Sign in to follow this  
Followers 5
The Blue Quasar

EarthCaches to return to Geocaching

145 posts in this topic

Just got the email about EarthCaches being returned to Geocaching, which I assume means they are leaving Waymarking.

 

This, in my opinion, is a BIG mistake.

 

Finally Groundspeak had divided the Container from the Non-Container.

 

Now we are going to get an onslaught of "Great... now bring back Virtuals, WebCams and Locationless"

 

All I see this as is proof to the Geocachers that have been complaining.... that Waymarking was a bad idea.

 

Waymarking is still in Beta, and Version 2.0 is close to launch... why would you do such a thing?

 

:laughing: The Blue Quasar

0

Share this post


Link to post

If it turns out to be true, this is a big mistake, as well as being a seeming reversal of the stated goals of gc.com in getting rid of container-less caches...

 

I'd like virts and web-cams back too please... :laughing:

 

Jamie - NFA

0

Share this post


Link to post

Just got the email about EarthCaches being returned to Geocaching, which I assume means they are leaving Waymarking.

 

This, in my opinion, is a BIG mistake.

 

Finally Groundspeak had divided the Container from the Non-Container.

 

Now we are going to get an onslaught of "Great... now bring back Virtuals, WebCams and Locationless"

 

All I see this as is proof to the Geocachers that have been complaining.... that Waymarking was a bad idea.

 

Waymarking is still in Beta, and Version 2.0 is close to launch... why would you do such a thing?

 

:laughing: The Blue Quasar

 

I'll check out Waymarking again when it gets more USER friendly. I got totally turned off to it verrrry quickly and I originally advocated the idea.

 

Sometimes ya just gotta let go of good ideas that don't work for EVERYONE.

 

I would like to see ALL of the outlawed caches come back to GC.com. In my opinion where they belong, but perhaps with a different tab like trackables have, or set aside like benchmarks.

0

Share this post


Link to post

wm = 14m3

Nice post. <_<

 

Aren't you the same person who just last month banned himself from the forums for a week, saying:

 

Maybe you guys can find something constructive or positive or even unique to discuss while I am gone.

 

BQ: I haven't seen the email to which you refer (perhaps you got a copy because you have a few waymarks in the EarthCache category?), so I'll withhold comment for the moment until more information is available.

 

Did the email mention a reason for the move back to GC.com?

0

Share this post


Link to post

There was no reason given, and I admit I'm very curious too.

 

I don't equate this move with anything negative regarding Waymarking.

 

I also don't agree with those that want to divide geocaching and Waymarking by container/no container. I think it's an artificial boundary that sounds tidy but otherwise carries no real significance.

0

Share this post


Link to post

There was no reason given, and I admit I'm very curious too.

 

I don't equate this move with anything negative regarding Waymarking.

 

I also don't agree with those that want to divide geocaching and Waymarking by container/no container. I think it's an artificial boundary that sounds tidy but otherwise carries no real significance.

 

Then what is your definition of the cache part of geocaching?

0

Share this post


Link to post

<_<

I like my Earthcache. People are still hitting it. I'd hate to think of what would have happened to it if were over at the WM.com site (Won'tMatter.com).

I was thinking about doing another Earthcache, but if it's a WM feature, who cares anymore?

Check out these 3 'Earthcaches' and the work that went into them.

Thomas A. Jagger Museum.

The 'Kilauea Visitor Center'

Thurston Lava Tube

These are 3 of my favourite "Earthcaches" by 'Yosemite John and Debbie' and the numbers since September 19th of last year. - Only on "Geocaching"

 

Hawai'i Volcanoes Earthcache 127 logs -178 photos

 

Hawai'i Volcanoes - - - - #2 -128 logs - 194 pictures

 

...and Visitor Center ..127 logs and 121 photos

 

There are 158 listed on "Waymarking" since June 15th 2006, many more than have been visited, of which some are duplicates.. <_<

So how many and how will they be moved to www.earthcaches.org?

Are duplicates, on"Waymarking", such as "The Blue Quasar's" St. John's Conservation Area EarthCache going to be removed?

0

Share this post


Link to post

I can forward the email that I received to anyone upon request.

 

When I duplicated my EarthCache GCMGE7 on the Waymarking site as WMFR I was asked to Archive the listing on Geocaching.com which I refused to do.

 

The premise of Waymarking was that it is supposed to be run as a separate site from Geocaching. I take it to be two listing services that are operated by Groundspeak. I see it no differently than listing a Geocache on Geocaching.com and Terracaching.com.

 

Moving exisiting Waymark EarthCaches over to Geocaching may violate the 0.1 mile (161 meter) rule. I know there is no physical container for an EarthCache in most cases, but there might be some. They might be inside "Commercial Establishments" that require you to sign a logbook. Now we are violating TWO guidelines that aren't an issue in Waymarking.

 

Worse yet, some local reviewers might deny future physical caches because an EarthCache is now blocking the location due to proximity.

 

What are they gonna do... "Well, EarthCaches don't count for the proximity guidelines".... but some EarthCaches might have a physical item and logboook... this is going be a problem.

 

I understand the concept of providing an educational aspect. But shifting them to Geocaching for the reasons of being more 'prolific' is poor management.

 

<_< The Blue Quasar

 

P.S. I can't wait to place my "PROJECT APE CACHE" since they must be coming back too! <_<

0

Share this post


Link to post

If it turns out to be true, this is a big mistake, as well as being a seeming reversal of the stated goals of gc.com in getting rid of container-less caches...

 

I'd like virts and web-cams back too please... <_<

 

Jamie - NFA

 

Yeah, locationless caches too, , <_<

0

Share this post


Link to post

I for one am looking forward to actually having visits at my earthcaches. I feel I've put quite a bit of work into my earthcaches and have been very dissapointed that the ones on WM have been ignored. :)

 

The ones on GC continue to be visited with positive comments, which I think was the point of Jake39's post.

 

Will the ECs be on both WM and EC? I didn't ask that.

 

Now I've got until October 15th to go through all my ECs and bring the logging requirements up to date. This could be a problem :o .

 

As when ECs were on GC, they have never counted against the proximity guidelines. Kind of hard to confuse a geologic feature with a tupperware :) .

 

That being said, I did get involved in the rest of WM because ECs were on WM. After being forced to use WM I have figured it out and found the concept to be more enjoyable than GC. I have a hard time finding those tiny little film canisters out in the middle of nowhere and I have a very short attention span so my DNF (or should I say Gave Up Fast) list is rather long.

0

Share this post


Link to post

I too was very surprised when I opened my email to the same email that the OP is talking about. I too think that they should stay here at the Waymarking site; but I guess we do not have any power in that respect since the announcement has gone out already, but when I clicked on the link to see the new guidlines the submittal form sent you right back to the Waymarking site. I too agree with The Blue Quasar wholeheartily.

I have voted Nay in some Categories as I strongly felt they were Duplicate categories, but now they did not pass the peere review and the Earthcaches that will move negates my votes regarding this, this is just bad format.

 

Here is a copy of that email.

 

Greetings from Geocaching.com and EarthCache.org!

 

 

As part of Groundspeak’s ongoing commitment to education, we are pleased to announce the return of EarthCaches to the Geocaching.com website. This change will occur over the next few months; EarthCache owners do not need to make any changes for this transition to occur. In related news…

 

 

New EarthCache Guidelines

 

We have created new guidelines to ensure the successful educational impact of EarthCaching. These changes are essential to EarthCaches returning to Geocaching.com. Please review these guidelines, especially those related to the new logging requirements, and make any changes necessary to ensure that your EarthCache meets our new educational standards. View guidelines at www.earthcache.org and click on “submittal guidelines.” On an ongoing basis, each EarthCache will be independently reviewed by our team to ensure compliance with the guidelines. EarthCaches which do not meet the new guidelines must be revised or the cache will be archived.

 

 

1st Annual International EarthCache Day – October 8th!

 

The Geological Society of America and Geocaching.com are sponsoring the 1st Annual International EarthCache Day, an opportunity to showcase the natural beauty of our outdoor geoscience resources during Earth Science Week.

 

 

Help us promote EarthCache education by hosting an event in your community! Read the attached informational flyer and begin planning today!

 

 

Thank you for your support!

 

Geocaching.com

 

EarthCache.org

0

Share this post


Link to post

There was no reason given, and I admit I'm very curious too.

 

I don't equate this move with anything negative regarding Waymarking.

 

I also don't agree with those that want to divide geocaching and Waymarking by container/no container. I think it's an artificial boundary that sounds tidy but otherwise carries no real significance.

 

Then what is your definition of the cache part of geocaching?

That was debated at length in many threads. I was puzzled as to why Earthcaches were never renamed Earthmarks. :laughing:

0

Share this post


Link to post

As the owner of the only two Earthcaches in France, I can see the problem.

 

One of my Earthcaches is a Geocache ( Dune de Pilat ) and the other is a Waymarking Earthcache ( Pont d'Arc) ).

 

The former gets frequent visits and most if not all are as astounded as I was at this geological feature. For them the visit to this Earthcache has been an educational experience in itself. Its almost a popular Earthcache. Sadly in two years the Waymarking Earthcache has received just one logged visit. In many ways the Pont d'Arc feature is even more impressive than the Dune de Pilat - and a visit there is an educational discovery in itself.

 

I unreservedly welcome the return of Earthcaches to Geocaching. I do ask TPTB to be sensible and sensitive in how they interpret education. Many Earthcaches sites are an educational discovery in themselves, but I do know that some are not.

0

Share this post


Link to post

 

The former gets frequent visits and most if not all are as astounded as I was at this geological feature. For them the visit to this Earthcache has been an educational experience in itself. Its almost a popular Earthcache. Sadly in two years the Waymarking Earthcache has received just one logged visit. In many ways the Pont d'Arc feature is even more impressive than the Dune de Pilat - and a visit there is an educational discovery in itself.

.

 

kewfriend has stated exactly what the problem is. It doesn't take much perusal of ANY waymark category to get an idea of how visiting waymarks has not developed and it is a potential fatal flaw of Waymarking. Its hard to keep justifying placing waymarks (and the amount of work that takes and the struggles with some category owners pickiness about waymarks) when there is so little payoff in terms of visits. By comparison, a cache page is far less of a hassle and will have several visits within a week.

 

It also needs to be remembered that Earthcaching is the creation of an organization outside of either waymark or geocaching and was developed as a method of teaching geology and geophysics. The concept does not work if there are no or very few visits and as erthcache owners are saying consistently in this and other threads, they are not getting the visits.

 

Groundspeak has a responsibility to this outside organization, earthcaching, to support and promote their activity and despite trying (first on geocachiong and then on Waymarking) it has become abundantly clear that Waymarking isn't the spot for this activity precisely because Waymarking has not developed as a sport of visiting the waymarks.

 

JDandDD

Edited by JDandDD
0

Share this post


Link to post
JDandDD Posted Today, 09:45 AM

 

kewfriend has stated exactly what the problem is. It doesn't take much perusal of ANY waymark category to get an idea of how visiting waymarks has not developed and it is a potential fatal flaw of Waymarking. Its hard to keep justifying placing waymarks (and the amount of work that takes and the struggles with some category owners pickiness about waymarks) when there is so little payoff in terms of visits. By comparison, a cache page is far less of a hassle and will have several visits within a week.

 

It also needs to be remembered that Earthcaching is the creation of an organization outside of either waymark or geocaching and was developed as a method of teaching geology and geophysics. The concept does not work if there are no or very few visits and as erthcache owners are saying consistently in this and other threads, they are not getting the visits.

 

Groundspeak has a responsibility to this outside organization, earthcaching, to support and promote their activity and despite trying (first on geocachiong and then on Waymarking) it has become abundantly clear that Waymarking isn't the spot for this activity precisely because Waymarking has not developed as a sport of visiting the waymarks.

 

JDandDD

 

From what I recall, EarthCaching was created to find a way to get some form of caching to be allowed in the National Park Service lands in the United States. NPS didn't want physical containers and off trail activity, and Virtuals were far too restrictive from Groundspeak. This proposal of EC's seemed to fit the hole nicely at the time.

 

Groundspeak does not have a responsibility to this outside organization in any way at all. If the group that created EarthCaches cannot fit their creation into the framework developed by Groundspeak, then Groundspeak doesn't have to host it.

 

Waymarking, while to us may be developing slowly, is still in BETA. There is no instant gratification, we just happen to have a front-row view.

 

Either way, if EarthCaches aren't getting the exposure they want on Waymarking, it doesn't mean they should be placed on what is now the shining star.

 

A bigger hammer might fit this square peg into the round hole... that doesn't mean it should.

 

So, EarthCaches aren't getting enough exposure??? So what? Neither are any other of our categories... so let's move them all to Geocaching.com.

 

What makes EarthCaches better than anything else? Nothing! Popularity filter probably agrees with that.

 

Did anyone else notice that the Groundspeak email was sent off at the end of the workday on Friday? Did anyone else notice that the ESA rep is away from the office until September 25th?

 

Well planned, if you ask me. :laughing:

 

:blink: The Blue Quasar

0

Share this post


Link to post

 

From what I recall, EarthCaching was created to find a way to get some form of caching to be allowed in the National Park Service lands in the United States. NPS didn't want physical containers and off trail activity, and Virtuals were far too restrictive from Groundspeak. This proposal of EC's seemed to fit the hole nicely at the time.

 

Groundspeak does not have a responsibility to this outside organization in any way at all. If the group that created EarthCaches cannot fit their creation into the framework developed by Groundspeak, then Groundspeak doesn't have to host it.

 

Waymarking, while to us may be developing slowly, is still in BETA. There is no instant gratification, we just happen to have a front-row view.

 

Either way, if EarthCaches aren't getting the exposure they want on Waymarking, it doesn't mean they should be placed on what is now the shining star.

 

A bigger hammer might fit this square peg into the round hole... that doesn't mean it should.

 

So, EarthCaches aren't getting enough exposure??? So what? Neither are any other of our categories... so let's move them all to Geocaching.com.

 

What makes EarthCaches better than anything else? Nothing! Popularity filter probably agrees with that.

 

Did anyone else notice that the Groundspeak email was sent off at the end of the workday on Friday? Did anyone else notice that the ESA rep is away from the office until September 25th?

 

Well planned, if you ask me. :laughing:

 

:blink: The Blue Quasar

Easy big guy!!.

 

First line of response: if you read their web page its much broader than the US NPS and is about geophysics.\

 

Second, nothing makes them better, but, the goal of Earthcaching is to show off geological features and that does mean visits. The simple facts are: on geocaching they got visits on Waymarking they didn't.

 

Three, my point about responsibility is in the ethical sense and in the ethical sense Groundspeak DOES have a responsbility. Not legal but ethical. Since the activity requires visits to the sites AND Groundspeak has clear evidence that the visits goal can be met on geocaching and not Waymarking (at least at present) Groundspeak does have an ethical responsibility to have this on the site that will lead to the visits. Because they originially agreed to make Earthcaching part of the geocaching and it was Groundspeak who chose to create Waymarking and move it, yes they have a responsibility that they accepted (ethically speaking of course).

 

Four, something does make them different: Earthcaching is endorsed by National Geographic Education Foundation, the NPS, and the Geological Society of America among others. This is not your typical waymark category.

 

Five, still BETA. How long is this going to be Beta? Its been more than a year. But beta also says when you test in beta mode and find something isn't working right you fix it. In this case they did. So, actually being Beta is not an argument to keep it on this site but a better argument to move it. You have clear evidence the concept works better elsewhere thanks to Beta testing so you fix it. That's the case her.

 

Six, popularity means nothing right now. Just not enough people doing Waymarking to really be meaningful.

 

Seven, you say it yourself, none of our waymarks are getting visits. That is not a good argument for Waymarking, quite the opposite really after more than 1 year since this activity was created.

 

I can't put my finger on it, but after placing 160+ waymarks I can sense that there is something just not right about this activity. No I can't tell you what that something is but clearly something is missing when people simply don't visit waymarks and when it feels that waymarks are so onerous to create that you don't look forward to it, not to mention the battles with some of the category owners who are far more difficult to work with than the geocaching volunteer reviewers.

 

That something is also evidenced by how sometimes I love it and then things occur that make me hate it. The approach/avoidance syndrome of this activity never happened with geocaching but it does here. I don't know yet what it is but this sport is going to continue to have trouble developing until that something is found.

 

JD

0

Share this post


Link to post

I do think that ulimately earthcaches and web Cams should not have been moved to Waymarking until we are in the finding part of this game here at Waymarking. We are still in the very begining of this activity and we are still creating Categories. Once the site is populated with categories ( I'd guess three years then the game will gradually switd=ch to a finders game). Web Cams and Earthcaches should not have been moved until this game was about finding not creating. But the TPTB disagreed and placed all new ones here. lLke the locationless caches they could have been moved over when finding is a routine activity. I firmly believe that they belong in Waymarking as they do not have containers and are not caches. Remember that Waymarking has not been proper;ly advertised YET!! THye belong were there is no container, but in my humble opiniuon they moved them prematurely. But you should not compound an error with another error. I am fully aware that they are not being visited at this site ( that is one of my reasons why I have not created an Earthcache here yet, while I have two on GC.com, but the new incentive program has inspired me to begin creating one that I thought would be placed at the Waymarking site. To me this decision was premature, it has not even been a month with the new incentives to create these waymarks. Maybe a compromise that new ones could be created at gc.cpm with the condition that when this site has completely changed to a visiting game instead of a Category creation game then they could all be moved here where they belong just like the locationless caches moved here. but state that up front when one is created on GC.com that within a year or two they would ALL move to the proper site.

 

A quote from a prior Thread

"Earthcaches, webcams, and virtual caches get more finds than waymarks get visits for several reasons:

Not as many people are aware of Waymarking as are aware of geocaching

People haven't gotten used to searching for nearby waymarks as part of their activities

There is no way yet to download waymark coordinates along with the geocaches in an area

A waymark visit is not counted in your geocaching find count

 

Whatever the reason, it doesn't seem to me that the solution is to move these waymarks back to geocaching. If Waymarking is "broken", it seems better to discuss ways to fix Waymarking.

How can we get more interest in Waymarking?

How can waymark searches be improved? How can waymark searches be tied in with geocache searches?

How should Waymarking downloads work?

What Waymarking statistics should there be? How should they be integrated with geocaching stats?

 

I would love to complain and whine about the geocaching puritans that won't let me find the virtuals and earthcaches anymore because there is no physical log to sign. But this isn't going to get me anywhere. TPTB have decided that there is now something called Waymarking and it should be the home of all new earthcaches, webcams, and virtuals. However, it seems that TPTB have given us these Waymarking forums as a way to give input on what Waymarking should be. Let's use them for constructive dialog on how to make it work.

Edited by chstress53
0

Share this post


Link to post

 

Whatever the reason, it doesn't seem to me that the solution is to move these waymarks back to geocaching. If Waymarking is "broken", it seems better to discuss ways to fix Waymarking.

How can we get more interest in Waymarking?

How can waymark searches be improved? How can waymark searches be tied in with geocache searches?

How should Waymarking downloads work?

What Waymarking statistics should there be? How should they be integrated with geocaching stats?

 

I don't want to hijack this thread so this will be short. I would love to have these kinds of discussion but they are secondary to a more important discussion, just exactly what is a waymark. When ISS sightings are approved I no longer have a clue. With geocaching you can say a spot on earth where something is hidden requiring a gps to find, on both sites you used to be able to say coords for a specific spot on earth. This category is none of those. So what is a waymark now?? Without defining that how can you advertise it and make it interesting??? The game is ill-defined and now even moreso.

 

JD

0

Share this post


Link to post

If the reason for moving EarthCaches back to geocaching is because they don't get visited enough as waymarks as some have indicated, then I propose a little testing be done. If they are not being visited because people don't know about them when they are on the Waymarking site, then move them to the geocaching site but don't give the "smiley count" for a visit. This would give an indication of why they are not being visited. Is it not being aware of their existence because they are "hidden" on the Waymarking site or is the lack of a "smilely count"?

0

Share this post


Link to post

If the reason for moving EarthCaches back to geocaching is because they don't get visited enough as waymarks as some have indicated, then I propose a little testing be done. If they are not being visited because people don't know about them when they are on the Waymarking site, then move them to the geocaching site but don't give the "smiley count" for a visit. This would give an indication of why they are not being visited. Is it not being aware of their existence because they are "hidden" on the Waymarking site or is the lack of a "smilely count"?

 

Earthcaches are somewhat hidden on GC.com as well. Neither of the maps, gc.com maps or gc.com google maps, show earthcaches (although the google maps one shows a shadow :D ). Google earth shows them and queries do include them.

 

I think a form of the test has already been done. Some of the earthcaches that are on gc.com have been duplicated on wm.com. A comparison of the finds on both sites would be an indication.

 

I also recently adopted a cache (Whale Fossil) about 20 feet from a new WM earthcache (Mission Viejo Whale Fossil) I set up on 7/20/06. On the cache site I put a link to the WM earthcache. Since that date the cache has been searched for 13 times and the wm earthcache has been logged 4 times (2 of them not from same 13 that looked for the cache).

0

Share this post


Link to post

If the reason for moving EarthCaches back to geocaching is because they don't get visited enough as waymarks as some have indicated, then I propose a little testing be done. If they are not being visited because people don't know about them when they are on the Waymarking site, then move them to the geocaching site but don't give the "smiley count" for a visit. This would give an indication of why they are not being visited. Is it not being aware of their existence because they are "hidden" on the Waymarking site or is the lack of a "smilely count"?

Instead of backlashing against the "smiley count", a better test would be to include a new tab in the GC.com profile page for Waymarking stats. Even a mere perception that the activities are integrated might be better than insulting cachers for liking the smiley count, which so far HAS NOT WORKED. :laughing:

 

Another strategy is to promote Waymarking to people other than Geocachers, since the game is different enough. That should eliminate the smiley count as the factor in participation.

 

It's obvious to me that the decision by TPTB to move Earthcaches back to GC.com wasn't trivial. I wish them luck for smooth transition and perhaps in the future, Waymarking will be popular enough to accomodate Earth"caches" again.

0

Share this post


Link to post

 

Instead of backlashing against the "smiley count", a better test would be to include a new tab in the GC.com profile page for Waymarking stats. Even a mere perception that the activities are integrated might be better than insulting cachers for liking the smiley count, which so far HAS NOT WORKED. :laughing:

 

Another strategy is to promote Waymarking to people other than Geocachers, since the game is different enough. That should eliminate the smiley count as the factor in participation.

 

It's obvious to me that the decision by TPTB to move Earthcaches back to GC.com wasn't trivial. I wish them luck for smooth transition and perhaps in the future, Waymarking will be popular enough to accomodate Earth"caches" again.

 

If you interpreted what I wrote as back-lashing against "smiley count" then you misread what I was trying to say. There was discussion that they were not being visited because they were located on the Waymarking site and not on the geocaching site. If the location alone was the problem then moving them to the geocaching site without including them in the find count would "solve" the problem. If just moving them did not increase the visits then there is is some other reason they are not being visited, which would be the find count. This would be the simple statistical test of changing one variable instead of two to find why they EarthCaches are not being visited.

0

Share this post


Link to post

 

Instead of backlashing against the "smiley count", a better test would be to include a new tab in the GC.com profile page for Waymarking stats. Even a mere perception that the activities are integrated might be better than insulting cachers for liking the smiley count, which so far HAS NOT WORKED. :laughing:

 

Another strategy is to promote Waymarking to people other than Geocachers, since the game is different enough. That should eliminate the smiley count as the factor in participation.

 

It's obvious to me that the decision by TPTB to move Earthcaches back to GC.com wasn't trivial. I wish them luck for smooth transition and perhaps in the future, Waymarking will be popular enough to accomodate Earth"caches" again.

 

If you interpreted what I wrote as back-lashing against "smiley count" then you misread what I was trying to say. There was discussion that they were not being visited because they were located on the Waymarking site and not on the geocaching site. If the location alone was the problem then moving them to the geocaching site without including them in the find count would "solve" the problem. If just moving them did not increase the visits then there is is some other reason they are not being visited, which would be the find count. This would be the simple statistical test of changing one variable instead of two to find why they EarthCaches are not being visited.

And I offered an alternate solution - adding a Waymarking tab to the GC.com profile, to give Waymarking more exposure. I think it's worth testing the idea of having an "Earthcaches visited" stat in there. Instead of a "smiley" you can call it "waymarkey" if you want. :rolleyes:

0

Share this post


Link to post

The idea that EarthCaches are being moved back to GC.com simply as a result of a lack of visits is just speculation. There could be any number of reasons for the change.

0

Share this post


Link to post

Then perhaps Jeremy or OpinioNate can tell us what the reason for the decision was.

 

There was no explanation given, not that they have to, but it would have been nice.

 

Speculating is not often a good idea, I just worry that this action will renew the drive to restore the other Grandfathered classifications.

 

And like JD&DD said... some clarification about permanent vs roaming style Waymarks needs to occur. I don't mind roving/temporary as long as they are separated from fixed/permanent listings.

 

There are many factors as to why Waymarks are not getting the visit counts. I've heard Geocaching was the same in 2000 too. How many caches were within 20 miles of your house by June of 2000? Few I bet!

 

:laughing: The Blue Quasar

0

Share this post


Link to post

Count me in with the crew that is relieved that EarthCaches are coming back to geocaching. I have an EarthCache that I just couldn't bring myself to switch over to Waymarking. Nothing against Waymarking, you folks probably know that I am involved in several waymark groups. I just thought the EarthCaches belonged on the gc side of things.

 

I like the new guidelines for EarthCaches, and I'm cheered to find out that I will have to do very little to bring mine into compliance. I'll just ask folks to send along a photo, sketch, or description of a fossil they found at my EarthCache. I already have several other EarthCaches planned, and I've gotten permission from a local state park to list one of their more interesting rock formations as an Earthcache after they return to geocaching.

0

Share this post


Link to post

I already have several other EarthCaches planned, and I've gotten permission from a local state park to list one of their more interesting rock formations as an Earthcache after they return to geocaching.

Why wait. They'll be moved automatically later on.

0

Share this post


Link to post

I already have several other EarthCaches planned, and I've gotten permission from a local state park to list one of their more interesting rock formations as an Earthcache after they return to geocaching.

Why wait. They'll be moved automatically later on.

I am going ahead with most of them, as for the one in the park, the park manager asked me to wait until the EarthCaches are on gc again. I didn't argue with him about it, partly because that suits my time table anyway (My students are helping to create that one, and it'll take some time to arrange for them to visit the park to get together with the interpretive guide and plan the Earthcache).

0

Share this post


Link to post

I also have rather a concern with a recent requirement they added: People must learn something while at the location. I have no issue with that as a whole, but I have an Artesian Well listed on Waymarking as an EC. What, exactly, can I ask people to "learn" from an Artesian Spring with no signage? Water is wet? It's cold? They're thirsty? I don't know about anyone else, but I usually don't go out prepared to estimate average water flow in gallons / minute or whatever.

So because this new requirement is in place (and wasn't when I listed the Artesian Well), I'm going to have an EC automatically archived because they're moving all the ECs back to GC.com? That'll pretty much kill the Artesian Well Earthcache subset altogether - many of them aren't much more than "pipe in the ground".

 

Suggestions for "what to have people learn" at my Artesian Well EC would be gratefully accepted.

 

Incidentally, I did not receive one of those letters - and I own 3 "EarthMarks".

Edited by PAWSitraction
0

Share this post


Link to post

I have been reading this discussion with interest. Inevitably its somewhat US-centric. To make the point I list the total waymarks of two countries: France with just 25 waymarks and 1280 geocaches (2%), and the UK with 471 waymarks and 13317 geocaches (3.5%), or less than 500 in two countires which have 15,000 geocaches between them. It is oddly a little difficult to extract similar data for the US as a whole or even by state - but I suspect a slightly higher ratio of waymarks to geocaches.

 

Geocache Earthcaches, certainly in the UK, have proven interesting and moderately popular. Because of the lack of canister they are probably visited less often than those with canisters. Twas ever thus: a nice walk, and treasure at the end is still the main form of enjoyment. [ And I have set a few caches in my time of most sorts ].

 

No-one over here (UK) ever really understood why new Earthcaches couldnt be listed on Geocaching.Com, and the evidence shows that over here in Europe, Waymarking is simply an irrelevance.

 

There is a difference in the way the two continents seem to enjoy geocaching. I am delighted that TPTB are bringing back Earthcaches to Geocaching - and given the figures above, I suspect that I am not alone over here.

 

By the way, I am also delighted one of my TBs is sauntering across the US!

0

Share this post


Link to post

I am still unclear as to why Groundspeak moved ANY type of cache away from the Geocaching website. Geocaching is just a hobby/game. There are no prizes to win and everyone plays the "game" the way it fits their likes, schedules, lifestyles, etc...So if someone does not like virtuals, then they don't do them. The same holds true for terrain, public places, remote places, and so on. Personally, I never really cared for locationless caches but I liked having the option to do them should I want to. (or NOT do them!) I know many people that hate micro caches, but they appreciate the option of being able to do them as well.

 

To me, unless I have missed the concept, Waymarking is nothing but an online yellow pages with different types of categories, and you use a GPS to find the store / restaurant / whatever...So I don't see the "game or hobby" aspect of it which is what draws me to the Geocaching website. Geocaching is an outlet at times for myself and my family.

 

I still go to the Waymarking site to check on the changes....I know it is still in Beta which is why I still visit it. I am waiting to see the changes and to see how it evolves. Perhaps I will understand it someday and I am maintaining an open mind for the Waymarking site. Who knows, I just may like it better than Geocaching someday! (Then again, maybe not!!) :blink:

 

So I am happy that the Earthcaches are coming back to Geocaching. And yes, I'm afraid that I am one of those individuals that would like to see all of them come back. (Especially web cam caches as I particularly like them!) And yes, I would even be happy to see the locationless ones come back as well! :o

0

Share this post


Link to post

I also have rather a concern with a recent requirement they added: People must learn something while at the location. I have no issue with that as a whole, but I have an Artesian Well listed on Waymarking as an EC. What, exactly, can I ask people to "learn" from an Artesian Spring with no signage? Water is wet? It's cold? They're thirsty? I don't know about anyone else, but I usually don't go out prepared to estimate average water flow in gallons / minute or whatever.

So because this new requirement is in place (and wasn't when I listed the Artesian Well), I'm going to have an EC automatically archived because they're moving all the ECs back to GC.com? That'll pretty much kill the Artesian Well Earthcache subset altogether - many of them aren't much more than "pipe in the ground".

 

Suggestions for "what to have people learn" at my Artesian Well EC would be gratefully accepted.

 

Incidentally, I did not receive one of those letters - and I own 3 "EarthMarks".

You can always point out a nearby geographical feature where the water likely flowed from, since there has to be a higher ground somewhere for the water to have enough pressure to sprout. I can see a "two stage" Earthcache, where one stage is the higher ground, and the other stage is the Artesian Well.

0

Share this post


Link to post

PAWSitraction

 

Took A look at your Artesian Well Eartcache You could easily add a crossword puzzle to your waymark page.

Use the words

impermeable

Aquifer

Watertable

Elevation

Flow

Waterpump

Pressure

 

All those words someone woud have learned while visiting your waymark, then have them email the answers to you to log the Earthcache.

 

You could even incorporate solving the crossword puzzle to get the real coords for the Earthcache.

 

Use the website wordplays to help you create a crossword puzzle, heck make them unscramble an anagram.

0

Share this post


Link to post

PAWSitraction

 

Took A look at your Artesian Well Eartcache You could easily add a crossword puzzle to your waymark page.

Use the words

impermeable

Aquifer

Watertable

Elevation

Flow

Waterpump

Pressure

 

All those words someone woud have learned while visiting your waymark, then have them email the answers to you to log the Earthcache.

 

You could even incorporate solving the crossword puzzle to get the real coords for the Earthcache.

 

Use the website wordplays to help you create a crossword puzzle, heck make them unscramble an anagram.

Wait a second. That sounds like your trying to make it fun :blink: . We can't have that! :o

0

Share this post


Link to post

Educational = Fun.... that's been my experience.

 

 

Sounds like a good starting place!

 

:blink: The Blue Quasar

0

Share this post


Link to post

The beauty of geocaching is the variety it has to offer everyone!!

 

While in Alaska earlier this year I was able to log the bore tide Earthcache. This was a priceless experience that I wouldn't have had if it weren't for GC.com.

 

I appreciate the fact that geocaching has taken me to so many beautiful, historical, and interesting places. I can't get enough!!

 

Earthcaches are just like any other caches, if you aren't interestd, you may just ignore them.

0

Share this post


Link to post
SweetBell Posted Yesterday, 06:53 PM

The beauty of geocaching is the variety it has to offer everyone!!

 

While in Alaska earlier this year I was able to log the bore tide Earthcache. This was a priceless experience that I wouldn't have had if it weren't for GC.com.

 

I appreciate the fact that geocaching has taken me to so many beautiful, historical, and interesting places. I can't get enough!!

 

Earthcaches are just like any other caches, if you aren't interestd, you may just ignore them.

 

That view can apply to anything, including Geocaches or Waymarks. That isn't the issue here.

 

The issue is the correct placement of EarthCaches.

 

The management of Groundspeak, before Waymarking was created, decided that Locationless and Virtual (and only those two) were in their words 'broken'. They worked for a few years to create a place that Locationless and Virtuals could live and run free.

 

Then it seemed that Groundspeak decided that this should apply to all Virtual-esque listings, so Web Cam and EarthCaches were also grandfathered and relocated to this new place. This makes sense, to me anyway. One site for all of the locations that involve a hidden container with a sign-in structure, and the other site for the go to this location and experience this public site.

 

One is kind of a secret spot (geocache), the other is public interest (waymark).

 

Personally I love EarthCaches, as long as they are more than just 'read the listing and take a photo there'. I prefer to learn at the site, which seems to be the new direction.

 

Still, with no container or logbook, it doesn't qualify as a cache. It does however seem just like any other Waymark, just has the chance of being more educational.

 

:blink: The Blue Quasar

0

Share this post


Link to post

The management of Groundspeak, before Waymarking was created, decided that Locationless and Virtual (and only those two) were in their words 'broken'.

 

Perhaps the reason behind the original fact that Virtuals were "broken" but Earth Caches weren't is that there was an independent body considering the validity of each cache. Maybe if a historical society were as involved in the placement of Virtuals as the Geological Society of America are with Earth Caches, it would solve the problem? Or maybe we need a new cache type for historical caches...

 

Just a thought...

 

Bambi.

0

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions; we now have an educational requirement on our Artesian Well Earthcache. :blink:

 

It's here if you'd like to critique it.

0

Share this post


Link to post

The management of Groundspeak, before Waymarking was created, decided that Locationless and Virtual (and only those two) were in their words 'broken'.

 

Perhaps the reason behind the original fact that Virtuals were "broken" but Earth Caches weren't is that there was an independent body considering the validity of each cache. Maybe if a historical society were as involved in the placement of Virtuals as the Geological Society of America are with Earth Caches, it would solve the problem? Or maybe we need a new cache type for historical caches...

 

Just a thought...

 

Bambi.

 

It is true that one problem with virtuals was that they were reviewed by the same Groundspeak volunteer reviewers who review all other caches. Having to determine that a virtual met the "Wow" requirement was just too much to ask the volunteers to do. Earthcaches on the other hand are reviewed by a separate person who does this on behalf of the Geological Society of America. He doesn't check for "Wow" and instead evaluates the Earthcache based on its relevance to geology and its educational content. This is very much like Waymarking where waymarks are reviewed by group managers, who have an interest a category, to see that the waymark meets the requirements that are specific to that category. In fact, Earthcaches are a much better fit to Waymarking than to geocaching - as are historic sites, cultural sites, and anything else that doesn't involve finding a container with a log to sign. I can only guess that Earthcaches are going to be listed on Geocaching.com because of the fact that waymarks don't get very many visitors yet. I think this is short sighted. Waymarking is still in beta. It is still a mystery to many geocachers who only find out about it when they try to submit a virtual cache. It still needs a way to download the waymarks in your favorite categories so you can visit them. It probably needs to be better integrated with geocaching. Perhaps an option to show waymarks in your favorite categories on the geocaching map along with geocaches. My prediction is that as Waymarking becomes more popular, it will eventually get to the point where the GSA will realize that they can reach more people would really like to visit sites to learn about geology through Waymarking than they can reach through geocaching.

Edited by tozainamboku
0

Share this post


Link to post

It is true that one problem with virtuals was that they were reviewed by the same Groundspeak volunteer reviewers who review all other caches. Having to determine that a virtual met the "Wow" requirement was just too much to ask the volunteers to do. Earthcaches on the other hand are reviewed by a separate person who does this on behalf of the Geological Society of America. He doesn't check for "Wow" and instead evaluates the Earthcache based on its relevance to geology and its educational content. This is very much like Waymarking where waymarks are reviewed by group managers, who have an interest a category, to see that the waymark meets the requirements that are specific to that category. In fact, Earthcaches are a much better fit to Waymarking than to geocaching - as are historic sites, cultural sites, and anything else that doesn't involve finding a container with a log to sign. I can only guess that Earthcaches are going to be listed on Geocaching.com because of the fact that waymarks don't get very many visitors yet. I think this is short sighted. Waymarking is still in beta. It is still a mystery to many geocachers who only find out about it when they try to submit a virtual cache. It still needs a way to download the waymarks in your favorite categories so you can visit them. It probably needs to be better integrated with geocaching. Perhaps an option to show waymarks in your favorite categories on the geocaching map along with geocaches. My prediction is that as Waymarking becomes more popular, it will eventually get to the point where the GSA will realize that they can reach more people would really like to visit sites to learn about geology through Waymarking than they can reach through geocaching.

 

As cachers, we are thrilled that ECs will be returning to GC.com and really look forward to placing some. From our perspective, we'd prefer it if Virts could return too and I feel that if making them more educational is the answer, I'd be happy to have them back in a new form with more stringent requirements. To be honest, I don't see why a third party assessing the quality of caches wasn't proposed as a solution when Virts were originally deemed to be "broken".

 

I can see how Earth Caches/Virts etc fit into WM and understand how WM is still in development and therefore has few users, has little functionality and is a long way from being "user-friendly". I'm not moaning, these things take time, but as Tozainamboku says, there is still work to do before people are enthusiastic. As for the prediction that the GSA will be able to reach more people through WM than through caching, that remains to be seen; judging by the number of people here in the UK who are agressively uninterested, I have my doubts, but am happy to wait until I'm proved wrong.

 

B.

0

Share this post


Link to post

Locationless was about "first to claim" and Waymarking has recaptured some of that excitement. Virtuals and Earthcaches are about "the visit" and this is where Waymarking is still lacking, in my opinion. Tools like .LOC, .GPX, Pocket Queries, and search are all about facilitating "the visit."

 

If anything, I would use "claim vs. visit" as the criteria for separation instead of "log book and container vs. not."

 

I think Earthcaches have the best potential of combining Waymarking and Geocaching. The "claimers" can research and explore and find interesting geographical features for others to share. The "visitors" can then go there and experience the wonders of nature that can "WOW" even if one already knows what to expect from the description.

 

If migrating Earthcaches back to GC.com was about "the visit" then I agree with the decision, even if it's short term. If Groundspeak chooses to migrate them back to WM.com in the future (after upgrading the site to enhance "the visit" of course), then I won't second guess the decision either.

0

Share this post


Link to post

This is great news! I love Earthcaches and Virtuals. There are many places where a physical cache just isn't appropriate but the place is worth a visit.

0

Share this post


Link to post

Locationless was about "first to claim" and Waymarking has recaptured some of that excitement. Virtuals and Earthcaches are about "the visit" and this is where Waymarking is still lacking, in my opinion. Tools like .LOC, .GPX, Pocket Queries, and search are all about facilitating "the visit."

 

If anything, I would use "claim vs. visit" as the criteria for separation instead of "log book and container vs. not."

 

I really like this description, and perhaps it explains why we aren't that fussed about WM - We don't get that excited about being the first to do something (in 250+ caches only 6 FTF) and don't get much pleasure out of "claiming somewhere". The explanation we had as the difference between normal and locationless caches was that one is "forward lookup" (get the coords and go find something) and the other is "reverse lookup" (go find something and post the coords). I think I like your explanation more though as it reflects the "emotion" better and explains completely our general feeling that it's not for us.

 

If migrating Earthcaches back to GC.com was about "the visit" then I agree with the decision, even if it's short term. If Groundspeak chooses to migrate them back to WM.com in the future (after upgrading the site to enhance "the visit" of course), then I won't second guess the decision either.

 

I still don't understand why we can't have ECs, virtuals and Web Cams listed on both sites. If WM is going to be such a success, then we should be able to fix ECs and virtuals and return them to GC.com and then allow WM to grow organically and have it's own entity, while GC does the same. Some places could appear on both, possibly even with different requirements, but this is only like some caches that I've heard of that are listed on the letterboxing site as well as on GC.com (or benchmarks that are listed on one, two or more sites). That way, the two sports would be truly independent. You could still have a universal "Groundspeak Profile" listing all finds/hides/WMs/whatever else they decide to do, but within that you would have two (or more) entirely separate games.

 

B.

0

Share this post


Link to post
I really like this description, and perhaps it explains why we aren't that fussed about WM - We don't get that excited about being the first to do something (in 250+ caches only 6 FTF) and don't get much pleasure out of "claiming somewhere".

Bambi,

 

I was not into locationless (probably out of the fact that I never took the time to learn what the different ones were, except for the yellow Jeep of course!) and I'm not a FTF hound but I do really enjoy Waymarking. I had to take the time to look for categories that were interesting to me, then do some research online to find where I might be able to locate some of those things. I started a group/category to learn more about that end and now I'm finding myself looking for things everywhere. I don't think it's possible to have them (virts/locationless) on both sites (earthcaches maybe since they're very specific), it should be one or the other. Locationless type caches are handled much better on Waymarking though, the software and setup is built to handle these things so I'd think it'd be a step back to move them (and virts) back. Give Waymarking a try, though.... find something you're interested in or just look at a few categories in the directory and see if you can think of where any of those are around you, then go mark them!

 

On-topic: I think earthcaches should have stayed on Waymarking.com (container v non-container) however I'm sure there's a valid reason they're moving, otherwise Groundspeak wouldn't go through the trouble. Given that, I support the move and look forward to [possibly] more earthcaches being submitted. I have some near me, I just need to go visit them soon.

 

:anitongue:

0

Share this post


Link to post

Bambi,

 

I was not into locationless (probably out of the fact that I never took the time to learn what the different ones were, except for the yellow Jeep of course!) and I'm not a FTF hound but I do really enjoy Waymarking. I had to take the time to look for categories that were interesting to me, then do some research online to find where I might be able to locate some of those things. I started a group/category to learn more about that end and now I'm finding myself looking for things everywhere. I don't think it's possible to have them (virts/locationless) on both sites (earthcaches maybe since they're very specific), it should be one or the other. Locationless type caches are handled much better on Waymarking though, the software and setup is built to handle these things so I'd think it'd be a step back to move them (and virts) back. Give Waymarking a try, though.... find something you're interested in or just look at a few categories in the directory and see if you can think of where any of those are around you, then go mark them!

 

robert,

 

We have done a little bit of WMing, and like you, I think locationless type caches are handled better on WM.com. At the moment we find the site hard to negociate, but that's just teething difficulties; more fundamentally we just don't find that it's something that really inspires us. Don't get me wrong, unlike some others, we've never had a problem with the setting up of WM.com, we just objected to the "virtuals are broken, lets move them" attitude, as that detracted from GC.com and the game we love. We always liked the variety that Virtuals, Webcams and Earth caches brought to caching; Sure, some are virtuals lame, but so are some trads/puzzles/multis etc. and you learn to spot them by reading the notes. I now feel that virtuals could be "fixed" by getting some historical type organisations to carry out the same function as the GSA do for Earth caches. Given this solution, I see no reason why WM can't exist as it is now (and containing Earth WMs) while caching goes on much as before. That way, you satisfy both caching and WMing worlds.

 

On-topic: I think earthcaches should have stayed on Waymarking.com (container v non-container) however I'm sure there's a valid reason they're moving, otherwise Groundspeak wouldn't go through the trouble. Given that, I support the move and look forward to [possibly] more earthcaches being submitted. I have some near me, I just need to go visit them soon.

 

I'm sure that there is a very valid reason and I think it's probably funding related somehow. However, I hope that Earth Caches won't be shunted back as soon as that reason (whatever it is) goes away, as that just messes everyone about. Meanwhile, we are already working on a new Earth Cache and hope to place it as soon as possible, so we are looking forward to a formal announcement about this matter.

 

B.

0

Share this post


Link to post
We have done a little bit of WMing, and like you, I think locationless type caches are handled better on WM.com. At the moment we find the site hard to negociate, but that's just teething difficulties; more fundamentally we just don't find that it's something that really inspires us. Don't get me wrong, unlike some others, we've never had a problem with the setting up of WM.com, we just objected to the "virtuals are broken, lets move them" attitude, as that detracted from GC.com and the game we love. We always liked the variety that Virtuals, Webcams and Earth caches brought to caching; Sure, some are virtuals lame, but so are some trads/puzzles/multis etc. and you learn to spot them by reading the notes. I now feel that virtuals could be "fixed" by getting some historical type organisations to carry out the same function as the GSA do for Earth caches. Given this solution, I see no reason why WM can't exist as it is now (and containing Earth WMs) while caching goes on much as before. That way, you satisfy both caching and WMing worlds.

I did a couple virts the other day, and one I was able to turn into a waymark. :D You can visit it, there just isn't a logging requirement to answer a question. :anitongue: Virts are so subjective (unlike earth caches) so I don't know how possible it would be to bring them back and put them through the same type of standards that earth caches will go through to get listed--the variables would just be too great! Not all virts are (or should be) historical, so I don't think you can apply the same idea to them like earthcaches which are very specific.

 

I'm sure that there is a very valid reason and I think it's probably funding related somehow. However, I hope that Earth Caches won't be shunted back as soon as that reason (whatever it is) goes away, as that just messes everyone about. Meanwhile, we are already working on a new Earth Cache and hope to place it as soon as possible, so we are looking forward to a formal announcement about this matter.

I doubt they will move them back, but I'm curious for more announcements on the subject.

 

<_<

0

Share this post


Link to post

I did a couple virts the other day, and one I was able to turn into a waymark. <_< You can visit it, there just isn't a logging requirement to answer a question. :anitongue: Virts are so subjective (unlike earth caches) so I don't know how possible it would be to bring them back and put them through the same type of standards that earth caches will go through to get listed--the variables would just be too great! Not all virts are (or should be) historical, so I don't think you can apply the same idea to them like earthcaches which are very specific.

 

It's true, Virtuals are very subjective and not all of them are historical, but I'm guessing that many people (most?) would accept more stringent rules to bring them back. With an educational element and a third party to assess the quality (or maybe several third parties, a historical scociety was only a suggestion, you could also include science and art societies for example), they could work again and add a valuable element to caching in the same way that Earth Caches do. I appreciate that in doing this perhaps people will think this detracts from WMing, but that is a different game and the logging requirements are different. My perception is that WMing is much less regimented, and more free-flowing game (perhaps another reason why Earth Caches fit in to GC.com), but some people prefer to have some boundaries (perhaps that's my Britishness coming out :().

 

I doubt they will move them back, but I'm curious for more announcements on the subject.

 

:D

 

You and me both! :o

 

B.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 5