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How do you handle a suspicious log of an EC?


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Someone logged one of my EarthCaches in New Zealand on June 22, with a date visited of February 22. I waited a couple of days, but didn't get an email from them with the answers, so I sent a gentle reminder message:


I noticed that you recently logged our EarthCache: Ruakuri Natural Tunnel in New Zealand dated Feb 22, 2010. I don't recall receiving an email from you with the answers to the logging questions though. If someone else sent the answers in on your behalf, then please just send me their name and I can check the message they sent me. If I somehow accidentally deleted your email, then I apologize.


I try to be nice because I know sometimes it takes a while to get caught up on all your logs. Or sometimes I screw up and accidentally delete and email I meant to keep. They seemed to be new cachers too, with only 50 finds.


They did send a response to my email with answers to the questions, however it appears that the answers were obtained through internet research, and not the information I was looking for which was written on the signs along the trails. Perhaps they lost the paper with the answers on it since they were logging it 3 months later and scrambled to come up with something to answer. Perhaps they were not familiar with the logging requirements of an EarthCache being newbies and all. I suppose there could be several good excuses for this, but that was not relayed in their email to me.


I also noticed that they had logged traditional caches in California on the same date they logged for my EarthCache. Of course, that's possible too if it's a couple and one was in NZ while the other was at home.


They only had two finds in NZ - both EarthCaches. One on South Island on Feb 21 and mine on North Island on Feb 22. They have since added photos to their logs for the EarthCaches, making it a bit better I guess.


So now I don't know what I should do. I really hate to delete someone's log unless I think they are really just trying to get away with something. If it's newbie mistakes, I'm willing to let it slide and just offer advice on how to log these in the future. Maybe I'm just too nice. Maybe they went there 10 years ago and now noticed there was a virtual EarthCache there, so thought they'd log it.


I suppose I should email them back and ask them what the scoop is. I don't want to discourage new cachers, but something doesn't seem quite right with this one.


Curious to know what other EarthCache owners would do in this situation.

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if you have doubts, i'd say leave it. in the end, they're only cheating themselves, it doesn't affect anyone else.


but you may wanna consider changing the logging requirements slightly so that at least some (one) of the answers can't be obtained through online research, for the future.

Edited by dfx
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it appears that the answers were obtained through internet research, and not the information I was looking for which was written on the signs along the trails.


You're right, it does sound suspicious. If they didn't send you the information you were looking for, I'd say delete it. You might want to send them another e-mail first though explaining how their answers are incorrect and giving them one more chance.


It's a judgement call of course and it's all subjective, but it sounds to me like you've gone the extra mile. I will NEVER understand though why people armchair log Earthcaches - or any other caches for that matter.

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Well, I decided to email them back to let them know their answers were not exactly what I was looking for and that the information they find online might be slightly different from what is written on the signs along the trail. I was nice about it and said there's probably a good explanation - I would just appreciate hearing what it was.

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If the information is incorrect, I would question the finders.

However, don't be like some COs and delete legitmate finds because you don't like the cache finder.


A big Amen to what a very wise Harry Dolphin said!


Sorry again, I couldn't resist posting because the topic of deleting legitimately found logs. has bothered me for some time. We have had the situation here for years. Literally, hundreds of legitimately found logs have been deleted from a local cacher! Please folks, like Harry requested, don't engage in this poor and rather childish behavior. It gives all of geocaching a black eye! Earthcachers know better and don't condone these actions. There is simply too much respect for the game and for other cachers to do it! B)

Edited by Konnarock Kid & Marge
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Just another thought:


I recently visited some sites with an individual from another country who had difficulty with english ... had I not been with said individual their answers would have borne no resemblance to what the CO had requested.


As an earlier poster has stated if the log is bogus ... they have cheated themselves.


I realize that I might have made the water more murky, for that I apologize.

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Well, I just went in and took a look at the cache itself. (Nice cache, BTW) Their log entry sounds like it could be legit, and the pictures look to me like they're genuine amateur photos and they certainly don't look like anything you'd find around here. Do they look like they could have been taken at the scene?


If so, my guess is that they were really there but they logged the wrong date and forgot (or didn't realize) that they needed to find the answers.


Personally I won't delete a log for wrong answers as long as I have "probably cause" to believe they were on site and made an effort. But I have deleted a lot of logs for no answers. It will be interesting to hear how they reply to your latest e-mail.

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By the way, I just wanted to add that your questions look good too. The fact that they have to get the answers off of signs at the site, and the answers are different than what they'll find on the Internet, is a good way to catch cheaters! I have a cache like that myself. Fortunately so far I haven't caught anyone cheating at that one.

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I received a response to my email. They said they were travelling and internet access was spotty at best (I can certainly understand that). They didn't have a way to print off the questions, so just tried to answer as best they could when they got home. The photos do appear that they were taking along the trail, so I am fine with their answers.


I wrote them back and thanked them for the explanation and then gave them the answers as was written on the signs along the trail.

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