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"Officially Muggled" Caches

The Punches
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Hello all,


Today we encountered yet another of these little orange stickers:


at GC210AB.


Here's another:


at GC22JQ8


And then a couple of days ago, this happened to one of our caches:


at GC2AFQ8


It is very frustrating as a cache owner who has done all of the right things in placing their cache to have some butthead seek it out, destroy it in the name of protecting from littering, and then litter the CZ with an orange sticker proclaiming their deed and that a legal cache is "Geotrash". Meanwhile, they bypass trash and graffiti to do so. This is not noble, and it is certainly not doing anything to protect the environment from litter. The law they are trying to cite as being violated at two of the sites regards these as acts of "Criminal Littering" while they themselves are guilty of doing exactly that! Someone is attempting to hide under this law while they commit their cowardly acts of theft, vandalism, and trying to make other folks unhappy as obviously they are.


I know caches get muggled everyday, but it appears as if these acts are being done with an agenda (however misdirected it is) in mind. On the first two above, it is obvious that the culprit wants to see what people think of their cowardice as they are "watching" those caches. I know that in an effort to thwart this from happening to us in the future, we will be making all of our hides "Premium Only" and they will be multi-stage caches.


My question is: Is this a common occurrence nowadays, or are is my caching team just happening to stumble upon these by coincidence? Is this now just part of geocaching? Is it possible for a moderator to see if the person who is watching these muggled caches is the same guy? If it is, is it possible to see which other caches are being watched by them as well so that the cache owner can be made aware that their cache may or may not be compromised?

Edited by The Punches
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What's a hoax?

I haven't checked the other thread, but my guess is that this is not being done by any official entity, despite the context of the decal.


Yes, that is the consensus over there and I never believed this to be done by any LEO; this person is placing "official" looking stickers and that is how I came to use the name "officially muggled".

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Funny how it works...


Someone with too much time on their hands thinks they're preventing crime when they are the one's perpetrating it (theft, defacing public property).


The person doing this is nothing more than a petty thief.


You're wrong there, they are a sociopath - they think they are doing the right thing, because they think you are doing the wrong thing, however, they are indeed doing the wrong thing.

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What's a hoax?


Here ya go. Hoax


Silly! Yes, I know what a hoax is! :laughing:


I was just wondering what you had meant by "It's a hoax" ie: did you mean what I posted was a hoax, or the whole orange sticker thing? (I knew it wasn't done by any LEO, hence the name "Officially Muggled")


The sticker is a hoax. It's some moron who spent the money to print them up and defaces property with them in the name of eliminating "litter".

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We just received a log late last night telling us that a cache of ours has been officially "tagged!" Obviously, we'll go check on it ASAP, but two things...


One, has anyone noticed that the dates of all of these incidents seem to all be on exactly September 13 (or maybe a day or two on either side of that date?) It is as if someone just took that weekend before and spent hours on trashing caches! Even ours, although we cannot say exactly when it was tagged because there is a lag in the dates it was logged as found, was last found on Sept 12 (that is until someone found it yesterday.)


I did go online to see if this was the latest hot novelty item, and I couldn't find anywhere where someone could order these stickers ready-made. Thankfully, it appears that a few people with too much time on their hands is making these at home with a computer and blank stickers. I guess that's encouraging. Perhaps, soon the cost of the labels and printer ink will, hopefully, make this cost ineffective in relation to the kicks some twisted person is deriving from this childish prank.


Also, we are really anxious to go and see what, exactly was done to our cache as far as it being removed. This particular cache (I don't care if I give it away!) was a very elaborate homemade electrical junction box that was made with real parts from an electrical supply company, and it was attached using the same metal strapping that is used by electricians. So, if it is truly gone... BUMMER! We'll add to the thread when we know more.


Lastly, another odd thing about this one is that it is located very far north and east in the Valley, in Scottsdale, and not in the city of Phoenix, so for those of you who feel you are being targeted in Phoenix, apparently this is happening all over the Valley.


My thoughts to whomever is doing this is simple... GET A LIFE! :anitongue:

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I just remove the sticker and put another. film cannisters are free, his label stock isn't :D

Heck, if the only ones he's stealing are film cans, maybe we could set the guy up with a trust fund? ;)

mine wasn't a film cannister but i'll be dipped if i'm putting dollars into a quality container only to have this person come by on a daily basis to steal it.

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I just remove the sticker and put another. film cannisters are free, his label stock isn't :D

Heck, if the only ones he's stealing are film cans, maybe we could set the guy up with a trust fund? ;)

mine wasn't a film cannister but i'll be dipped if i'm putting dollars into a quality container only to have this person come by on a daily basis to steal it.

Q: So, Fred, why do you intentionally utilize containers known for their excess crappiness?

A: 'Cuz I'm skeered some feller might thieve 'em!

Moral: Cache thieves are crappy cache enablers.

Moral 2: Cache owners who fear cache thieves are also crappy cache enablers.

(and the circle goes unbroken)

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I checked their blog and it is truely ridiculous; they claim that they are doing it to protect the natural habitats/enviroments by going there themselves rather than (if it is indeed a protected/volunerable habitat) mailing the reviewers/GS to have the cache officially closed.


It is IMO just a geo"pirate" hiding behind an eco-agenda. Think they are in fact just removing caches they don´t like and leaving the ones they do...

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There is a very long thread about this on the azcachers.com website. It has a lot of specific information so you might want to check it out. In the meantime, yes, our cache was taken... just completely removed with the "Have a nice day" version of the sticker left behind (more conspicuous and unsightly than our cache was!)


Here is our last post on the subject and our thoughts of how we are going to handle this:


This is going to be my last post on any forum about this topic, as I believe part of what is fueling this cacher's actions is watching the distress it is causing others. Having given this further thought and some research, I completely agree with the approach as mentioned above, to give him/her no attention whatsoever, and to replace our caches.


Here's my two cents, and that's all it is. The following may seem overly analytical to some, but any kind of vandalism stems from some kind of personality disorder. I am not a psychiatrist or psychologist, but after doing a little research this sounds like either Sadistic Personality Disorder, a God complex, or a bit of both. Below are the descriptions of these disorders, and they seem to be right on the money.


Sadistic Personality Disorder (I have edited out the references to the sexual variation of this disorder:)


"Sadism is the condition of enjoying inflicting suffering on others, or exerting control over them. It can be sexual or non-sexual.


Non-sexual sadism is the enjoyment of cruelty or power in a general sense. Sadists are often drawn to positions of influence or authority. As with sexual sadism, some may actually enjoy causing suffering, while other sadists have a fixation with having control over people or situations, manipulating them at will."


It seems to me that by causing all of this uproar, this person is definitely manipulating us by allowing him to have the power over us to alter, or even contemplate altering our caching practices. This manipulation extends even further when we give him the power to allow him to cause us distress, anger, and fear (specifically of putting our caches back or putting out new caches.)


If this person truly believes that he is doing a good thing by ridding the world of caches he deems inappropriate, unworthy, not in keeping with the guidelines of GS, or whatever, a God complex disorder could apply.


God Complex (a slang expression for a variation of Narcissistic Personality Disorder):


"A psychosis based in uncontrolled narcissism, inflated arrogance and a perceived need to subjugate and/or ridicule other individuals deemed to be inferior or unworthy."


"Those with narcissistic personality disorder believe that they're superior to others and have little regard for other people's feelings."


"Narcissistic personality disorder symptoms may include:


* Believing that you're better than others

* Fantasizing about power, success and attractiveness (my comment: this translates into needing attention)

* Believing that you're special and acting accordingly

* Failing to recognize other people's emotions and feelings

* Expecting others to go along with your ideas and plans

* Taking advantage of others

* Expressing disdain for those you feel are inferior"


At any rate, however small his problem may be in comparison to the other end of the spectrum of this disorder (such as someone like The Zodiac Killer who enjoyed reading about himself in the newspapers after a killing) IMHO, the power and attention we are giving him is only contributing to the continuation of his actions because it is gratifying for him. Both of these assessments are probably oversimplifications of his problem, but regardless, he is a troubled and disturbed person... more than just a jerk. And, again, IMHO, he needs to be treated as such.


Sadly, I do think that we will change all of our caches to Premium Members only and audit the logs. This is just a suggestion, but if everyone did this, and a single cacher's name continually appears in each instance of the theft of the cache, perhaps we could gather enough evidence against him/her to go to GS and have him/her banned. Also as mentioned above, this comparison should take place between cachers off of the boards.


If you are not a Premium Member, and don't know what this audit feature is, you might want to consider parting with the $30 and joining. Besides the one that would help in this situation, you do get some other nice features, such as being able to build Pocket Queries, which is really handy. Anyway, as a Premium Member, you can set up your cache so that you can see every person who logs on to look at your cache, and it also keeps track of how many times that cacher views it. It might not take too long for one cacher's name to become common to all stolen caches. It might also cause the thief to think twice before stealing your cache if he knows that we have started to monitor the visits, and share information amongst one another.


I am going to post this on all the threads about this topic.


Signing off and replacing our cache,

Desert Trailblazers

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