Impossible KOM's!

I was wondering what we have to do to get bogus KOM's off of a segment?  I did a ride this morning, looked at the results and saw this:
The guy Jeff Fredericks that has the KOM for this segment, it is impossible! The time is a dead give away but the speed something to behold!

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  • Official comment

    Thanks everyone for chiming in to help suggest the Flag Activity feature. 

    @Anthony, we do have some automatic flagging in place, but unfortunately the algorithm is very strict and it only really catches rides that are miss-categorized as runs and take CRs by more than 50% over the previous record holder. It's something we've considered before, and it's still on the table for consideration. I don't have any further updates at this time. 

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  • you can 'signaler' the ativity..............Sorry i don't know the word in english.

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  • I have flagged it and am waiting for the reply.

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  • you flag the ride

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  • you can flag the activity but, in all honesty, its a waste of time as it relies on the offender doing something about it. There are many segments which have similar issues.

    Ideally there should be a way that the segment creator can add a filter so that the bogus times are filtered out. something like a max MPH for example... In general there needs to be an overhaul of the way segments are created.. Adding a start date and end date to a segment would also be a benefit.. 

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  • You'll need to do it on a PC / MAC (not a phone) - If you click on the date of the one you want to query you'll be taken to that specific person's activity.  You can then have a look and see if you think the activity was in a car / etc.  If you then want to flag this activity for Strava to investigate there is a spanner - click this - then click Flag and give the reason you believe it's wrong and Strava will check and remove if need be.

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  • I know there are probably lots of rides on here that have the same issues. It is really unfair to riders that go out and try to accomplish a KOM. This one is the most ridiculous one that I have seen in my area!

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  • Leonard, you don't actually get any sort of reply.  The flagged activity will just disappear. 

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  • Leonard, it just isn't false KOMs and their times that have concerned me for months, there are some segments where there are more than one person who have posted impossible cycling times that are beyond 40 mph or 64 kph! It's true that elite professional racers can reach 40 mph for flat distances of one kilometer; however, elite pro racers are NEVER riding the streets at top speed!  The pros I have seen are in the mountains - training for the next big event or they may occasionally venture into the city to ride on dedicated bike paths that often start in the mountains. The pros don't DO streets - there are just too many cars to safely get up to and maintain the top speeds they crave. There are downhill segments which most of mortals have ridden where we have attained speeds in excess of 40 mph, so at first appearance it might seem to not be an easy problem to solve.  However, through an equation, Strava does have the ability to take the grade of a segment into account and determine for a given speed what the proper speed on a flat route should be.  Strava should apply a filter throughout all its segments worldwide so that no segment can have a posted time - after adjusted to a flat-route time - that can exceed 40 mph or 64 kph. That would be a simple fix.  

    I should add that I have seen many run times where the posted times were clearly done on a bicycle, in a car, or on a train because the speeds exceed what any person, even a world champion can run! Run times should have a Strava filter that would exclude any posted times in excess of 20 mph or 32 kph.

    Besides, taking grade into account, I also have seen another equation that takes distance into account for speeds. If both grade and distances were taken into account for every segment and route, then for every time posted in the future and, retroactively for ones that have been posted in the past, the times could be rejected if they are beyond what could be expected.  I have looked at the records of some of the people recording outlandish times and I always see that they are not real athletes, but jokers who are taking advantage of Strava and the rest of us.

    Another filter might be for Strava to look at the average speed that a cyclist or runner is performing at and realize that when a time or speed is at a level far beyond it, it should be rejected out of hand without any qualms or misgivings!         .     

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  • It certainly should be very possible to programmatically catch these as they are uploaded.  Just use some logic, like if the speed is X % faster on a segment done by hundreds or thousands, or if the VAM far exceeds that riders previous bests.  It should be possible to set some parameters that flag such efforts for review by a human, or kick them back to the participant with a 'you just climbed faster than you ever have in your life and even faster than Froome, congrats, but could you please confirm that it wasn't erroneous?'

     

    Personally, the lack of addressing these issues means I won't pay for the service.  

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  • Would be good if KOM's were only allowed if accompanied with cadence and heart rate readings...or one or the other.  Then you know if it is a genuine ride and attempt at a KOM

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  • I agree with the issue. How many of us have loaded up our bike and driven 5mi down the road until we realize, then hit the finish ride button? Who has forgotten to hit the "run" button instead of "bike"? Some are honest mistakes. One easy thing would be to ask any KOM to verify that the segment was correct. Give them a chance to self filter an error or a mis categorization. I think many of these issues would be immediately fixed if flagged and the user had an easy fix. 

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  • @Elle Anderson

    Suggestion: If a KOM is flagged, initiate a peer vote via email or in-app to the top ten user/times on the segment. Have this vote be worded to those riders as, "This KOM was recently taken and has been flagged for review. Based on the segment, weather conditions, and the rider, is this KOM likely valid?" select "YES" or "NO". Then allow the voter to elaborate if needed. In the case of a unanimous vote the outcome is valid. In the case of anything else allow the final judgement to lay with Zwift support. You could even have local verified pros or categorized USCF riders be judges if you wanted. Overall, this would help make segments more valid and increase buy-in to the Strava KOM system.

    I have been questioning some KOMs recently. User has no power or HR data ever and I refuse to flag them because I want to believe that the rider is capable, but they don't race and he doesn't follow up with anyone I know to join them on a ride. He has ten pages of KOMs. It is likely that he is using moto assist bike or altering data but who knows. 

    -Dan

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  • It seems the algorithm is either ineffective or rarely used. I found a cycling KOM on a route I use regularly, a short 190 meter uphill climb with a sharp right turn on the approach and the KOM equaled by 2 riders is 5s at 141.2kmh! 

    How about as suggested by Dan Lawrence, a proper clean out of the KOM that a way outside the capabilities of a human.

     

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  • It's said if a KOM is 50% or faster they have a filter. but.... No one can run a half marathon at over 30mph.  A simple filter would fix these issues. 10% faster than the world record should be ample to scrub garbage like this (see below).

     

    I saw a segment the other day that the top 10 people had run under 2:00 minute mile pace. This is polluting Strava and making it less fun. 

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  • I can’t believe that filtering out impossible times isn’t possible for Strava to do. Don’t know but would think that the main main value of this site for them is the huge data mining potential it has. To be of value it would require the ability to filter stuff.
    Even just the fastest known speed ever achieved by a cyclist/runner would be a start as a moderating benchmark?

    I gather that if you are paying for the premium service you can compare yourself to others of similar gender and age etc. 
    Perhaps leaving this oversight in place is a nudge from Strava to sign up for premium service?
    For myself I just pay attention to my PRs and the times immediately round me in the leaderboards. I commute single-speed in London so with my gearing and traffic lights there’s only so fast I'll ever go!

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  • Strava obviously dont care and will never filter.

    Should just make an API interface instead so that third party filters can link a blacklist and/or user filter criteria. Reasonable if this is limited to Premium since filtering by weight etc is a paid feature so dont want filters making that a freebie.

    Allow accounts to add a Blacklist URL in settings, website and app then applies that filter client side and makes people disappear.

    Community projects will sort out their own smart filters and respected filters will rise to the top as with ad-blocker lists.

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  • Seems Legit...

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  • I got a KOM without even trying. Sometimes it is not the fault of the rider but a stuff up of calculations or equipment. 

    There is no way I was travelling at 182.1km/h. I have hit speeds in the 70-80km/h range before but not on this section of road and it is a rare occurrence.

    I only realised this issue today when I was looking over some old rides. I tried to change it or fix it up, but couldn't figure it out. Anyway clearly the rest of the numbers don't match up with the speed. Through my search on how to fix this I came across this forum and thought I would post my experience here. I have now flagged that ride in hopes that it will be corrected by the Strava team. 

     

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  • Another impossible KOM:

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  • This issue is one of the most pointed out and common reason for people to NOT use Strava_Summit (pay)

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  • I am pretty surprised that people don’t seem to realise that it’s pretty much beyond what can be achieved in a car, so it is not necessarily people just driving with the device still running. It is an error with Strava’s data. I had rides that were 5 years old which had all looked normal suddenly come up with a couple of insane segment times, giving me unearned QOMs. When I contacted Strava I was initially told it must be my device which it couldn’t have been because the speeds on these segments randomly changed after a number of years (it’s also happened on more recent rides), and I am not using the same device I had then. I was told the only way I could fix it was to delete the rides, which I don’t want to do because the majority of the rides are still legitimate data. What annoys me though is when people contact me asking to delete the segments because they weren’t done on a bike,’but they have not looked at the segments in the context
    Of the whole ride. People are hardly going to get off their bike, jump in a car, get the car up to 180kmh for 1km then get back on their bike. I understand when someone has no achievements except for KOM/QOM for the last fifteen segments of their ride, but there are a lot that are obviously glitches with the data. This has also happened to several people i ride with. I wish Strava would fix it because I am tired of whiny people contacting me on Strava rather than going to the source. So before you point your finger at the user, please check the context

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  • Nat G, If you know you have garbage data posted to the leaderboards, you need to do your duty as a community member and clear that crap off. Show some character.

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  • Tank Driver, do you know anything about how the platform works? It is not my responsibility to clear the junk data’s, it is Strava’s responsibility. If Strava had the functionality to crop segments from within the ride data believe me I would, but alas Strava only has the functionality to crop segments from either the beginning or the end of a ride. Neither does Strava have the functionality to simply ‘remove’ yourself from the leaderboard of a particular segment, believe me if I could I would, I take no pride in having false QOMs. So it appears you are suggesting that because Strava can’t resolve their bugs I should remove the entire ride that I have completed, for the sake of one dodgy segment of perhaps 500m on an 80km plus ride, therefore sacrificing in excess of 79km if legitimate data? That seems a little unfair don’t you think, that I should have to lose all of that data through no fault of my own (if it had been because my device was switched on while I was driving of course I would remove it, by cropping it, because in that case the junk data would be at the beginning or end of the ride). Like I have suggested previously, perhaps people should either a) flag the segment, or b) contact Strava with their grievances rather than attacking paying consumers of the platform who have unfortunately been affected by Strava’s subpar finctioanality issues. And you know absolutely nothing about my character, judging a person’s character based on how they respond to a platform’s faulty data is quite reductive don’t you think?

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  • Oh, and before you tap away a response without applying much lateral thi king, I have contacted Strava myself on more than one accasion in an attempt to get the issues with my false segments resolved

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  • I flagged the below ride, but now it is back. the guy averages 39kmph with a average HR of 96bpm... and he isnt a regular rider... 

     

    https://www.strava.com/activities/2152003415#54255344897 

    can strava remove it. 

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  • @Natasha G. I haven't seen false KOMs like yours (so far). That sucks!

    As you pointed out, cropping won't work in your situation. If you can't get Strava support to fix the activities, I have a few suggestions. They have down sides. You might lose achievements--PRs, Cups, QOMs (as of the date of the activity). That is, if you earned a (legitimate) #5 cup two years ago , and 7 riders since then finished the segment faster, you won't see the cup on the activity anymore. That wouldn't matter much to me (unless it was a KOM 😉), but I understand why it might matter others. There is also the risk of loosing data; download the activities to xml files before cropping or splitting activities. You might lose kudos and comments. Anyway, here are some ideas:

    1) Try recalculating the activities. It's easy. I'm guessing you tried that, though.

    2) Download the activity to an xml file, delete it (on Strava), then upload the xml file. You will loose the kudos and comments. The new activity will be effectively "recalculated" as though you just did it, but it will show as being done on the original date. If Strava's data is actually corrupted, it will still be corrupted. Worth a shot, though.

    2) You can split a ride into two (or three) separate rides. I think you can also do that  with a run, but not a walk or a hike (so switch it to a run, then switch it back later. Split the ride just before or after the bad segment, then crop off the errant portion. If it's a long segment, try cropping off a couple tenths of a mile at the start or end of the segment; that might be good enough (?). A down side is that instead of showing a single 60 mile ride, you will have several shorter ones--not as impressive. Otoh, it's a few years back--no one will notice.

     

    Danger, Will Robertson. DANGER!!! 😉

    I've manually edited downloaded xml files a few times. It's not for the faint of heart. It's tedious, and too complicated to describe here. fI you are a programmer for example, you will figure it out. I'm told there are third party apps. Let me know if you find a good one.

    You can download the split activities as xml files, manually recombine them into a single file, then upload them again. Don't overwrite the original xml file, in case you make a mistake. You will (probably) have to delete at least the first of the split activities before you upload the recombined file, or Strava will see it as a duplicate. I think it does that if activities have start times within a minute of each other (?). I suppose you could split (or crop?) off and sacrifice the first few minutes of the first split activity, until you are sure the combined xml file works. Cropping would be better, if it works, so you don't lose kudos and comments until you are sure it's going to work.

    3) I've manually cropped from the middle of an xml file a few times, e.g., to crop out a long stop at my LBS (it made my average speed look bad. Lol!). I think I found the section to delete by looking at the analysis (including the map) to find the elapsed times when I arrived and left the bike shop, then searched the xml file for the corresponding UTC times (add the elapsed times to the UTC time at the top of the xml file). I also remember using Google Maps to find latitudes and longitudes to search for. That might or might not be easier.

    Did I mention third party apps? Let me know if you find a good one!

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  • It's been a while since I manually edited an activity file. I called them XML files. They are GPX files. It looks like xml data to me, but don't write that stuff. TBH, angle bracket syntax makes me want to run and hide. Lol!

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  • As another said you have to look at the segments and see whether it looks like the person was in a vehicle. I have spent a lot of time weeding out segment leaders that were in a car, and often I don't think it was intentional either, but it happens.

    Mostly this is cases where someone packs up following a ride and forgets to terminate the application. I rarely see this coming from Garmin user, mostly because once a Garmin is paused it will auto shutoff after certain amount of time. That is for Edge units, not for the watches though.

    My beef with Strava is that they are non-responsive to most anyone who isn't summit, when the issues are important. I have been put off for a month now, and my guess is they just don't want to admit that their segments system sucks and needs a complete rewrite.

    If you think fake koms is a problem then recognize that often the beginning / endpoints of segments can drift, so the playing field for segments is not equal for everyone. I've had two cases where it was blatantly problematic, Strava won't respond to my service ticket, as I said it's been a month now and no answer. They also don't seem to want to respond to another service ticket about why 107 watt increase in ave power does not change the speed traveled in a segment, which again is utter BS.

    I won't pay for summit cuz I don't think it's worth paying for...

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  • I am having the next problem:
    Somebody rides a KOM with an e bike and I can't flag his ride because I can't see his ride, the guy blocked his profile for people who don't follow him.
    Great option so people can't flag you...

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