Trap Street

trapstreet
Compairing Oxford A-Z from 2000-2005 reveals a trap street- Goy Close via The Map Room

A trap street, or errata, is a fictitious street inserted into maps to purposefully trap potential copyright violators of the map. Normally quite innocuous, these fictitious bits of information are used as proof to spot where plagiarism has taken place. It’s not just a matter of creating fake streets, rivers, buildings or even towns, but also design errors, such as rivers bending another way and added roads that are used as tell-tale signs to prove a copyright holder’s case. Publishers deny the existence and purpose of trap streets.

Must get my hands on this book by Mark Monmonier revealing the methods cartographers employ to “confuse potential enemies or to trap copiers”. Never knew cartography could be so dramatic!