I noticed that we have a new host in our area and clicked oh his profile. The location on the map is about 40km from where he lives. I assume thai has occurred because he hasn't included his complete address details, just his post code and suburb. It would be good if there was a way of more accurately locating a host without divulging their complete address details. Any thoughts on this?
Nobody has to publicly divulge their address (in fact I recall WS admin specifically recommending against that, something I would also be in agreement with). The host location should be set manually, if the new member fails to do this (as it seems many are wont to do these days) then whatever geodata WS uses has default locations by city, state, and country and will locate the member automatically according to the information entered in their address - if they have none they end up floating off the Gulf of Guinea coast at 0 degrees North, 0 degrees West.
Perhaps a better way would be for WS to insist that members manually choose their location before they can be listed as available to host (and , yes, I will say it again, marking new members as unavailable to host by default would reduce this significantly as I find a large proportion of these members aren't even signing up to host in the first place).
I like the idea of requiring people to locate themselves manually prior to publication of their profile.
I also agree with your idea of defaulting to not being able to host although that is a different topic. I think more than half of the people on the site are non-hosts and as you say, more would probably be guests only if they were defaulted to not currently hosting.
We don't include our address either and it puts us where our rural post office is located. In our case it's extremely close to where we actually live. But there is an option to manually place your location on the map. I opted to not be 100% accurate with the location to prevent cyclists just showing up.
Thanks for the info about the manual location on the map. I have been a Warmie for a long time and wasn't aware of that option. I will let people in my area who haven't included their full address in their profile know that this option exists.