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Totally bummed with GC.com


LooneyTunes

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At a risk of repeating myself, I think that approval of trad caches requires the owner to positively, and explicitly, answer at least one of the 3 questions:

- is there something special about the content of the cache (i.e. theme cache, or there are gold nuggets in there)

- is there something special about the way it is hidden (e.g. unusual containers, puzzles)

- ia there something special about the location (same question as for virtuals, and remember, you've got to be explicit on what will awe the visitors.

In other words, if a cache doesn't stand out on the 'stuff' merit, it must be approvable as a virt to be approvable at all.

I also mentioned before that the popular verify-by-email schemes for virts make it very difficult to explain just why one has to visit. The owners do not provide any info about the significance of the markers, no add'l bits of history, no links to other Internet resources...

This is lame. The caches should speak for themselves. The description should cry "Visit me", and it should offer *more* interesting info than one would learn just by stumbling at a certain waypoint. So I suggest that the "confirming questions" of the virts should *not* be asking substantive questions. Not who's been there or when or what happened. The stuff of substance should be present, and even expounded, in the descriptions. Instead, one may ask about the shape and size and orientation of signs, what is seen around, and likewise non-historical stuff. I further suggest that gc.com introduces multiple-choice confirmation question forms on the virt's pages. By enforcing the quality of questions and descriptions this way, we would go long way.

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quote:
Originally posted by cezanne:

... I guess that you did offer an English version of your cache description, didn't you? I noticed that in Germany there are quite a number of caches which are described only in German and which most likely would not have been approved if they had included an English version as well... I even came across postings in German geocaching forums that encouraged the cachers to offer only German descriptions since this might help in the approval process. To avoid misunderstandings, let me add that I am not at all in favour of making an English version compulsory as there are quite a number of cachers who do not speak English or whose knowledge of English is too poor. The choice of the offered languages should, however, not be influenced by the cache approval process.

Part of the reason for the inconsistencies which certainly exist in Germany is the fact that there are no cache approvers who are native speakers of German.

 

Cezanne


 

Yes, all my cache descriptions are bi-lingual. I consider it necessary with respect to the worldwide geocaching actions. Never heard of "tactical submissions" using just German cache descriptions (but I don't read the forums quite often). Contrary to your opinion, I'd suggest to make English descriptions mandatory, because a cache description even in poor English would be helpful to ALL cachers than none in English. Language barriers, namely English, are disappearing, and I believe there are very few people not having at least a friend or relative with some English knowledge, who could len a helping hand.

 

The basic problem, at least in my perception, is not language, but the regulatory inconsistenca. In fact, it's not easy to set up easy and comprehensive rules, and maintaining as much personal freedom and creativity at the same time. It's not sufficient just to say "back to the roots" and simply rejecting lots of "unwanted" cache approval requests, including virts. More difficult, but really helpful would be to show up a way towards a "geocaching conscience". This would be a long-term process, and I have no idea who could start, communicate and moderate it. Until then, we have to duck to the approvers, who are making the rules.

 

Regards, Fobrokel

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quote:
Originally posted by Fobrokel:

Yes, all my cache descriptions are bi-lingual. I consider it necessary with respect to the worldwide geocaching actions.


 

I guess that you did misunderstand me. I also regard an English cache description as very important, and all my caches do have one. (I even start with the English version, and kind of translate it then into German.) I also log in English, but got kind of flamed for doing that in Germany.

 

quote:

Never heard of "tactical submissions" using just German cache descriptions (but I don't read the forums quite often).


 

This did not happen in a Groundspeak forum. It is not a secret that quite a number of cachers in Germany are not happy with the process of cache approval and in particular do not feel able to argue in English about their caches.

 

quote:

Contrary to your opinion, I'd suggest to make English descriptions mandatory, because a cache description even in poor English would be helpful to ALL cachers than none in English. Language barriers, namely English, are disappearing, and I believe there are very few people not having at least a friend or relative with some English knowledge, who could len a helping hand.


 

Let me rephrase my opinion differently. Personally, I have a strong preference for English. I travel a lot, and also make short time visits to countries the languages of which I do not speak at all. For that reason, I am even glad to encounter English logs (to be precise, it helps me if there exists at least one log in English - I do not mind if there are also logs in other languages). I was recently in Denmark and appreciated a lot that all caches I did there, except one had an English description.

 

Unfortunately, the situation in Germany differs considerably from the situation in Scandinavia or the Netherlands. In the Eastern part of Germany, there are quite some cachers who have never studied English at school. Moreover, English is hardly present on TV in Germany. There are many cachers who even have troubles in reading English. Writing English is even much harder for them.

 

quote:

The basic problem, at least in my perception, is not language, but the regulatory inconsistenca.


 

I do not agree as there are a large number of caches in Germany which clearly violate the rules, but this went unrecognized due to language issues. It is also interesting to note that in certain regions of Germany caches which would be classified as micros nearly everywhere else are classified as regular caches.

 

Cezanne.

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quote:
Originally posted by cezanne:

quote:

The basic problem, at least in my perception, is not language, but the regulatory inconsistenca.


 

I do not agree as there are a large number of caches in Germany which clearly violate the rules, but this went unrecognized due to language issues. It is also interesting to note that in certain regions of Germany caches which would be classified as micros nearly everywhere else are classified as regular caches.

 

Cezanne.


 

Well, that's life. I don't mind variations. But why performing an approval procedure when sometimes - as you mentioned - caches are approved by people who don't understand the submitted descriptions due to the language used? Shouldn't he ask for a comprehensive English explanation, or ask someone else for help?

 

No way to solve the problem here. Enjoy geocaching, and smile when any new surprise will pop up, from cache approval through cache size to unreadable logs. Let's keep it funny!

 

Regards, Fobrokel

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quote:

I don't mind variations.


 

Your original posting made me think otherwise.

It was you who asked how it can happen that some caches are rejected while other comparable ones are approved. I provided you with one of the reasons.

 

I do not reply to your other question as I believe that it will lead this thread into a wrong direction. (Just as a comment: I never claimed that someone is approving a cache the description of which he does not understand at all - doing that would be pretty much crazy.)

 

Cezanne

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As I read this thread, a few thoughts came to mind...

 

First, it is true that the criteria for virt approval has changed. It is unlikely that one will be approved unless you are able to explain why the object cannot be incorporated into a physical cache.

 

Second, many people love virts and would enjoy this one. Unfortunately for this cache, those people do not make and enforce the decisions of GC.com.

 

Third, it burns me when individuals post to a thread using more than one account. This makes it appear that it is multiple people in agreement and is dishonest.

 

Finally, due to other commitments (and the high cost of feeding my Jeep) I have done little geocaching lately. Surprisingly, I have not suffered as a result. The only changes I have noticed is that my golf game has improved dramatically and I have not suffered as many bug bites. My point is, IT'S A GAME. No one will suffer any ill effects no matter what decisions TPTB make.

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I recently had a virtual denied. I wrote several angry notes, but never emailed them. A day or two later, I sat down and wrote a defense of why the virtual was indeed at a high interest site, and that it would be anti-climactic to put a micro near the site. Besides that, the area had no nice places at all in which to place a physical cache. When I sent this logical and reasoned explantion as an apologia, the cache was approved and posted as a virtual.

 

Since then, I've used the cache log to send notes to the approvers to explain things. For instance if you have a cache that's 30 feet from a railroad track it will probably be denied. However, if you explain that the cache is next to a chainlink fence on a 200 foot cliff above the tracks, they'll understand that no one is going to get whacked by a passing train. The same goes with virtuals. Use the logs to explain your reasoning. It may still be denied, but at least they'll know the reason behind your placement.

 

Parsa

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quote:
Originally posted by Parsa:

Use the logs to explain your reasoning. It may still be denied, but at least they'll know the reason behind your placement.

Parsa


What I do is dash off an area at the end of my description and put a note to the approver with the explaination. Worked for me.

 

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Free your mind and the rest will follow action-smiley-076.gif

And may no Admin bricks 19490_2600.gif fly your way

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I haven't placed many caches, mostly because I want to make sure I don't spread myself too thin maintaining them. I have only placed one virt. It made it through the approval process, but there are many factors to consider.

There are relatively few caches in my state, even less at the time it was approved. This may have played a part in it's approval. Recently, I archived some caches, and the virt was among them. Another cacher in my area expressed a desire to adopt it. I told him, "Thanks for your interest, email gc.com and tell them you have my blessing, but don't expect them to revive it."

Soon after I had created the cache, another local told me he had plans to use the site as a stage in a physical multi. I mailed him back and told him that if he wished, I'd let him have the spot. I never got a response back on the subject, so I let the cache hang out for a while.

All of the locals who were going to visit it have, and many visitors enjoyed it. But to be honest, I could easily have stuffed a micro under a park bench on the site. So, the point is, I really didn't need to place a virt there. There was room for a micro. My motivation for placing a virt was to try another aspect of the game.

I suggest that if virts are to be discouraged, a link explaining the reasons why (old ones grandfathered, lame, vacation cache, waypoint.org, etc.) be placed in series with everything having to do with virtuals caches. This way, new cachers won't see virts and think "Oh cool! I wanna make one too.", because they will know right off that they are discouraged. It seems like most of the people complaining about having virts denied had no knowledge of the current state of virt approval. They get exited, spend time creating the cache, then are denied. I don't blame them for having a "Now you tell me!" attitude.

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quote:
Originally posted by Bloencustoms:

I suggest that if virts are to be discouraged, a link explaining the reasons why (old ones grandfathered, lame, vacation cache, waypoint.org, etc.) be placed in series with everything having to do with virtuals caches. This way, new cachers won't see virts and think "Oh cool! I wanna make one too.", because they will know right off that they are discouraged. It seems like most of the people complaining about having virts denied had no knowledge of the current state of virt approval. They get exited, spend time creating the cache, then are denied. I don't blame them for having a "Now you tell me!" attitude.


 

Amen. My first cache was a virtual multi (Up the Close and Down the Stair), posted before the rules were tightened. I read everything I could find in the FAQ and information pages on virtuals, then spent a good 40 hours doing the research, setting up, writing, and "playtesting" it. I would have been burned up if it had been denied.

 

I don't know whether it would be accepted under the current rules...one could argue that I could send people to a physical cache at the end rather than the final objective. But that would be an anticlimax - there is no way I could set up a physical cache that would beat the object in that glass case, either for impact or for appropriateness to the cache as a whole. I wonder how many other virtual setters feel like that requirement rather deflates the impact of their carefully chosen virts?

 

(Having then done more caches, I realised that I had perhaps over-prepared for my first one - it's so much simpler to find a hidden place to tuck a Tupperware box or a film canister than it is to do all the research and setting up of a good virtual.)

 

Oh, and for clarity, despite the title of this thread, I am not totally bummed with GC.com.

 

evilrooster

-the email of the species is deadlier than the mail-

 

[This message was edited by evilrooster on September 26, 2003 at 09:00 AM.]

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quote:
Originally posted by BrianSnat:

For those of you who LOVE virtuals, there is a website for you. It's called http://www.waypoint.org.

In case you didn't notice, this site is called http://www.geoCACHING.com and it's point is to list CACHES.


 

Every time I hear this logic I almost GAG. Anyone who really believes this better go and delete all their "EVENT", Locationless and most "CITO" caches.

Fact is GC.com is a BUISINESS and as such, if the majority of Jeremy’s "customers" would have gone wild over locationless, and been willing to pay membership fees for it, He would have been the lead proponent of locationless caches. Don’t try and tell me there is some universal virtue finding Tupperware and ammo cans just because , “ This site is called http://www.geoCACHING.com and it's point is to list CACHES.”

 

icon_geocachingwa.gif

 

Cachin's a bit sweeter when you've got an Isha!

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