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[FEATURE] Why other caches were archived in the area I want to place a new one?


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We would like to suggest a new feature that will popup a list of archived caches near the coordinates of a newly submitted cache so the owner can check the archived caches and acknowledge the history and reasons of the archival of those caches and evaluate his cache based on the information he gets from the former ones.


This is because geocaching has been generating caches everywhere, during the last 11 years, and some of the caches were placed in locations that were not proper for this hobby - sites classified as archaeologically relevant, geological monuments, private properties, having specific security issues and many other motifs. The original caches at those sites were archived because of that. For some reason (sometimes, lack of proper information at location), this might not be obvious at the time being and, thus, there is the risk that someone might place new caches at these locations – where, lets recall, other caches, in the past, were not allowed to remain. These situations might jeopardise reputation of the game with local authorities and risk caches that were hidden at other locations with their consent.


We, as a community that plays a game and practices a hobby mostly based on the Nature, have the responsibility to have a correct conscience regarding natural, archaeological and cultural patrimony and we think that this new feature would help avoid the placement of caches in places where, as said, others caches were not allowed to remain due to the situations referred above.


This suggestion is based on a specific actual situation that we are dealing with in Portugal (when we realised what happened, we contacted both the cache owner and Archaeological authorities, to minimize possible risks). It must be said that the previous cache in that location was archived 9 years ago under a request from the area archaeological society, and both the owner of the new cache and the current reviewers didn't knew about it.


Hence, we would like to drive forward and propose this extra tool (the popup showing previously archived caches in the area), to prevent the occurrence of such situations in the future (by actually making it easier for the owner to know of such problems before actual publication). We also think it mitigates the risk of future disputes with local authorities / land owners, and thus helps to protect geocaching reputation.


We think it is necessary to build a bridge between our past and our present and, thus, to help avoiding to repeat past mistakes.


This suggestion has born in Geocaching-pt.net, one of our local foruns, and I am only the guy who volunteered to present it and defend it here in Groundspeak Foruns - the place where most decisions starts.

Edited by MAntunes
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In the past, Groundspeak has declined to implement suggestions to permit archived caches to be searched out in any systematic manner. Perhaps most controversially, the option to see archived caches on the cache maps was removed. So, I doubt you will see your suggestion adopted, although a change in philosophy is always a possibility.


There are sound reasons for the present approach, based upon land manager requirements for all evidence of the cache listing to be removed from the site. Accessing the cache only through its owner and finders remains, in order to provide the basic function of an archival record.


Of course, reviewers have access to nearby archived cache listings. These are highlighted for us during the review process. It was a simple mouseclick for me to go from the linked cache page to the prior cache listings in the same area, and to read about what happened. You would need to ask your local reviewer whether this information was factored in when the new cache was published.

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Thank you for the answer.


I just want to underline that we don't wish to address that particular situation here in the foruns - it only warned us to other similar situation that may be occurring in other places. That specific situation is already being addressed by contacting the local Archaelogical authorities - those who requested the archival of the original cache in 2002. As soon as we receive an answer from them, we'll move on accordingly.


About the access and tools Reviewers have at their disposal, seems that in this situation something has failed - and may fail in other situations. Maybe it is the number of submitted caches they have to analyse per month - one of our local Reviewers referred a number of 500 and growing, and we are a small country -, thus, leading to a situation where even if they want to do a good job (and I am sure they want!), maybe they have no time for a more detailed analysis per cache.


If, by other hand, as we suggest, this feature is developed, the owner of a submitting cache could, by his own initiative, check the reasons that led other caches in the past to an archival and take some measures to adapt his new cache or even give up of it, avoiding, this way, repeating the problems that forced the previous caches to be archived.


But, as a decision was already issued we hope that, in the future, a change in philosophy will take place.

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Perhaps both needs can be addressed. Cache owners interested in the history of past caches near their potential cache locations don't really need the coordinates, size, difficulty–terrain ratings, etc. Perhaps it would be possible to show them the archive log, and possibly other logs (reviewer notes, needs maintenance logs, owner maintenance logs, etc.), without creating problems with land managers.

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Excellent contribuition, NiraD!


Allowing all of those logs, of the archived caches in an area someone wishes to create a new one, despite means more development work to Groundspeak, would, undoubtedly, help present cache owners to avoid past mistakes and keeps Groundspeak's philosophy.


Thank you!

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