Update: Please add your location, photo, video, mashup URL or something interesting to the Google Maps Mania Visitor Map, which shows this collaborative mapping feature in action!
Google Maps has launched the feature everyone creating maps has been waiting for: Collaborative Map Editing! Now when you create a map using Google Maps creation tools you can invite specific friends, co-workers or family to edit the map or even select an option to "Allow anyone to edit this map".
To see how this feature can be enabled, create a map from the My Maps tab in Google Maps, then click the "Collaborate" link on the left side panel to see:
So let's give this a try! I've set up a Google Maps Mania Visitor Map that I encourage everyone to visit and add your location to! Add your name, or the name/address of your mashup or just post a fun picture or video of your favorite place on earth.. Let's have some fun! :) To take part, follow the link above and click the "EDIT" button found to the left of the map. Browse to a place on the map and add your location. If you've never created a "My Map" using Google Maps creation tools, this will be your chance to try it out! :) Let's fill this map up! :)
Googler Jess Lee has shown a great example in her Google Lat Long Blog post announcing this new feature: "..imagine if all the surfers around the globe worked together, leveraging their combined knowledge to create a single map of the best surf spots worldwide, applying the power of wiki-style collaboration to cartography." Is the "Google Maps Mania phenomenon" entering a new chapter of mass, user-collaborative mashups thanks to this new feature? I personally think so. The power and scope of a maps mashup expands greatly when not one but many contribute to it. Stay tuned!