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How do you thwart "cheaters"?


Tequila
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So many people complain about lame hides, drive up micros and LPC's.

 

But yet, it seems even with good hides, some cachers always want to circumvent having to hike a little farther or do a little extra. All they care about is that stupid smiley.

 

I recently published a Letterbox cache that required the cacher to follow a trail of fire tacks at night to find a container that gave them the coordinates for the final. I did this to add some variety to the caches in the area. There are very few letterboxes and this was an opportunity for some cachers to get that icon. There were no night only caches east of Toronto and this was an opportunity to try it.

 

With only six cachers having found it, emails were already flying around with the coordinates for the final. Allowing people to save about 1 km of hiking and avoiding doing it at night.

 

It was extremely disappointing.

 

The purpose of this topic is not to rant but rather to seek out ways of preventing this from happening. I am not looking for "delete their logs" or ideas like that. I want to know how you make it "difficult / impossible" to short cut in the field. For example, most multi's are a loop or an out and back with the final close to the start. I no longer do that. I put the final as far away as possible. That way cachers who get the final coordinates by cheating, still have to do the walk.

 

Ideas?

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I'm told I need to declare on my cache pages that I am 'opting out' of any sort of PAF network.

 

I think I should just be handed that courtesy and should have to 'opt in'.

 

Email, phone or however it was passed around - It is just another form of ther PAF networks.

 

Best I can advise is to make such caches in a place where they just must hike by the first to get to the 2nd anyway.

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Probably the easiest and most basic thing you could do is to require that all cachers post a photo of themselves with the container from each stage of the multi. Make each container easily identifiable with a label, unique camo , or some other identifying mark to thwart cheaters. Or, to preserve the difficulty of the cache, a picture of each cacher posed in front of a nearby object/landmark near each stage could be required. Of course, then this would have to be listed as a puzzle/mystery cache, which will probably cut down on the number of visitors.

Edited by whistler & co.
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Or, you could decide not to worry about it.

 

For me the pleasure of cache ownership is in reading the logs and providing interesting experiences for people. If someone logs my cache without walking as far as I did to place it, when the alternative is that they wouldn't otherwise have attempted it, that's one more person who got to see the final location, who otherwise wouldn't have done. The glass is half-full. :D

 

[edit: spelling]

Edited by sTeamTraen
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Probably the easiest and most basic thing you could do is to require that all cachers post a photo of themselves with the container from each stage of the multi. Make each container easily identifiable with a label, unique camo , or some other identifying mark to thwart cheaters. Or, to preserve the difficulty of the cache, a picture of each cacher posed in front of a nearby object/landmark near each stage could be required. Of course, then this would have to be listed as a puzzle/mystery cache, which will probably cut down on the number of visitors.

 

That is an interesting idea. Thank you.

 

I don't like the idea of making everything a mystery but it is a good suggestion.

 

For the others: I am not looking for post telling me to forget about or there will always be those that get around it. I already knew that. I was looking for suggestions like whistler's that give the cache owner alternatives. Thanks.

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I am not looking for post telling me to forget about or there will always be those that get around it. I already knew that. I was looking for suggestions like whistler's that give the cache owner alternatives. Thanks.

Like it or not, Disney's cheesy "Hakuna Matata" philosophy applies. Once one person finds your puzzle/multi/etc, they have the final coords. If they wish to share these, they will, and you'll be powerless to stop them. You can come up with lots of complex mechanisms to ensure that anyone who does your cache experiences a certain degree of exertion, if you're the type who embraces stress, or you can relax and assume that those folks who "cheat" are simply missing out on an amazing experience. How controlling are you willing to be, in regards to other people's smileys? I've got three night caches that are at least a couple miles of bushwhacking each, and if someone wants to go straight to the final, it doesn't bother me a bit. Life is way too short to get worked up over how someone else plays a game.

 

Relax & enjoy is, like it or not, an alternative.

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Make sure the final is past stage 1.

The only other thing I can come up with to help is have multiple locations to move the final to, and regularly move it to a random one.

The only thing I can come up with to encourage doing it at night is, use a two part stamp with glow in the dark ink, part 1 is in stage one, part two is in the final.

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I've found a number of multi-caches with words on each stage. In addition to signing the log, you needed to email that list of words to the cache owner. Obviously the words, like the final coords, could be shared. More effort though.

If you're really intent upon thwarting finds from coordinate sharing, you could simply shift the final from time to time.

 

(That said, I'm in the don't worry about it camp. )

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I put the final as far away as possible. That way cachers who get the final coordinates by cheating, still have to do the walk.

 

Interesting, I hadn't really thought about that. The same cache owner who wanted the "codewords" from each stage emailed also generally configured his multis this way. Started nearish the trailhead, ended 6 -8 miles out. At the end, you were as far as you were gonna get on his cache. That this was part of a "no cheaters" plan didn't occur to me until your post.

 

Anyway, I do think that simply shifting your final will, at least, force cachers to find the end point of your fire tacks.

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Don't sweat it. No matter what you do someone will either circumvent or whine. Those that will enjoy the journey will. Those that will enjoy the smiley will. Those who can do both will. In the end they all had fun. Except maybe you? Like I said, don't sweat it.

Well, I largely agree with you, but you DID forget to mention the fact that anyone who cheats while trying to earn a quick smiley has committed a most grievous offense against God, a sin known as a "geo-moral sin", and, when they die, their eternal soul will rot in H3ll for all of eternity, and... there are no geocaches in H3ll, and, in any case, H3lll is so hot that any GPSr would melt in about four seconds flat. If you fail to point this out, you are tempting geocache hunters of weak moral fiber and loose moral will to slip and slide down the slippery evil slope of moral relativisim. Shame on you for your omission!

 

 

 

 

:P

 

:D

 

:D

 

.

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I suppose that you could have intermediate caches along the way, containing little strips of paper. Each strip would have a unique 10-digit number (use Excel's random function to generate these). To log the cache, they have to take a strip at each point and e-mail you the numbers, which you can then compare against the original list. (Make sure to do a "paste values" before saving, because otherwise you'll get new random numbers every time you open the file.)

 

Of course, the first person to find the cache could take a handful of the strips and give, or sell, them on to their buddies. So after each visit, you'd need to visit each intermediate cache and do an inventory of which strips are missing. Good luck with that.

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Put in the first waypoint the papers that each geocacher have to take and leave the stamp that they must put in the paper in the final location. Then make sure it's better to get from the 1st place to the 2nd on foot than by car... Or make sure that it's only possible to get there on foot...

Good luck. If you manage a way to thwart cheaters let us know, please.

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Personally, I feel that if your life is so empty that you have to find ways of cheating to get a image of a smiley on a map on a website, I feel bad for you. :D Not that I don't like the smileys, just its not the driving force behind the game. The finding of the cache is.

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Don't sweat it. No matter what you do someone will either circumvent or whine. Those that will enjoy the journey will. Those that will enjoy the smiley will. Those who can do both will. In the end they all had fun. Except maybe you? Like I said, don't sweat it.

Well, I largely agree with you, but you DID forget to mention the fact that anyone who cheats while trying to earn a quick smiley has committed a most grievous offense against God, a sin known as a "geo-moral sin", and, when they die, their eternal soul will rot in H3ll for all of eternity, and... there are no geocaches in H3ll, and, in any case, H3lll is so hot that any GPSr would melt in about four seconds flat. If you fail to point this out, you are tempting geocache hunters of weak moral fiber and loose moral will to slip and slide down the slippery evil slope of moral relativisim. Shame on you for your omission!

 

 

 

 

:P

 

:D

 

:D

 

.

 

I am neither a geo-shaman nor a geo-demon. The condition, or destination, of anyone's soul is none of my responsibility. And I don't care who you're related to.

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Ideas?

Here are a couple of caches that were put out with the idea of thwarting phone-a-friend giveaways of the cache location:

 

So you want to PAF - Quit stairing at me!

So you want to PAF - Cleft in the Rock?

 

While the coordinates are known to all, only the most recent finder of the cache knows the exact location, so the potential PAF network has a size of one.

Edited by the hermit crabs
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Instead of moving the cache, you could lock it with a changeable combination lock and change the combination periodically. Moving the final might run you into issues with the reviewers.

 

Your standard brass 4 numeral combination lock is probably the easiest to form a scheme with. You can have one stage with a number or multiple stages. One scheme could involve multiple stages and the final requires the solver to add or multiply the numbers together to get a four digit number to open the lock. You can preselect the numbers and as you walk in drop off the clues and then change the combination on the final. No need to take the time to final a new spot, take coords, etc.

 

Of course, the last seekers could share the latest combination, but then again you have massive groups tackling harder caches and all log it as a find versus a single person or a pair do the same cache and having fewer persons to split the work load. What are you going to do?

 

The root problem is sharing of information. You can either make that information not valid or you can punish the sharing of that information. Cheaters could cause an owner to archive a cache. It's an option, not a good one, IMHO, but at least you'll let the locals know you're serious about not sharing solutions. Yes, you're punishing the seekers who would come later, but letting folks know why it was archived (without naming names) would be a good way to socially bend arms. It won't stop the true cheaters, unfortunately.

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Certain cachers don't like long hikes, so they found a way to do your cache in a manner they prefer. Why do you want to make them do it your way? That's not a cache issue... that's a control issue! :D

Because that is the way they set it up?

 

It's not about short-cutting a cache, the OP is concerned about flagrant cheating. Major difference.

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I think that the photo option mentioned by whistler & co is probably the best one. Photos can be photoshopped, but there are ways to tell -- all of the other suggestions (but one) can be circumvented by giving the next person the information.

 

I like the idea of putting the last stage far away from the first (in a line rather than a loop). Of course, you have to keep it away from some other easy means of access, as someone who's been given the final coordinates could approach it from another direction if it's easy to get to that way.

 

And I like the "so you want to PAF" caches -- that's clever. : ) And keeps the cache a traditional one vice a Mystery cache. Although I for one don't think that having your cache be listed as a Mystery cache would be a problem -- after all, it looks like the people who'd take the time to look into Mystery caches are, in fact, the kind of cachers you want to find your cache, Tequila. : )

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Put in the first waypoint the papers that each geocacher have to take and leave the stamp that they must put in the paper in the final location. Then make sure it's better to get from the 1st place to the 2nd on foot than by car... Or make sure that it's only possible to get there on foot...

Good luck. If you manage a way to thwart cheaters let us know, please.

 

HMMM!

This seems like a pretty good option.

You (the owner) make customized log-in slips, that are only available in stage one (or two).

Anyone who wants to claim a find must have taken and signed (or stamped) one of the slips from stage one, and left it in the final.

 

But, now that I think about it, some jerk will certainly take all the slips, even if they have no intention of passing them around to their friends.

 

Still, it's an idea to consider...

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I've got a puzzle/multi that is 6 stage's. I got three log book's and placed them at different part's threw out the cache. To claim a "find" on it a person must sign all three logbook's. I figured this way if someone gets them by the puzzle they will still have to hike the whole distance of the cache so they sign all the logbook's. I do move the logbooks around between the stage's at times. It's noted to all the three book's don't need to be signed in the same day cause they might not finish it all the same day.

 

After many of log's that I've gotten couldn't find this so I called so and so and they told me where I was going wrong, I have been trying to come up with way's to block the PAF. So far this multi has worked and the idea of the log book's is working. Since nobody knows when I'm going to shift the log book's there' no point in trying to call someone. Heck I may have already done it and nobody knows. :P

 

Also I have a special one that I go and move from time to time. This result's in a lot of DNF's. But I've giving out very nice hint's to all that ask ME via e-mail. I find it kind of funny when I get a DNF that tells me my cache is missing. Well, they made a call to someone and it's not where they found it. :D

 

And before anyone decides that I'm ruining someone else's fun, well let me just say when I get a found log from someone that says's thanks to another cacher on my cache page well, it's kind of a slap in the face. I didn't get a thanks for placing it, maintaining it, or nothing just a thanks to the guy that they called to make the find. After that I've made them so calling someone isn't going to do someone any good.

 

And who ever said "some cacher's don't like long hikes" so calling someone is cool or whatever you said. :D Well that cacher chose to hunt it. Just because they don't like a hike doesn't say it's cool for other's to be giving any the finals for some of MY caches. They could have skipped it or slapped it on the ignore list, just like I'm expected to do when I see a cache that I don't care to hunt. :)

 

I haven't opt'ed in for PAF and don't think I should have to put a note on MY cache page explaining that I expect someone to find it the way it was intended. :P

 

I don't mean to sound rude here but I have a very passionate feeling on this subject. I've answered every e-mail asking for a hint for a cache of mine so it's not like a person has no place to go to ask for a extra hint if they need it. But I've also had dozen's of private e-mails thanking me for hiding one's that really makes them feel like they accomplished something.

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I am not looking for post telling me to forget about or there will always be those that get around it. I already knew that. I was looking for suggestions like whistler's that give the cache owner alternatives. Thanks.

Like it or not, Disney's cheesy "Hakuna Matata" philosophy applies. Once one person finds your puzzle/multi/etc, they have the final coords. If they wish to share these, they will, and you'll be powerless to stop them. You can come up with lots of complex mechanisms to ensure that anyone who does your cache experiences a certain degree of exertion, if you're the type who embraces stress, or you can relax and assume that those folks who "cheat" are simply missing out on an amazing experience. How controlling are you willing to be, in regards to other people's smileys? I've got three night caches that are at least a couple miles of bushwhacking each, and if someone wants to go straight to the final, it doesn't bother me a bit. Life is way too short to get worked up over how someone else plays a game.

 

Relax & enjoy is, like it or not, an alternative.

Well said. My sentiments exact-o.

 

I am in the disappointed but not gonna be obsessed about it camp.

 

I am, however, interested in creative suggestions.

I see Coyote beat me to the combination lock idea, but here is my version anyway:

 

Explain in your description that there is a combination lock on the cache container, and that you have hidden the combination at some random point along the fire tack trail – on a tag hanging from one of the tacks perhaps, or maybe inside a nearby bison tube (maybe with a tiny piece of reflective tape for night-finding).

 

Further explain that you will, at random yet relatively frequent intervals: (1) change the combination itself, (2) change the location of the combination, or (3) both.

 

Will you ever actually make the random changes? Maybe you will ... maybe you won’t. That’s for each 'next' finder – the one who just got the coords of the final from his buddy – to guess.

 

Heh heh heh.

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I own a few puzzle caches. If a finder wants to bypass one (or all) of my puzzles by mooching the coords off a buddy, that’s his business. I really don’t care. He has cheated himself only; he hasn’t stolen anything from me.

 

In my opinion: cheating oneself out of a cache challenge by using a shortcut is no different than turning the page to peek at the solution of a crossword puzzle. One is only cheating oneself -- but as long as the sole victim isn’t complaining, then who cares?

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Well, I largely agree with you, but you DID forget to mention the fact that anyone who cheats while trying to earn a quick smiley has committed a most grievous offense against God, a sin known as a "geo-moral sin", and, when they die, their eternal soul will rot in H3ll for all of eternity, and... there are no geocaches in H3ll, and, in any case, H3lll is so hot that any GPSr would melt in about four seconds flat. If you fail to point this out, you are tempting geocache hunters of weak moral fiber and loose moral will to slip and slide down the slippery evil slope of moral relativisim. Shame on you for your omission!

There are too geocaches in hell and you get a list of them all plus the coords are accurate within a micron.

Only problem is the closest cache is 3 hours away through 10 star terrain and the GPSr will turn off wile your still a half an hour away and wont turn back on till you find it. Wile your slogging through lava fields or swimming in max brine after sliding down a hill of broken glass etc etc the host will be laughing at you because you cant find a 0 star hide. In about an eon you will find you first cache and and be rewarded.

Your reward will be helping to hide a micro, then you get to find it, only problem is you have to rip out your own intestines to get it and sign the log. Then you will have to b.. never mind it's just too sick to put into words.

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we are an obstreperous people; if you tell us that we shouldn't drive on that road but we find that we can do so legally, we will. we prefer this to walking in, even though we might be hanging by our seatbelts.

 

if you tell us it can't be done at night and we find that it can legally be done at night, we will go at night. in winter. carrying sleds. we will arrive at the cache after midnight and then sled down the mountain.

 

if you tell me that i need a boat and i have to climb a tree, i will drive out over the ice with a stepladder.

 

some of my favorite cache memories are from caches where i cracked a multi without doing the stages. that's a neat trick if the final isn't even in the same park as the first stage you can't find.

 

i want people to find my caches.

 

i have little respect for people who just do it for the numbers, or who seem to be trying to prove they're better and faster than anyone else. you finished that cache in 2 hours and ten minutes? good for you. it seems to be important to you, since you mentioned it in the log.

 

twice.

 

it took me five hours but i stopped to take more pictures than you. did i have a better time?

 

you figured out how to drop a dozen stages on my monster multi? fine. more power to you. you missed the cool part.

 

you won't have had the experience i designed for you, but you will have had some experience that i hope you found satisfying in some way. sometimes the alternate experience is better than what the hider has in mind, and sometimes not. it's an act of faith, geocaching. you go out with the idea that the hider is leading you through something worthwhile.

 

you never know how it will turn out, though.

 

once i went to find a puzzle cache. there were three of us. one had not solved the puzzle. THAT was the only guy with the tools and the strength to hack it out of the ice when we got there.

 

cheater? maybe.

 

i quit worrying about it.

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I think that the photo option mentioned by whistler & co is probably the best one. Photos can be photoshopped, but there are ways to tell -- all of the other suggestions (but one) can be circumvented by giving the next person the information.

 

Only problem with this is that you have list it as a mystery puzzle cache. Some folks don't want to do that.

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And before anyone decides that I'm ruining someone else's fun, well let me just say when I get a found log from someone that says's thanks to another cacher on my cache page well, it's kind of a slap in the face. I didn't get a thanks for placing it, maintaining it, or nothing just a thanks to the guy that they called to make the find. After that I've made them so calling someone isn't going to do someone any good.

 

I agree with this. To omit a thank-you for the cache owner and give props to the PAF informant for helping him find the cache demonstrates very little appreciation.

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And before anyone decides that I'm ruining someone else's fun, well let me just say when I get a found log from someone that says's thanks to another cacher on my cache page well, it's kind of a slap in the face. I didn't get a thanks for placing it, maintaining it, or nothing just a thanks to the guy that they called to make the find. After that I've made them so calling someone isn't going to do someone any good.

 

I agree with this. To omit a thank-you for the cache owner while giving props to the PAF informant for helping the finder locate the cache demonstrates very little appreciation for the effort involved in placing a cache or understanding of how the game works. Be good to cache hiders, thank them, help them.. it can only lead to better caches.

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I think that the photo option mentioned by whistler & co is probably the best one. Photos can be photoshopped, but there are ways to tell -- all of the other suggestions (but one) can be circumvented by giving the next person the information.

 

Only problem with this is that you have list it as a mystery puzzle cache. Some folks don't want to do that.

 

Understood, though I did know that (and referred to it later in the post). I opined that from what Tequila has posted so far, it sounds like this would not be a problem. Of course, it is up to Tequila to say whether this is or isn't the case. : )

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I think that the photo option mentioned by whistler & co is probably the best one. Photos can be photoshopped, but there are ways to tell -- all of the other suggestions (but one) can be circumvented by giving the next person the information.

 

Only problem with this is that you have list it as a mystery puzzle cache. Some folks don't want to do that.

 

Understood, though I did know that (and referred to it later in the post). I opined that from what Tequila has posted so far, it sounds like this would not be a problem. Of course, it is up to Tequila to say whether this is or isn't the case. : )

The problem with this type of approach is that the OP (sensibly) is reluctant to delete logs. So if the next finder doesn't post a photo (or whatever), what do you do?

 

My suggestion is to make the trail pretty much the shortest route to the cache, and then don't worry about it.

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And before anyone decides that I'm ruining someone else's fun, well let me just say when I get a found log from someone that says's thanks to another cacher on my cache page well, it's kind of a slap in the face. I didn't get a thanks for placing it, maintaining it, or nothing just a thanks to the guy that they called to make the find. After that I've made them so calling someone isn't going to do someone any good.

I agree with this. To omit a thank-you for the cache owner and give props to the PAF informant for helping him find the cache demonstrates very little appreciation.

This has happened to me as a cache owner, but it never occurred to me to let it bother me.

 

How is a finder thanking his buddy for help on a puzzle, or a by-pass on a multistage, any different from Flask thanking her friend for being strong enough to muscle that container from the ice for her?

 

I don’t hide caches for the purpose of receiving specifically stated thank-yous from cachers. Explicit gratitude is nice, but it is never a logging requirement. I only hide caches so that other cachers might have fun. If a cacher enjoys my cache, then I’m happy. How he gets to it is up to him. If his log also happens to include a nod of thanks to some third party who helped him overcome a challenge, yet he forgets to also stroke my ego in the process, that doesn’t take anything away from my satisfaction. As long as he had fun finding my cache, then I had fun owning my cache.

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How is a finder thanking his buddy for help on a puzzle, or a by-pass on a multistage, any different from Flask thanking her friend for being strong enough to muscle that container from the ice for her?

I'm curious, you really don't know the difference or are you just trying to be argumentative? Again.

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If you don't want people to "cheat", then don't place the cache. I placed a cache with a puzzle that up font made no sense what so ever. Then seeing logs indicating a hint was given let me know the finder was basically given the solution. The puzzle was made in such a way that any hint was the answer.

 

Asking a person to take pictures is now fair to everyone as not every cacher has a camera. You could demand track lines, as that may proved they walked the whole thing unless they are clever enough to fake the track lines.

 

What about team caching? Does one get the find and the others not because they simply foloowed the person that found the cache?

 

What about people that read the hint before even looking for the cache?

 

There are so many variables involved in placing and finding caches, you would be hard pressed to make a cache that is going to make, or allow everyone to find it the way you intended.

 

My advice would be to not lose any sleep over it.

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How is a finder thanking his buddy for help on a puzzle, or a by-pass on a multistage, any different from Flask thanking her friend for being strong enough to muscle that container from the ice for her?

I'm curious, you really don't know the difference ... <argumentative stuff deleted> ... ?

I see no difference. If you see a difference, I would be very interested to hear why you think there is a difference.

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This has happened to me as a cache owner, but it never occurred to me to let it bother me.

 

Interesting approach. Is that how it works, nothing bothers you unless it occurs to you and then you decide if you are going to let it bother you or not? I'll bet that for a lot of people it is more emotional, where things bother them as a feeling, more than "letting" it happen.

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This has happened to me as a cache owner, but it never occurred to me to let it bother me.

Interesting approach. Is that how it works, nothing bothers you unless it occurs to you and then you decide if you are going to let it bother you or not? I'll bet that for a lot of people it is more emotional, where things bother them as a feeling, more than "letting" it happen.

Then I guess I just don’t experience that feeling. It never bothered me. It didn’t occur to me that it would bother anyone until I read about it in the forums.

 

I can’t control what bothers other people, but one thing I can control is whether or not I choose to go looking for things that will bother me. I prefer NOT to actively seek such discomforts, but if you prefer otherwise, knock yourself out.

 

Do you, Traildad, insist that cachers provide you with explicit words of thanks when they log your caches?

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Can we please keep this on topic of how to place caches that prevent shortcutting?

 

I am not interested in verbal sparring over what should be in logs. Please start a new thread if you wish to discuss that.

 

For those who have posted the interesting suggestions on how they place caches, thank you.

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This has happened to me as a cache owner, but it never occurred to me to let it bother me.

 

Is that how it works, nothing bothers you unless it occurs to you and then you decide if you are going to let it bother you or not?

I can't speak for KBI, but for me, I'll say, "Yeah, pretty much. That's how it works." I recognized early on that this is a game, not a religion.

Getting offended by the actions of others, when those actions cause no harm to myself or anyone else, just seems silly.

Your mileage may vary. If so, that's perfectly OK.

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I own a few puzzle caches. If a finder wants to bypass one (or all) of my puzzles by mooching the coords off a buddy, that’s his business. I really don’t care. He has cheated himself only; he hasn’t stolen anything from me.

 

In my opinion: cheating oneself out of a cache challenge by using a shortcut is no different than turning the page to peek at the solution of a crossword puzzle. One is only cheating oneself -- but as long as the sole victim isn’t complaining, then who cares?

 

This is not good! I'm agreeing with KBI! :)

I think I read somewhere: Find cache, sign log, log it on-line. Sign log, get smiley. Yes. I have a few evil mystery caches. Yes. I see logs saying: Got help from another cacher. (Didn't ask me for a hint!) Sign log, get smiley. Yes. They're missing a lot of the reason that I set out that cache. Oh, well. Did they sign the log? Ranks right up there with the cache with a beautiful view, and the log says: Couldn't see anything in the pea soup fog. Oh, well. Your loss. You signed the log, you got the smiley.

 

Back to OP: Met someone at an event today who admires our caches. He mentioned that he had traded the finals for one of our mystery caches to another cacher. But he lost them, and has to do the whole cache. Hee hee hee. :) Some COs lay out their mystery or multis in a circular fashion to make maintenance easier. Nope! This one is a mile in and a mile back out, uphill in both directions. If he 'cheated' he would have missed the fun of the mysery aspect of the cache, but would still have had the beauty of the area to admire. You can do it my way, or you can do it your way. But: Sign log, get smiley.

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Back to OP: Met someone at an event today who admires our caches. He mentioned that he had traded the finals for one of our mystery caches to another cacher.

 

Maybe its just me but I would be less than impressed with this and would have said so. The two cachers (I live in a small area) have never given me the answer for anyone elses cache. The will happyily let me moan and groan about how hard a cache is but wont tell me where it is. If it is suppossed to be done at night and someone figures out how to find it in the day fine, but I see that as different to being told where the final is.

 

Sorry op I have no clever suggestions as to how to stop it. Do you know who the group is who does it? Maybe a few e-mails saying that you have heard that some people are passing on final coordinates to others and if they come across someone doing it that you would prefer that your final coordinates where kept private so that it doesn't just become a traditional for anyone other than the first person to find it.

 

Sure its a game but do you need to find every cache? I think not.

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One cache I did a long time ago had in it a small 5 second recording device. You played back and got a word from the last person that found it. Then you had to record a word over the previous recording. Then you e-mailed the owner with the word you heard and the word you left. He also had some back-up batteries in the cache just in case the batteries went dead.

 

It was a cheap recording device from radio shack. I don't know if you could make this work in your case but it was one of the things that came to mind that I've seen at a cache.

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And before anyone decides that I'm ruining someone else's fun, well let me just say when I get a found log from someone that says's thanks to another cacher on my cache page well, it's kind of a slap in the face. I didn't get a thanks for placing it, maintaining it, or nothing just a thanks to the guy that they called to make the find. After that I've made them so calling someone isn't going to do someone any good.

 

I agree with this. To omit a thank-you for the cache owner while giving props to the PAF informant for helping the finder locate the cache demonstrates very little appreciation for the effort involved in placing a cache or understanding of how the game works. Be good to cache hiders, thank them, help them.. it can only lead to better caches.

 

day before yesterday i phoned a friend.

 

"please tell me it's not in that big brushpile" was really all i needed.

 

when i acknowledged in my log that i had made the call, i wasn't running credits. i was telling the story the way it happened, making my admission that i had at least a little handholding.

 

that's all i do in the logs: tell the story.

 

and you know what? i'm not listing all the people i want to thank. if the cache owner needs more explicit stroking of his ego, i will politely suggest that.. no, what i will probably do is run a series of logs where i thank each and every person who helped me find the cache from the cache owner to the guy who cut the trail right on down to the guy who put the tires on my car.

 

 

likewise if you are at one of my caches, it is enough for me to know you had an experience that made it worthwhile for you. sometimes it is the experience i mean for you to have, and sometimes not.

 

yesterday my most recent cache was first found by guys who didn't really solve the puzzle, but extrapolated enough information to locate the cache. they had a good time. i'm happy.

 

this week i learned that some cachers took a landowner from one of my caches to another of my caches last year when they visited. what a lovely surprise. oh by the way- they shortcut one of the stages.

 

last spring a whole flock of cachers went to a series of five puzzles i had put out. only one of them had done all the work to solve all of the puzzles. they all had a nice walk on pretty trails. they all learned a little something about the puzzle method, and they all had a good time.

 

i know for fact that other cachers have phoned friends for hints at some of my caches. i am thankful that every last person who wants a hint doesn't call me. i really hope that if they need a hint in a pinch that they call one of their friends and not me.

 

people who need so desperately to control someone else's solutions remind me very much of a woman i am no longer friends with: she was a middle-school spanish teacher, and her idea of a good day was a day in which her students did what she told them to because she told them to. her whole enjoyment of her work was in exacting obedience for obedience's sake.

 

if your multi-stage cache is smartly laid out i won't WANT to shortcut it, because i will want to experience it the way you intended. if i perceive that you have given me a ton of nuisance stages, i will consider it my challenge to cut as much out as i can. the more you try to squeeze me into the corral, the harder i will work to subvert you.

 

i'm fun that way.

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