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Everything posted by -CJ-

  1. After being here at this forum for a while I think that this is just a part of the common attitude to any issues based on regulations that have been worked out years ago and designed mostly for a different reality. While there could be exclusions for some really remote caches and some "grace period" for them to be maintained after being reported missing, users seem to be convinced that caches must be maintained by COs only and in short period of time. This is much like in the neighbouring thread when some guy wished to maintain geocaches in his area which he liked and which were obviously missing - and asked for advice. He's got replies like "No!", "Never!", "Don't do it!" and "You should not maintain cache that you don't own!" A better advice (IMHO) could be "Contact COs and ask what they think about your idea". Geocaching has often been described as a social game where people make interesting acquaintances, meet each other and cooperate for things like CITO. However when it comes to specific situations around caches it can be often heard "Place a NM log and leave as is", "Wait until ... DNFs and then check you cache" or anything of this kind. Looks like the cache listing and its logs are the only allowed way to communicate between those who hide and those who search. Me too. However I had to archive three caches in Khamar-Daban, three caches in Polar Urals, seven caches in Carpathian mountains and nine caches in Khibiny mountains. All in good condition. Or, better say, I failed to publish them at geocaching.com because of the known regulation and the popular attitude "log DNF/NM and leave as is" and "if a CO cannot maintain his cache soon this cache should be archived". There are no conditions in these really remote regions to do any maintenance by myself quickly. For "Montalor" (Polar Urals) it takes at least three days of a serious hike through tundra, partially without any paths, to get to the container. No civilization at all. I didn't invent anything to suggest as a maintenance plan for our local reviwer. Moreover, if I even managed to publish this, what should I do if anyone gets there and (persuaded by what people say) just leave a "NM" log?
  2. Sometimes a geocacher logs DNF and contacts me personally. After his explanation it could be pretty clear that the cache has gone and should be disabled. One who doesn't know the situation may think that the cache was disabled after just 1 DNF and be surprised by this fact. I can think about different situation when a cache can get his only DNF by mistake - it should be logged NA because of conditions have changed dramatically. For example, a cache disappears after local powers started construction works right at that place, it is seriously guarded and the CO is not responding. I'd add there can be exclusions from this policy or we will have no geocaches in really remote places.
  3. Thank you. So, as The_Incredibles_ said, it was because of the weekly bulletin.
  4. For me English is a second language so I was especially intrigued by this thread. A bunch of new idioms like "dog bomb" and "brown word" Sorry about this comment but your discussion made me think of what could happen with logs of those cachers who know English POOrly.
  5. We celebrated Geocaching Day this August in our city with a small event (9 people attended). I organized a stroll and excursion in one of the old districts of Moscow, provided old photos of the area, explained what was here and there under tzars and in the Soviet period. Besides, I placed three simple but different puzzles on our way so participants could enjoy hunting. Our walk ended in a cafe where we spent about an hour talking about different geocaching issues. I tell this story to make clear what type of event I mean in this thread. The only major problem I had was language. There was a couple from Finland, a girl from Sweden, one guy from Germany and other were Russians. The Swedish girl had Russian origin and spoke out language fluently. The German guy had very slight accent and his Russian was just great. However the Swedish couple didn't speak Russian. Some of our Russian participants knew English poorly. I found myselft in an awkward situation. It was an excursion, not just "hello - goodbye". I spoke mostly English at first but had to stop from time to time to repeat what I just said in Russian. This was not so easy and make all our walk slower. After about 40 minutes the Swedish participants left our group (they had tickets to some sport attraction) and I continued in Russian. I understand that this situation may seem rather unusual for those who live and play geocaching mostly in the US, as well as for cachers from some countries of Western Europe where English is known by most of population. However you might have attended events (or even organized them) where not everyone could speak/understand English. How did organizers of these events solve the problem?
  6. I appreciate this. Actually, I didn't mean proposing different regulations for different purposes. My first point was to know the reason for this limitation. I'm far from calling myself an experienced user here so I hoped to get answers from other cachers. Something like "This guildeline was stipulated ... years ago because someone nicknamed TheMostUglyCacher started publishing events every time he went outdoors to walk with his dog and Groundspeak found no better decision then to impose a 2-week limit for all events". This could explain the issue. When people say "you need at least 2 weeks to organize any event properly" I still see no reason (sorry). It sounds like "you need at least 300 words to make a good cache description". My second point is if there's no other reason but to take care about the quality of organization of events then this limit could be a recommendation but not a rule. I understand however (and this discussion helped me too) that people at this forum may not support this suggestion if I post it in a proper thread "as is"; so I might think about some compromise like 1 week (as it was suggested above). Or use Facebook and other media instead.
  7. I often use my Android smartphone with Locus Free. Is Pro version worth buying from your point of view as a geocacher? (I guess you also used Free version before upgrading to Pro)
  8. I've done some small events in less then 2 weeks (including advertising). In some cases I used forums, social media, mailing lists, personal emails, website announcements, telephone calls to get people involved. Every event is specific. I can understand 2 weeks minimum as a recommendation. Frankly, I worked out similar approach when I wrote recommendations for organizing CITO events in regions (for the Russian geocaching community). However these recommendations have never been mandatory. Each CITO may be different. For instance, some communities in small cities consist only of few geocachers. They don't need to wait for any newsletter to be informed; they used to call each other by phone (because they know each other well). So, if they decide to publish an announcement of their CITO meeting next weekend, I won't be against that - and they will have a wonderful small event, small but productive and encouraging. A strict universal minumum of 2 weeks for different (uknown) events in different circumstances still seems strange to me.
  9. From my point of view, someone has enough enthusiasm and altruism to help to maintain some geocaches in his area. It's a good intention in its core. It may be easy for him since he lives nearby. A kind gesture at a little cost. Should he be stopped at his start with "No", "Don't do it", "Let them be archived" and so on? You say throwdowns, well, do you think this cacher has intention to place throwdowns? For me he doesn't look like so bad. People of that strange sort don't come to geocaching forums to politely ask for an advice before placing their micros. To me all this thread doesn't seem a "throwdown issue". Neither we can say for sure that these caches have been abandoned. Leaving a NM log is OK (if no one has done this for the cache yet). My way of further action would be "If you really like this cache consider contacting the CO and offering him your assistance". If a CO doesn't reply then it could be that the cache has been really abandoned (let it be archived) or the CO didn't value my offer. I would do nothing then. (And will most probably not trouble this person with my messages at all regarding other caches he owns). Different scenarios may lead to bringing the cache back into game or its adoption. Both variants are better in my mind then doing nothing if you have ideas, enthusiasm and are ready to help someone.
  10. I cannot take an arguement like "a good event must be prepared for no less than 2 weeks" a reasonable statement. There may be people with better organizing skills that can prepare a great event in shorter time. There may be other people who can waste three months with very poor output. Some number of events just cannot be (for different reasons) announced two weeks prior to their dates. It may be a short stroll in the city centre, or a couple of hours of nice chat in a pub, or a good hike, or a small CITO event, please add any kind of event you prefer - we all have different tastes. They won't appear at the website due to that limitation. This is what we probably loose. I believe there should be some reason for paying such price. Please explain me what is it. Few words about Facebook. Hope you pardon me if I suggest a short list. 1. "Want to organize a geocaching event? Consider Facebook". Were geocaching events at geocaching.com specifically designed for geocachers to meet and enjoy the game alltogether? 2. Not all of us (who would probably attend an event) use Facebook. 3. Local geocaching communities may have no Facebook page. 4. If they have, there could be a language barrier between you and those locals who've used that page/community for years to chat/communicate with each other. 5. It will take you additional time to get acquainted with the guidelines of the local resource before posting anything to it. (We started with the idea that we may lack time). 6. Non-members of this resource will most probably not see your event. It won't be displayed at geocaching maps or uploaded to GPS receivers/smartphones. You won't get an email notice there's a new event organized in the area. I'm not trying to speak against Facebook. Moreover, I used Facebook and geocaching.com event page simultaneously at the last CITO meeting I organized in Moscow region in June 2013. Facebook proved to be nice and efficient way of dissemination of CITO news. If I'm advised to use Facebook instead of geocaching.com to organize "short-term" events I won't argue. I will follow this advice and consider focusing on Facebook for all of my events making Facebook my first choice. Just to let people know (for sure) that they can find all information at Facebook and only part of it at geocaching.com. Why not? However, I'm still interested in finding an answer what was the true reason for that 2-week limitation.
  11. Maybe. Don't you think that this could be improved by educating people how to organize an event instead of imposing limitations that prevent them from publishing their events on the website?
  12. It was said (as far as I can see) that the caches were missing. A missing cache is not necessarily an abandoned one. I think that someone's intention to replace a missing cache should not be stopped by absolute "no!" Why don't suggest the topicstarter to contact COs instead?
  13. Geocaching.com will probably loose some points if people find that using other media is more quick/comfortable way to arrange meetings then to announce events at the website itself.
  14. So did I. But this summer I was in Helsinki and planned to go to Tallinn. Checked geocaching.com and discovered that there was an event there. Some cacher from Germany suggested locals (and all those who were interested) to meet at the central square at 19:00 on the given day. That was unusual but I came. Not many geocachers came but it was a wonderful small international meeting, very interesting conversation; then we walked to one tricky cache that we had failed to find earlier and managed to get it alltogether. That German guy said he used to announce events when traveling and made many interesting acquaintances with local geocachers. As I said, I know this way. I can even try to get through posts in Finnish or Norwegian language (that I sadly don't know), ask local administrator to let me in (if the group/forum/chat/anything is moderated) and explain people what I want. Most probably my plans won't be seen by other travelers who happen to be in the same area at the same time. I'm a pretty persistent guy who can prove that my intent is true Aren't events at geocaching.com designed for this? Your plan will not work in Russia, for instance. Again, what are the reasons for this limitation? Anyone will publish events daily to get quick smileys?
  15. Most people would say "no". Some even say "it's none of your business to maintain caches you don't own". From my point of view, it depends. Once I found a geocache that had been obviously muggled just before my visit. The container was on a bench, wide open, no logbook, no stuff. I found a pencil sharpener and an introduction note about geocaching a couple of meters away. What should I do? Leave it as it was? I gathered everything alltogether, added a logsheet, a pencil, some souvenirs and hid the cache in different location. Then I hurried to log a NM and sent a PM to the CO telling that he should pay attention ASAP. Once I found the remains of the container - some idiots had burned it. I didn't hesitate much to replace it. If I just cannot find some cache I understand clearly that this doesn't mean it has been destroyed. I lack evidencies. The best thing I can do is to contact the CO, describe the situation and ask if he/she needs assistance. Sometimes I act this way when I'm going to visit some remote places. I understand that maintenance may be rather difficult for such caches so I send messages to COs asking if they need assistance. I've been offered help of the same kind by fellow geocachers too. It also depends on whether the CO takes care or not. If I see he/she doing the job, replying messages, changing description and cache status, I see that the cache isn't abandoned so my efforts to help aren't meaningless. If such missing caches are in my area and I really like them I would definitely contact their COs and ask what they think.
  16. We had an intensive discussion on this rule within our local community. From my point of view, it's OK if a CO speaks about history, architecture, famous people who were somehow connected to the place. So to emphasize the interesting place itself, not its current commercial status. I bet we all have visited geocaches in parks where you have to pay some entrance fee. Those were devoted to parks and I see no problem with them. From my point of view (as a cache seeker) a geocache with an interesting description about some unique building where certain historical events took place is more attractive than a cache with a short description like "there's some building I cannot name due to gc.com rules, just come and enjoy". As for our local reviewer, I own a geocache in Moscow devoted to one of our famous "Stalin skyscrapers". It was a hotel from the very beginning, now it's one of Hilton hotels. My story was about how this building was constructed, what was the difference between it and other 6 skyscrapers of the same historical period, why this one was unique, people who built it, position it takes in this city district. After the reviewer declined my publication I removed the phrase "if you enter the building you can enjoy wonderful interior" because (as I understand now) it sounded like an invitation to a commercial venture. However I kept another phrase telling people that there was a Hilton hotel in this outstanding building. It was not a promotion of any commercial interest - it was a part of the history of this place. I thought that my story would sound stupid if I start cutting pieces from it. Soviet historians have done that for decades, you know. And yes, the cache was published. Of course, the hiding place was outside the building in a public area free from guards/CCTV and accessible 24/7.
  17. I've organized a couple of events at this website and numerous other events (earlier) at our national geocaching website. As we all know, an event cache should be published not later then two weeks before the date. This can be explained by letting all interested people in the area to read, think, post "will attend" logs and prepare for the event. In some situations two weeks term seems to be too long. I'm going to visit one foreign country; this will be a business trip but I'll have some time to meet local geocachers and probably hunt a couple of caches with them. However my bosses told me about the trip just few days ago so I'm unable to publish an event due to the known rule. There might be different situations when a meeting, a joint trip or a walk in a city centre with fellow geocachers cannot be announced so early. Of course it is possible to use other ways like contacting local geocaching community or write personal emails to people. My questions: - Are there any other reasons for this limitation? - Does anybody else feel uncomfortable with it? (Perhaps I'm the only one)
  18. Started in Nov 2002 but has played mostly at the national geocaching website. This is why people (generally from the US and Germany ) sometimes ask me "Hey, you're more than 10 years in this sport so why your statistics is not 5,000+?"
  19. I see no troubles marking my hosted events as attended. These are differents jobs at all. Being a long-term organizer of CITO events in my region (though most of them haven't been published at gc.com) I know for sure what is the difference. I announce a CITO event and organize it: call local authorities to inform about our plans, take care about plastic bags for garbage, prepare souvenirs for participants, regularly publish news about what's going on, answer questions, etc. Most of my fellow geocachers don't do anything of this. It's an organizational role. When it comes to cleaning the park we all come and work. This is the different job/role. I do both I definitely can say that I'm the host and I also attended this event. So, though the event is the same there are different roles. "Finding" my own geocache has nothing with it. It is still the same role - owners maintenance, not a find.
  20. I recently had an issue with a travelbug in Moscow left beside a magnetic micro. Both have fallen from their hiding place and were on the ground when I visited the cache for regular maintenance. I was lucky to find them before they were taken away by kids. (The cache was located in the yard of a living house with many muggles passing by every day). Pray don't leave any trackables in (or near, as it was in this case) caches in the downtown Moscow. There are several TB hotels at the airports, all far from the city centre, and they are better places for that purpose. The reason is not only that most geocaches in the heart of our city are micros/nanos but that the caches have been often muggled. Not many people know about the game. Not many people at the local geocaching website know about trackables. We do our best to improve this situation but it takes time. If you like to bring a trackable item to Moscow you're welcome indeed but I suggest you contact me in advance so we could meet and exchange trackables. We could arrange a meeting or probably an event and I will drop your trackables in geocaches in different, safer location or (better under such circumstances) let them visit some interesting places with me and pass them to other cachers who will travel to foreign countries so TBs may continue their ways whatever they are.
  21. Yes, this can happen to traditions.
  22. We have to replace stolen geocaches so it cannot be that "nobody notices" Do you mean that COs may say (to those who ask) that the lost caches were not stolen but muggled by accident?
  23. I don't see much trouble in such notes but I myself won't do that. Every cache is someone's job, and in many times it's something that introduced an interesting location to me (at least). So, if I know some facts that could be a nice addon to a cache description I would most probably send a PM to its owner. Frankly, I've never seen such rather specific helpful notes. However I saw many notes/logs from people who were not satisfied with something - description, difficulty/terrain ratings, etc. - complained about some difficulties/troubles they've run into, and so on. Such people usually prefer to talk in public to attract more attention to themselves. I suppose that by posting a note that I consider to be helpful I may find myself in this row.
  24. Thanks for your interest
  25. There are not so many geocachers that play at geocaching.com in Moscow. I know many of them in person and they are responsible folks that won't mix a TB with a souvenir. However there's a Russian geocaching website with about the same level of activity at Moscow geocaches published at this resource. Trackables are almost unknown in this community. There were two attempts to implement the idea of trackables at the Russian website, one with a "national branded" TBs and one with Geokrety (neither are supported at geocaching.com AFAIK). Both initiatives had very weak response. So many people still know nothing about trackables (despite my educational efforts in a Russian geocaching blog). There are several caches in Moscow that have been cross-posted to both websites so these containers could be visited by geocachers from both audiences. But it is more important that newbies at geocaching.com are mostly those who have already tried playing at the Russian website so they sometimes use their original understanding of the game when they start visiting geocaching.com caches. See, it's rather complex. Another trouble is that we have a geocaching thief here in our capital who has been active for more than a year. This is why we are worried about trackables not being left in containers in the city. There's an option to leave trackables in TB hotels that are close to airports but it looks more reasonable not to travel so far (Moscow is really a large city with crazy traffic) but pass trackables to some geocacher in the city during his/her staying in Russia. Outside Moscow the situation is not much better because there are not so many caches at all. I've placed a number of them outside Moscow but very few geocaches fit into geocaching.com strict standards. In other regions geocaching is relatively active in Saint-Petersburg, there have been no vandals there as far as I know but they have not many geocaches there too. Other regions mostly lack any geocaches.
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