Changing my station name

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Hello,
Our local (small town) airport must have quit sending data to WU, so I joined two other stations in the area and put a new weather station on the air.

The station is working great. The data shows up on WU and all is well, except for one thing. I can't change my station name. The station name is defaulting to our town name. I want to include my ham radio call sign in my station name, but it doesn't update on WU. On the devices page, I can edit the station to whatever I want, and it shows that in the devices pages, but then on the map, it still only shows "[Townname] Station". I wondered if it had to be manually approved, but that was a couple weeks ago and it still doesn't match what I have in the device page.

I emailed support on April 6th and got an automated response:
The Weather Channel
 |  Apr 06, 2019 03:37PM EDT


Thank you for taking the time to write to us. Our team has received your email and will be reviewing it shortly.
Case #1291442

No human response and it's now the 16th. I bumped it again with another email a few days ago, got another automated response, but no human reply. Is WU support still active?

Is there something else I have to do to be able to change my station name?

Thanks
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bassgeek

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Posted 2 months ago

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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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Hi, Bassgeek.  

I am the human.  Hi!

In your case it may be that because you're trying to use a special character (the non-standard zero), the system is disallowing the change to be presented on the page.  I don't know that for sure, and I will check, but this is going to be a relatively low priority question in the problems queue.  

--Victoria
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bassgeek

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Thanks or the reply, Victoria.

I tried removing any special characters, spaces, and using nothing but plain text and it still doesn't change on the map or station listings. I have other ham friends that are using the slash zero Ø in their station name without issue?.?.

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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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It may be that now the display name is under algorithm control only.  (Eliminates a lot of multilingual proofing.)  Old names may be grandfathered in.  I'm checking.

--Victoria
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Jack Canavera

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I've also found that my station name is showing my City name only.  I have attempted to change the station name and while it shows the new name on the device screen, it fails to update the station name on the station screen.
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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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Hi, Jack!

The publicly viewable station names are set by an algorithm right now.  You may see others nearby that are not; these are stations that were created before the change was made and were grandfathered in.

At the moment, there is no way to override the algorithm's location name.  

--Victoria
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Jack Canavera

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Victoria, just to clarify.  Are you saying that every new station created in my locale, Fenton Mo.  will get the same station name like mine?  Fenton?

Jack
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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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The station ID will be, for US locations K+<state>+<city>+<number>.  The station display location should be City, State.  How much variation there is in the location names will be affected by things such as how urban/rural the area is, for instance.  I didn't write the algorithm, so I don't know all the things that go into it.  

--Victoria
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Jack Canavera

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It's sort of ugly for those in metro areas since I used my subdivision name in my station name to signify my station location relative to the city name.  I'm apparently the first person in my city that has a city name only as the station location.  The other 40 or so in the city have differentiations in their station name to give us more granulation of the station location.
 
Jack
(Edited)
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bassgeek

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I'm trying to think of good reasons why the developers would take something like naming the station away from the people that provide the data ... not coming up with much.
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Tim Gardner

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Seems to me this would be a simple fix.  I have the exact same problem and frustration and has me all screwed up.  Since IBM owns it all now I think WU will be down the drain for the little folks like us with their PWS's. :(
(Edited)
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Jack Canavera

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Definitely agree.  And in some cases I've seen owners of specific brands of weather stations on their consumer forums, starting to blame the problem on their manufacturer, not WU.  We know obviously where the blame lies.
(Edited)
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user 21248

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Sadly, a lot of things don't work like they use to:  1) It's not displaying the station name I gave it, instead defaults to city name.  2) When I click the station on a weather map it initially looks like mine but then redirects to some random local station.  3) When I finally get it to show my station all the stats are blank except temp.  I've tried deleting and re-adding my ws-2902 and no change. Wish there was a suitable alternative to WeatherUnderground that could receive my data. Really disappointed in this site now.  I seriously question the accuracy of the other information on this site now.  Sad.
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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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User, you might consider putting your station ID here so that I could give you some kind of answer.  Deleting and re-adding is rarely going to fix the problem.  Retyping IDs and keys is a much much more common fix.  

Using an algorithm to name the stations is an effort to try to make the station names -- the part that is publicly visible -- yield clearer results worldwide.  When people can name their stations anything, they do just that.  And not all the names are useful or desirable.  It's impossible to scan all the names for accuracy in every conceivable language on the planet.  So what seems like an "easy fix" when you're thinking of just one language in one place becomes an enormous task when examining hundreds of places and dozens of languages.  

--Victoria
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Jack Canavera

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Victoria, my station is KMOFENTO40.
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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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Jack, your station looks like it's going just fine:  https://www.wunderground.com/dashboard/pws/KMOFENTO40

So yes, any new stations added in Fenton are also going to be "Fenton".  

--Victoria
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Jack Canavera

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Well I'm not sure then what the purpose is in not allowing us to name our stations.  It can't be the issue of accuracy since the location is the searchable feature.  Station name is not.  Our station names for many is for clarification.  Can you imagine every station in this area of Fenton being named Fenton?  It just doesn't make any sense.  Almost all the others in this area, unless it has a family name, can ID a station by station name to it's location in the area.  Especially since my city name covers two counties and a small municipality which is called Fenton, but the Fenton zip code covers a much larger footprint.  I have no idea where WU adds clarification.  Prior to having a weather station I monitored a local Fenton weather station.  I chose it because it was identified with a station name that belonged to a local landscaper who was a block from my house.  That's the value of allowing the owner of the station to choose their own name.  At this point you might as well pull out the station name feature since it for many will be superfluous.

Jack 
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DJinNM

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I completely agree. I just replaced my station and thought it was just a glitch that it wouldn't accept my station name. Now I see that is intentional. Even in a small, rural town like mine (Mountainair, New Mexico) there are many far-flung stations. People want to know which one is closest to them. FYI, my station is KNMMOUNT26 and the name I chose is my local geographical feature, Red Bluff.
Please tell us you are going to reconsider this change!
Thank you, Deborah
(Edited)
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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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As I have said in many different places, the hope is to bring it back.  There is, however, no timeline for that at present.  

--Victoria
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Bill

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In no way can removing the station name be a feature. Please advise as to when the station name will be coming back. Thx
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Bill

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Oh yeah ,my little town of Pagosa Springs, CO already has three stations named the same. My proposed name "The Golf Clubhouse" would be very informative to prospective golfers. Having all new stations named the same adds no value.
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bassgeek

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If the issue is WU "policing" the station names to make sure they are not "undesirable" what if you added a "report" button next to the name? That takes the pressure of WU and lets the public police the names by reporting the few bad apples.

Seems to me that would make everyone happy .... WU would then only have to respond to a few reports, and station owners (the ones who provide your data) could decide how they want their own stations displayed.
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Victoria Gardner, Official Rep

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Thanks for the suggestion!  

--Victoria
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Dobie Hoffman

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Well that answers my question, I just updated my station and lost my name. I'm also a ham, and get questioned all the time... Did you take your satation off the air? This is kind of disapointing.

(Edited)