I am the developer of this scouting system: First Release of Analytics App for FRC MScout System
Currently I am in the planning stages is the next iteration of the scouting system (with a better name too).
Another colleague and I have been having discussion on the idea of crowd sourced data and how publishing should be accomplished. In this next iteration, I’m looking to expand the scouting app to a cloud based model (still retaining full offline functionality of course). In this cloud based model, data gathered by scouts would eventually get published into a public database (think TBA, but crowd sourced with a standardized quantitative scouting system). My colleague and I have had some differences in opinion regarding this issue and I wanted to open this discussion board to gather new perspectives and experiences regarding this complex issue before making a decision.
Opinion #1: Data created by the scouting system should be published as soon as possible (real-time)
The idea is that teams are incentivized to do first hand scouting if they have the resources to do so. First hand accounts are more reliable than second hand accounts from other teams. The scouting system serves to empower teams that do not have all the resources to run a full scouting team (like rookie teams) and facilitate the easy creation of scouting alliances. How this approach solves the free-rider problem is the idea that data gathered from your own team is more reliable than second hand data. Data publicly shared is only quantitative data, encouraging teams to scout themselves.
This opinion asserts the idea that the condition of using the scouting system is to publish the data. Private ownership of quantitative data is not considered to be a thing since the whole idea of the scouting system is for crowd sourced data.
Opinion #2: Data created by the scouting system should be published by the scouting team
The idea is that the free-rider problem causes teams to stop scouting entirely when they deem the data of other teams as better than their own. It also asserts the idea that the data created is, at least in some part, the property of the scouter, not the developer. Scouting teams should be in control of who gets access to the data, not the developer. The crowd sourcing relies on the good will (does GP apply here?) of teams instead of the automatic publishing system.
The compromise solution is that data should be published automatically after the event has concluded. This allows for teams to have temporary control of data during the event and public publishing afterwards.
Which opinion do you think is a good way to proceed with a crowd sourced scouting system and why? Do you have a different view? What experiences do you have with sharing scouting data?
I agree more with opinion #1 than #2, so I may have misrepresented #2 unintentionally. If you agree with opinion #2, please correct me.
I appreciate any and all feedback regarding this topic and I thank you for your time.