This 'train map of the world' is so inaccurate that people are calling it an 'abomination'

Moya Lothian-McLean@moya_lm
Friday 19 June 2020 11:45
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(iStock)

People may be expending their outrage energy on high profile issues like racial inequality and attempts to roll back state provisions for low-income families but that doesn’t mean they haven’t held a little back for less… meaningful subjects.

Like tube maps.

A supposed ‘tube map of the world’ has been causing a large amount of controversy on Twitter, mainly for being totally inaccurate.

It’s ruffled feathers to a degree the likes of Piers Morgan would be impressed by.

Posted by Twitter user @daveloach2, the map purports to depict a world connected by tube lines, like London is.

For example, what would be the Circle Line starts at Hanoi and calls at the likes of Dubai, Stuttgart and Kiev.

The Bakerloo line runs from Melbourne to Edinburgh.

Unfortunately, this piece of harmless fun has made everyone very, very angry.

One Twitter user said it caused them “physical pain”.

Attempts to map the graphic onto real maps went immediately south.

Many pointed out there were absolutely impossible routes, going through oceans…

Or the Equator.

To be fair, the Central Line in summer is a pretty close approximation of that route.

Others found countries like Africa still couldn’t get proper representation.

Not so fun fact: for years Western cartographers have downplayed the relative size of Africa on maps.

Then the actual author of the tube world map got involved.

Turns out it’s a book cover – and the author is well aware it’s not representative, because he’s a transit system expert.

The tube map was for Mark Ovenden’s 2003 book, Transit Maps of the World, which mapped “every rapid-transit system on Earth”.

So, fair enough.

Though it would be really useful to be able to get to Tehran from London.

We can but dream.

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