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Everything posted by RenMin

  1. That's two different questions. Is it acceptable? The only governing agency, (so to speak), in this hobby is Groundspeak. They have decided that it is acceptable. The other issue, etiquette, speaks to what each of us, as individuals, believes should be done. I find an acronym only log to be mildly insulting. If I spend several months creating a hide, and someone posts a "TFTC", it feels like a letdown. Snoogans described my issue in his most excellent 'Tree of Angst' thread, pointing out that the problem is on my end, having to do with unrealistic expectations and a poorly suppressed sense of entitlement. Still, if I'm being honest with myself, these logs still bum me out. I have the same feeling. I want to read logs that tell a story of the experience. As a CO, you put some effort into developing an idea and you do look for feedback in the form of a found it log. The short logs or cut-n-paste formats, although tiresome, are the perogative of the finder, and a reflection of how they play the game. To each their own, since this is just a hobby and not a council on curing world hunger.
  2. You get the satisfaction of bringing a smile to someone's face. That's why I created mine. They loved it! The hider gets no stat for lab cache they make but they get to test out a new idea. I missed the idea on this test when I put a rough draft together and found out later I could not edit. The lab cache was no where near ready but already in its final form. I ended up just sending the keyword and link to cacher and they logged from home. Could somebody elaborate as to what a lab cache is supposes to be? My idea was really just a glorified multi so I am not sure what the difference is. I will also assume the builder was overly basic for the test and the final builder will have more options for individual design.
  3. Agreed. As a cache owner the only reward I want is knowing that people enjoyed my cache. How did you feel about the "31 Days" challenge which, at least in our area, promoted more cache placements? It seems most don't care about quality of hide and gobble up the park and grabs. A quality multi and puzzle gets little traffic compared to The magnetic GRC. I think something to "reward" COs for quality and quantity should be considered but with care so any new caches it encourages are better. I also agree that the satisfaction we get comes from finds, good logs/ feedback, and fav points.
  4. Don't worry. The rest of us can. Trolling or not the topic of Premium Only caches comes up with me from time to time with other users. I tend to us the PO feature as a way of protecting more expensive or unique containers and on all my ammo can hides. If non-members can cirmcumvent the PO feature then maybe its all for nothing. As for trackeables, I learned quickly that if you want to never see your trackeable again release it into the wild. Most of the ones I have sent out have stopped moving or have gone missing. I don't buy them anymore but do have a small collection at home. If loopholes exist than Groundspeak should close them so PO can be PO. With cache thieves abounding its the only way to help preserve good quality containers.
  5. What about CO's who place a decent cache and maybe they place many good ones? However, when they go missing they allow DNF's to pile up, somebody to post a "needs maintenance," another to post a "needs archival," and then the Admin to disable for two months, and then the Admin to archive for lack of response from CO. That irks me. Either replace or archive your own caches.
  6. I just held my thrid annual "Armada" event. They are 5-6 miles of paddling, with a stop for lunch along the way (each year with a different theme). The last two years they were along the same stretch of river (and will be from here on out) - there's a canoe camp halfway through that makes for a nice stop. It has a rope swing and a fire ring for cooking up lunch. It can be reached via a 3 mile hike as well. They have been going so well, we actually took to teh road and I held an Armada event in New Hampshire. We'll be going back next year to NH as well! I used to do simple raffles for the few prizes I give out, but that's not very fun. For some of my indoor events I use simple trivia contests, or similar things to pick winners (for trivia quizzes, I always award a prize to a random person - say, someone who only got two questions right). For the outdoor events, we do silly games live "Cookie Toss" - try to get the oreo cookie closest to a target (long storry on how that game came about), or Gator Golf (kid's game). Everyone has fun laughing at each other. I no longer hide caches for an event. I also move them to the afternoon, so people go out caching in the area, and use the event as a wrap-up to the day. Peopel just hang out, relax, and maybe have a burger. I tend to hide new ones but I understand the issue with it too. I went to an event where I stood at event GZ chatting while people came, signed in, and then hit the trails to cache. I met and chatted with maybe 50% of attendees while some I never knew even came out. The focus tends to be caching when its an area of unfound caches. Yet, you get everybody to a restaurant at night and the focus is on food and fellowship.
  7. Haff a lie down on meinen couch und vee see vat der problem ist. I tink you suffer a common phenomena een US - Ordinarius Neurosis. In otter verds you tink you efent not EXTREME enoff. You media ist vul of EXTREME dis und SONTAG! SONTAG! SONTAG! dot. Ach, Du lieber! Sie muss nicht giff in to das Monster Kool-aid or Rot Bull getrinken! Juss remember, iz how irhe guests enjoy themzelfs ist was gematter most! Nichts mit das fretzen un geworryink. Relaxen un watchen das log signen und Eventen unfolden. I think you hit the nail on the head. Me thinks I need to be more extreme, develop an intricate game or activity, when most seem to just enjoy sitting, chatting, and getting to know their fellow cachers. A friend long ago taught me the K.I.S.S method (Keep It Simple Stupid). It seems that is good advice for an event too. In fact, I enjoy the simple act of direct communication with cachers I know and those I don't.
  8. Looking to pick the collective brains of all who surf these pages. I have done a handful of events and I seem to be in rut as to the structure. They seem to go well; people have a good time chatting and stuff but how can on make an event stand out? So what events have you attended that really were amazing or included a creative ideas to pass the time? What makes an event memorable for you? Is it just hanging out chatting or does it involve planned activities?
  9. Yeah, I guess I should relay the story. While in appeals I decide to call the city and speak with somebody about the cache (after being transferred several times). They love the idea and give me verbal permission to place exactly where I want to; near the bridge structure, and in the city park. I attach his name and contact info to the listing with a note about our conversation and enable the cache. The reviewer archives stating that, "even with permission" he/she will not publish. Keep in mind this baby is in appeals while it was archived. This begs the questions about the power of permission. The next week I hear back from HQ about the appeal and they ask me to secure "written permission" before they publish. Ok. I call the city again, speak to my contact, he cooks up a letter for the mayor to sign. The letter states I have permission to place cache and they wish me good luck. I get the letter in the mail the next week, copy it, and send it to HQ. The cache is unarchived but before it publishes I need to attach a note to the listing stating how I got special permission to place. I enable and get the publish. So, yes, I get the cache up and running but no, the issues at the heart of the appeal are not openly disussed. The appeal process only worked to ensure I would hold full liability if this cache goes sour. In all fairness this process has only ensured the safety of the placement but I don't see the same concern and standard being upheld across our local geo landscape. If it was and other CO's, on similar hides, were put through the same paces, I would have not issue. Two questions for consideration: Is permission all you need to get a cache published? Does it "trump" guidelines or allow them to be bent a bit? Should any action be taken against a disabled cache in the appeals process?
  10. 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? I mean you quietly replace the cache or archive it without any mention of why. I agree. Ignore the post and replace container. Although not a full-proof plan and in an attempt to thwart theft, I usually do the following: (1) Don't mention ammo can or type of container in writing in cache listing. (2) Make the cache premium only (3) Keep ammo cans and such as final in multi or puzzle cache Would love to hear if anybody has other ideas too.
  11. I agree that the reviewers hesitancy here only ensures a safer placement. However, when permission is obtained and the reviewer still doesn't publish makes you wonder. One would think that obtaining permission by a landowner or government body overseeing/ managing land would be a slam dunk pubish. But again, kicking this one back to appeals ensures a higher level of safety. Also keep in mind that reviewers rely on the information given by CO. If they mislead or hold back on details, i.e, school grounds, then the reviewer may publish without knowledge. Does that explain a cache I attempted this year that is actually under a bridge wedged between rocks and the bridge wall?
  12. That's great to hear. See, it wasn't that bad. Yeah, I thought that getting permission was a slam dunk publish. My reviewer thinks otherwise and archived the listing. Still in appeals too.
  13. I must eat crow here for starting a discussion that may not have been necessary. Just got off the phone with the City of Rensselaer and they are in favor of this cache placement. They want all the information about the cache with my contact information and I am free to place. I did not expect this response (and maybe that is why I didn't call to start). Permission to place goes a long way. Hope to see this one up and running by next week.
  14. Nor does it make it an automatic denial. The access to this area by the public includes cachers too. It would not look weird or concerning for somebody to be around GZ, but completely normal. One of the purposes of the bridge restriction is to prevent caches from being placed where the public is not allowed and presence of people would raise red flags. This applies to most bridges but not here. The cache was hidden with ease in mind so cachers would find it quickly and be on their way. No lingering or extended searches. Secondly, if the reviewer suggested I call local PD prior to publish I would have, but they denied it solely on the bridge restriction. Either publish the cache as is or rewrite the bridge guideline to include this type of situation. Currently, and in my opinion, this cache fulfills requirements for publish. Again, just my opinion. I think you are missing the rationale of the guidelines. It is not prevent caches where the public is not allowed. There are other guidelines (permission) that address this issue. It is not to address issues where simply the presence of people would raise red flags. Rather it addresses the concerns over what would happen should someone not aware of geocaching either find the container or see people acting in what they perceive to be a suspicious manner. Any cache, anywhere, can result in someone calling the authorities to report something suspicious. If the cache is in a location where the authorities are likely to take a report of a suspicious package or suspicious activity more seriously then this is not a good location for a cache. It's hard to draw a line in the sand about what locations are taken more seriously, however highway bridges over bodies of water that are also use as major shipping and transportation routes would seem to qualify. If in fact you believe the authorities in this area would not shut down the highway and the river to trafic while investigating a report of a suspicious package or or activity near the bridge, then make your case that this location is not what the guidelines address. I agree that "any cache, anywhere, can result in someone calling the authorities." In fact, I have one not far from here (Decked Out) that was removed after somebody saw a man put something on the deck of the local eatery. The police responded to call and removed cache. The only thing was the cache was placed with permission. The owner apologized for not telling all her staff about the cache and I replaced it. It has been in place without incident ever since. Bridge, no bridge if the authorities are called they will remove cache. I do agree that the presence of the bridge structure makes this placement a bit unique. However, the size of the cache and the ease of finding it will reduce the likelihood of the authorities being called. Secondly, the park itself has been open and operational for many, many years so the pedestrian flow is, again, expected. If this area of the park was deemed a sensitive area to authorities I would have thought they would have closed it off years ago. They havn't and it remains to this day a place to view the Hudson or drop a fishing line by the locals. I have submitted case for appeal and if it is rejected I will move cache and resubmit. I think, at least, it is worthy of this process. We shall see.
  15. Nor does it make it an automatic denial. The access to this area by the public includes cachers too. It would not look weird or concerning for somebody to be around GZ, but completely normal. One of the purposes of the bridge restriction is to prevent caches from being placed where the public is not allowed and presence of people would raise red flags. This applies to most bridges but not here. The cache was hidden with ease in mind so cachers would find it quickly and be on their way. No lingering or extended searches. Secondly, if the reviewer suggested I call local PD prior to publish I would have, but they denied it solely on the bridge restriction. Either publish the cache as is or rewrite the bridge guideline to include this type of situation. Currently, and in my opinion, this cache fulfills requirements for publish. Again, just my opinion.
  16. I decided to take Mr. Yucks advice and submit this issue for an appeal. I feel it is an exception and should be given special consideration. I have given them and the reviewer all the information and have not sugarcoated it to make it look better. We shall see. I also may contact the local police and let them know (if I get a publish) about placment.
  17. Appreciate the discussion here but I think the moral of the story is to lean on the side of caution. A spot in park away from bridge structures is being looked at as an alternative.
  18. I feel I have a good understanding of the listing requirements and restrictions. I completely understand the issue with bridges and putting caches on or near bridges. To the passerby, people searching under a bridge look suspicious especially if they are pulling off or putting something on it. However, in my neck of the woods there is a city park with walking paths, boat docks, basketball courts, softball courts that lies directly under a bridge structure (Rensselaer, Ny: Rensselaer Riverfront Park). Part of this park requires the public, if they want to enjoy, to walk under or near bridge structures in certain parts of the park. So my question is if you want to place a cache in this park does the bridge restriction apply if the cache is within the park boundaries and doesn't incorporate the bridge or structures of the bridge in its location? Am I missing something here? This in response to my local reviewer not publishing a cache in this park due to the bridge restriction.
  19. Maybe they are busy learning cop stuff? And how many hours of each shift should they dedicate to being proactive about a nerdy hobby? Should each cop on the planet be given a premium membership, with auto notifications set to their patrol areas? I'm thinking Groundspeak would balk at that. But let's pretend hat they don't. Poof! Every cop, all 80 gazillion of them, now have access to the location of every traditional. Will Groundspeak also fund sufficient education, so the cops who access this data know what it means? I figure a couple hours in the classroom would suffice. Multiply that by 80 gazillion, and you have a significant expenditure. But again, to satisfy your fantasy, let's pretend that Groundspeak does pay for this, and continues to pay as new officers are hired. What about non traditionals? Should Groundspeak grant Secret Squirrel Reviewer powers to all 80 gazillion cops, so they know the final coordinates of these as well? If an officer is called to a suspicious object, on private property, showing up and asking questions is not harassment. Who removed it? Because cops are psychic... I can understand your responses but I feel I need to elaborate. Local law enforcement, whether they like it or not, are pulled into the hobby when they see somebody acting a bit "odd." Most cachers have stories of being asked what they are doing by police. One that asked me smiled when I told him, and said his wife had tried it with his kids. I realize they have better things to do than inform themselves on a hobby but such knowledge might prove useful if they are called to check out a suspicious object. Knowledge of cache placements may help them understand their community and what people are doing where. I guess "harassment" was a strong word but the point I was trying to make is if a cache is placed on federal property without permission it can and should be dealt with directly through Groundspeak. That would save the trouble of turning the occasional cacher around every time they come out to search. Immediate archival without question. I had heard (not sure if true) that Groundspeak will give free accounts to local law enforcement so as to keep tabs on placements. Not that every cop would have an account but departments would have ability to check out caches in their area. Not suggesting training but just awareness. So when a 50 year old man pops out of the woods near a soccer field and mentions geocaching, the officer has a clue of what that means. or when a 38yo man is found climbing a tree in a park that same can be true.
  20. I have mixed feelings regarding this scenario. With the increased popularity of caching and subsequent public awareness why does law enforement still seem ignorant about caches and their placements? Why do they seem not to have a proactive approach and thus learn where caches are being placed in any given community? For the most part we are a harmless community of people. Instead of harrassing people why not ask for a cache to be archived? I placed a cache at a local eatery, with permission, and the police were still called and the cache was removed. In my opinion they should have already known it was there.
  21. Very interesting. I was sure NY wasn't the first to have parks departments get involved but wasn't sure just how many states are doing it too. This is good to hear.
  22. Here are other reasons you seem to have missed: 1) There is programming work required. The fact that I executed an SQL query to count the attributes in your area has NOTHING to do with the extra programming needed. Your statement "Your PQ kinda makes my point" speaks volumes. With all the current issues that are outstanding for the website, the mobile apps, and the API, any programming dedicated to such a miniscule part of the caching environment is wasted time. One small such item: getting corrected coordinates passed to the GPS automatically via all access methods. 2) The new icon would add nothing to the hobby. Please defend your statement it would stimulate interest without discussing icon collecting. Describe other benefits to having an additional icon. They are already searchable by the attribute, so what else does the new icon offer. And with a PQ you can see them on a map to see if there are any nearby. 3) Any icon change would also impact all the other applications that connect to GS via the API. Even more programming work. 4) Beacon caches are just like kayak caches, technical climbing caches, diving caches to name but a few: Each can all be an unknown cache, a traditional cache, or a multi-cache. If the cache owner places a Chirp on on an unknown cache what icon does it get? How about a difficult puzzle cache that also has a chirp at GZ? Many (most?) do not include unknown caches in their general PQs because they often require advance work before going to the field. A Chirp may or may not require preliminary work but with the new icon you can't tell. This would be an improvement? 5) Even the developer of Chirp does not have a unique icon. 6) Icons are not in place to sell equipment. Your statement "That limitation should push users to acquire the gear to enjoy the cache" is exclusive instead of inclusive. (And I'm trying to be polite here.) I think I have only done two Chirp caches and both have offered alternate ways to find them. 7) To place the icon on the map requires the cacher to spend money to buy a special device. Almost like requiring a finder to visit a commercial site to find a cache. 8) A restatement of 1). There just aren't enough such caches to justify the suggestion nor the time and effort to implement it. I have neither sought them out nor avoided them but have encountered only 2 in over 1200 visits. I'm sure there are others that I have overlooked. This is the kind of input I was looking for and yet this thread did go off on Letterboxing. (1) Regarding the programming work, please understand (or maybe you already figured it out), I am not a programmer but can't imagine constructing a new icon is all that complex or expensive. GS can speak to that if they even consider this idea. (2) I am not sure I am suggesting this new icon would "do something for the hobby" but it would merely separate out technology (very much like the Wherigo) into its own category. Most (that have posted here) seem to think an attribute is all that is needed. (3) Again, I wouldn't consider programming work an obstacle since that is the job of GS to streamline the website, and make updates when new applications arise. Only GS can speak to how easy or difficult that would be and whether it is worth the effort. (4) I understand other gear can cause restrictions to the caching experience. I am talking only about the chirp since it was designed for caching to direct the caching experience. It the idea of this new icon takes shape (which it is not or GS would have handled my inquiry differently) the guidelines for a chirp cache would be developed like the others already have. A chirp to me would be an IP where the chirp is and then the chirp directs you from there. No advance work required. Don't you feel the Wherigo is a great arguement for this idea? Chirp tech is very similar in that a GPS application is required. (5) Icon would be for caches that use the Chirp to get to the final. Not sure what is meant by, "developer doesn't have own icon." Chirp + Cache = icon on GS for cachers to download and search out. (6) This could be a true conflict as I am not sure of the legal implications of GS promoting a tech only developed by one company. Either way people will still buy the chirp and are buying the chirp to include in caches. I myself will soon buy a chirp and put it out. In my area we have about 6-8 chirps. The three I have done have all worked flawlessly (so far). I agree though that this could be considered an exclusive deal with Garmin and thus not doable. (7) Icon or no icon special gear will be purchased by the cacher who enjoys the hobby. If not for caching I would not have purchased three GPS units to date (all Garmin). The reason for the third purchase was for the chirp and Wherigo, better maps, etc.. I am soon to purchase a kayak (borrowing for now). Either way cachers will be pushed to purchase new gear. They will want the gear to maximize enjoyment and caching options. (8) I disagree. My area has a growing amount. Not the most common, don't get me wrong. The tech itself is directing the idea not the volume of caches using the tech to date. Once in icon form it will see some growth. I have sought them out and was delighted when I got a GPS that could read them.
  23. Title should read: State Involvement in Caching For the second year now several NYS parks in upstate NY have entered the caching fray. Inside the department is apparently a geocache fan so they got the parks involved. Recently they published fifty caches scattered amongst historical sites and state parks with a challenge attached. Does anybody know of other state entities are getting involved in geocaching? Companies? And what are your thoughts? It seems like very good press for the hobby and opens up areas to caches that may have been closed or required permits. This current challenge spreads from Albany to Saratoga to Lake Placid.
  24. It seems this thread has digressed into a discussion on Letterbox hybrids. I am not sure why some are adverse to the idea of a new icon. The only reason I can see why the chirp should not be its own icon may relate to a legal restriction. Since it is a Garmin product and nobody has a similar product. However, giving it icon status may encourage other manufacturers to develop other geo ideas. Others are afraid of a an icon proliferation but the icons are controlled by GS. The current icons, at least in my area, are not overproduced by underproduced, save the traditional. I still vote for the chirp to be separated out into its own icon. The main arguement relates to the Wherigo and the similarities of the tech guiding the cache experience. Anyhew, I would consider this thread closed as most have weighed in. Now to purchase a chirp and put out a puzzle cache chirp of my own.
  25. I don't think cross-listing is a requirement for letterbox hybrid caches. My letterbox hybrid wasn't cross-listed. Nor is mine. It is not required, merely suggested. Curiously, it is my second most found cache, and second most favorited. (Well. It is in a popular tourist spot, and has a different icon.) More oddly, my most found and favorited is my Webcam cache. Oh, well. Makes up for my evil mystery caches, and long hikes. But to OP: Unknown is the catch-all category for caches that do not fit into another category. Chirp fits in well there. I've hunted two chirps. One was weak. The other was dead. A very minimal hide category. And limited to certain users. (Oh! That's true of Where-did-I-go caches too.) No. I do not see the need for a new icon. They're dying out. Let them die. Appreciate your input. But many caches are designed with limitations if you don't have the gear, i.e. kayak caches, spelunking, space, Wherigo (already mentioned), chirp, very, very difficult puzzles, etc.. That limitation should push users to acquire the gear to enjoy the cache. Whether thats getting a gps that can do Wherigo and Chirp, buying a kayak, or learning how to spelunk. That is one of the better aspects of the hobby. In my opinion a Puzzle cache shouldn't require special gear to complete save your home computer, gps, and some brain power. Consideration should be given to any new tech that directs the caching experience like Wherigo does, and separated out into its own icon. The glut of icons some are afraid doesn't hold true in my area which has many, many traditionals, followed by puzzles, multis but very few Letterboxes, Wherigos, and Earthcaches. It seems to me that many icons are underutilized. Ultimately GS determines what stays and goes and thus keeps the map from being filled with too many senseless icons. The Chirp, I feel, would not be one of them.
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