellis Island are once again on the CORRECT side of the border!!!

Here is the new map....


and this is the way they did have it....


This isn't the first time I've had map corrections made, the last time was with the Gazetteer, but this makes me feel much better. More people use google maps than any other online mapping utility and NOW when people look up Manhattan or Jersey City and try to see where the Statue of Liberty is, NOW they will properly see that it is within New JERSEY's border.

Score 1 for New Jersey in the fight for respect! :D

Now I can happily use Google Maps as the map utility for AboutNewJersey.com We have been using it, but I haven't been happy as long as they had our border incorrect.

Check it out for yourself - Location of Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island (http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=jersey+city+nj&ie=UTF8&ll=40.699772,-74.020386&spn=0.032861,0.09347&om=1)

08-18-2006, 09:14 PM
I would never have believed it if i hadnt seen it with my own eyes.
*cracks open the champange*

08-18-2006, 09:17 PM
I would never have believed it if i hadnt seen it with my own eyes.
*cracks open the champange*
Well thank you for showing me today that it was corrected. Google must have made the change within the last couple of weeks, because I had looked in the beginning of August or end of July and it still wasn't correct. I was preparing to write another letter. :D

08-19-2006, 01:35 PM
Well thank you for showing me today that it was corrected. Google must have made the change within the last couple of weeks, because I had looked in the beginning of August or end of July and it still wasn't correct. I was preparing to write another letter. :D


This is an example (for everyone, myself included) of the difference that one person can make.

It may be possible that the people (or person) @ Google made an honest mistake with the map.

Once the error was pointed out, they made the effort to check a good map and correct their mistake.

07-19-2007, 07:48 PM
Well there is a new fight on our hands when it comes to New Jersey's and New York's border being misrepresented. I'm not sure if you are aware of the desk top application Google Earth (http://earth.google.com/intl/en/) - if not - it is really cool and you should check it out. Anyway, there are some things I would like to try out and see about using it to implement some cool features on AboutNewJersey.com, however they have our border with NY wrong. Of course again it deals with Liberty Island and Ellis Island...

This is an e-mail I sent to them off their "google earth error reporting form (http://earth.google.com/support/bin/request.py?&problem=billing&extra.customer=GEFree&contact_type=data)"...

The image is correct here, but on Google Earth - the desktop application - the border between NY and NJ is incorrect. Liberty Island and Ellis Island are shown in NY waters, whereas both are in NJ waters as correctly shown here. The border on Google Earth also skirts just off the NJ coast, whereas it actually goes through the middle of the Hudson River We e-mailed Google Maps to get this error corrected there and I hope that you will correct it on Google Earth. We would like to use Google Earth for AboutNewJersey.com just like we use Google Maps currently, but we can't when our border is misrepresented. You can see the discussion on our messageboard about Google Maps misrepresenting our border with NY here - http://forum.aboutnewjersey.com/showthread.php?t=320

Thank you,

Robert Rosetta, president

You can read about my comments in the Google Earth Messageboard (http://groups.google.com/group/earth-data/browse_thread/thread/f7c112f14543d933).

Everyone, please send your comments also to Google earth about this. Let's show our support to New Jersey! people have to stop redefining our border because they think that Liberty Island and Ellis Island are in NY waters.

08-30-2007, 04:19 AM
Well I forgot I sent the above letter to Google Earth and sent another one. This one said the following -

The border for NJ is incorrect on Google Earth. On Google Maps - as shown here - it is properly represented. However - Google Earth shows the border of NJ and NY wrapping around the west of Liberty Island and Ellis Island. BOTH are in New JERSEY waters - not in New York. The line should be continuing straight through the center of New York Harbor until it curves around Staten Island.

I had seen that Liberty Science Center in Jersey City was using Google Earth for an interactive display. I hope that you will fix our border and properly represent it. We would also like to incorporate Google Earth in some AboutNewJersey.com applications, but would be unable to unless the NJ border is properly represented.

They say they consider more than one letter to be spam - but I haven't heard any response from them and I actually forgot I sent them a letter before.

I wonder if they will correct the border - or if this will just continue to be misrepresented. Since it's not simply an online application, I can't just e-mail the Jersey City representatives and give them a link and have them write to Google Earth. I just don't understand why the border with NY is also misrepresented. There was the New Jersey Gazetteer, Google Maps and now Google Earth. Really where do they get this erroneous border information from? Is it a New York company that hopes no one wil notice?