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Should Waymarks Have Logging Requirements?


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What is the current feeling among those participating in Waymarking - should new categories have requirements for creating and visiting waymarks, and if so, what are appropriate requirements?

 

This question was the subject of some discussion way back in the early days of Waymarking, but I haven't seen it brought up for awhile, so I thought I'd raise the issue again now that we are starting to get a better understanding of how this is all coming together.

 

I'm asking this in the context of how people might apply their vote during Peer Review if a category is presented with no requirements, or very tough requirements, and also in the context of how logging requirements (or the lack thereof) might impact Waymarking in the long run.

 

My particular view is that since most people have access to a digital camera these days, having a photo requirements is appropriate and reasonable. I think it encourages more of a hands-on (and presumably more honest/accurate) approach to creating and logging.

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The dust has been stirred a little concerning the WOW factor, so here's a little more thought on the requirements for both new waymarks and for logging existing waymarks.

 

* A physical visit should be required for both new waymarks and for logs on existing waymarks. Waymarking shouldn't be an armchair game / hobby / lifestyle / .... Proof of the visit should be required -- photographic proof is best, but a real puzzle (not one that can be solved online) might be a satisfactory substitute for logging existing waymarks, because not everyone has the photographic equipment, some finds are at night, some locations just don't photograph well, day or night, and others can be expected to prohibit photography (in at least some locations) altogether.

 

* New waymarks should have some compelling reason to visit them. I know, what's compelling for me won't be compelling for you, but the only way to get at the WOW factor is to raise the entry bar for new waymarks so someone is willing to get out and locate it. Posters of new waymarks should be expected to answer, "why is this waymark significant" with a short narrative. By the way, I think a lot of virtual caches suffered from the HO-HUM factor, something we should work hard to avoid in waymarks.

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I am in favor of *some* sort of verification requirement for waymark *visits* in one of three forms:

 

1. Photo of the finder at the waymark target.

2. Photo of the finder's GPS at the waymark target (for those who are camera-shy/concerned about privacy)

3. Answering a meaningful verification question.

 

I prefer the photos because they add to the collective experience of the category.

 

In contrast, for the initial creation of a new waymark, I would rather see a high-quality artsy photo displayed on the waymark page, WITHOUT the waymarker or the classic "GPS and hand" shot to ruin it. Some would go further and say that "remote Waymarking" is fine. "Here are the coords I got from Google for this cool object, and here's a picture of it. Go find it."

 

I do not care whether a waymark has "wow." I want to collect *ALL* historic markers, not just the really cool ones. Here's one that I called "the category's equivalent of a lamp post micro". But for one with a scenic view and a more interesting page, look here. Not every historic marker, fountain, statue, etc. will be interesting. Photos and page writeups help the reader decide whether *they* want to visit there.

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I say a photo is the best and fairest way to assure a valid visit. There are some category owners (I guess we should say "leaders" now) or don't feel this way. I disagree. Photos are proof.

 

I am in favor of *some* sort of verification requirement for waymark *visits* in one of three forms:

 

1. Photo of the finder at the waymark target.

2. Photo of the finder's GPS at the waymark target (for those who are camera-shy/concerned about privacy)

3. Answering a meaningful verification question.

 

I prefer the photos because they add to the collective experience of the category.

 

In contrast, for the initial creation of a new waymark, I would rather see a high-quality artsy photo displayed on the waymark page, WITHOUT the waymarker or the classic "GPS and hand" shot to ruin it. Some would go further and say that "remote Waymarking" is fine. "Here are the coords I got from Google for this cool object, and here's a picture of it. Go find it."

 

I do not care whether a waymark has "wow." I want to collect *ALL* historic markers, not just the really cool ones. Here's one that I called "the category's equivalent of a lamp post micro". But for one with a scenic view and a more interesting page, look here. Not every historic marker, fountain, statue, etc. will be interesting. Photos and page writeups help the reader decide whether *they* want to visit there.

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Lep's post covers my view of this quite well. I wish that similar wording was included someplace on the category creation pages in order to encourage this approach.

 

When it comes to requirements, we need to continue to walk that fine line between 'too much' and 'not enough'. I'm completely convinced that in the long run Waymarking will be best served by practices which encourage honesty and accuracy with regards to both creating waymarks and visiting them.

 

At this point, I haven't decided if I'll vote against proposed categories which don't include proof of visit, but I plan on at least adding comments encouraging such requirements when casting my vote.

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The potential problem is going to be bandwidth and server usage. That is what drove the death of LC's and if they WM keeps going, the issue will grow expotentially.

 

The 'proof' issue is junk unless people are going to treat it like GC.

 

Proof for NPS can be the stamp in the passport...

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I do not care whether a waymark has "wow." I want to collect *ALL* historic markers, not just the really cool ones. Here's one that I called "the category's equivalent of a lamp post micro". But for one with a scenic view and a more interesting page, look here. Not every historic marker, fountain, statue, etc. will be interesting. Photos and page writeups help the reader decide whether *they* want to visit there.

 

At least the first one stated that the dam and lock is no longer there, and that it is basically just a marker and nothing exists of that site. Then you know not to go there if you really wanted to view a lock/dam site. Even though would probably be thought of as a 'lame' site, it is still a historic marker and at least you will know it is lame before going there. (unlike many lampost micros)

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The potential problem is going to be bandwidth and server usage. That is what drove the death of LC's and if they WM keeps going, the issue will grow expotentially.

The issue with LCs and performance wasn't bandwidth, it was the way the data was structured (a problem which has been corrected in the Waymarking database). In any case, I don't see how this relates to a discussion about logging requirements. <_<

 

The 'proof' issue is junk unless people are going to treat it like GC.

I don't understand what you mean, could you please provide an example of what you mean by 'treat it like GC'?

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yes, proof of visit is key...but i often waymark alone, and cant really be in my own pictures, and feel that i pic of my gps is stupid...after loffing the find that picture is useless...i can't do anything with it (why do you have a gps in the frame?). and what if i did not know/forgot that that category needed a pic of my gps in it?

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I'm mixed on the idea of making photos or other proof of the visit a requirement.

 

I think that a category owner should make the inital visit, and take the time to photograph and verify coordinates - especially if such information is available online.

 

However, as a visitor, I have mixed feelings about said requirements. Some categories, such as the ones in the "Waymarking games", I fully understand (and support) a requirement for such. Other more general ones, I'm not as certain such is really necessary.

 

If a photo or other proof of visit is requirement to log a visit to a waymark - I think i would be less likely to log a visit. I rarely upload photos to cache logs, unless I happen to have taken my camera with me on a cache (not likely) and have something interesting to post. I do not feel the need, nor have the time, to upload photos of every cache/waymark I visit. Not to mention the issues with having another piece of electronics to carry, lose, break, etc.

 

The requirement / proof idea is fine for the "games", but beyond that it seems to me like "hoops to jump through" for a Waymarking-numbers-game. I dont cache for the numbers. I doubt I would waymark for numbers either. I would very possibly visit sites that interest me, but not every site on the Waymarking website.

 

(Eduted for gramer an spellung airors.)

Edited by Crystal Sound
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yes, proof of visit is key...but i often waymark alone, and cant really be in my own pictures, and feel that i pic of my gps is stupid...after loffing the find that picture is useless...i can't do anything with it (why do you have a gps in the frame?). and what if i did not know/forgot that that category needed a pic of my gps in it?

The beauty of a digital pic is that there is little cost associated with each one (Battery usage, basically) and they are easily deleted. After you upload the pic, simply delete it from your camera and/or hard drive.

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...I think that a category owner should make the inital visit, and take the time to photograph and verify coordinates - especially if such information is available online.

I assume that you mean the waymark owner. As a category owner, I am likely not going to visit every location in the world that people create waymarks for, just because they are in my category.

 

If you do mean waymark owners should upload pics and visitors should not be required to, I'm still not sure that I agree with you. For me, Waymarking is just a really good replacement for LCs and Virts. As such, having both waymark owners and visitors upload pics to prove they were at the location makes sense to me.

Edited by sbell111
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...I think that a category owner should make the inital visit, and take the time to photograph and verify coordinates - especially if such information is available online.

I assume that you mean the waymark owner. As a category owner, I am likely not going to visit every location in the world that people create waymarks for, just because they are in my category.

 

 

Correct assumption. Apologies - it was an early monday morning. :anibad:

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I think that a waymark owner should make the inital visit, and take the time to photograph and verify coordinates - especially if such information is available online.

 

However, as a visitor, I have mixed feelings about said requirements. Some categories, such as the ones in the "Waymarking games", I fully understand (and support) a requirement for such. Other more general ones, I'm not as certain such is really necessary.

 

I agree fully... as someone who doesn't own a digital camera, nor can I afford to buy a new one (unless someone here makes a donation to "Support the college waymarker foundation" that I will start in my behalf). Basically what you would be doing by requiring photo for waymarks & logs is taking me off the site. (Which I suppose maybe some of you don't like me so that may work!) Though I could just sit here and create endless categories but never make a single waymark or log one because no one will let me *cry*

 

I totally get the need for proof so that everyone here can be a numbers whore just like in geocaching.com.. but could we please not require additional equipment... I already had to pay $100+ for a GPS unit to play geocaching/Waymarking... why should I have to double it just for Waymarking?

 

If you did make a requirement for photo, I think photo alone should do and not include picture of yourself (which takes away anonymity which would also take away me wanting to actually play Waymarking because I don't want to post a picture of myself online unless I have to and I don't think I should have to here... not to mention that I also would waymark alone (haven't had time to) so getting myself would be interesting... although I could take nice headshots, not sure how much of the waymark object would be in there!) and as previously mentioned the gps in the picture just looks dumb and makes it a wasted picture.

 

I would prefer we found another way to prove that people visit a waymark if we are that gun-ho into being number whores. My best idea is to create a password for a waymark sort of like what is done with virtual caches. Maybe have a waymarker create a word from a nearby plaque, or store across the street that the logger would have to put in in order to get log credit. This would create an issue with remembering stuff, but if Groundspeak went and made some ways to save favorites on PDAs or such like you can in geocaching then this could be easily looked up. (btw I don't think programming this type of functionality would really be that difficult either). This may not be a complete solution, but I think would be of great help to those who don't require a picture but still want to have proof.

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Razak Posted Today, 06:57 AM

 

I totally get the need for proof so that everyone here can be a numbers whore just like in geocaching.com.. but could we please not require additional equipment... I already had to pay $100+ for a GPS unit to play geocaching/Waymarking... why should I have to double it just for Waymarking?

 

 

That's a very good point.. just because I have a digital camera, doesn't mean everyone else does... there should be alternatives for Visiting a Waymark as proof.

 

It does come down to the same old discussion... if someone wants to cheat and claim a Visit... they are only cheating themselves.

 

But then again, I also believe you should be able to find any Waymark without the use of a GPS... after all, if you can't find it using Google Maps and the description... maybe it's not really a Waymark after all. This isn't Geocaching that the item to find is hidden.. this is supposed to be the opposite.. isn't it?

 

:ph34r: The Blue Quasar

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But then again, I also believe you should be able to find any Waymark without the use of a GPS... after all, if you can't find it using Google Maps and the description... maybe it's not really a Waymark after all. This isn't Geocaching that the item to find is hidden.. this is supposed to be the opposite.. isn't it?

 

 

I'm not sure if opposite is the right word... to me this seems like "along the same lines but not quite." I don't think a lot of the categories could be found on Google Maps, though I could be incorrect I guess I don't know what all you can find on google maps=P For instance Penny Smashers, Rails to Trails, Berry Picking, Graffiti, Movie locations, any of the Waymarking games, etc... these are perfectly valid categories in my eyes and are not easily found on google maps. (You could probably find some stuff like trails, but would you know they used to be rails?) What you are looking for here isn't hidden per say, but many of them are unknown, and at the very least should be interesting. It still has some of the flavour of geocaching... (essentially the virtual caches and earthcaches of geocaching moved over and expanded upon... so are those things considered the opposite of geocaching? Think the point is the same).

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I dont have a digital camera either, yet I have managed to post pictures. Walgreens developing of film onto a CD is cheaper than having prints made. If you dont want an ugly gps in the photo for future use of the photo, do what I do. Put the gps in a corner of the photo. You can crop it out later on if you would like the photo for any other use later. No gps? Well you can put a stuffed animal in it then, or something offbeat so I know it wasnt an old vacation photo.

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Razak Posted Today, 08:44 AM

 

I'm not sure if opposite is the right word... to me this seems like "along the same lines but not quite." I don't think a lot of the categories could be found on Google Maps, though I could be incorrect I guess I don't know what all you can find on google maps=P For instance Penny Smashers, Rails to Trails, Berry Picking, Graffiti, Movie locations, any of the Waymarking games, etc... these are perfectly valid categories in my eyes and are not easily found on google maps. (You could probably find some stuff like trails, but would you know they used to be rails?) What you are looking for here isn't hidden per say, but many of them are unknown, and at the very least should be interesting. It still has some of the flavour of geocaching... (essentially the virtual caches and earthcaches of geocaching moved over and expanded upon... so are those things considered the opposite of geocaching? Think the point is the same).

 

Categories... no, they couldn't be found on Google Maps... but every Waymark can be.

 

For example...

 

This Waymark Halifax Citadel Hill can be easily found on Google Maps like this Map of Waymark as listed on the Waymark page itself.

 

I could drive there, Visit the Waymark without ever turning on my GPS. I am pretty sure that most could be done the same way.

 

And, the suggestion of a disposable camera and a Walmart photo CD is very valid also. Yes it would take a while to fill the camera possibly, but except for the people that rush for the First to Visit... there is no need to post your Visit on the same day.

 

However it is up to the Category Manager (Leader) to decide the logging requirements, not the Waymark Owner... but if someone wanted to add MORE requirements on a Waymark in a Cateogry I owned.. I'm not gonna be upset. That would be artistic IMHO.

 

;) The Blue Quasar

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Categories... no, they couldn't be found on Google Maps... but every Waymark can be.

 

For example...

 

This Waymark Halifax Citadel Hill can be easily found on Google Maps like this Map of Waymark as listed on the Waymark page itself.

 

I could drive there, Visit the Waymark without ever turning on my GPS. I am pretty sure that most could be done the same way.

 

True, you could, heck I can do that with Geocaching... people do=P it doesn't mean it is easy none the less... Some would be easier than others (Buildings, landmarks, etc)... but some still may need searching once you get out of the car (penny smashers, berry spots, earthcaches, etc). I don't think that differentiates Waymarking so much from Geocaching that a lot of the sites are more

 

And yes getting photos developed from a disposable camera is valid... however, I'm still not a fan of forcing people to get additional equipment just to prove to someone else that they visited... it doesn't matter if they visited or not. Who cares? Many of these waymarks don't even get visited, people should be frickin thrilled if someone logs a waymark instead of trying to drive them off. Heck takin a picture doesn't even always work... I can take a picture of me standing in front of a McDonald's with my GPS... that doesn't mean I went into it does it? How does that prove a visit?

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Before there was Waymarking, I visited the Dry Falls & Mt St. Helens in Washington, The Murals in Paducah KY and other waymarks. I have photographic proof of my visits. Should I log these, I have logged in the "watertower" (read that Lamppost) category.

I would give someone my old and way outdated Polaroid PDC 700 so that they could take those "needed" pics

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I wish i had a digitial camera but as in real life and spending money on bills and food,It just doesn't leave me enough for getting items,like the camera,pdas,etc.Unless you want to leave one as a birthday prersent. My feeling's is just log on the site (either email the owner a answer to a question,or something that got your attention at the Waymarking site,) If someone just cheats and claim a find,they are cheating themselves.Just log the find and dont worry about,you know if you been there or not.

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You know, the logical extension for this is allowing the posting of "approximate" coordinates for a geocache or waymark just because you don't own a GPS receiver.

 

There has to be some minimum standard to play the game. We don't allow people to look at maps and "guess" or “approximate” coordinates for waymarks and geocaches. They have to own or have access a GPSr or they can't play the game. A digital camera or a camera-phone is going to have to be standard equipment to waymark. Just as it was for most locationless geocaches.

 

 

Razak Posted Today, 06:57 AM

 

I totally get the need for proof so that everyone here can be a numbers whore just like in geocaching.com.. but could we please not require additional equipment... I already had to pay $100+ for a GPS unit to play geocaching/Waymarking... why should I have to double it just for Waymarking?

 

 

That's a very good point.. just because I have a digital camera, doesn't mean everyone else does... there should be alternatives for Visiting a Waymark as proof.

 

It does come down to the same old discussion... if someone wants to cheat and claim a Visit... they are only cheating themselves.

 

But then again, I also believe you should be able to find any Waymark without the use of a GPS... after all, if you can't find it using Google Maps and the description... maybe it's not really a Waymark after all. This isn't Geocaching that the item to find is hidden.. this is supposed to be the opposite.. isn't it?

 

<_< The Blue Quasar

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By 'find a Waymark' I meant VISIT, not OWN. Owning a Waymark should have much more to it, like posting images as examples.

 

Lots of VC and LC (and by extension EarthCache) had other methods beyond posting images.

 

I like what what someone else suggested (sorry, I forget who)... if OpinioNate or Bootron could create a "Fill in the Blank" box and the Owner submits the answer, then anyone that wants to log a VISIT could enter their answer... if it matches then they claim the Visit, if not... they don't.

 

<_< The Blue Quasar

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I've suggested before that certain categories may want to have two different log types: visit for visiting a waymark that wouldn't require any special logging requirments and find for finding a waymark that would require answering a verification question or posting a photo. New log types aren't absolutely necessary. A visit could require verification and a note could be used for when a waymarker can't meet the requirements. I have already seen some people post a note that says "I visted this waymark in 2002".

Edited by tozainamboku
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