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Subscription Only Caches--grrrrrrrrrr!


Pinster56
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Does anyone else out there (who is a basic member) get aggravated when a " Subscription Only Cache" pops up in your area? Every week I always hope a new cache will pop into my cleared radius and when it does, it often is one of these hoity-toity subscription only caches ....This is a cheesy way Geocaching.com has come up with to try to get us to pay for a premium membership. A fun sport such as gocaching should be available to all--not just those who pay extra. Fine if you want to pay extra for special techniques like Pocket Queries, but it's wrong to have to pay just to search for a cache. It's hard enough for a lot of us to make ends meet and those who cannot afford a premium membership should NOT be penalized for being a basic member!

Edited by Pinster56
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I doubt you'll get much sympathy on that subject here in the forums. There are very few members only caches in my area, and many that start as M-O convert to "free" after an alloted time or after the first find.

 

There are many ways to tighten up and come up with $3/month if geocaching is that important.

Edited by CacheNCarryMA
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It's more the principle of the thing than the money...I just don't see the point in these members only caches... Why would you make one, anyway? I thought the point is for as many cachers as possible to find your cache?

Not always...I put out a 4/4.5 cache in October of '04 and it's only had 17 finders.

 

Up until a few months ago, I didn't include any hints because I wanted it to be a mental challenge.

 

I'm perfectly happy with only having a few finders on that cache.

 

I've created a couple of MO caches for various reasons...and yes, part of that reason is to encourage people to sign up (but not the only).

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It's more the principle of the thing than the money...I just don't see the point in these members only caches... Why would you make one, anyway? I thought the point is for as many cachers as possible to find your cache?

I have several caches that are MO, and will leave them that way. This topic has been beaten to death, at least twice. If you don't want MO caches in your area, spend $3.00, be a premium member for a month,, and find them all. Problem solved

 

Member Only Caches

Some caches are only available to Premium Members. This has been a request of many geocachers who want to put more energy into designing a cache for dedicated geocachers. As the cache owner, you can make any of your caches "subscriber only" so folks will need a subscription to seek it out. (Note: Member Only caches may not be any better than public geocaches. Each cache is managed by its cache owner.)

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I will not hide member only, but support the idea for others that hide em. MO is, as someone pointed out, a good way to encourage others to join. I understand that there are those that can't afford it and will not take shots at people who don't pay to play. That is their choice for whatever reason. However, it is another incentive for some. I think I have only found 2 MO in my nearly 2 years doing it, but for others, it may be a draw. To each their own.

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For some cache hiders, the feeling is that M-O restrictions make the cache less prone to muggles.

That makes no sense--muggles find caches by accidentally discovering a members only cache as they would a regular one--they don't know the difference.

Some cachers have speculated that people (pirates!) have looked up caches and intentionally found and plundered them.

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For some cache hiders, the feeling is that M-O restrictions make the cache less prone to muggles.

That makes no sense--muggles find caches by accidentally discovering a members only cache as they would a regular one--they don't know the difference.

Some cachers have speculated that people (pirates!) have looked up caches and intentionally found and plundered them.

Yes. Let's keep the cheap low-lifes out of the sport.

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For some cache hiders, the feeling is that M-O restrictions make the cache less prone to muggles.

That makes no sense--muggles find caches by accidentally discovering a members only cache as they would a regular one--they don't know the difference.

This isn't about accidentaly finding caches. In the past, you didn't have to "log on" to see the coordinates on each cache page. Cache maggots would note the coords to caches in their area, use their GPSrs to hunt them down, and trash/remove them.

 

MO caches made it a bit harder, but not bulletproof. The only way to truly protect a cache from muggling, is to Hide them in very remote areas, with a difficult puzzle, and make them MO caches.

 

Here is an "upgrade success" story on one of my caches.

 

12:05 pm. *** FTF! *** OWOWOWWWOOOOoooo! What a puzzle! What fun! Did the funky FTF dance, took White Jeep TB "Lynley", left "Baby Alien" TB, signed log. Thanks big KF for a most excellent mystery cache. And thanks also for finally persuading me to upgrade my membership.

 

Now this person is enjoying all the upgrade features like PQs, New cache notifications, etc.

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There are plenty of legitimate reasons for hiding subscriber-only caches other than being elitist. Some areas have been targeted by cache maggots, and only allowing paid members from viewing the cache pages keeps them from getting plundered. Some caches are particularly fragile in construction or in sensitive areas, and limiting the number of people who can find the cache will preserve the container or area and improve the longevity of the cache.

 

The few subscriber-only caches I've hidden have been designated as such for the latter reason. I hardly think that's "hoity-toity."

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Pinster, I'm a strong opponent of paying for a premium membership at this time (and one of the most vocal in these forums about it as well).

 

Unfortunately, I agree with others that Subscription-Only caches have their place. I have seen places where whole areas of caches changed to short-to-middle-term length periods of MO caches have forced local cache killers to find something else malevolent to do with their time. I am not bothered any greater when new MO caches show up in my nearby searches than I would be if no new caches show up. Instead of thinking about how there's a cache out there...but you can't find it, maybe it'd be better to think that there's no caches out there to find.

 

Advocate to fellow cachers in your area that more non-MO caches get placed and lead by example by hiding great non-MO caches for the others to find. Also keep an eye on the MO caches, because I've often see them change once it seems that the cache is no longer found because the local Premium Members had all hit it once already. The cache was hidden to be found and when that no longer happens due to having reached its entire available audience, the owner will usually figure on everyone else getting a crack at it to expand the audience.

 

So, I both choose not to pay for a membership at this time (due to my personal reasons that I've made clear before in the forums) AND I find MO caches to have their place in the hobby...just not in *my* hobbying.

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Though our membership has lapsed at the present, we'll never ever place a members' only cache - it's our preference. Our caches are open to anyone willing to look for them.

 

I personally don't care for the idea of members' only caches. The ability to do members' only caches had absolutely no bearing on our becoming members. The way to get us tightwads to part with our money is to better communicate the fearures we are missing.

 

That being said, I'm OK with others making theirs a members' only cache.

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When I place a brand new cache with a nice $20+ value FTF prize, I like to make it a MO cache because it gives others who support geocaching a better chance of getting the prize.

 

I like to make some of my puzzles MO at the start because with a MO cache you can view the Audit log and see who looked at your cache and when

 

I like to make some of my 1200+ elevation gain caches MO's because I enjoy the audit log and seeing 40+ cachers looked at the cache in the last week but only 1 person got the cache in the last 6 months.

 

I normally open them to all within the first 4 or 5 months of being listed.

 

If I cannot make a Members only cache, why can you make puzzle caches that some people cannot solve, are you not trying to prove yourself smarter then others by creating this? Are you not trying to do something that is different?

 

I was taken back slightly by the puzzle cache that requires a cacher to go through a mall to answer questions as this even says on the cache page a GPS is not required. I come to town and have only a few hours between meetings to get caches and if I want this one I have to spent time in a mall of your choice? Is this really any different then my placing a cache and saying 'Hay, members get this one first'?

 

Alas, I drop back now into the shadows because as was mentioned, this topic has been beaten to death. If you are that opposed to a MO cache, click the ignore option for that cache :ph34r: There, the world is happy again.

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I'm planning on placing a MO-cache in my area with the express purpose of excluding people, and to increase my personal level of "hoiti-toiti"-ness.

 

I see it as a way to punish those too cheap to pay 8.213552361 cents per day.

 

No...not really.

 

There is one MO-cache in my area, and I did it and found...it was a cache, like any other.

 

I get the arguments behind people placing MO-caches, I just don't buy them, which is why I'm not likely to hide one.

 

If you really don't want to pay for premium membership, even for 1 month, then just learn to live with the fact that there'll be caches you can't find.

 

There are lots of caches I'll never find, because they are too hard or too far or too clever or just one of the types of caches I don't care for...MO-caches will be one of those for you.

 

Jamie

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I am not a full fledged member as of yet, but I plan on doing so in the near future. I don't get upset at MO caches, because I can understand about geocachers wanting a little extra incentive.

 

It doesn't bother me, but I won't be putting any MO caches out there either. Just my opinion... as it stands.

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When I place a brand new cache with a nice $20+ value FTF prize, I like to make it a MO cache because it gives others who support geocaching a better chance of getting the prize.

One thing I wish is that people would remember is that MO caches don't reward supporters of geocaching. They reward supporters of Geocaching.com.

 

There is a difference and it's a fairly distinct one.

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I like to make some of my 1200+ elevation gain caches MO's because I enjoy the audit log and seeing 40+ cachers looked at the cache in the last week but only 1 person got the cache in the last 6 months.

 

How do you know how many people looked at your cache?

Click the Audit this cache link on a MO cache you own.

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There are kayak caches that I can't do because I don't have a kayak. There are scuba caches I can't do because I don't have a scuba. There are 5/5 caches I cannot do because I am too old and fat. I feel so excluded! It's so unfair! The entire sport should lower itself to my level! :ph34r:

 

But seriously now, Whenever I put out a new cache, I make it M/O until FTF--as a thank-you to cachers who are willing to help Support the Sport.

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Does anyone else out there (who is a basic member) get aggravated when a " Subscription Only Cache" pops up in your area? Every week I always hope a new cache will pop into my cleared radius and when it does, it often is one of these hoity-toity subscription only caches ....This is a cheesy way Geocaching.com has come up with to try to get us to pay for a premium membership. A fun sport such as gocaching should be available to all--not just those who pay extra. Fine if you want to pay extra for special techniques like Pocket Queries, but it's wrong to have to pay just to search for a cache. It's hard enough for a lot of us to make ends meet and those who cannot afford a premium membership should NOT be penalized for being a basic member!

Yes!!!!

 

I see someone else is annoyed by the MOC cache. It should be called PMOC (Paying Members Only Cache) because you do not have to pay to be a member.

 

I also am annoyed because of the principle of the deal, it is said somewhere that all you need to cache is a GPS, Internet access (Free at public libraries) and a sense of adventure. Nowhere does it mention $30 annually. (Monthly payments is not an option for me.)

 

Let's keep the caches out of the paying part, you should be paying for special features and tools, not to access cache pages.

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I like to make some of my puzzles MO at the start because with a MO cache you can view the Audit log and see who looked at your cache and when

The irony is, I'm less likely to view your cache page if I know my name will show up on your audit log. :ph34r:

 

Fortunately, I can view your cache page as many times as I want if it's included in a pocket query, and you'll never know about it! :ph34r:

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I like to make some of my 1200+ elevation gain caches MO's because I enjoy the audit log and seeing 40+ cachers looked at the cache in the last week but only 1 person got the cache in the last 6 months.

 

How do you know how many people looked at your cache?

For example it is fun to see people from :

Auburn, Wa looking at my caches in Arizona.

 

Sometimes I even send them an email and I have gotten to meet many geocachers whis way. Without the Audit log of the MO caches, I think I would have met a lot less cachers from out of my area.

 

We are planning a trip to our neighbor state of NM soon for a few days and you can bet I am going to look for cachers to try to meet while there.

 

MO caches have a place and a purpose to some, they are annoying to others. As I said before many people look at Puzzle caches as an Elitist item because some people do not have luck or patience when it comes to solving them.

 

I will not recommend anything on how you feel about this, I can only say that each person plays the game the way they decide to and when they decide to. I know of one spot that was very special to the cache owners, so they made it a MO cache to try to limit the amount of people in the area and it worked rather well.

 

Have fun and as a friend says

 

Cache on.. till you cache out.

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I like to make some of my 1200+ elevation gain caches MO's because I enjoy the audit log and seeing 40+ cachers looked at the cache in the last week but only 1 person got the cache in the last 6 months.

 

How do you know how many people looked at your cache?

Click the Audit this cache link on a MO cache you own.

Ah ok, my cache isn't MO, which would explain that.

 

Thanks for the explanation.

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It has been said many times over that the audit log is little more than useless. Also it has been said that making it a MOC cache does not change the muggle factor. The ONLY perk to an MOC is making sure non-paying members cannot access the cache page. I am certain that a non-paying member could find an MOC cache by manipulating the search by coordinates, and narrowing down the area. Then, log it by manipulating the URL address of the cache page.

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It has been said many times over that the audit log is little more than useless. Also it has been said that making it a MOC cache does not change the muggle factor. The ONLY perk to an MOC is making sure non-paying members cannot access the cache page. I am certain that a non-paying member could find an MOC cache by manipulating the search by coordinates, and narrowing down the area. Then, log it by manipulating the URL address of the cache page.

It's real easy to use a session variable to track whether you're a premium member or not and validate that at the page level. Even if you DID manage to crack or guess the appropriate URL the web server could serve you alternate or no content at all. I'm pretty sure that Groundspeak's web developers are probably smart enough to see through your ingenious hack :ph34r:

 

Ain't dynamic content great?

Edited by ParrotRob
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It seems you are displeased with two things here:

 

Membership fees

You obviously aren't paying them, I don't know why. Maybe it's financial, maybe it's on princible. If it is princible, you would be well reminded that running the site costs money, lots more than you would imagine. It only exists because of people who will pony up the $3/mo pittance.

 

People who post premium-only caches

they have their reasons. I would imagine not the least of which is not wanting to have their caches plundered by geo-pirates. Groundspeak could easily make every cache "Premium-only", but they don't. You can't condemn them for making it an option to hider's though. You do not have a "right" to every cache.

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Yes!!!!

 

I see someone else is annoyed by the MOC cache. It should be called PMOC (Paying Members Only Cache) because you do not have to pay to be a member.

 

I also am annoyed because of the principle of the deal, it is said somewhere that all you need to cache is a GPS, Internet access (Free at public libraries) and a sense of adventure. Nowhere does it mention $30 annually. (Monthly payments is not an option for me.)

 

Let's keep the caches out of the paying part, you should be paying for special features and tools, not to access cache pages.

It's ironic that you have enough time on your hands to post over 1000 times on these forums, and find 128 caches for free, yet you dislike MO caches. If you ask me, you get a lot of quality entertainment for free.

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Even if you DID manage to crack or guess the appropriate URL the web server could serve you alternate or no content at all. I'm pretty sure that Groundspeak's web developers are probably smart enough to see through your ingenious hack :ph34r:

Yes they are, and it's been discussed in the forums on many occasions. Yet the loophole has not been closed. Makes you wonder, doesn't it?

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It has been said many times over that the audit log is little more than useless.

Said by people who do not use it or like it.

I argue it is useful and I like it.

 

Thus it must be slightly higher on the Useful scale for som of us. Thanks though I always like a well informed discussion on why I like useless things.

 

For that matter and not to get too far off topic, but has it not been said that a micro under a lamp pole in a parking lot is useless? Under the trashcan in the parking lot useless?

 

Each plays the game as they opt to play it.

 

The ignore feature works on caches, not forum posts :ph34r:

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Hmmmm......one can afford a GPSr but cannot/will not support the listing service for the caches.

This is an argument that is given quite often. Well, if you figure that the average GPS unit could last a cacher five (or many more) years, the cost of the GPS unit is actually less than the cost of a premium membership.

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I am certain that a non-paying member could find an MOC cache by manipulating the search by coordinates, and narrowing down the area.

That is true. I played around on a search page by narrowing the coordinates on a random search until the coordinates for the nearest cache said "here." I estimate that got me within 25 feet of the actual coordinates. Plus, based on the "size box" on the search results page, I know that I would be looking for a regular sized traditional cache. So I know the name, the hider, the size, and the approximate coordinates. That's exactly the information I normally carry around in my GPS anyway.

 

Then, once I've found the cache, all I have to do is go to the link http://www.geocaching.com/seek/log.aspx?wp= and type in the waypoint, and presto, I can log my find!

 

So, even if I'm not a premium member, I could simply go out and find subscriber-only caches. If someone went through that trouble to log one of mine, I'd not just let the log stand--I'd have to commend them for putting that much effort into it.

 

Jeremy has in the past stated he is quite happy with the site having those work-arounds. And it's fine by me. Of course, it would be much harder for a non-subscriber to find a puzzle, multi, or virtual that way... :ph34r:

Edited by Team Perks
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Yes, i find MOCs annoying. I just don't know if I should be annoyed that Groundspeak offered this option (I wish they'd get rid of btw), or that people keep checking that dang stupid box on the submission forum. :ph34r:

But, hey its their choice to do so. I don't buy the reason that get tossed out for WHY, but it's not my cache. *Shrug*

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Not many MO caches within 100 miles of me, but I'm going to be forking over the dough on next payday.

 

What people fail to realize about paying for the subscription is that it opens up aLOT of additional tools and features. Like being able to download the waypoints as .gpx files instead of .loc files... The loc files are barebones when it comes to details. I use GSAK to keep track of all of my caching and I have to manually input any detail right now. IT SUCKS!!! But this is just one reason for me to upgrade...

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It has been said many times over that the audit log is little more than useless.

Said by people who do not use it or like it.

I argue it is useful and I like it.

 

Thus it must be slightly higher on the Useful scale for som of us. Thanks though I always like a well informed discussion on why I like useless things.

...

Ok, what is it useful? Knowing who looked at the cache page is helpful because.... :ph34r:

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It has been said many times over that the audit log is little more than useless. Also it has been said that making it a MOC cache does not change the muggle factor. The ONLY perk to an MOC is making sure non-paying members cannot access the cache page. I am certain that a non-paying member could find an MOC cache by manipulating the search by coordinates, and narrowing down the area. Then, log it by manipulating the URL address of the cache page.

Your post is as good as any to address a few misconceptions. Keep in mind I don't have any MO and don't intend on it.

 

1) Accidental finds are a risk of all caches. MO has no impact here.

2) The audit log is handy within it's limitations. One of which would be that a cache maggot has to look at your cache to find it.

3) It does reduce the rate of intensional theft. Cache maggots have to work harder to ply their trade. Even if they can figure out how to find MO without looking at the page.

4) Logging a MO cache is simple enough and it's intensionally left that way so that Non members who accompany a member or those who stumble on a cache can log what they found.

5) Some members like to see other members have first shot at their cache. It's their cache and so their preference is fine.

6) Some people like to experiment with their caches and see how it changes things.

7) Some people have a theory that MO caches won't degrade to McToys as fast. (Unproven so far as I can tell, but it may work in their area)

8) Some owners feel more secure hiding MO's and do not want to risk standard caches. If it keeps them hiding caches, more power to them.

9) Some cache owners wish to support this site and do place MO to do just that.

10) My area has a lot of MO caches because of a Cache Maggot. I learned to adapt and it was not hard. My present status as a premium member was a gift.

11) It used to be a method to keep ghosts away. (Those people who don't give back in the form of a log even if it's as simple as TFTC).

 

These are all fair things for a cache owner to do. In general the only Hoity Toity behavior comes from those who are pretentious enough to post topics like this.

Edited by Renegade Knight
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It only exists because of people who will pony up the $3/mo pittance.

 

Groundspeak could easily make every cache "Premium-only", but they don't.

No. The site existed before the $3/mo "pittance". In fact, the listing of caches existed before the site. Certainly the site exists in its current size and state in part due to the membership fees. We're not really able to know what the site might have been if it hadn't decided to start charging fees. Then again, there are plenty of other sites that have similar size and access requirements that have met the financial burden in other ways. In fact, this site doesn't get all of its money via membership fees. There's also the store items, the TB tags, the geocoin registrations, corporate tie-ins from Planet of the Apes and Jeep, and possible other things I can't recall or am not privvy to.

 

In regards to your other comment, it can also be said that Groundspeak could easily do away with Premium-only caches but they don't. I don't know of a single cacher that says they pay their membership fee solely because of MO-caches or that they would quit paying the site if MO-caches stopped existing. There's a far greater plausability behind doing away with MO-caches than making them all MO-caches, so I don't see how your statement has any relevance to the discussion.

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...Ok, what is it useful? Knowing who looked at the cache page is helpful because.... :ph34r:

You can bet on who will be FTF.

The Cache Maggot will look at the page (now that you have to register to see coords).

You can keep tabs on whos looking at your cache.

You can guage the interest level in your cache relative to your other caches.

 

I certainly can't think of everthing that could be done with the audit log. That's just a few.

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