+CoinsAndPins Posted November 11, 2006 Share Posted November 11, 2006 I love to find coins in caches, and I love putting them in caches. However, some coins will come up missing when put in caches. This should not discourage you from releasing them. At the time of this writing I have put about 180 coins into caches. I met another cacher who has about 500 coins traveling. When a coin turns up missing I know the first feelings that come about are you have been robbed or taken advantage of. I think some cachers get very protective of their coins to the point they feel that if one comes up missing then it is definitely stolen instead of thinking about other circumstances that come up. So, let’s look into the possible reasons why they are gone and what can be done to counteract it. A good expectation is a 10% missing rate. Some will experience more and some will experience less. I have experienced about an 8% missing rate and could climb to 12% or 15% in the next year. Most of that 8% is due to a new cacher that on her first day went out with cacher friends that were showing her the ropes and she found the coins. She emailed me later and asked how to log them. I explained the process to her and never heard back. I think she quit caching after that; so the coins are probably sitting in her house somewhere or thrown out. This kind of thing is expected to happen since some people get really excited about caching on their first day, and then later realize the game is not for them or they just don’t have the time to play. I have also had coins come up missing due to kids taking them from caches and keeping them, not knowing they are trackable. It is one of those situations where the parents are busy signing the log and handling their caching administration and not paying attention to what items the kids are trading with (normal practice and not really an issue). Luckily a few parents have caught it in time and kept the coins moving. I have also had some military people pick up coins with the intention of moving them, but they were sent on a deployment before they could place them; so those will be in limbo for a few months to over a year. This also happens with civilian jobs that move people on short notice. Some people find the coins, want to do something with them, but then life’s circumstances take over that prevent them from getting around to it. It’s not that they want to keep the coin, but there are sometimes more important things to tend to than moving coins. Other times there are people that loose the coins. They may have pulled it from a cache, put it somewhere, and then when trying to log it they can’t find it. They may be too embarrassed to tell the owner. Other coins come up missing due to cache container problems such as: 1. Missing cache. Let’s face it, we have all encountered many caches that are not taken care of by the cache owner. A problem comes up with a cache after your visit and the owner doesn’t even know about the problem for months (depending on how often it is visited by other cachers). 2. Water in the cache. A cache that gets soaked and another cacher or the owner just throws away everything inside without going through the contents. I can’t blame them with how trashed the insides of some caches get when wet. 3. Cache tips over. Sometimes we all get a little clumsy and accidentally tip the container. The contents go everywhere including under leaves, branches, in holes, etc. If it is while opening the cache, then the person probably didn’t know the coin was in it and some of those items may get lost and never seen again, even with a thorough search. 4. And many more scenarios. All those kinds of situations I can understand and have no problem with. I think only one of my coins has been stolen that I can speculate for sure, but the others are problems due to some kind of caching mistake, unexpected circumstance, or muggle. That is why I don't deface them; While there are a couple of thieves, I feel most cachers will do the right thing and move coins if they know what it is for and have the time. There are over 1 million cachers in the world, so a large percentage of them (especially new ones) will have no idea what geocoins are. How to compensate: Put out more coins!!! With so many people playing the game, and with so many caches around the entire world, things are bound to happen. Don’t fret over a missing or stolen coin, just put more out. I consider it a numbers game: the more you have traveling, the more that will get around to their goals and not end up missing. Placing 5 coins into the wild could easily all come up missing; place 50 coins out there and the remaining 45 coins could end up traveling to hundreds of caches (90%). Even if you have a 20% loss, you will still have coins traveling. After all, traveling is what trackable geocoins are for. I usually give an inactive coin 4 to 6 months before I archive it; then hopefully it will turn up again some day. I probably should give them more time. There are times when people need to be given a little time before they are emailed about the status of the coin. A little time could mean several months. Keep in mind, there are many cachers that don’t cache very often and they have the right to take long breaks. They also have the right to take care of life before taking care of a coin. Quote Link to comment
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