Automatically flag blatantly impossible things

There are a significant amount of activities that have what I will call impossible results. There are quite a few reasons why this could happen, including bad GPS data, wrong activity type, using a car, etc. Strava should implement some checks to automatically flag blatantly impossible things that are well beyond the capabilities of human performance like sub 3 minute running miles, or tens of thousands of feet of gain in an hour long run.

The leaderboards of the monthly running climbing challenges are frequently garbage results from random athletes whose watches recorded crazy elevation gains on what are almost always completely flat runs. It would be easy to check their VAM against known world best performances and see that such gain is literally 10 times more than the world's best mountain runners could do in that time period. Or simply do a GPS spot check against the altitude data that their watch recorded, often altitudes of over 20,000 ft (and they aren't in the Himalayas, Denali, or the Andes).

There are many similar threads to this, some that are quite old. I really don't know why Strava has not fixed this yet.

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Comments

40 comments
  • Hi Dan

    On the Strava website, go to the Settings page, then click the Display Preferences menu item on the left. You'll be able to choose your default sport

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  • Thanks Phong!

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  • Over the years I have flagged literally 1000s of rides by motorbike riders.  Sadly Strava you are going to lose your supporters if you are too lazy to implement auto flag for obviously false rides/runs.  There are other apps out now that are very similar as well as Garmin.  I'm just sick of having to flag the same motorbike riders, with profile pics of their motos, for doing 100km/hr up a 4% slope.

    It's just lazy on your part Strava and I'm looking elsewhere now.

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  • As I post here last year, wonder if you have to flag in bike and run activities, like I do. And you find every day an senior heavy weight WR breaker!!!
    It’s not had to put under quarantine any activity that is faster than any WR, in 400m, 1km, 5..... even a marathon winner faster than the fastest Quenia runner.
    In the other hand, around here, the bike segments KOM are almost 100% in a semi tail! They had rode the activity, but 90km/h is not real and should be auto flagged to.

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  • Here’s a good example of Strava’s automatic flagging hard at work:

    https://www.strava.com/activities/259789356/segments/60032954846

    This segment is part of a 5k that’s run on an airport runway, but people evidently start Strava while on an actual airplane. Strava happily obliges, granting them a course record for “running” at a casual pace of 33s/mi.

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  • This is ridiculous. some really simple measures could cut vehicle activities... like riding over 100km/h on anything but downhill. Or accelerating from 0 to 60 in a few seconds. Or climbing 10% hills at 50km/h. Lol... Anything that requires over 2500w should raise an alert as those numbers are only hit for a few seconds by top pro track sprinters. I refuse to pay premium while that kind of filter isn't added.

    PLUS there's no flag button in the android app, only in computer website.

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  • Why does Strava claim to have an autoflag system when it clearly doesn't or have one that remotely works? I was just on a training trip in Mexico and many cycling segment KOMs were listed being done at 50-80+ miles and hour... Here's one of many, at 50 mph on a zero percent grade:

    https://www.strava.com/segments/19847682

    For a data company, it seems astonishing Strava is incapable of implementing simple algorithms to flag data like this. Without a an autoflag system, I'm certainly not going to spend my time doing Strava's work reporting these. Why encourage people to create, train for, compete at segments when the data is invalid. It's very sloppy.

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  • "

    Currently, we do have an auto-flag system in place. The system works to detect when an uploaded activity ranks 1st on any segment leaderboards by an amount considered unlikely (based on how many athletes have matched the segment, either 25% faster or 50% faster than the existing fastest time). 

    We would love to improve this system and make the auto-flagging more robust and accurate. We appreciate the feedback and will keep you all informed when development on this system is planned. "

     

    You clearly dont.

    There is  KOM on the course I ride that that apparantly was achieved by riding it at 135mph. Its been up there for a long time.  Second place is done by riding a 54mph. Looking at the speeds these people are riding other similar sections or downhill sections on the route, and their speeds are 4-15mph.

    With these speeds and times, they should of been flagged by your auto flag system you claim to have in place.

    Your either lying or its broke.

     

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  • Strava must have an army of people handling flaggings. They would really do themselves a favor by implementing a system that would dismiss flawed workouts before they get into their database.

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  • I think 99% of them are just folks that forgot to turn off the computer at the end of the ride. Surely it wouldn't be to hard for the software to detect something amiss when a user returns to the start and then suddenly starts generating 10x the wattage.

    Wouldn't have to auto-flag - could just be a message to the user when they submit "Hey, did you forget to turn off your computer..."

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