Have you upgraded your server recently?
If you can provide an example workbook or enable the download from Tableau Public then I can have a look for you.
Thanks Neil - I apologize, I thought the "allow download" was checked on my example viz. It can now be downloaded. As for upgrading the server, I don't have my own server as I'm using Tableau Public (still awaiting an academic license for Tableau Desktop). However, I did make sure to upgrade to the latest version of the Tableau app (10.3). Even so, the problem seems to be on the Tableau server side - if I go to a completely new computer, enter the link directly to one of my zip-code based viz's on public.tableau.com, it is broken even though it worked about a week ago. Thank you very much for looking at this.
I think you've found a bug here!
As you said, it works fine on desktop but as soon as you load it to Tableau Public (I also tried it on Tableau Server) the map does not render!
If you report this, then Tableau can apply a fix.
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Thank you for your suggestion - I did report a case to Tableau about the bug. In the interim I have found a work around. It seems that Tableau no longer recognizes ZCTAs, but does recognize zip codes. For those that are familiar with the two types of area, they are not exactly the same but very close. The code for a ZCTA is 7 digits. The first 2 digits represent the US State in alphabetic order and the last 5 represent the zip code that most closely corresponds to the ZCTA. For instance, if you live in zip code 85287, which is in Arizona, you most likely also live in ZCTA 0485287. Thus, I truncated all my ZCTA codes by creating a calculated field called "zipcode" = RIGHT([ZCTA],5) and used that as my geographical unit instead of ZCTA. Now all my ZCTA-based maps work again.
So in summary, while either ZCTA or Zip Code used to work for mapping data, it appears that only Zip Code works now. I don't know if this is a bug or was intended, but if others have this problem, I hope this explanation helps.