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Implemented Add a User Group Permission for Google API Maps views

This suggestion has been implemented. Votes are no longer accepted.
This has been implemented in SC 3.2.7.

These new permission allow you to both MONETIZE Google Maps and control costs associated with the Google Maps APIs, by controlling which Users or User Groups are able to view the various maps types throughout Showcase.

I've added TWO new "View" permissions for the TWO major Map Types (Item Maps and Category Maps). This gives you flexibility in controlling each major map type (vs either both on or both off).


I'll give a brief overview of each map type so you have a clear understanding of each one and what permissions come into play for each group.

Item Maps

Item maps are the individual maps that are displayed on SC ITEMS. These require the Google Maps EMBED API (which is cost free).

A Showcase Item has 4 different display options (Link, Map Sidebar, Map Below Item, Map Own Tab), 3 of which are rendered by the Google Maps EMBED API (which again, is a cost free API, it has no monthly cost).

Item Maps have NO CONNECTION what so ever with any of the OTHER Maps types in Showcase.

The View item maps permissions is only for ITEM MAPS.

Note: As per OP's request, Users that don't have permission to view a map, will see the Location Link in the Item Information block (clicking this link takes them off site to a Google served map).

Map Icon Note: The MAP ICONS that display on Listing Pages will only display IF the viewing user has permission to view Item Maps (the location text will still display, just the Map Icon that launches the Map Overlay will not be displayed).

This next map requires/uses both the Google Maps JavaScript API (which is needed to add multiple markers on a map) and Google Maps Geocoding API (which is for fetching location data needed for the JavaScript API). Both of these API's have monthly costs associated with them based on VIEWS (which is why the OP wanted a permission to control who can view JS Maps).

Controlling who can view this can have a major impact on the monthly cost associated with the JavaScript API (as you are charged by API calls and if say "Guests" can't view maps, that's a lot less calls to the JS API.

Category Maps

Category Maps are for displaying multiple markers on a map. There are TWO types of Category Maps, a smallish one that is displayed ON the Category Page above the Items Listing and a Full Page Category Map.

In order to View the 2 types of category maps, you need the permission "View category maps".

The only thing NEW is that there is now a Permission that allows Admins to control which Users and or User Groups can actually view the Category Maps if they are enabled.

IMPORTANT NOTE: These permissions only pertain to the viewing of the map... they DO NOT STOP the usage of the Google Maps Geocoding API being used when adding or editing items that have a LOCATION to an item. So just be aware of that. These VIEW permissions are not intended to control who can add location to an item and in turn, whether a call to the Geocoding API to fetch location data happens.