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Eartha

How To Keep The Secret Tracking Number Safe

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Just a request/reminder for everyone to not post the tracking number of a travel bug anywhere online. This includes caches logs, forum postings, or in photographs - even on your own bug page! The number should only be used when you are Retrieving, Grabbing, or Discovering a traveler.

 

There are people out there who look for these numbers and will virtually log the bug, sometimes moving it to another cache listing. If the bug is virtually logged or moved around too much, gc.com will lock the bug page down for abuse even though the bug owner isn't at fault.

 

If you want to reference a bug, look on upper left-hand corner of the bug page and you will see 'Use TBxxxx to reference this item'. That number can be posted online as it can't be used to log the bug.

 

When you photograph a bug try to position the tag so it won't show the tracking number. Otherwise you should use photo editing software (like Microsoft Paint) to erase the number from the image.

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Just a request/reminder for everyone to not post the tracking number of a travel bug anywhere online. This includes caches logs, forum postings, or in photographs - even on your own bug page! The number should only be used when you are Retrieving, Grabbing, or Discovering a traveler.

 

There are people out there who look for these numbers and will virtually log the bug, sometimes moving it to another cache listing. If the bug is virtually logged or moved around too much, gc.com will lock the bug page down for abuse even though the bug owner isn't at fault.

 

If you want to reference a bug, look on upper left-hand corner of the bug page and you will see 'Use TBxxxx to reference this item'. That number can be posted online as it can't be used to log the bug.

 

When you photograph a bug try to position the tag so it won't show the tracking number. Otherwise you should use photo editing software (like Microsoft Paint) to erase the number from the image.

 

Is this still the current policy or are virtual TB's now allowed?

Edited by RockhoundMT

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Just a request/reminder for everyone to not post the tracking number of a travel bug anywhere online. This includes caches logs, forum postings, or in photographs - even on your own bug page! The number should only be used when you are Retrieving, Grabbing, or Discovering a traveler.

 

There are people out there who look for these numbers and will virtually log the bug, sometimes moving it to another cache listing. If the bug is virtually logged or moved around too much, gc.com will lock the bug page down for abuse even though the bug owner isn't at fault.

 

If you want to reference a bug, look on upper left-hand corner of the bug page and you will see 'Use TBxxxx to reference this item'. That number can be posted online as it can't be used to log the bug.

 

When you photograph a bug try to position the tag so it won't show the tracking number. Otherwise you should use photo editing software (like Microsoft Paint) to erase the number from the image.

 

Is this still the current policy or are virtual TB's now allowed?

"Virtual trackables with virtual logs are not encouraged. It is up to the trackable owner to state if they allow this, and delete any bogus logs."

http://support.Groundspeak.com/index.php?pg=kb.page&id=148

Edited by kunarion

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Thank you for this post. I just put out my first techno bug and took a picture of it. Within 30 minutes someone said they discovered it and then less than an hour out it was discovered again. But users are in Germany, I am in Nevada I was sitting here really confused. Reading this made me realize that the tag had the scan code on it. So I cropped the picture and now u cant see it. So thank u lots.

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I recently, and mistakenly, posted a picture of a TB a friend and I created. My friend is 7 years old and loves the activity of geocaching. Unfortunately when we were creating it I posted a picture of the TB with the tag and number showing. As stated by the previous poster I was overwhelmed with discoveries from all over the world. I went back to bugs page and removed the pictures from the page but it is apparently on "Gallery" or something and continues to be discovered. Not sure what I can do as far as recourse, any help is greatly appreciated. I went to the gallery to try to find it but there is no way to search the gallery that I know of. I was going to try to remove it from the gallery to stop all the discoveries. Most days theres 5-10 and I have my alerts on for notifications so its a pain!!! Would welcome any help, Thanx, Kneedragger1.

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I made the unfortunate error of posting my 4 travel bugs with their ID's showing, and was inundated by "logged" finds form mostly Germany.

 

Short of junking these 4 TB's, what can I do to start fresh again. so they have no log, no finds, etc? Is there any kind or recourse available for starting a TB out anew?

 

I don't want a strike against me for TB abuse or whatever!!

 

Thanks and a valuable lesson learned!

 

WoodGlue

Edited by WoodGlue

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First thing -- Delete the photo from the TB pages.

 

Second -- I see none of your TB's have been sent out into the real world yet, so... delete all of the bogus Discovery logs. If somebody has by chance actually seen any of them and logged it, you should leave that log intact.

You are allowed to delete obviously bogus logs without recourse.

 

 

There is no "magic eraser" that I know of... you are faced with individually deleted each one of those logs (six pages worth).

Whether or not these folks that did the logging passed those numbers on in a list is yet up in the air. Time will tell.

 

You'd best start today with getting rid of those photos first.

 

Yes, I would say that you learned a lesson.

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I made the unfortunate error of posting my 4 travel bugs with their ID's showing, and was inundated by "logged" finds form mostly Germany.

I couldn't figure out how this could happen since your TBs haven't been released and -- if you'll excuse me for saying so -- there's no good reasons for anyone to be looking at your profile to see if you posted any TB pictures. So I poked around and was astonished to discover that geocaching.com conveniently posts every single TB picture, allowing people to scan for anyone making the same mistake you did. Mystery solved! And apparently, judging from your logs, many people do just that. I always assumed accidentally posting a TB code would be a minor problem, quickly remedied, but, no, it turns out that your mistake was broadcast to the entire geocaching world!

 

And, by the way, I notice that it wasn't just people in Germany. I have no idea why anyone would do that, but as Gitchee-Gummee says, now you've learned the lesson. NOW GO DELETE THE PICTURES! (Although the worst damage is done: the gallery only shows the last 1000 pictures, so yours fell off the list a couple weeks ago. Although now people will find your pictures through your post here.)

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I made the unfortunate error of posting my 4 travel bugs with their ID's showing, and was inundated by "logged" finds form mostly Germany.

I couldn't figure out how this could happen since your TBs haven't been released and -- if you'll excuse me for saying so -- there's no good reasons for anyone to be looking at your profile to see if you posted any TB pictures. So I poked around and was astonished to discover that geocaching.com conveniently posts every single TB picture, allowing people to scan for anyone making the same mistake you did. Mystery solved! And apparently, judging from your logs, many people do just that. I always assumed accidentally posting a TB code would be a minor problem, quickly remedied, but, no, it turns out that your mistake was broadcast to the entire geocaching world!

 

And, by the way, I notice that it wasn't just people in Germany. I have no idea why anyone would do that, but as Gitchee-Gummee says, now you've learned the lesson. NOW GO DELETE THE PICTURES! (Although the worst damage is done: the gallery only shows the last 1000 pictures, so yours fell off the list a couple weeks ago. Although now people will find your pictures through your post here.)

 

I edited the photos (deleted them) and now I need to erase each individual log entry, right? There isn't a "delete all logs" tool is there?

 

Thanks for the help!

 

 

 

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I believe that you need to delete them individually, because it is a website function.

 

If it were a function limited to your computer system, you could delete them as a whole... but it is not.

 

Each deletion will send an email (auto-generated by the website) to the logger alerting them to the fact that their log was deleted -- and their Trackables Logged count will drop by one (for each log deleted).

In that these folks that do this type of logging have probably had logs deleted before, it is unlikely that they will complain about such.

 

Besides, there are lots of other folks that make the same mistake as did you, so they still have plenty to choose from. :(

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so virtual bugs are ok; how about multiple physical items with the same trackable item? the tracking item would of course have to be moved to a collection; thus people can't virtually drop it anywhere or grab it. otherwise it would move all around the place. but people could post notes and discover it. this has many applications that i would use if available:

 

1. log my cache, anytime someone find any of my caches for the first time, they can log they found one of my caches.

2. calling card, people can keep them or discover and leave them. people can note where they took them from when they discover them too.

3. have any swag be discovarable, doubt you really want to track where all your swag has been to such detail you really need a separate page for all of them.

4. sure others would have other good reasons. it's your trackable page and it doesn't spam alot of caches inventories if it has been moved to your collection.

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I too am having current problems with a trackable being logged as discovered when not actually seen.

 

First a new cacher logged my trackable code (not the public code) in his log - this resulted in several "discovered" logs where the so-called finder did kindly say that they had found the code in an on-line log.

Then the coin went missing - no big deal, it happens all the time. However the plastic case was still there with the little piece of paper with the code on it. You guessed it, "discovered" logs based on the piece of paper. A couple of these slipped though my radar, the first had been a note telling me it was missing, and thought the next few were also notes.

BUT - and this is the biggie! - one of those "discoverers" took the code, added to a list and has recently distributed the list at a recent event in France. Elation when the first found log came through - had the coin resurfaced? So I contacted a coupe of the discoverers and the event owner. Sadly no. One of the discoverers was a new cacher and did what everyone else was doing - taking pics of the list and logging them as found. He wasn't sure if my coin was one he had physically handles, so sent me the photos he'd taken of the list - and sure enough it was there. CO also did his homework and confirmed the same.

What to do? I changed the cache page - now as well as he MISSING in front of the trackable name I have a BIG message in English and French (a la Google) stating that discovered logs with a supporting pic being emailed to me will be deleted. May have done some good as so far "only" 7 discovered logs. I'm guessing they are using automatic log generators so aren't seeing the log page.

Solution - deletion of log and message sent along the lines of "I have deleted your discovered log for NZxxxx because it had been proven that the coin was not at the event but on a list distributed by an attendee"

 

What would be nice would be a way of blocking any Discovered logs from being made ... ...

 

BTW here were at least 27 codes distributed at the event and I have photos of them! Will try to get the public codes and post them somewhere so their owners know that they could be getting "suspect" logs.

Edited by Ruru_nz

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I searched "geocaching" and "trackables" on pinterest. There were hundreds of photos that have been "pinned" that show the tracking numbers of trackables. This is the same for instagram. Should you find that you're getting a lot of "discoveries", I would check there first.

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I'm just needing a little advice,I have recently retrieved a trackable from a cache, which has a goal of travelling as far as possible. If I take it to a cache and log a find for cache and log the trackable as visiting cache the trackable code wont show anywhere online will it. Then do I put the reference code in the log. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

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I'm just needing a little advice,I have recently retrieved a trackable from a cache, which has a goal of travelling as far as possible. If I take it to a cache and log a find for cache and log the trackable as visiting cache the trackable code wont show anywhere online will it. Then do I put the reference code in the log. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

 

If you just use the tracking number to create the log, and do not include it in any of your text, it will not show up. That is the correct way to use the tracking number. If you want to add the reference number (the public "TB" number) in the text of your cache log, that is fine, but not necessary.

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I've noticed that the KB article http://support.Groundspeak.com/index.php?pg=kb.page&id=148 has been updated to include the line "Virtual trackables with virtual logs are not encouraged. It is up to the trackable owner to state if they allow this, and delete any bogus logs." Does this mean that this is now officially sanctioned by Groundspeak, albeit "not encouraged"?

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Frankly I am miffed at why geocachers bother to post bogus logs; particularly experienced cachers. What's the point? Invalid numbers. Why would I want to say that I discovered or visited something, knowing I haven't? They have to know that the world knows they are phony.

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Hi!

 

This is an email i wrote to Annie Love today in the morning. I will let you know, if or what answer i get.

i think, now, after even Jeremy noticed the problem, we have to take action!

Feel free to let GS know, how you think about discover-lists! ;)

 

... hi Annie!

 

I write this letter to you, because you are the only person in GS i now. ;) In person and from different mail contacts.

In the morning i saw the facebook posting from Jeremy. He was annoyed about the illegitimate discover logs.

And i have to say, we fight about this problem since last year. This was the first time, the list showes up (with our codes), after the Mega Event in Ulm, the Geocoinfest. But i hear from people which are having this problem since first geocoin event in cologne, but even earlyer with this one. http://coord.info/GC2055M

Since Ulm, it seems someone shared a qr code with a link to a text-file with 3200 codes. 350 of them belong to only one cacher. So you could imagine, what happens after the mega. And again and again after the next megas, not only in germany, even after the Event in Brugge.

And to make it worse, there must be more than one list, because some of us get several logs from the same cacher, different text. So, happens when "he/she" run´s several lists i guess.

And they use always this automatical tb-logger ... and we think, this "device" in context with challenge caches which you need thousands of discoveres trackables are the reason why this got "viral".

And we think, the limit is now, we are getting sick ... we hope, that you (as Groundspeak) will step in!

Help us, please!

 

Some people suggest to get owner the possibility to "block" the coin listing for a certain time, but, i don´t know, if this would help.

To disable any challenges, which need discovered trackables, nah, i don´t know, the owner will get pissed.

If there would be a possibility to stop this tb-logger, i guess, this would be a great help. No one discovered thousands of codes by own hand.

At least, some informations, spread by GS, how to act with list´s, codes and so on, would be helpful.

 

As far as i can tell, the owner of the codes going mad. Some wrote angry mails to the people which discovered their coins. But most of them apologize, because they didn´t know that it was not ok to "use" that list. This is why i say, we need to inform people.

Some owner logged also found logs to the caches from people, which discovered, (and delete them later, of course) just to make their point.Also a few of the US cacher which codes are involved, logged an "attended" in Mainz, because they say, if all my coins where there, i have to be there too. They deleted it too, of course. But you see, things going crazy.

 

We really really hope, Groundspeak shows a reaction in any kind of way. And for my opinion, it is not done to find the person (if it is even possible) who shares this list and block him/her ... we need more. Otherwise the next list´s will show up.

 

We love our hobby geocaching, we have a great community, we also love to collect coins and trackables, to design them and everything else.

Now we need your help!

 

Please, don´t let us down! :)

 

Respectfully, Maja

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I searched "geocaching" and "trackables" on pinterest. There were hundreds of photos that have been "pinned" that show the tracking numbers of trackables. This is the same for instagram. Should you find that you're getting a lot of "discoveries", I would check there first.

 

Being the owner of the tracking number is it possible to have a picture of your trackable removed from sites like pinterest siting copyright laws?

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I searched "geocaching" and "trackables" on pinterest. There were hundreds of photos that have been "pinned" that show the tracking numbers of trackables. This is the same for instagram. Should you find that you're getting a lot of "discoveries", I would check there first.

 

Being the owner of the tracking number is it possible to have a picture of your trackable removed from sites like pinterest siting copyright laws?

 

No, for a variety of reason. When you purchase a book, do you gain any interest it the book copyright?

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I really feel Groundspeak have got this back to front.

 

If a member logs a trackable when it is patently obvious they can not have physically seen it then they ought to be banned.

 

I have just had to delete 3 log entries that it is obvious they haven't been able to see them -- one before I had even finished registering the trackable on geocaching.com!

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I have just had to delete 3 log entries that it is obvious they haven't been able to see them -- one before I had even finished registering the trackable on geocaching.com!

 

This is just a suggestion but have you considered not posting the tracking numbers of your own trackables online in photos you add yourself when you set up their pages? :)

Edited by elfre

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I'm really new to this. Just happened across this when I was trying to figure out who to find trackable locations to go find them. I don't understand the reason people are logging they found them, when they didn't. Why would they do this, why does it cause such a problem?

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I'm really new to this. Just happened across this when I was trying to figure out who to find trackable locations to go find them. I don't understand the reason people are logging they found them, when they didn't. Why would they do this, why does it cause such a problem?

Some Trackable Owners now post their Trackable's code on the page for folks to Discover, thinking they'd rather share the "code" than lose their property (like so many others).

Some bring lists of their geocoin codes to events, to save others who trade codes with them from writer's cramp. :)

Geocoinfests, where folks are lugging hundreds of coins, are good for that.

 

A "problem" could be some share those codes of Trackables not theirs.

We see this sometimes at events. A person passing copies of Trackable codes and doesn't own one.

Couple hundred people logging Discover emails after a Mega may not be too much fun for the Owner who wasn't prepared for it.

 

Some may run programs, hoping to get a hit on tracking numbers, and might simply do it for stats, or a challenge cache.

No real way to know why, I suppose you could ask one if you notice.

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First post on here, still relatively new to the Geo-world. Question. I accidentally posted a TB photo with the tracking number showing - D'oh! I deleted the old photo, and uploaded a new one. On the desktop site, only the new photo shows. However, in the Geocaching app, the old one is still there (potentially making it discoverable)? Is there any way to tell if the old photo is indeed no longer in the TB gallery? Any help is greatly appreciated.

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First post on here, still relatively new to the Geo-world. Question. I accidentally posted a TB photo with the tracking number showing - D'oh! I deleted the old photo, and uploaded a new one. On the desktop site, only the new photo shows. However, in the Geocaching app, the old one is still there (potentially making it discoverable)? Is there any way to tell if the old photo is indeed no longer in the TB gallery? Any help is greatly appreciated.

It looks like there's a little delay in the App, updating photos.

 

On the web site, I only see one of your Trackables that should be addressed. Your Geotrain coin has two identical logs, each with a photo that seriously should be deleted (or edited). When taking a picture, cover that tracking number (or blot it out in a photo editor), or flip the coin over so the number is not in view before posting it.

 

The rest of yours have no tracking number shown.

Edited by kunarion

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