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Ethics of Finding


Profbrad
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It's about how the game is devolving, at least over here.

Btw, the "Greetings from Germany" reference is dated and boring.

Forgive the snip of the quote, but this is an important part of context.

 

Sorry that it is devolving "over there". Like I said, it seems awfully localized to hear about "coordinate sharing" at a scale of 700+ people on a facebook group or listserve. That hasn't happened in my experience anywhere in the US I've lived or visited.

 

As for the "Greetings from Germany", it may be "dated and boring", but it is still incredibly relevant for context about what the state of affairs are over in Germany/Austria when paired up with the existence of a 700+ person blacklist coordinate-sharing site on the internet. This only serves as historical context that it appears that your localized problems are, indeed, localized problems. There are a few clear, obvious "ethical violations" such as mass couch-logging ("Greetings..."), or mass coordinate-sharing (mentioned facebook group or listserve with 700+ members) in your part of the world.

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As for the "Greetings from Germany", it may be "dated and boring", but it is still incredibly relevant for context about what the state of affairs are over in Germany/Austria when paired up with the existence of a 700+ person blacklist coordinate-sharing site on the internet. This only serves as historical context that it appears that your localized problems are, indeed, localized problems. There are a few clear, obvious "ethical violations" such as mass couch-logging ("Greetings..."), or mass coordinate-sharing (mentioned facebook group or listserve with 700+ members) in your part of the world.

 

The hacking of the geochecker and a lot of other such activities take their origin from other countries. It's just that what happens in Germany is much easier detectable as more cachers understand German and the community is much less closed.

 

Armchair logs for virtuals have a completely different background than coordinate sharing.

 

As coordinate sharing is regarded, it is less common in some areas of the world, however one also needs to mention that there is a much higher percentage of non traditionals in many European countries and much less space than say in Canada (except some very urban regions) or Alaska where it is not that easy that conflicts show up because there is not any longer space for everyone and the different ways people want to geocache are conflicting with each other.

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As for the "Greetings from Germany", it may be "dated and boring", but it is still incredibly relevant for context about what the state of affairs are over in Germany/Austria when paired up with the existence of a 700+ person blacklist coordinate-sharing site on the internet. This only serves as historical context that it appears that your localized problems are, indeed, localized problems. There are a few clear, obvious "ethical violations" such as mass couch-logging ("Greetings..."), or mass coordinate-sharing (mentioned facebook group or listserve with 700+ members) in your part of the world.

 

The hacking of the geochecker and a lot of other such activities take their origin from other countries. It's just that what happens in Germany is much easier detectable as more cachers understand German and the community is much less closed.

 

Armchair logs for virtuals have a completely different background than coordinate sharing.

 

As coordinate sharing is regarded, it is less common in some areas of the world, however one also needs to mention that there is a much higher percentage of non traditionals in many European countries and much less space than say in Canada (except some very urban regions) or Alaska where it is not that easy that conflicts show up because there is not any longer space for everyone and the different ways people want to geocache are conflicting with each other.

And my above point is suddenly less valid because.......? :blink:

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Armchair logs for virtuals have a completely different background than coordinate sharing.

That may be true. NEITHER, however, is considered ethical, yet the area of the world where these two things happen is the same.

 

Actually, as Groundspeak has published virtuals in this coin of the world (several European countries, including e.g. also the Netherlands) which could only be solved in a armchair manner and as Groundspeak reviewers defended those virtuals when cachers like me were arguing that they are no real caches, it is not surprising that a lot of cachers started to think that virtuals are a way of virtual caching where you just need to find the answer from home. The name virtual cache was a very unfortunate one. They should have called it containerless cache or whatever. Then lots of cachers followed the examples of their fellows and logged the very same caches. While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context. Most of them had no idea that it is not ok what they are doing and as I said many such caches could only be logged in this manner.

Of course later also some cachers joined in who wanted to log virtuals and since in many European countries there hardly exist virtuals, using the lists for armchair virtuals got popular. It was however Groundspeak's fault of not interfering early enough (also with respect what the reviewers in some areas published and defended).

 

Moreover, as I said it is unfair to always refer to Germany. I would not say that the cachers in the Czech republic for example behave in a more ethical manner than German cachers. It always depends on the individual cacher and the more popular and the more competitive caching is in an area, the more likely one will also be exposed to extremes.

 

Suppose e.g. in an area a 365 streak challenge cache gets published and it is an area with more than 50% non traditionals (not too uncommon in some areas of Europe). What do you think will many competitive cachers do when they run out of traditionals. You can play the same game with many other targets for competitive aspects.

 

 

Cezanne

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Armchair logs for virtuals have a completely different background than coordinate sharing.

That may be true. NEITHER, however, is considered ethical, yet the area of the world where these two things happen is the same.

 

Actually, as Groundspeak has published virtuals in this coin of the world (several European countries, including e.g. also the Netherlands) which could only be solved in a armchair manner and as Groundspeak reviewers defended those virtuals when cachers like me were arguing that they are no real caches, it is not surprising that a lot of cachers started to think that virtuals are a way of virtual caching where you just need to find the answer from home. The name virtual cache was a very unfortunate one. They should have called it containerless cache or whatever. Then lots of cachers followed the examples of their fellows and logged the very same caches. While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context. Most of them had no idea that it is not ok what they are doing and as I said many such caches could only be logged in this manner.

Of course later also some cachers joined in who wanted to log virtuals and since in many European countries there hardly exist virtuals, using the lists for armchair virtuals got popular. It was however Groundspeak's fault of not interfering early enough (also with respect what the reviewers in some areas published and defended).

 

Moreover, as I said it is unfair to always refer to Germany. I would not say that the cachers in the Czech republic for example behave in a more ethical manner than German cachers. It always depends on the individual cacher and the more popular and the more competitive caching is in an area, the more likely one will also be exposed to extremes.

 

Suppose e.g. in an area a 365 streak challenge cache gets published and it is an area with more than 50% non traditionals (not too uncommon in some areas of Europe). What do you think will many competitive cachers do when they run out of traditionals. You can play the same game with many other targets for competitive aspects.

 

 

Cezanne

You're honestly trying to rationalize the actions of logging a virtual that a cacher never actually visited because some virtual caches were considered by you to be armchair type caches and therefore all the rest could be logged the same way? I don't see anything that's in the spirit of geocaching by claiming a find of a cache without actually visiting the site. You don't find it wrong for ethical reasons. "While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context." They didn't realize it was wrong, so you give them a break and say they didn't breach any ethical boundaries because some virtual caches "could only be solved in an armchair manner" so that's why they logged the others that way. It's the caches' fault, not the cachers' fault.

 

Topping it off, you then state it's Groundspeak's fault for allowing it to happen later? Groundspeak is a listing service for caches and provides some guidelines for those seeking and those hiding. The COs are responsible for verifying the finds of any cache, not Groundspeak. What happened to personal ethics and the role of the individual who claims a find that this thread purportedly discussed? Instead of placing the burden of proof on the individual cacher and their personal code of ethics, you place the blame on virtual caches and Groundspeak, letting the cacher off the hook as it pertains to ethical decisions in this situation. However, you complain about cachers who share the final coordinates, bypass the right way to do it, and then physically visit and sign the log of a puzzle or multi cache. I find not visiting a cache and claiming the find to be a worse ethical fault than shared coordinates. They weren't even there! At least the "cheating" person physically visited the final cache location to sign the log.

 

I wasn't going to address the "Germany" issue anymore (it's off topic), but as you brought it up, here's my opinion. As to continually referring to German or german speaking cachers as more unethical than other cachers around the world, you're right, German cachers aren't the only ones doing this. I'm sure EVERY nationality has its share of cachers doing this. However, when I look at this single virtual cache (which I have bookmarked to do since it's 230 miles away) and the number of loggers from Germany (or german speaking countries) who never were actually there, it's hard to NOT refer to german speaking cachers in the sense that we're discussing. I don't see as many other nationalities claiming a find here where it's obvious that they didn't actually visit the island. Add to that the fact that Germany is home to the single largest coordinate sharing Facebook page and I hope you begin to understand why Germany is singled out over other nationalities. No wonder Cezanne and Rebore are so upset.

 

I also took a look at this cache, which I found this past summer in Berlin, to see if any non-German cachers looked like they were claiming a bogus find. Anything NOT in German and I went to their caching profile. I made it to the giga-event dates before it just got to be too time consuming. There was only one non-German finder (out of about 30 total) that I considered questioning the validity of their find. They had two other finds in Berlin on the same day, one at the zoo and the other was another virtual in Berlin. There's nothing very close on either side of the date when their logs were dated so I'm more apt to consider it a legitimate find. That's it. One non-german speaking cacher with a find that I would question. That does NOT mean that other nationalities don't act in an unethical manner when it comes to finds. It just means that it's much easier to find this type of occurrence with German or german speaking cachers than it is for anyone else, which is why german speaking cachers get singled out, fairly or unfairly, and to repeat, it's not ALL of them, just a small portion, although Rebore and Cezanne make it sound like it's a rampant problem. I certainly hope it isn't.

Edited by coachstahly
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It's about how the game is devolving, at least over here.

Btw, the "Greetings from Germany" reference is dated and boring.

Forgive the snip of the quote, but this is an important part of context.

 

Sorry that it is devolving "over there". Like I said, it seems awfully localized to hear about "coordinate sharing" at a scale of 700+ people on a facebook group or listserve. That hasn't happened in my experience anywhere in the US I've lived or visited.

 

As for the "Greetings from Germany", it may be "dated and boring", but it is still incredibly relevant for context about what the state of affairs are over in Germany/Austria when paired up with the existence of a 700+ person blacklist coordinate-sharing site on the internet. This only serves as historical context that it appears that your localized problems are, indeed, localized problems. There are a few clear, obvious "ethical violations" such as mass couch-logging ("Greetings..."), or mass coordinate-sharing (mentioned facebook group or listserve with 700+ members) in your part of the world.

 

I think you misunderstood something. Allow me to quote myself:

There's a thread in the biggest german forum with over 700 postings right now called "Mystery coords on Facebook" which was started on January/29/2015, so obviously quite a few people are upset and affected by this.

I have no idea how many people are sharing coordinates and where they are from. There are many german cachers upset by this, that's what I was trying to say.

 

Edit: Also, allow me to quote you from a different thread:

Woah, that's a lot of stereotyping.
Edited by Rebore
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You're honestly trying to rationalize the actions of logging a virtual that a cacher never actually visited because some virtual caches were considered by you to be armchair type caches and therefore all the rest could be logged the same way?

 

No, it was neither about me nor about saying that virtuals can/should be logged that way. I explained how the issue came up and that in my opinion Groundspeak is to blame for what happened to a great deal.

I cannot recall how often I explained to cachers what a virtual should be about as so many people interpreted it as virtual caching like in virtual reality.

 

I have been one of the strongest opponents of the armchair virtuals that have been published by some European reviewers.

 

 

I don't see anything that's in the spirit of geocaching by claiming a find of a cache without actually visiting the site. You don't find it wrong for ethical reasons.

 

I never would do it and I never would publish such caches. I do know however that many logged such caches based on a wrong understanding what a virtual is about.

When virtuals still existed the guidelines were available only in English and only a very small minority of cachers in German speaking countries have ever read the guidelines.

The virtuals they typically found around them have been set up in a way that invited armchair logs and most owners of the virtuals had virtual visits in mind even when a real world visit was possible.

 

 

Topping it off, you then state it's Groundspeak's fault for allowing it to happen later? Groundspeak is a listing service for caches and provides some guidelines for those seeking and those hiding. The COs are responsible for verifying the finds of any cache, not Groundspeak.

 

I recall a very hot debate I had with a former German reviewer (at the time when he was reviewer) about whether something like "Bake a chocolate cake and take a photo of your cake" could be a publishable (virtual) cache at gc.com (I wanted to come with an absurd extreme example because I found some of the virtuals that got published so stupid and with no relation to geocaching) and the answer he posted (and was not joking) was "W"hy not?" and "Why I would care about what others enjoy".

He was not the only reviewer acting and arguing like this. There was a also a Dutch guy and others.

 

You need to know that in most European countries no or almost no real virtual cache exist (an exception is the UK) - these cachers never got to learn what virtuals are and how they are intended to be taken care. If they learnt to know virtuals where it has been the idea of the owner that one googles for the answer or finds it in some more tricky manner, than you should not be suprised that they do the same for virtuals abroad and are even proud to have found the answers. (Of course later also some sharing happened, but that's a different story and the same as for other cache types).

 

 

Add to that the fact that Germany is home to the single largest coordinate sharing Facebook page and I hope you begin to understand why Germany is singled out over other nationalities. No wonder Cezanne and Rebore are so upset.

 

No it isn't. There are larger site/pages in other countries. For example a site with all final coordinates of all Czech mystery caches.

Neither myself nor Rebore are German and while I have done some 500 caches in Germany, I care much more about what happens in my home area.

rebore reported what he read in a large German geocaching forum (about the upset cache owners). Since we know German we can follow the German speaking geocaching forums while we cannot follow the forums/facebookgroups/blogs of countries with languages we do not speak. What is written in English, German and also French somewhere has so much more exposure than what is written in Czech, Dutch etc. (I know that some years ago there has been quite an uproar in the Dutch community about cheating/spoiler sites but I became aware of that only due to an English language posting in this forum.)

 

All bogus logs (not many) I have received for my virtual (bound to a multi-mystery and definitely not possible as armchair cache) came from non German speaking countries.

(The last big bogus log action was by a French guy. Before a Czech guy has logged all T5 caches in Austria etc).

Edited by cezanne
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It's about how the game is devolving, at least over here.

Btw, the "Greetings from Germany" reference is dated and boring.

Forgive the snip of the quote, but this is an important part of context.

 

Sorry that it is devolving "over there". Like I said, it seems awfully localized to hear about "coordinate sharing" at a scale of 700+ people on a facebook group or listserve. That hasn't happened in my experience anywhere in the US I've lived or visited.

 

As for the "Greetings from Germany", it may be "dated and boring", but it is still incredibly relevant for context about what the state of affairs are over in Germany/Austria when paired up with the existence of a 700+ person blacklist coordinate-sharing site on the internet. This only serves as historical context that it appears that your localized problems are, indeed, localized problems. There are a few clear, obvious "ethical violations" such as mass couch-logging ("Greetings..."), or mass coordinate-sharing (mentioned facebook group or listserve with 700+ members) in your part of the world.

 

I think you misunderstood something. Allow me to quote myself:

There's a thread in the biggest german forum with over 700 postings right now called "Mystery coords on Facebook" which was started on January/29/2015, so obviously quite a few people are upset and affected by this.

I have no idea how many people are sharing coordinates and where they are from. There are many german cachers upset by this, that's what I was trying to say.

 

Edit: Also, allow me to quote you from a different thread:

Woah, that's a lot of stereotyping.

Well, sure. But you've also helped me see that this stereotype is also quite accurate. High fives! :D

 

Also, if you've taken the time to read everything I've said, you'd also recognize that I've stated clearly that there are FEW making this look bad for the many. What you've got in your area is what you've painted to be as unethical behavior. This is supported by our knowledge of the mass-couch logging behaviours which have been dubbed "Greetings from...(GERMANY)" problems, and your clear description that someone has a GERMAN forum where 700+ posts have given away the final coordinates for Geocaching.com geocaches.

 

So, call it a stereotype, but you're also just as guilty of painting people there are generally unethical, and used direct examples where they are acting in an untoward manner.

 

Again, what I said is that you're seeing the majority in your paradigm exhibiting behaviors which are, on the whole, in the slim minority of overall geocaching ethical behavior. You live in a hotbed of subversion, and clear historic record of liberties being taken with a game developed and played thousands of miles away, with a foundational language which creates misinterpretation and additional variation on what is, for English-speaking people, much more clear on how it guides gameplay on Geocaching.com.

Edited by NeverSummer
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...and your clear description that someone has a GERMAN forum where 700+ posts have given away the final coordinates for Geocaching.com geocaches.

 

Nope. There is also a thread in the Groundspeak forums with over 300 posts right now called "Ethics of Finding". In neither of those threads any final coordinates were shared.

You thought cezanne was making something up when she talked about mass coordinate sharing, I tried to correct you and pointed you to a list with nearly 28000 spoilered Caches. That is what is beeing discussed in the evil GERMAN forum.

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No, it was neither about me nor about saying that virtuals can/should be logged that way. I explained how the issue came up and that in my opinion Groundspeak is to blame for what happened to a great deal.

 

You missed my point. You explained how the issue came up and then explicitly stated, "While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context." What, if it wasn't an ethical issue, wasn't right about their logging methods? Why don't you have an ethical problem with their logs?

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...and your clear description that someone has a GERMAN forum where 700+ posts have given away the final coordinates for Geocaching.com geocaches.

 

Nope. There is also a thread in the Groundspeak forums with over 300 posts right now called "Ethics of Finding". In neither of those threads any final coordinates were shared.

You thought cezanne was making something up when she talked about mass coordinate sharing, I tried to correct you and pointed you to a list with nearly 28000 spoilered Caches. That is what is beeing discussed in the evil GERMAN forum.

Aha. It wasn't very clear what you or cezanne were talking about. It sounded like there was a German forum where someone was posting final coordinates:

There's a thread in the biggest german forum with over 700 postings right now called "Mystery coords on Facebook" which was started on January/29/2015, so obviously quite a few people are upset and affected by this.

 

Surely you can see where the confusion came from.

 

So...there's 700 posts in the German-speaking forum on forums.Groundspeak.com in a thread called "Mystery coords on Facebook"? Ok. There's many threads with 700+ posts on this forum site, and often it's just 2-3 people going back and forth for 8 pages. :laughing:

 

So we'll go back to my original understanding: There's a facebook group or page where people are sharing final coordinates? I've never seen one. Can you provide links? I understood this to be the problem from the start: that there was a facebook site or other forum where people are "mass sharing" final coordinates. I guess I wasn't wrong when I was talking about that above. <_<

 

Who owns/runs those Facebook pages? Are they European? German, perhaps? A search on Facebook for "Mystery coordinates" and "Final coordinates" +geocaching brought up 0--ZERO hits in English where someone had a page, group, or post included final coordinates.

 

I'm still not convinced that this is as massive a problem as you think it is. And, I'd appreciate if you can help me understand the scope of your claims by backing them up with examples so I can better understand your position that there are rampant ethical violations within this game going on in regards to coordinate sharing, as an example.

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No, it was neither about me nor about saying that virtuals can/should be logged that way. I explained how the issue came up and that in my opinion Groundspeak is to blame for what happened to a great deal.

 

You missed my point. You explained how the issue came up and then explicitly stated, "While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context." What, if it wasn't an ethical issue, wasn't right about their logging methods? Why don't you have an ethical problem with their logs?

Because she interprets the guidelines differently, and the Reviewers allowed these variations to take hold in their area, so the deviation and misinterpretation of the guidelines and basics of cache logging/listing became rampant thanks to lack of clarity, language/interpretation barriers, and a belief that "the way we do it here is the right way (even if it is apart from how it is played where the game was founded)." It's quite simple, actually: There are deeply rooted "house rules" for that region, which is a deviation from the fundamental way the game is played in, say, North America.

 

I saw this first hand when I lived in Portland, Oregon, then moved to Minnesota. I was amazed at the difference in how people played there (listing/logging) versus where I was--so close to the Lilypad. Then, when I moved to Alaska, it was even more clear--especially when I'd go back to visit Portland and Seattle/Olympia and cache there again. The farther you are from the lilypad, the more liberties people take, and they seem to gravitate toward the "it's just how we do it here" mentality, versus an effort to make the game more consistent (or, "ethical") across all borders.

 

As an educator, I'm familiar with this concept. What happened in Oregon and Washington in 2000 was a person-to-person, hands-on learning process for the "fundamentals" of the game. The forums and in-person events were a close-knit group of people who helped set the tone, and refine what the guidelines should be. Once those preliminary guidelines were set, they went live on a website. People across the globe could visit "Geocaching.com" to learn about stash hunting, and start playing for themselves. Because of this grassroots foundation, the game across the globe took root with variations and liberties taken with the online guidelines. What I might be able to show for "ethical behavior" in person was left to be interpreted from the online source; nobody was in Abu Dhabi to hold someone's hand and go caching with them to instruct, mentor, and be a hands-on exemplar of how the game is played (including the "Lilypad" fundamentals of hiding, listing, and logging).

 

Learning by doing isn't always how people learn best, but when the guidelines are provided as the sole learning methodology--and those guidelines aren't clear, refined, or all-encompassing (exhaustive of most/all possible issues), you'll see variation in the results.

 

Think of assembling furniture. If I've put together a few Ikea desks, I can show you with accuracy and efficiency how to assemble it. If I hand you the instructions and walk away, you'll not learn as efficiently, and you also might not do it "right" to the letter. Now, imagine the same piece of furniture, but with instructions with no drawings, and in a completely unfamiliar language...and nobody is there to help you through it. This is the proverbial "smash that table with a hammer" frustration, and also the wonky, "how do I have 10 extra screws?" table you see laughed about on sitcoms (or your friend's apartment).

 

You see, that is how we got here. And the idea is to try and refine the guidelines so that they are more clear and consistent across borders and languages. This is a global game, and we have to deal with the fact that people don't have the same hands-on learning from the Lilypad.

Edited by NeverSummer
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Aha. It wasn't very clear what you or cezanne were talking about. It sounded like there was a German forum where someone was posting final coordinates:

 

There are numerous facebook groups where people get access to data bases/files with final coordinates.

The case that has become known recently was a facebook group with well over 1000 participants but many of those were there just to try to spy out what happens and if their caches are affected.

The story is more complex, but I neither have the time nor the motivation to provide all the details.

 

Rebotre was talking about the largest German geocaching forum www.geoclub.de were there are over 700 posts which discuss this incident and the hacking of geocheck.org which was detected due to one

member of the facebook group who managed to get hold of one of the cheaters lists and this list was then analyzed and it became evident that caches with a geocheck.org were affected to a very high degree.

The list had more than 14000 caches in it, originally the list grew by manual feeds, but then due to the addition of a small submit of the hacked data the list quickly became much larger.

 

Afterwards it became known that e.g. exists a list with more than 100000 coordinates including e.g. all finals of mystery caches in the Czech republic. The one incident that became known because a

cache owner acted as kind of spy in the facebook group and then made everything public and archived all his caches (and many followed his example) is just one of many - it's just that typically the things do not become known and are not publicized - also for this incident a lot of cachers criticzed that the affected cache owner made the things known publically. They argued that keeping them secret would have been better as the lists are if course still available just at other places.

 

So...there's 700 posts in the German-speaking forum on forums.Groundspeak.com in a thread called "Mystery coords on Facebook"? Ok. There's many threads with 700+ posts on this forum site, and often it's just 2-3 people going back and forth for 8 pages. :laughing:

 

No, on the geoclub.de forum. He wrote on a German forum, not on the Groundspeak forum.

 

The idea is of course not to find those lists by googling. These are closed circles and one often needs special methods to get entry and moreover the language barrier also plays a role.

 

I once tried to find out who was distributing the much smaller local list on which one of my caches entered up or at least send this person my request that they delete my cache. Noone of those who had the list told me anything about it and were also not willing to forward my message.

Edited by cezanne
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No, it was neither about me nor about saying that virtuals can/should be logged that way. I explained how the issue came up and that in my opinion Groundspeak is to blame for what happened to a great deal.

 

You missed my point. You explained how the issue came up and then explicitly stated, "While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context." What, if it wasn't an ethical issue, wasn't right about their logging methods? Why don't you have an ethical problem with their logs?

 

Because those who logged virtuals in an armchair manner because they believed that this what is the intended way made a mistake but did not violate something which I understand as ethics.

But that of course is an philosophical issue.

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Because she interprets the guidelines differently, and the Reviewers allowed these variations to take hold in their area, so the deviation and misinterpretation of the guidelines

 

and basics of cache logging/listing became rampant thanks to lack of clarity, language/interpretation barriers, and a belief that "the way we do it here is the right way (even if it is apart from how it is played where the game was founded)." It's quite simple, actually: There are deeply rooted "house rules" for that region, which is a deviation from the fundamental way the game is played in, say, North America.

 

What a nonsense. I have been one of the strongest opponents of those virtuals that only could be done in an armchair manner.

I understood right from the beginning what Groundspeak had in mind with a virtual cache (even though I think that they chose a very bad name for the concept).

It's not true that the reviewers in my area allowed these variations. The main reviewer in my country has been Erik and I guess he is beyond doubts apart from coming from the US and having been the trainer of several highly appreciated reviewers.

I provided details about some European reviewers who live several 100km from me. It's not true that the reviewers only allowed these variations, those who did were among the supporters and thought that these are cool caches and those who did not share their opinion got insulted.

 

I provided the real reason for why I did not consider it as an ethical issue.

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No, it was neither about me nor about saying that virtuals can/should be logged that way. I explained how the issue came up and that in my opinion Groundspeak is to blame for what happened to a great deal.

 

You missed my point. You explained how the issue came up and then explicitly stated, "While I never thought that what they did was right, it was not the ethical issue that bothered me in this context." What, if it wasn't an ethical issue, wasn't right about their logging methods? Why don't you have an ethical problem with their logs?

 

Because those who logged virtuals in an armchair manner because they believed that this what is the intended way made a mistake but did not violate something which I understand as ethics.

But that of course is an philosophical issue.

No, see my edit above. This is an issue of people taking liberties with what they think is the way the game is played, versus how the game is played closer to the Lilypad.

 

I guess the "philosophical issue" is that these armchair loggers "Greetings from..." people had the philosophy that "how we do things here is how we do them here--how you do them there is how you do them there...", rather than trying to understand how they were/are doing it is incorrect, and really is against the guidelines.

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Because she interprets the guidelines differently, and the Reviewers allowed these variations to take hold in their area, so the deviation and misinterpretation of the guidelines

 

and basics of cache logging/listing became rampant thanks to lack of clarity, language/interpretation barriers, and a belief that "the way we do it here is the right way (even if it is apart from how it is played where the game was founded)." It's quite simple, actually: There are deeply rooted "house rules" for that region, which is a deviation from the fundamental way the game is played in, say, North America.

 

What a nonsense. I have been one of the strongest opponents of those virtuals that only could be done in an armchair manner.

I understood right from the beginning what Groundspeak had in mind with a virtual cache (even though I think that they chose a very bad name for the concept).

It's not true that the reviewers in my area allowed these variations. The main reviewer in my country has been Erik and I guess he is beyond doubts apart from coming from the US and having been the trainer of several highly appreciated reviewers.

I provided details about some European reviewers who live several 100km from me. It's not true that the reviewers only allowed these variations, those who did were among the supporters and thought that these are cool caches and those who did not share their opinion got insulted.

 

I provided the real reason for why I did not consider it as an ethical issue.

Erik-l88r also published geocaches on United States Fish and Wildlife Refuge lands and wilderness areas here in Alaska and beyond. How infallible are you assuming him to be?

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I guess the "philosophical issue" is that these armchair loggers "Greetings from..." people had the philosophy that "how we do things here is how we do them here--how you do them there is how you do them there...", rather than trying to understand how they were/are doing it is incorrect, and really is against the guidelines.

 

How should they come to the point to question that what they are doing is not correct?

Many of them would not even have been able to understand the guidelines even if they invested a lot of time.

 

It would have needed people to educate them.

 

The philosophical issue I referred to refers to me and has nothing to do with other people. It only related to what ethics means to me and that is not the same as for you.

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I guess the "philosophical issue" is that these armchair loggers "Greetings from..." people had the philosophy that "how we do things here is how we do them here--how you do them there is how you do them there...", rather than trying to understand how they were/are doing it is incorrect, and really is against the guidelines.

 

How should they come to the point to question that what they are doing is not correct?

Many of them would not even have been able to understand the guidelines even if they invested a lot of time.

 

It would have needed people to educate them.

 

The philosophical issue I referred to refers to me and has nothing to do with other people. It only related to what ethics means to me and that is not the same as for you.

Precisely. Thank you. There is, in a nutshell, the problem on a global scale for Geocaching.com and Groundspeaks guidance of the gameplay.

 

So they clarify and add guidelines, as well as provide more apparently/supposedly consistent instruction to Reviewers so that we see more consistent enforcement of the guidelines, and more understanding on a global scale (not personal or regional) what the "ethics" of the game really are.

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Erik-l88r also published geocaches on United States Fish and Wildlife Refuge lands and wilderness areas here in Alaska and beyond. How infallible are you assuming him to be?

 

Who is infallable? In any case he did not publish armchair virtuals and he also did not defend them. I'm not intending to talk about wildlife areas now.

 

I do not know the situation in the US and also not which maps were available at which times. I just can state that even now in 2015 it can happen very easily that a cacher hides a cache in a protection area (without knowing it) and the reviewer publishes it (without knowing it).

 

Above our topic was publishing armchair virtuals in the apparent belief that such virtuals are legitimate.

 

I did not even blame the single reviewers, but Groundspeak who did not interfere when being told about the situation for many years. It took very long until they reacted.

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Erik-l88r also published geocaches on United States Fish and Wildlife Refuge lands and wilderness areas here in Alaska and beyond. How infallible are you assuming him to be?

 

Who is infallable? In any case he did not publish armchair virtuals and he also did not defend them. I'm not intending to talk about wildlife areas now.

Stop being so obtuse.

 

I'm using this as an example of ethics and their variations across borders.

 

I do not know the situation in the US and also not which maps were available at which times. I just can state that even now in 2015 it can happen very easily that a cacher hides a cache in a protection area (without knowing it) and the reviewer publishes it (without knowing it).

 

Above our topic was publishing armchair virtuals in the apparent belief that such virtuals are legitimate.

 

I did not even blame the single reviewers, but Groundspeak who did not interfere when being told about the situation for many years. It took very long until they reacted.

I'll tell you how: By having permission to place a cache there, according to the guidelines and TOU that have been in place for, umm, like forever.

 

You said:

It's not true that the reviewers in my area allowed these variations.
I have proven this hypothesis to be false.
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I'll tell you how: By having permission to place a cache there, according to the guidelines and TOU that have been in place for, umm, like forever.

 

There always used to be the notion of appropriate permission which has been applied.

 

You said:

It's not true that the reviewers in my area allowed these variations.
I have proven this hypothesis to be false.

 

I talked about armchair virtuals. As appropriate permission is regarded, several cachers from North America wrote in posts that at least back in the early times (which I have in mind) the situation there was not any different - of course this does not refer to national parks or other areas with a land manager.

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The philosophical issue I referred to refers to me and has nothing to do with other people. It only related to what ethics means to me and that is not the same as for you.

EXACTLY! All of us don't share the same ethical boundaries as it pertains to geocaching (and other facets of life as well). Complaining about someone else's ethics isn't going to accomplish anything and attempting to control others' ethical actions by working hard to make sure your puzzles and multis are done the right way is an act of futility, IMO. Yes, those that share your sense of ethics (I'd be one of them) would do it the right way (and be appreciative), but others are going to attempt to find another way to do it, regardless of what you would prefer. Either they will or they won't. Save your frustration, time, and energy by not worrying so much about what people do with regard to your caches and devote it to the things you like about this activity instead. You'll end up being much happier with a lot less stress in your life.

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The philosophical issue I referred to refers to me and has nothing to do with other people. It only related to what ethics means to me and that is not the same as for you.

EXACTLY! All of us don't share the same ethical boundaries as it pertains to geocaching (and other facets of life as well).

 

Of course not, but what I meant above was something else. I referred to the definition of ethics and not which ethical rules someone might have for a particular situation.

 

Complaining about someone else's ethics isn't going to accomplish anything and attempting to control others' ethical actions by working hard to make sure your puzzles and multis are done the right way is an act of futility, IMO.

 

My intent was not to complain about someone's ethics. my point was rather that a lot of cachers do not care at all about any sort of ethics at all when it comes to geocaching.

When you write about what many/most cachers agree upon it just does not reflect my observations, but let's stop it it makes no sense.

My idea was never to come up with a list of things that everyone in geocaching should adopt as his/her ethics. I just thought that addressing the topic of ethics in geocaching and discussing about it can make sense beyond the statement that there can't be a list that everyone accepts.

 

There are so many barriers which make it hard to understand each other when it comes to such topics. In your case I at least have the feeling that I got part of my message across while I feel completely misunderstood by some other participants.

 

It's not only language, culture, regional habits etc that play a role - there is so much else that makes the geocaching scene be very different in different areas.

For example, when I encounter the many links to great outdoor events in North America, then it makes it easier for me to understand that these people will miss what the guidelines have taken away less than I do. I also feel that geocaching is less competitive in North America on average than it has become in some European countries. I guess one needs to have experienced this to understand this and I live in an area where a particularly high percentage of old timers have given up (it's considerably higher e.g. than in Vienna).

 

Yes, those that share your sense of ethics (I'd be one of them) would do it the right way (and be appreciative), but others are going to attempt to find another way to do it, regardless of what you would prefer. Either they will or they won't. Save your frustration, time, and energy by not worrying so much about what people do with regard to your caches and devote it to the things you like about this activity instead.

 

The easiest way to achieve this is to archive my caches and not hiding any further - however it makes the wrong persons suffer. That's why I have not yet done what many before me already have done.

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

Edited by cezanne
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The easiest way to achieve this is to archive my caches and not hiding any further - however it makes the wrong persons suffer. That's why I have not yet done what many before me already have done.

 

You need to stop the "suffering" you're experiencing first and worry about others' suffering later. If it's really causing you that much stress, you'd probably be better without it. It would be a shame and your community's loss, but you need to take care of you before taking care of others. If you can live with it, as you appear to be doing so right now, minimize the stress, energy and effort and quit worrying about what others are going to do with your cache. You KNOW what you want them to do; you have it spelled out in your descriptions. It's up to them to determine how to do it and that's something you have very little control over.

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<snip>

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

How does a TFTC log ruin the experience for the next cachers?

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<snip>

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

How does a TFTC log ruin the experience for the next cachers?

Don't bother. Why do you think this thread revolves around only 4 people now? LOL It's what we've been trying to get an answer to, or at least attempt to point out that it's NOT ruined. You're like the 4th or 5th person to bring this up and we still get the same answer (or more appropriately, a non-answer).

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<snip>

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

How does a TFTC log ruin the experience for the next cachers?

It doesn't.

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<snip>

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

How does a TFTC log ruin the experience for the next cachers?

It doesn't.

Cezanne just said that it was.

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<snip>

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

How does a TFTC log ruin the experience for the next cachers?

It doesn't.

Cezanne just said that it was.

No, she didn't. TFTC doesn't spoil anything, but logs from people who treat puzzles like traditional caches might do. Especially if they try to write more in their log than "TFTC", simply because they have no idea what the riddle was really about.

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<snip>

 

A TFTC log for amn involved cache does not make me happy, but it does not ruin the cache for others. What happens frequently is however that the experience is ruined for the next cachers and that's where it really, really gets frustrating for me. I have to deal with my own disappoinment and with the disappointment of future finders who lost the chance to do the cache in the way they wanted to do it.

How does a TFTC log ruin the experience for the next cachers?

 

A better question might be "how does a TFTC log help future seekers (or the CO)?"

 

If more finders considered the online log to be more than an obligatory step required to get credit for a find we might see better logs.

 

 

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