is down for…two days? has been down at least since 1 Apr 2008. For some time now, I have been making do with what else? Why, Google Maps of course! E.g. finding me at work.

“Virtual Map shuts down street directory site after losing suit,” by Chua Hian Hou. The Straits Times, 03 Apr 2008.

POPULAR online map has shut down, after the company behind it, Virtual Map, lost its appeal against the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) over copyright infringement last week.

The SLA, which originally issued Virtual Map a licence for its maps of Singapore, sued the company in January 2007 for continuing to use the SLA maps even after the licence had expired.

Virtual Map lost it case in the District Court, and was ordered to stop using the infringing materials. It appealed to the High Court, but lost again.

The site was taken down two days ago, said Virtual Map’s managing director Firdhaus Akbar, but the company is currently working with a set of replacement, non-infringing maps, and hopes to bring the site back online in ‘about two days’.

The are based on its own surveys, he said.

The company also intends to appeal to the highest court, the Court of Appeal, to reverse the decision, he said.

An audibly bitter Mr Ackbar, who was interviewed over the phone, said the privately-held company is calling a shareholders meeting either on Friday or Saturday to assess its position.

The meeting will decide whether to continue to provide what he claimed were ‘the best maps in Singapore’, or quit the business here and ‘focus our efforts elsewhere’.

Virtual Map also offers online maps in countries like Indonesia and Malaysia.

Mr Ackbar said his company has spent ‘millions’ putting in value-added data like points-of-interest, on top of the maps SLA had provided.

Alternative online maps are available at sites like the SLA’s StreetMap and Show Nearby.


5 thoughts on “ is down for…two days?

  1. Found below new street directory site from internet.

    It’s a simple site which quite useful to me. I like the best food directory which show exactly where is the location of famous hawker food. Can hunt for nice food at weekend with my family 🙂

    cheers to the webmaster of this site.


  2. Hi Otterman,

    This is Melvin from 20twenty. We’re Virtual Map’s PR agency and we’ve been reading your posts regarding
    On behalf of the guys at VM, thanks for your interest in the website and how it’s fairing.

    We’ve been receiving a lot of comments about how the loss of the site has inconvenienced people, so we’ve decided to come back online with most of our features like the popular bus/mrt guides. Unfortunately, the maps will have to wait, but hopefully this will relief your inconvenience somewhat.

    So we’re hoping to engage opinion leaders like you to spread this news. Every now and then, we’ll keep you updated on the situation and once we make a breakthrough, you’ll be the first to know.
    For a start, we put out a media release yesterday that I’d like to share with you. Let me know if you’re interested, and I’ll send it over. Feel free to email or call me.


    Warmest Regards,
    Melvin Tang
    20twenty public relations

    43 Mosque St #02-01 . Empire Lofts . Singapore 059521
    O +65 6536 6921 . F +65 6220 6639

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