Portal Picture of Horizon Observatory

NelkonNelkon ✭✭✭
edited November 2019 in Portal Photo

Category: Portal Photo

Title of the Portal: Horizont Observatorium

Location: 51.568604,7.168552

City: Herten

Country: Germany

Screenshot of the Rejection Email:


Usually I don't submit appeals for portal photo rejections, because the assessment of pictures is a matter of personal taste. When a reviewer rejects it, there might be a certain reason. But in this special case I'd like to have a special connection to the picture, because it took some effort to make it. I don't want to brag overly, but in this case I think that it turned out quite nice.

This is the picture that got rejected:

Background story:

This cool structure is located in the Hoheward landscape park in Herten, Germany. It consists of two tips - the Hoheward and the Hoppenbruch tip – and is the largest s l a g heap of Europe. Visitors can walk around on diversified hiking and cycling trails up to the top of this man-made mountain/hill. Once you reach the highest platform of the Hoheward tip you can experience one of the landmark art installations of the Industrial Heritage Trail - the “Horizon Observatory”. It is made up of two great curving steel arches which can be seen from far and wide. A very great example how former industrial coal and steel areas can be converted into a center for science, education and sports.

I went there in June 2019. First I had to climb 1000 stairs (which are another portal). Then I wanted to take a picture which shows the structure from a new perspective. So I used my drone to take some aerial shots. I had to fly very carefully due to the high winds up there. My drone can fly up to 72 km/h. When the wind speed is near to this top speed than it might be impossible to return the drone to its starting point. So I had to fly first against the wind's direction to have enough reserves for a safe return. A small video clip can be found on my instagram post. It was a cool hike with awesome views and I can endorse anyone in the area to visit this cool place. Directly or by doing the great banner "Route der Industriekultur" (Industrial heritage trail) which connects a lot of these cool post-industrial landmarks.

I submitted this picture on June 10 2019. I got rejected in September. This happens sometimes. But since I didn't found a reason why this doesn't meet the acceptance criteria, I resubmitted the picture on September 23. It got rejected on November 20 (yes, Niantic got a lot slower at reviewing this submissions than a year ago).

Well. I was bit disappointed. But I would usually have shrugged my shoulders and closed the case. Adding a cool picture to the portal network is like a gift of intellectual property and nobody is obliged to accept any present.

But in this case I got an acceptance mail for another submission the same portal. I had been curious whether a picture from the ground would be more acceptable, even if it's of a much lower quality. So I had submitted another candidate made with my smartphone:

And well, this one got accepted. That was the moment when I lost faith in NIA Ops. At least for some days. Then I decided to make an appeal in order to understand better what's going on.

Long story short:

Is there a chance that the rejection of the drone photo gets revised? If not, is there a special reason for rejecting the drone picture two times? Did I miss a rejection criteria for accepting new portal photos?



  • Appeal Denied- Thanks for the appeal, Agent. We took another look at the Portal in question and decided the Photo does not meet our criteria.

  • NelkonNelkon ✭✭✭

    Thank you for your quick review and answer, @NianticKN !

    I still haven’t learned why this is considered as a low quality photo, but at least I know that the reviewer didn’t just made a mistake.

    I‘ve searched the acceptance criteria for good submissions and the possible reasons for rejecting a photo submission at the support center. But I wasn’t able to identify a matching point.

    My assumption it that the (internal) policy towards drone photos have been changed again. But it’s not clear because other drone photos at other locations were accepted in the meantime.

    If you could elaborate a little bit about the main reason for rejection in this case, you could help other agents and me to submit these kind of pictures. This would save time and money for unnecessary reviews at NIA Ops.

    Thank your for your kind help and consideration in advance.

Sign In or Register to comment.