Politics isn’t about policy don’t put Shetland in a box

New rules barring public bodies from putting Shetland in a box on official documents have come into force.

Islands MSP Tavish Scott had sought to change the law to ban the “geographical mistake” which “irks” locals, by amending the Islands (Scotland) Bill.

The bill’s “mapping requirement” has now come into force, although it does give bodies a get-out clause if they provide reasons why a box must be used.

Mapmakers argue that boxes help avoid “publishing maps which are mostly sea”.

The Islands Bill, which aims to offer greater protections and powers to Scotland’s island communities, was unanimously passed in May.

Here is the full story, via Glenn Mercer.  You can’t call it “racist,”or “sexist,” might someone coin a future term for the objectionable act of…”putting my islands into a box”?



I went back to read my past comments. I realize I add no value to this site.

My long search is over! Now I can get some rest.

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anwdnden müssen z Strategien, um Ihr gewonnen Website.

There is probably a word for it in Mandarin, especially in regards to the new South China Sea islands (though likely no words in Formosan), as the Chinese are currently attempting to redefine their territorial waters.


("Annexed" Province)

I checked this out with Chinese to English and got "affiliated province". But that may just be a euphemism.

It was kind of a joke, hence the quotation marks. The word "FuShu" means both annex but has a double-meaning. It also means "subsidiary" aka "dependent" resulting in "subsidiary/dependent province"

In other words a related to this article, the Shetlands, like the Spratleys are "dependent, annexed, subsidiary, less than..." and should therefore shut the hell up. LOL.

But is it still legal to put Baby in the corner?

I thought we already went over this...

A map is a diagrammatic representation of reality. It need not capture every single feature. For instance, it need not represent the relative distance of a smaller island to the main territory.

This discussion sounds so childish. I feel that the cartographers should tell Shetland that it is not a "box", but its own "little map". You are a big boy now, you get a map just for you, printed on top of mom and dad's map.

By law shall land be built. That's the motto of Shetland, which is more Scandinavian than Scot; it was once part of Norway. The Orkney Islands, about 50 miles to the southwest, is also more Scandinavian than Scot. My very good friend's sister married a man from Orkney (she met him while vacationing there) and the sister and her husband reside there. I've met him several times on their visits to the U.S., and he is an interesting man, but I can't understand a word he says, even though it's English. Well, that's not quite right. I did pick up on wee dram. There's a lesson there for Mr. Kavanaugh.

"I did pick up on wee dram. "
Dram is an honored word for drink in Norwegian!

I'm intrigued by the comment of the mapmaker: "It would be virtually impossible to print a paper map, with any usable detail, of this vast geography."

National maps with scales over 1:1,000,000 are useless beyond telling people "this is our country". Times have changed, we like to know our relative position. The coastline shape or orography are interesting, albeit secondary, a few examples.

a) while driving your car, either an old paper map or new GPS screens don't show the national scale and you don't care at all about the land forms shape. roads are lines of different colors and width.

b) public transport user (plane, train, bus): this point and lines diagrams help people to get their destination. what matter is connectivity informing people if there's a direct link from A to B of how many connections are needed and where. land forms is just clutter.

c) sailing, hiking, cycling: max 1:50,000 scale, min 1:10,000 scale.

Sorry, I can't help being annoyed but the mapmaker mumbling about the utility of the national scale map, what utility?

A shorter and visual way to explain why we don't care that much about land features anymore would be: just look at google maps, they're USEFUL maps.

Two more things:

People can decide how they want to be perceived by others.

I always chuckle when Germany, France and Spain have more agreements and less fights than England and Scotland.

This is all that matters.

Now hush!

"A shorter and visual way to explain why we don't care that much about land features anymore would be: just look at google maps, they're USEFUL maps."

"People can decide how they want to be perceived by others. "

Shouldn't there be a law against mercator projection as well? The scale is totally deceiving and people can decide how they want to be perceived by others...?


The Mercator Projection is racist: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/world-map-mercator-peters-gall-projection-boston-globe-us-schools-european-colonial-distortion-bias-a7639101.html

How about a rousing game of Devil’s Triangle?

Please. I'm kind of desperate here.

Stop making eye contact with me!

Perhaps we should sell Shetland back to the Vikings. Could we get a bidding war between Denmark, Norway, and Sweden?

Nah, I know. Sell it to China.

The U.K. is going to need the money pretty soon.

While any of them would love to acquire the associated North Sea oil, I expect Norway would likely offer the most, since as a non-EU member they could keep the associated fishery rights to themselves.

Boxed in translates to "cistae", so I propose cistaeism.
"The leaders of Shetland threw their arms up in rage at the cistaeic practice of the oppressive mapmakers"

“CanadianWithoutBorders” = “CuckToTheWorld”

Straussian interpretation: As a Shetlander, the box is deeply upsetting to me.

Next, the Falklands?

You mean the Malvinas right?

Or at least that's what the losers call them, amirite?

As much as I don’t like trolls I think this fake JWatts has a few good lines. You better step up your game real JWatts.

>it does give bodies a get-out clause if they provide reasons why a box must be used.

Presumably such as "it wouldn't fit otherwise."

Is there any other reason? Are Brits really going out of their way to box-in Shetland unnecessarily?

Because that would be nakedly Shetlist, and should not be tolerated.

Why don't they just indicate the ferry route on each map and put in time/distance?

Someone tell the Danes, who now can chart their vast country from Copenhagen to Qaanaaq (Thule) in Greenland.


There are many such terms. "out of touch", "coastal elite" (us only? ) "provincialism" (antonyn?) , "parocialism". I'm sure Alaskan grumble when the true size of their state is distorted on maps. Especially as a smaller state, Texas, lays such vigorous claims to being "big"

I’m a cuck for all seasons!

It would be worse for the USA, as maps of the United States would have to be scaled to show over 2,000 miles of ocean between California and the Hawaiian Islands.

Then again, the USA has the First Amendment. If we can keep it, of course.

BTW, are mapmakers permitted to just leave Shetland off the map (perhaps with an asterisk to denote the omission)? Might these islands be demoted from boxed to asterisked?

I suppose the map maker could simply title the map “Scotland below 59 degrees” and could leave Shetland off.

I hope that the Shetlanders move to outlaw Mercator projection maps that distort the relative size of their homelands.

Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies above

Don't fence me in

As a resident of Alaska, I'm happy to see Alaska show up on maps of the US at all. In contrast to what some other commenters said, I think digital maps is driving a lot of the exclusion. If someone is drawing the map, it's easy to add AK and HI in boxes, but increasingly you plot whatever you want to show into a digital map, and then you're stuck as far as where Alaska appears in relationship to the contiguous. Either you leave it out, or you have the whole of Canada as blank space in your map.

What about making it illegal to depict Alaska using a different scale from that used for the rest of the map? That would be amusing! (And as a kid I assumed that Alaska was somewhere near Hawaii, since they were always near each other on maps.)

Racist? Sexist? Rewatch Yes Minister and you'll see that it's called politics.

Tyler, the phrase you are looking for is "full of Shetland." Oops, there goes my Supreme Court nomination.

Can we use this example to gain some insights into the recent Caplan-Cowen debate around identity? Do Shetlanders have a unique perspective here about the use of inset boxes or does their identity instead cloud or narrow their judgement, preventing them from seeing the legitimate reasons for boxes, reasons other than anti-Shetland animus? Don't mapmakers also have a unique perspective for what those legitimate reasons might be? What about various (unidentified and perhaps unidentifiable) groups of map users?

Of course, everyone has a unique perspective, down to the individual level. That's what we mean when we say that central planners lack distributed, localized knowledge to understand all the consequences of policies like bans on inset boxes. One strength, the main strength, of markets is to incorporate that distributed knowledge into an emergent spontaneous order.

A central planning committee with members representing a small handful of identity groups may actually incorporate a larger number of perspectives than a single central planner. However, a single central planner is not the only alternative, nor is a single monolithic collective the only alternative to a handful of identity groups. The other alternative is to view everyone as a unique individual, which one could also view as identity taken to the extreme, atomic level. But, that's exactly what Caplan argues for, that Caplan should speak as Caplan rather than "as a cis-het-white-educated-coastal-male". So, while "identity politics" is often rationalized in terms of diversity, it's actually in this sense diversity destroying. It tries to collapse the diversity of 7 billion individuals into a small handful of identity groups.

Are they sure map makers won't just leave the Shetland Islands off the map entirely?

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