Jump to content


+Premium Members
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by CondorTrax

  1. Lil Devil... thanks... sometimes it's all about the timing...
  2. One of the most useful macros I use is the EmailReader by Red Roo. This new email format effectively makes that tool useless. Now it's updating GSAK one email at a time (unless I'm missing something).
  3. Kind of reminds me of Old Coke vs New Coke. Moral of the story, Ground Speak: listen to your customers!
  4. I really do hope GS is reviewing this thread and considering the ramifications. It's been posted a few times that GS will not get involved in local or regional squabbles; that it's up to those groups to figure it all out. My contention, however, is that GS is being invoked, via Geocaching, by NNJC as NNJC being the de facto governing body in NJ with respect to approving caches in parks (be they National, State, County, etc). It appears that it would be up to NNJC to determine cache placement. The issue, however, is that it's up to GS through their review process which determines cache placement, I have been led to believe, and not a sub-authority. The logic being that GS should determine if in fact NNJC has the charter to do what they're proposing in their plan. Moreover, that the outright manipulation of the Park Admins to be their coercive element in making sure that plan is enacted is a tactic which GS would support, as has been demonstrated and implemented, by NNJC.
  5. These are geotrails. By concept, a series of caches along a well maintained trail, fairly easy terrain where caches are placed along historic, significant, or interesting spots highlighting an attribute, fact or trivia. Think of it as a guided tour where smilies are picked up along the way. At the conclusion you submit some sort of proof (a passport or check book) etc whereby you get a pathtag from the park office. The idea is there. The execution and sacrificing of someone's existing work is where it fails. Secondly, from the article, and this may be presumptuous of me, but it does appear as if NNJC is approaching the parks rather than as claimed by NNJC, that NNJC was approached by land managers to kill any and all existing caches. This is where clarity is being muddied for the sake of an agenda.
  6. This article was just posted on the "NNJC Free Speech Zone" FB page. May allow for insight on NNJC's plans for caching in NJ. I removed the link which contained names and personal contact details: ____________________________________________ Article from NJ350 "(Name Redacted) President NNJC August 12, 2013 at 5:53 pm NJ350 offers a perfect opportunity to celebrate and showcase New Jersey’s rich history and heritage by launching a New Jersey Historic Geocaching Geotrail. Geocaching Geotrails combines both physical and education components as it connect today’s technology with the outdoors, all while learning about many educational aspects to spotlight New Jersey. A New Jersey Geocaching Geotrail program will bring folks closer to its rich history; builds a sense of community pride; and get folks engaged with the New Jersey’s heritage by exploring many historic locations throughout the State. A New Jersey Geocaching Geotrail offers many benefits to folks of all ages, from kids to retirees, families, teachers, scouts, corporate team building, and many outdoor groups. Geotrails connect today’s technology by researching and teaching about the Historic location and educational aspects. Then, gets folks outdoors to see these locations combined with getting outdoors and exercise, all while they explore and learn about the historic location. Also, the communities all benefit too by bringing folks to their locations. NJ Geotrail Themes: As New Jersey is known as “New Jersey’s Crossroads of the American Revolution”, we propose to launch: ~ The “Crossroads of the American Revolution Geotrail”. This Geocaching geotrail can be located across New Jersey to feature important “Crossroads” locations from Fort Lee to Trenton. There are other future Geotrails ideas that can also be addressed: ~ New Jersey Lighthouse Geotrail, ~ Morris/DR Canal Geotrail, spotlighting New Jersey’s historic canals. ~ NJ Native American Cultural history About Geocaching: Geocaching is a modern day treasure hunt; it serves as a powerful information tool by spotlighting tourism, environmental and historic locations throughout the world. Today many Geocaching organization partner with National parks, nature conservancy groups, State, county, local organizations to promote many programs. This year, the Smithsonian in DC included new geocaching programs into their museum system, as geocaching has become a mainstream activity. Who we are: We are the Northern New Jersey Cachers, (NNJC) a non-profit organization and leading authority on Geocaching throughout New Jersey. NNJC supports and partners with many organizations to teach and present quality geocaching programs. Some of our current clients where we have put on programs; Essex, Morris, Somerset, Sussex Counties, Jefferson, Franklin, Chester, Denville Townships, NJ Conservation Foundation, Great Swamp Watershed Association, Harding Land Trust, Audubon at Scherman Hoffman wildlife Sanctuary, and Duke Farm Foundation. NNJC installed an historic Geotrail at the Duke Farm Foundation in 2012, and we are currently working on new Geotrails at Franklin townships Griggstown Preserve for fall 2013 and at NJ State owned Waterloo Village in 2014. These trails are historic and educational, spotlighting the area history and will develop tourism by getting folks engaged in exploring the outdoors again. Geotrails are not new in fact many states have seen the benefits of these Geotrails for years. Here are some examples below, click on these links and explore these wonderful Geotrail benefits: http://www.visitdelaware.com/geo/ http://www.civilwargeotrail.wv.gov/about/Pages/default.aspx http://friendsofchesapeakegateways.org/projects/ssb_geotrail/ http://www.alleghenygeotrail.com/ http://www.seawaytrail.com/geotrail/ http://amishtrail.com/geotrail http://www.smithtrail.net/ Geotrail Reward: Completing a Geotrail usually offer a reward of a geocoin, a sought after token and keepsake of the adventure. Many folks will travel from surrounding States to complete the Geotrail to receive their geocoin. These custom geocoins can be designed to reflect the message of the Geotrail, for example a New Jersey Crossroads of the American Revolution coin can depict a Patriot or historic state house. Implementation: If the “New Jersey Crossroads of the American Revolution” Geotrail theme is chosen for a Geotrail then we can develop a placement plan of geocaches at various approved locations from anywhere in New Jersey to showcase NJ’s Revolutionary War history, from Fort Lee, Monmouth Battlefield to Trenton. Geocaches can be simple and non intrusive depending on the location. As example National Parks are currently off limits for actual geocaching, but at Fort McHenry in Md. they approved a simple logbook at the visitor center whereas visitors seeking the “geocache” go inside and ask the Park Ranger for the logbook and sign their visit. A similar situation can be presented at Jockey Hollow National Park. Other historic locations can be a small container, depending on the location. Many NJ parks already have geocaches, including Monmouth battlefield which has many geocaches placed there. We can work on a plan to replace these and add new ones as we see fit. NJ State involvement: We would like the NJ geortail to be sponsored and supported by NJ State. (see the links of other States provided above). We would work together to determine locations and how many geocaches to be placed for the Geotrail. Also, the logistics when the Geocacher who completes the trail, how to receive their geocoin, usually at a state office. We have already met with the Crossroads of the American Revolution organization in Trenton and they are excited about the prospect to showcase these important NJ locations. We propose to develop a committee to develop the Geotrail with NJ350. Brochure: Most State Geotrails offer a brochure or printable brochure with the locations, with a clue inside each location. When folks complete the geotrail they submit their brochure with the completed clues so the office knows they completed the geotrail. This can be something simple like a letter inside each of the geotrail caches the geocacher need to obtain. As example, inside each of the 11 Duke Farm Foundation geocaches are letters, once they person obtains the individual letters they must unscramble them to reflect a theme which spells STEWARDSHIP. See DFF’s Geotrail information: http://www.dukefarms.org/en/Visit/Plan-Your-Visit/Geocaching/ Program Planning information: Identify your team. NNJC has an officer team in place with the abilities to successfully complete the planned geotrail program. NNJC has Geocaching members throughout the state who will act as consultants who can handle local logistics, throughout implementation. Develop a budget. Estimate depending on quantity of geotrail geocaches, geocoins, and website promotion. Estimate: $3000 – $5000. We are submitting a NJ350 State Grant application to hopefully cover these expenses. Perhaps underwriting by NJ dept of Tourism or other groups. Identify your partners. NNJC already had many land managers throughout the state, from State, county, and local parks where geocachers can be placed. There are many NJ historic locations which have geocaches or new geocaches placed for the geotrail. NJ350’s sponsor Crossroads of the American Revolution will be a great addition at the program. Identify your audiences. The audience that a Geocaching.com geotrail will reach is endless. It will engage multi-ethnic and multi-generational folks from kids to retirees. Develop a marketing plan. All the NJ Geotrail locations will be listed on Geocahing.com, we will also promote the Geotrail on NNJC.org, NNJC Facebook as well as a new Geotrail website. (see other state’s links above for website promotion ideas.) Develop a reasonable schedule for planning and implementation. We feel that from a planning to implementation will take 3-4 months to determine locations and cache placement logistics. Develop clear lines of communication inside and outside your planning team. The NNJC team and Geocaching community will be informed of the progress of the project, via many social communications: NNJC.org website, e-mail, Facebook, and twitter. Include a qualified historian on your planning team for history programs. NNJC members cover many qualified folks from teachers to law enforcement. We will reach out to folks at The Crossroads of the American Revolution to discuss the Heritage sites in NJ as potential locations and get their insight. Plan for evaluation Evaluation and data will be collected by reviewing each Historic location’s geocache log (online) as folks visit each site they write a log, this data will capture the number of folks visiting the site, their experiences, what their perspective, and a way to communicate back for any survey. Summary We at NNJC feels New Jersey needs to join what many other States already are experiencing with offering a State Geotrail program. The benefits are unlimited, from increasing NJ tourism, education, exploring the outdoors, exercise and promote all the New Jersey has to offer. Geocaching is a great family outing that takes you on an adventure to discover new places and learn about things you never thought you would learn about. It gives you a purpose to take a drive to a destination you would not normally know about, adds some excitement and adventure to your trip as you learn and explore a previously unexplored area. It give you a connection to the history and environment as you get back to nature, find those special places and create stories along the way. Our NNJC team would be happy to meet with NJ350 to give a presentation on Geocaching in general and discuss a plan to implement New Jersey’s Crossroads of the American Revolution Geotrail. Please feel free to contact me with any questions, (Name Redacted) President Northern New Jersey Cachers ~ NNJC.org" ----------------------------- This is the thinking that most bothers me: "Many NJ parks already have geocaches, including Monmouth battlefield which has many geocaches placed there. We can work on a plan to replace these and add new ones as we see fit. " Who is "we"?
  7. NNJC President has been a vocal advocate of caches that bring people someplace interesting and evocative. I've done many of Old Navy's traditionals and multis and have always been impressed with their placement and work that has gone into making them an adventure. Some of my earliest cache finds were his in Lord Stirling park. He does not like the park-and grab, lamp-post, urban micro in a pine-tree, experience. Nor is he a big fan of difficult puzzles that appeal to a narrow caching sector. Their attempt to create a better experience at the expense of others is at the core. My humble suggestion is for them to continue the individuality they have been so applauded for, but not to impose that individuality onto others. And certainly not condemn an existing cache to Archive-land because it doesn't apply.
  8. Compilation cache; a challenge cache is something totally different. Apologies for mis-labeling. This is the listing for the "Central Jersey Checkpoint Challenge": http://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC1NJAZ_cjcc-central-jersey-checkpoint-challenge?guid=80def225-0b10-4a1e-9b98-70cb0f9bc963 As you can appreciate, it wasn't a "simple" traditional, but one that affected 25 other placements. I'm belaboring the point, but I again ask why NNJC couldn't accommodate it's existence knowing it was part of a larger scope?
  9. Compilation cache; a challenge cache is something totally different. Apologies. Here's the cache listing that had to be archived. http://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC1NJAZ_cjcc-central-jersey-checkpoint-challenge?guid=80def225-0b10-4a1e-9b98-70cb0f9bc963 As you can appreciate, it wasn't a "simple" traditional, but one that affected 25 other placements. I'm belaboring the point, but I again ask why NNJC couldn't accommodate it's existence knowing it was part of a larger scope?
  10. As far as Griggstown is concerned: There were 6 or so caches in the park having been there for almost 6 years. One of those was a final to a regional challenge cache. NNJC went in there and apparently convinced the land managers that they had a better vision of how to place caches. In looking over the "plan" the existing caches were in the way of the meticulous 528' grid that would have 28 new caches placed. Why the existing caches couldn't co-exist is still a point of contention. It's not like the land manager could have distinguished one from another. From what I gathered, the existing caches didn't have the theme associated with the new placements, therefore, they had to be force-archived. Under the guise of "land manager demands your caches must be removed", the cache owner was sent a note demanding their removal. The gist here is that NNJC didn't collaborate with the CO and land-manager to have a way to manage the new and existing; it was simpler to vacate what had been established and popular caches. The concept is idyllic; the execution is Draconian. NNJC's policy and plan is to extend this model to other parks and across the state. It isn't hearsay. This link is for an interview given by NNJC President on the opening of the Griggstown trail. http://franklinreporter.com/2013/10/28/high-tech-scavenger-hunt-launched-griggstown-grassland-preserve/ Again, the concept is a good one. What's needed is more collaboration with the COs and not the statement of direction to force-archive that which doesn't meet their agenda. As far as KVSP, we havent seen the new caches. They are to be published to coincide with the Caching Through The SNow #10 event this Sunday (12/10). However, there are over 200 active caches in the park. 7 had to be force-archived to make room for those being introduced Sunday (the Genesis of this issue). There were possibly another 6 which were voluntarily archived. That is, the CO was either a board member or close friend.
  11. I saw a post on the NNJC facebook page from that moderator, saying that folks could come here to the Groundspeak Forums and rant all they want. I got a good laugh out of that. For the most part, posts by New Jersey geocachers such as CondorTrax have been thoughtful and in line with our forum guidelines. A few isolated instances -- two of which involved geocachers from outside the area -- were dealt with by the moderating team here. This kept the thread from spinning out of control into "rant" territory. I hope everyone would agree that a moderated discussion is better than a deleted discussion. I found this thread to be very good and thoughtful reading. I am especially happy that the New Jersey participants seemed to appreciate the suggestions made by OReviewer, myself and other Geocaching volunteers and forum community members about better ways to approach situations like this. Thanks for the comment. We try....
  12. While several reviewers have posted to this thread, expressing displeasure about how everything transpired, it is quite a different matter to ask a reviewer to take sides when it comes to publication. If the caches were submitted at least 10 days in advance of the event date, and if the caches meet the listing guidelines, then I'd expect the reviewer to publish them. So would any other cache owner. You are misinterpreting the listing guidelines. There's nothing wrong with hiding new permanent caches timed to coincide with an event date. The guidelines guard against placing temporary caches for events, and also guard against events that are organized solely for the purpose of hunting caches. (So long as there's even a flash-mob length meeting where geocachers can socialize, there's a socializing purpose -- otherwise flash mob events would not be published.) I stand corrected. Thank you for the clarification.
  13. I had to clear the air and bring the issues back to center. So I posted the comments below on the "NNJC Free Speech Zone" Facebook page we created as a way to freely express and move the conversation forward. NNJC President(name redacted): Clearly you and "the board" voted to keep me off. Can't speak for (name redacted). I want you to state for the record why I was kicked off? What is the policy and justification? You appointed (name redacted)as your moderator and he claims the reason for banning me, under your leadership, was because I was ranting and need to cool off. I don't see my name anywhere on the 2 screen-shots. Remember, (name redacted) purged me when I posted the GS forum thread the second time. I thought FB burped and couldn't believe, subsequently, that I had been purged and then blocked As (name redacted) claims, he sent me an explanation and apology....Show me where an explanation or apology was delivered to me justifying the expulsion. Since this selective banning issue is one of the core problems, I believe the NNJC community at large deserve a response. Really shouldn't take very long. The 2 screen-shots are the evidence. Reconciliation, in my view, can only really begin when things like this are put out for all to evaluate. Those that know me know I'm not a hot-head, although my Latin passion and temper do come to the surface. I have not been the cacher I once was due to personal reasons. Those that know me know. But that does not excuse ANYONE from curtailing my ability and right to express and communicate. The actions taken by (name redacted) and his leadership are inexcusable. Yes, it's OUR FB page... we should demand more from the appointed board and not back-room decisions. Not sure who voted or just shrugged their shoulders and said, "yeah ok you're in again", but accountability should be demanded of anyone in a position of leadership. This is going to get me in trouble with (name redacted){caching wife}... but then again gotta express it. For those who simply want caches to go out and log at the expense of what happens, that's wonderful, enjoy. But, when those that have a mandate to improve, educate and progress fail on that core mission and are a law unto themselves, you are not being appropriately represented. More than likely, your "board" has voted to keep me out. If that's OK with you then I'll live with it. This is a game. I can still cache. But keep in mind that what happened to me and others can also happen to you. Your cache will be force-archived, your voice and tongue will be smothered. You will be unwelcome at events and activities... but as long as there's a cache out there you may shrug and say "oh well, doesn't affect me". It does. Each time you now see an Archive notice you'll take a closer look to see who got archived, where and why. When you see a comment on your FB page prefaced by, "I hope this gets approved to post", or "this will probably get deleted", or you have to self-censor your comment so you don't offend "the board", or you look at someone's post and wonder "oh boy, cant believe he/she got away with that"... you're affected. So, bringing this back and tying a nice bow on it.... (name redacted)NNJC President.... I ask you and the board again.... justify.
  14. Normally I assume that there's more to a story like this, so I've been waiting for someone, friend or foe, to present the other side. But at this point, the fact that no one has is starting to make me think there really isn't one. The most your going to get for the moment is the response the president of NNJC posted on their FB page defending the policy of force-archiving for the greater good. Has to be on one of the first 2 pages. I posted it so look for my avatar. Found it. Here's the full commentary: "From (redacted) - President of NNJC Placing a geocache is a privilege not a right. NNJC has been contacted and partnering with many Land Managers to assist with Geocaching programs. Our goals are to work with these land manager to install quality educations geocaches so these managers can utilize their parks for interpretative and educational programs. This benefit many parks goals to bring public awareness into their parks and introduce geocaching. In the last year NNJC has worked with Morris County Park, Duke Farm Foundation, Franklin township and Kittatinny Valley State Park, just to name a few to assist and develop successful programs for many to enjoy. unfortunately, there are times when an existing cache that had been placed in their park must be removed to make room for the Park Managers new program. We must understand all Park Managers have full responsibility and final word on what is placed inside their park. This is a tough situation, by NNJC's partnering with the parks, we have assisted these park managers and reached out to our NJ community on the park managers behalf to ask the CO's to archive their caches. We are fortunate that most of our geocaching community understand that NNJC is making the request on behalf of the park manager. This is to avoid the Park Manager having to contact geocaching HQ to make the official request. The Geocaching policy states: Please note that the list is not exhaustive; there are many reasons why a cache may be disabled or archived. 1.If your cache is reported by the land owner or land manager as being an unwanted intrusion, Groundspeak will respect the wishes of the land owner or manager. In the case of public property, permission can often be obtained from the agency or association that manages the land. Worldwide, there are many such agencies and organizations that regulate geocaching on their managed land. As the cache owner you are responsible for determining who to contact to obtain permission. Even if you are certain that geocaching is permitted on particular public property, ensure that you have followed any and all requirements established by the land owner or land management agency before placing the cache. There may be locations in which cache hides are inappropriate, even though not prohibited by local laws. If Groundspeak is contacted and informed that your cache has been placed inappropriately, your cache may be temporarily disabled or permanently archived. It is unfortunate that some CO's simply do not understand that placing a geocache is a privilege not a right. Months ago NNJC was in discussion with Kittatinny Valley State Park (KVSP) about installing a interpretative and educational program along their main trail, their park is saturated with caches and they felt it was time to take back some controls of the park, also decided it was be an added benefit for KVSP's geocaching program to launch their new educational trail with NNJC's CTTS event. KVSP has advertised this event with the local media to promote their park. NNJC has assisted with this program, and contacted CO's about this new rail and ask on behalf of KVSP to archive their caches. Most have achieved, but one CO refused to abide by the request, it then took more official KVSP park manager's requests to finally have these caches archived by the CO. KVSP had contacted geocaching HQ and they were in the process of archiving the requested caches. unfortunately this individual has now decided to complain and rally geocachers against KVSP and NNJC. NNJC goals have been to promote geocaching for the good of everyone, we are working with many park managers from State, County and Townships all to help promote geocaching programs. With the growth of geocaching and park cache saturation, many parks want to take back control and current caches may have to be removed. Morris County and NJ State are currently working on restrictive and permitting geocaching policies. So please keep in mind when placing a cache or being contacted by a land manager placing a geocache is a privilege not a right, get approval first and if a manager want a cache removed for whatever reason, they have rights. Old Navy "When you go to hide a geocache, think of the reason you are bringing people to that spot. If the only reason is for the geocache, then find a better spot." – briansnat" =================== Make sure you read all the posts for context.
  15. Out of curiosity, when is the next opportunity to elect/select a new board? Not sure. When my wife was on the board the period was 2 years. Back then, the current President was self-appointed and the other members were voted in. They've had elections since then but no one wants to run so the president appoints those he feels would do a good job.
  16. Normally I assume that there's more to a story like this, so I've been waiting for someone, friend or foe, to present the other side. But at this point, the fact that no one has is starting to make me think there really isn't one. I saw a comment that they've been preparing a response but have been too busy...
  17. Thanks for the good wishes and advice. Since WNC post requesting reconciliation very little real progress has been made. The NNJC board voted to allow one member back from banishment. The other member has not been re-instated. Remember, one of these was blocked for simply posting this very thread on the NNJC FB page as a way to communicate a direction and policy NNJC were adopting and defending. His freedom of expression was removed to eliminate any contrary perspective. Not sure what the next steps will be or what direction NNJC will take with this. I am deeply disappointing and discouraged this has gone on for as long as it has. We were hoping that open and collaborative communications would have resolved this sooner. Unfortunately, however, there is a core group that will do what they want at the risk of perpetuating a schism and advancing a policy which has been determined to be counter-productive. I would advocate that the caches being considered for publication to coincide with the 2 events be evaluated and published 1 day after the day of the event. This would send a clear message that their behavior, attitude and direction is not in-line with what Geocaching is all about. There's been enough chatter on this forum and on the 2 NNJC FB pages that this would suck but would be appropriate. Secondly, it would support the GC rule that caches placed for the purpose of attracting people to an event is not permitted. There are enough caches in that park (200+) that would satisfy most seekers. This is may be initially construed as an unpopular position but a realistic way to convey that what NNJC is advocating, pursuing and mandating to be critically evaluated and allow for their membership - not just the board - to debate and vote.
  18. Looks like the FB moderator over at NNJC has begun a purge of cachers/members FB posts. As in, "we don't like them so we're going to erase any trace they existed". Is it me or does this smell really bad? Is there any recourse Groundspeak can initiate to censure a local club for this type of behavior? Honestly; censorship, banning, purging.... sounds tyrannical and not within the guidelines of a "community" activity.
  19. I don't believe the actual number of new caches in KVSP has been documented; that's still with the Reviewer.
  20. Make it a multi... Unfortunately, we all know this is about numbers. Making it a multi or part of a mystery would not bring in the numbers like a stand alone traditional would. I believe the point O was making (correct me if I'm wrong) is that there is a creative and collaborative way to making these proximity issues work for all affected.
  21. I do hope Reviewers are reading these posts. I've said it before, but why couldn't these cachers/Land Managers simply collaborate with experienced and seasoned cachers. Amazed at the arrogance.
  22. One word, numbers. Just another example of how the obsession with the almighty +1 is destroying this game. I have to disagree. It's not about the numbers. It's about locals finding all the caches and getting bored so someone puts out new caches for them to find. Most people here are looking for a nice hike and a bit of fun, but don't care exactly what their find count says. Nah, i have to agree with Briansnat. We used to go to events with aniticipation of seeing old friends, meeting new, and visting with like minded people. Things have changed over time with cachers becoming more interested in smiley count than anything else. These caches are put out as an effort to entice more cachers to attend the event. This ups the number count for both the event holder and the finders of those caches. I think this is where the Reviewer community will probably start taking a closer look at cache requests that must be published by a certain date. If they correlate the date of publication and day of event it'll be a simple conclusion. Event caches by GS rules "should not be set up for the sole purpose of drawing together geocachers for an organized geocache search." It's a matter of interpretation as to motive, but if you're having an event and 30 caches must be published on that date and in close proximity to the event, well..... Last CTTS I went to I skipped the group hike and had a great time at the Krough's catching up with geo-friends I hadn't seen for a while. Was a very rewarding 1 cache for the day.
  23. An open letter to NNJC Board, Trustees and Members. I'd post this on that site but I've been banished. 1. No one can argue that Old Navy and his assembled team have not done a great job of explaining, educating and expanding the understanding of Geocaching. This has been going on since I've been caching (2005) 2. As an individual cacher, Old Navy has created some of the most creative, well thought-out and entertaining caches, adventures and experiences. 3. The other board members of NNJC, who I admit not to know, have also published quality caches. Unfortunately, pushing their agenda created a situation where Old Navy and other NNJC members thought it beneficial to the caching community that their vision was best, at the expense of existing caches. Having Ranger Lynn act as cacher and Park Admin accelerated their tactic. What this eventually created was a back-lash - as we're now witnessing. Yes, short sighted as their goal appears, I still believe they were attempting to do the right "thing" but in the wrong way. I think what really made this situation worse was the deleting of the Groundspeak thread authored by WeatherNowCast and posted on the NNJC Facebook page. An even worse situation was created, with the subsequent explanation and defense of their position offered by NNJC President without the benefit of NNJC members understanding what he was rebutting. Banning members from their page is certainly in their right, but the manner in which it was done demonstrated a certain desperation. All of this could have been avoided if a few things, I believe, had been kept in mind: 1. NNJC as a board should have been kept aware of what Old Navy and Ranger Lynn were contemplating. I'm sure someone would have offered a "what if" or "that doesn't sound right" opinion. 2.Those cachers who had their caches targeted for elimination by Old Navy and Ranger Lynn should have been given the right of refusal. Those that did refuse or ignore, received an "official" note from KVSP of their force-archiving. It was this heavy handed approach, which has been characterized as Geo-bullying and conflict of interest, which ultimately fueled this fire. Griggstown was a similar scenario with slight differences in the details. 3.Targeted caches and new ones could have been placed within a short distance of one another maintaining Geo-tranquility. In working with their local reviewers, an exception could have been worked out where all caches could have co-existed. 4.Banning members for posting or expressing their views is never a good sign or direction. Especially when it was simply informative. Old Navy's rebuttal would have made sense and a discussion could have occurred. If it got personal or heated, an objective moderator could have then stepped in to cool the situation. Ultimately, the conversation was purged even though it had remained civil. 4. Event caches, by definition, are get-togethers. The rules stipulate that caches placed for the purpose of attracting cachers to the event are not permitted. If this rule had been maintained, particularly in an area where many caches exist, there wouldn't be: a ) frenzy to create new ones for the event; b) attempt to coerce archiving of existing caches; c) holding the reviewer accountable to only publish the day of the event (and subsequent frustration when they're not) d) ridicule cachers who go on a separate path; e) create a massive group FTF. 5. Complete transparency without hidden agendas. If you're asking someone to eliminate their cache, be up front and honest. Do not hide behind an agenda, Park Admin. or meeting you may have had with a township. Publish your minutes on the FB page and NNJC Web site. Make it a team communication and not just emanating from the President. Allow your membership to agree, disagree and offer dissent without the fear of ridicule or banishment. Offer the idea up to the community. I repeat: No one doubts the excellent work NNJC has done. What's in doubt is what they did and the negative impact it's created locally and within the geocaching community. No doubt they will regroup and collectively determine what needs to be done to bring back the label "one of the most respected geocaching organizations in the country" I ask of Old Navy and his team a few simple things: 1. Not defend this policy or tactic of force-archiving but to establish a working model where NNJC will work jointly and collaboratively with the cacher and reviewer (see points 2 and 3 above) 2. Reinstate those members who were banished from the NNJC FB site and remove any semblance of censorship. Allow open communication without the fear of retribution 3. If possible, working with the reviewer, allow the caches that were force-archived to be re-published and issue an apology for the manner in which NNJC's vision was communicated. There is no need to have separate groups, agendas, Facebook pages, etc. There is a need for openness, collaboration, and communication We will never agree on everything but to try to come to an understanding without the worry of one single-input agenda being "the best" is an attainable goal.
  24. Three of my caches were victim to archival for the Geo-Trail placed in Griggstown, This was my believe too. While I did have permission from the parks department and collaborated on the cache page write ups with the park manager, when the time came to create the Geo-Trail, I was informed that my caches had to go after living there for happily for 6 years. I'm under the impression now that there is a hidden agenda, on top of a lot of unsavory and childish behaviors going on with that group. At this point, I really regret that I gave into the archive request so easily without a proper discussion with the land manager again. While ultimately, archiving my caches was best for me, it wasn't best for the community and I apologies to my local communities for setting this precedent Nik, I strongly believe that if you had been given all the details and not been deceived, you would have made the appropriate decision. No need to apologize. Others should be keenly aware of their poor behavior and make amends which includes issuing apologies, to start.
  25. A time out? Really? You tried to open the doors for debate on an issue happening in the NNJC community and in return you are issued a time out. The members of NNJC have the right to be informed of what's happening in THEIR community as well as agree or disagree respectfully. There's absolutely no reason why this issue should be hidden from the members of NNJC. There's a display of power happening within this group which I believe should have no place within a geocaching community. It's a community, after all. Leadership? Yes, but not a dictatorship. "There must be no balance of power, but a community of power; not organized rivalries, but organized peace." -Woodrow T. Wilson What bothered me, and maybe I expressed this earlier, was that my attempt to inform was purged without notice or warning and that the rebuttal from their President was allowed to stand. It left the NNJC membership with a defensive argument (the rebuttal) without a clear premise of why the long explanation and assumed justification of archiving was put in place to begin with. I sincerely hope that NNJC officers have had an opportunity to absorb the salient points made here (assuming they were allowed to visit this forum) and understand that their tactic is not beneficial to anyone. I also hope that they will apologize to the affected cachers who had their caches force-archived, apologize to those who were banned for expressing an opinion and informing their membership, and finally, re-think their practice of forcing a "privilege" onto those who have rights as cachers. This is a game. Period. Let's all play nice.
  • Create New...