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Geocaching in the news


snow_rules
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While the "journalist" doesn't seem to be wrong, the article sure reeks of paranoia.

I guess putting one's own slant on a subject is part of being a journalist, eh?

 

Reading into that "news" article, it appears that Albuquerque parents need to keep their kids away from restaurants, movie theaters, shopping malls, sports centers, the YMCA, or just about anywhere other than home... and being at home might not be a guarantee, either.

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They forgot to mention that if your child is carving a stamp for a letterbox hybrid cache they could cut themselves. A comment to the article asked if there had been any documented cases of harm as a result of caching. I have not heard of any, but it is always a good idea to know where your loved one might be and perhaps we can agree that if you see a van like this that says "geocache inside" it is best to put it on your ignore list:

 

free+candy+van.jpeg

Edited by geodarts
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This is brutal, man. So brutal I whipped out a blog post on the article this morning. I cannot post a link to it though, for reasons I can't get into here. :P The article is also showing up first today on a Google RSS feed for Geocaching in the news.

 

I can tell you though that my opinion is that it's manufactured news, and it's rather strange that no one from the department of homeland security who is allegedly concerned is named or quoted. I think the reporter just came up with this nonsense, and got someone to say they were "concerned" after she brought up her findings to them.

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The danger according to this report seems to be anywhere where people live. If you are where people live, there could be a sex offender living there.

 

It seems odd to focus on Geocaching in this context. Walking to the movies or a friends house seems just as likely to pass a sex offenders house.

 

Even odder to me is the implication that it is safer to geocache in parks as people don't live there. Not that I am against caching in parks, but sex offenders can leave their houses (well unless they are under house arrest).

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Complete bull spit. There's also sidewalks in front of those houses. Let's outlaw sidewalks. Aren't those images copyright or trademarked to Groundspeak and the map companies(Google, OSM) I doubt GS gave permission.

 

Even someone from the DGS thought it was dumb.

 

Well, since the Department of Homeland Security has concerns about the Intro App, perhaps they should get rid of it. :D

 

:ph34r:

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At my buddies place so I gave him the contact info (he's done media stuff before) and just got a call back about the story. I believe he said it was the Managing Director at KOB, Johnny Chandler. Mr. Chandler did apologize about the written article and it should have been written better. There will be an update probably tomorrow (probably running a little behind with it being New Year's). The TV will stand, and they stand by it. I know Mr. Chandler and my buddy spoke a bit about how somethings in the story could have been done better.

 

The report was done because someone from Department of Homeland security reached out to them. It is a "concern". Interestingly, they were not releasing he source. After hanging up, my friend said he forgot to ask if local law enforcement was part of it. The managing director did say that there is a huge issue of sex offenders in that region and the point was to make parents aware. From what I heard, I don't think my friend and the director agreed that is what came out of he story, more so than painting Geocaching badly. You can decide that for yourselves, the reports will always stand by their point because they are tied to it. Of course we are tied to our side too. Perhaps see what someone thinks who is not a geocacher.

 

What is still unknown is if the reporter reached out to Groundspeak / Geocaching directly, which I know my friend was pretty big on (as well as the map bit used in he article. One thing is for sure according to him: no one from KOB was familiar with Geocaching prior to doing the article.

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The report was done because someone from Department of Homeland security reached out to them. It is a "concern". Interestingly, they were not releasing he source. After hanging up, my friend said he forgot to ask if local law enforcement was part of it. The managing director did say that there is a huge issue of sex offenders in that region and the point was to make parents aware.

 

I'm wondering if there was any specific person that raised their concern, but that they dont want to mention specifics about.

 

On this map

sex-offender-site-pic.png

there are several sex offenders in the neighborhood, but none near any caches http://www.geocaching.com/map/?ll=35.0841,-106.65099#?ll=35.12993,-106.60356&z=16

Until you zoom out and find the 10th person who does seem to live less than 500 feet, and down the street from this cache. But thats just one zip code.

Edited by 4wheelin_fool
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Who are these kids that go geocaching by themselves?

 

And if they're out there with their smartphone and get accosted, they can just call 911, eh?

 

They sure can.

 

Better yet, they probably should just wait until they are an adult. Nearly every log that I have seen by kids bringing their friends along to show, is almost always followed by another log noting that the container and contents were found strewn about the area. Perhaps purposely placing a cache near a sex offenders house, along with a warning on the cache page, may just keep it from getting muggled. :ph34r:

Edited by 4wheelin_fool
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Last I heard, Albuquerque had a much more serious meth lab problem than child predator problem.

 

76a2f2d1053e4b5693227e6d1280eec8.jpg

:laughing:

 

How did this "journalism" happen without contacting Groundspeak or with an interview with the Police? Also...there is no mention that the guidelines state that users should be over the age of 18...or is that just for the forums? :unsure:

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One of the caches 4wheelin fool referenced as being within 300 ft of an offender is in the parking lot of the restaurant where we have a recurring dinner event each month. Would that rule out urban events for kids? No reports of anyone hearing "Hey kid, want some free pizza?" Must have been a slow news day for this crap to be offered.

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One of the caches 4wheelin fool referenced as being within 300 ft of an offender is in the parking lot of the restaurant where we have a recurring dinner event each month. Would that rule out urban events for kids? No reports of anyone hearing "Hey kid, want some free pizza?" Must have been a slow news day for this crap to be offered.

 

I don't think there is any concern warranted, unless a sex offender happened to be a geocacher. Even so, there is not much he could do, other than hide a cache near his house. If he set up find notifications for a few miles of his residence, it would not necessarily show that someone was logging from the site, or was a kid at all.

 

Perhaps a warning could be posted on cache pages near sex offenders houses, but that would be a laborious task for reviewers to enforce.

Edited by 4wheelin_fool
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