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BBWolf+3Pigs

New Message Center...

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Gripes:

 

1) Why can't I send a message to multiple people? (Or am I missing something?)

2) Why don;t I get notices that people have replied to a thread I am in? (Do I have to constantly keep checking the message center to see replies?)

 

Question:

 

1) If I deselect the checkbox to receive email notices of new message in the message center, will people still be able to message me? Because if I don't get the message notification, people will wonder why I am not responding to their message(s).

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  • Group messaging is not a part of this beta release, but may be included somewhere down the road
  • Email notification is not automatically triggered for every message in a conversation; it will only trigger if a message comes in and you do not visit the Message Center within a half-hour (there may be some additional rules around that; I would have to check)
  • Deselecting the checkbox will only turn off the email notification; people will still be able to send you a message through the MC

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1) I would like copy message to my mail from this message center which I send, as the old messaging system. Can I do it? If not, why?

2) Why isn't text of message in notifications mail? I have to go to new message center to know whether the message is important. May you send message with notification mail as old system? If not, why?

3) I would like send answer to message from another geocacher directly through email as old messaging system, when he didn't check "do not send email". When I have to go from email to www.geocaching.com - it is for me complicated. And for server geocaching.com it's higher load (when for answer we have to go to server), when now (in last week) it goes so slowly...

4) I would like send notifications of all answers, not only about some messages.

 

How long will be messages on server? And how can we find between messages? Will be some finding tools? When I will after year look for something... Between my mail I can find by text long time ago...

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Deselecting the checkbox will only turn off the email notification; people will still be able to send you a message through the MC

 

So in this case I may have messages stacking up and people getting annoyed I am not responding. Couldn't you disable the ability for people to message me (if I opted out of receiving Message Center emails) so they know I won't be seeing the messages?

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1) I would like copy message to my mail from this message center which I send, as the old messaging system. Can I do it? If not, why?

2) Why isn't text of message in notifications mail? I have to go to new message center to know whether the message is important. May you send message with notification mail as old system? If not, why?

3) I would like send answer to message from another geocacher directly through email as old messaging system, when he didn't check "do not send email". When I have to go from email to www.geocaching.com - it is for me complicated. And for server geocaching.com it's higher load (when for answer we have to go to server), when now (in last week) it goes so slowly...

4) I would like send notifications of all answers, not only about some messages.

 

How long will be messages on server? And how can we find between messages? Will be some finding tools? When I will after year look for something... Between my mail I can find by text long time ago...

This input underscores the bottom line for me: all of these requests are asking for things to make the new message feature almost as good as the existing e-mail feature.

 

The one improvement I can see -- attaching pictures -- would be even more useful on the existing e-mail feature. And I'd much prefer they spend their time adding the ability to CC other geocachers in the existing e-mail feature rather than waste time implementing a group messaging feature, especially since I expect most people to ignore yet another messaging facility tacked on to a side of a web site they use.

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1) I would like copy message to my mail from this message center which I send, as the old messaging system. Can I do it? If not, why?

2) Why isn't text of message in notifications mail? I have to go to new message center to know whether the message is important. May you send message with notification mail as old system? If not, why?

3) I would like send answer to message from another geocacher directly through email as old messaging system, when he didn't check "do not send email". When I have to go from email to www.geocaching.com - it is for me complicated. And for server geocaching.com it's higher load (when for answer we have to go to server), when now (in last week) it goes so slowly...

4) I would like send notifications of all answers, not only about some messages.

 

How long will be messages on server? And how can we find between messages? Will be some finding tools? When I will after year look for something... Between my mail I can find by text long time ago...

This input underscores the bottom line for me: all of these requests are asking for things to make the new message feature almost as good as the existing e-mail feature.

 

The one improvement I can see -- attaching pictures -- would be even more useful on the existing e-mail feature. And I'd much prefer they spend their time adding the ability to CC other geocachers in the existing e-mail feature rather than waste time implementing a group messaging feature, especially since I expect most people to ignore yet another messaging facility tacked on to a side of a web site they use.

 

Agreed.

 

It appears they are trying to cater to the smartphone users who don't have email addresses registered with GC.com. So now the rest of us (who have been around for years) have more overhead to worry about.

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It appears they are trying to cater to the smartphone users who don't have email addresses registered with GC.com. So now the rest of us (who have been around for years) have more overhead to worry about.

 

It seems that they want us to read messages on the website instead of the comfort of our mail clients. That way there are a lot more views on the ads they run.

Messages should be delivered to your mailbox (as they are now), a notification that there's a new message is send after 30 minutes while e-mailconversations are now instant is a serious step backwards.

Edited by on4bam

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I have been messaging with a friend on MAC suing sarfari and he cannot attach Photos. When he click on the Attach Photo link it takes him to the geocaching.com home page. It does not pop us a file selector box. When he tries to drag and drop an image it just puts in the full local path to his image.

 

i.e.: /Users/{His User Name}/Pictures/Geocaching/Siver Creek Park Glacial Erratic.jpg

 

Is anyone else on a MAC seeing this problem?

 

Thanks

Terrible Ts

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I'm using Mac OS X 10.7.5. With Safari 6.1.6, both the attach photo link and drag & drop work just fine.

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It appears they are trying to cater to the smartphone users who don't have email addresses registered with GC.com. So now the rest of us (who have been around for years) have more overhead to worry about.

 

It seems that they want us to read messages on the website instead of the comfort of our mail clients. That way there are a lot more views on the ads they run.

Messages should be delivered to your mailbox (as they are now), a notification that there's a new message is send after 30 minutes while e-mailconversations are now instant is a serious step backwards.

 

BINGO!

 

At the very least, there should be an option whereby I can opt out, and the sender will get that information when they try to send a message. It does no-one any good to have messages piling up that are not getting read!

Edited by BC & MsKitty

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I'm actually curious, personally not including earthcache or virtual answers I doubt I send 1 message a month so honestly I see no need for the new message center.

 

What I'm curious about is how many messages do you send/receive?

 

I guess if you own virtuals, earthcaches or a large amount of caches you will get more.

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I'm actually curious, personally not including earthcache or virtual answers I doubt I send 1 message a month so honestly I see no need for the new message center.

 

What I'm curious about is how many messages do you send/receive?

 

I send a couple every month. Sometimes mysteries don't have checkers and I like to make sure the solution is correct before we go into the field. I might need an extra hint solving a mystery or contact a CO because of a problem with a WP. Monday we started a multi with electronics tags, WP2 didn't work anymore (battery exhausted) so I mailed the CO. Next multi we got stuck at WP6 (as did previous cachers) so I contacted the CO to make sure we were at the right spot and if the WP was still OK.

If we were to go out for traditionals we probably wouldn't have to send any messages.

GClittlehelper script makes contacting an other cacher a one click operation, I get a copy of my mail and I see an instant reply. Mails will not eat up my data when mobile too where webpages will add up the Megabytes at a higher rate.

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What version of the OS and Safari are they running?

I just heard back from him and he has:

 

OS X ver 10.5.8

Safari 5.0.6 (5533.22.3)

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What version of the OS and Safari are they running?

I just heard back from him and he has:

 

OS X ver 10.5.8

Safari 5.0.6 (5533.22.3)

 

Those are pretty old; I think they will need to upgrade in order to use the picture functionality as we've implemented it: http://www.dropzonejs.com/#compatibility

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What I'm curious about is how many messages do you send/receive?

This just happened to be a big month: I sent 7 just last weekend. Every one of them was sending in answers to EarthCaches and Virtuals, so I was reminded 7 times of the one thing I asked for in that input gathering thread just mentioned: I want a way to send a message that automatically carries a referral to a cache.

 

I don't expect to send more than one or two other GC e-mails for the rest of the month.

 

I guess if you own virtuals, earthcaches or a large amount of caches you will get more.

I would think COs of virtuals and earthcaches would be more likely to prefer processing the messages in a mail system where they have all the normal routing, processing, and archiving facilities instead of having to regularly go to gc.com and use a tinkertoy messaging system.

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What version of the OS and Safari are they running?

I just heard back from him and he has:

 

OS X ver 10.5.8

Safari 5.0.6 (5533.22.3)

 

Those are pretty old; I think they will need to upgrade in order to use the picture functionality as we've implemented it: http://www.dropzonejs.com/#compatibility

 

I will pass that info along to him. I am not that familiar with MACs, but his version sounded pretty old to me too.

 

Thanks.

Terrible Ts

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What I'm curious about is how many messages do you send/receive?

This just happened to be a big month: I sent 7 just last weekend. Every one of them was sending in answers to EarthCaches and Virtuals, so I was reminded 7 times of the one thing I asked for in that input gathering thread just mentioned: I want a way to send a message that automatically carries a referral to a cache.

 

I don't expect to send more than one or two other GC e-mails for the rest of the month.

 

I guess if you own virtuals, earthcaches or a large amount of caches you will get more.

I would think COs of virtuals and earthcaches would be more likely to prefer processing the messages in a mail system where they have all the normal routing, processing, and archiving facilities instead of having to regularly go to gc.com and use a tinkertoy messaging system.

 

When I take a trip I find myself logging 20 or more earthcaches/virtual at one time, what I'd like is what you mention, one click from the cache page to a message/email with prefilled info, the cache name.

 

Other than that I rarely send emails to COs as puzzles aren't my thing so if someone is contacting me or I need to contact as CO the mail line from their profile is good enough for me and as long as it's there I will have no use for the message center as all my friends I can text.

Edited by Roman!

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Is this going to replace the e-mail functionality on geocaching.com? Are we going to suddenly have no option but to use this message system? I hope not. I would much rather stay with the e-mail.

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I would think COs of virtuals and earthcaches would be more likely to prefer processing the messages in a mail system where they have all the normal routing, processing, and archiving facilities instead of having to regularly go to gc.com and use a tinkertoy messaging system.

 

Yes, definitely. If only the new system were available I'd archive my virtual (which is untypical and quite complex) and some complex mystery/multi caches at once.

Often people send me long lists of variables and some initial thoughts (certainly not fitting within 1000 chars) and I then reply on it part by part and I heavily reply on the usual reply/quote features of mail programs. It could be that we send back and forth several mails for the same cache over some time. It sometimes makes sense to organize these mails cache-wise and not sender-wise.

 

BTW:

I cannot remember to ever have used a different approach to contact a cacher via gc.com than over their profile which I typically reach via a cache page. I never searched for a cacher and then went from there. Typically my mails via gc.com are cache oriented and not cacher oriented.

Edited by cezanne

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I would think COs of virtuals and earthcaches would be more likely to prefer processing the messages in a mail system where they have all the normal routing, processing, and archiving facilities instead of having to regularly go to gc.com and use a tinkertoy messaging system.

 

Yes, definitely. If only the new system were available I'd archive my virtual (which is untypical and quite complex) and some complex mystery/multi caches at once.

Often people send me long lists of variables and some initial thoughts (certainly not fitting within 1000 chars) and I then reply on it part by part and I heavily reply on the usual reply/quote features of mail programs.

 

 

I generally enjoy doing earthcaches, but I wouldn't try to find one that required writing an essay to get credit for the find, especially if I got a part by part essay in response.

 

As you said, you're virtual is atypical. I haven't even tried the new messaging system but, to me, if it works for 99% of member to member communication (for which I think a 1000 character limit would not be a limitation) than I'm willing to accept that it might require a little more work to address atypical cases.

 

It's quite reasonable to have a character or upload file size limit. Without it, the messaging system could be easily abused and bring the system to it's knees as it tried to store copies of war and peace or gigapan images into the database and disrupt communication from those that just want to send a sentence or two to another member.

 

 

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I generally enjoy doing earthcaches, but I wouldn't try to find one that required writing an essay to get credit for the find, especially if I got a part by part essay in response.

 

First, no essay needs to be written for my virtual, and noone is forced to visit it.

 

Second, I only reply to the extent asked for by the sender or when I feel that the sender might be interested into some additional information on something

they did not get fully correct.

 

Third, the part in part reply often refers to issues where the cachers who ask me ask for part by part guidance (allowing them to get as little help as possible)

or a check up. I get the most mails for my cache with the most favourite points (the virtual is linked to that other cache and cannot be done independently) and none of them is a forced email which needs to be written. If people travel from other cities to my city to visit one of my caches they appreciate to obtain some information about whether their homework part (which does not lead to coordinates, but a list of variables) is correct and the same then happens at some of the following stages when they cannot find out why their coordinates do not make sense.

 

Most Earthcaches that I have done required me to write more than 2-3 sentences.

 

 

I haven't even tried the new messaging system but, to me, if it works for 99% of member to member communication (for which I think a 1000 character limit would not be a limitation) than I'm willing to accept that it might require a little more work to address atypical cases.

 

It does not work for >80% of the member to member communication I'm involved in.

1000 characters are not even sufficient for cases where I ask someone about the terrain difficulties along a multi cache route and some route guidance.

 

It's not a little bit more work, it's inacceptable. If Groundspeak only wants to appeal to Facebook smartphone cachers, fine, then they will have to live with losing a large segment of caches that are different and that appeal to a different target audience.

 

There are many more issues than the 1000 char limit. The fact that messages are not sent to the e-mail accounts will certainly dramatically decrease the reply rate as many cachers will not log onto the Groundspeak system and look there for messages and be forced to reply from there. e-mail is so much superior to what the new tool can offer.

 

 

It's quite reasonable to have a character or upload file size limit. Without it, the messaging system could be easily abused and bring the system to it's knees as it tried to store copies of war and peace or gigapan images into the database and disrupt communication from those that just want to send a sentence or two to another member.

 

The pictures (which the new system allows) certainly need much more space than 5000 chars (which is the current limit). Moreover 5 message a 1000 characters end up with 5000 characters too.

 

Moreover, I do not want to store messages in the Groundspeak system anyway. I want to store them in a cache related and organized way or delete them right away.

E-mail folders, filters etc are much more efficient for doing that.

 

Moreover, it often happens that communication between cachers about caches also include some private statements or critical comments which I would not want to store on a Groundspeak server.

It's enough to need to be careful what to write in this forum. There is no need to apply the same rules to private communication between cachers if both partners are perfectly fine with the communication.

Edited by cezanne

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I generally enjoy doing earthcaches, but I wouldn't try to find one that required writing an essay to get credit for the find, especially if I got a part by part essay in response.

 

First, no essay needs to be written for my virtual, and noone is forced to visit it.

 

Of course nobody if forced to visit it, in which case, the use of a messaging system is a moot point. My point is that for most earthcaches one can provide the required answers with just a few sentences. I'm really not interested in getting into a long dialog with a earthcache owner where a 1000 character limit would become an issue and would likely avoid any earthcaches that might lead to that.

 

 

I haven't even tried the new messaging system but, to me, if it works for 99% of member to member communication (for which I think a 1000 character limit would not be a limitation) than I'm willing to accept that it might require a little more work to address atypical cases.

 

It does not work for >80% of the member to member communication I'm involved in.

1000 characters are not even sufficient for cases where I ask someone about the terrain difficulties along a multi cache route and some route guidance.

 

Even if it was 100% of your member to member communication, you're just one geocacher, and you've demonstrated time and time again that no matter what we're discussing here, you'll come up with some sort of exception for why something doesn't work for you. If you can demonstrate that for a significant number of geocachers, the 1000 character limit is too constraining, then perhaps you might have a chance at getting GS to change it. GS isn't going to change things because 1 geocacher threatens to archive their 1 virtual cache over a character limit in a form element.

 

 

It's not a little bit more work, it's inacceptable. If Groundspeak only wants to appeal to Facebook smartphone cachers, fine, then they will have to live with losing a large segment of caches that are different and that appeal to a different target audience.

 

In order to convince me (and GS) that GS will lose a large segment of caches you'll have to provide evidence that more than 1 person is actually concerned with the 1000 character limit.

 

 

There are many more issues than the 1000 char limit. The fact that messages are not sent to the e-mail accounts will certainly dramatically decrease the reply rate as many cachers will not log onto the Groundspeak system and look there for messages and be forced to reply from there. e-mail is so much superior to what the new tool can offer.

 

You're not going get any argument from me there. I'm an old schooler. I've always preferred email for one on one correspondence. That's why, when I send someone a PM I *always* check the "include my email address" box and if it looks like it's going to be more than a single back and forth exchange I'll ask the other member to use my real email address. Guess what? You can do that with the new message center too?

 

 

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Of course nobody if forced to visit it, in which case, the use of a messaging system is a moot point. My point is that for most earthcaches one can provide the required answers with just a few sentences. I'm really not interested in getting into a long dialog with a earthcache owner where a 1000 character limit would become an issue and would likely avoid any earthcaches that might lead to that.

 

It depends a lot on the number of questions asked. One can actually put many things into one cache or have several separate shorter ones. It's the same type of thing as some cachers prefer 10 traditionals spread over 20km to a single cache spreading over 20km with 10 stages - you would then expect the single cache to have a description taking into account all 10 stages and thus being about 10 times as long as the descruiption of a single traditional at one of the 10 locations.

 

Moreover, I have mentioned that virtuals and Ecs are not the only issue. The longest mails I get are requests to check variables for some of my mystery/multi caches. I offer a much more flexible service

than geochecker ever could from a simple correct/false to messages which ideas/variables are correct and which false to providing help - whatever I'm asked for.

None of the messages I rececently received (so it was not me sending me) would have fitted into the 1000 character field.

 

GS isn't going to change things because 1 geocacher threatens to archive their 1 virtual cache over a character limit in a form element.

 

I'm not asking them to change their message system, but just to permanently offer the old system of e-mails in addition.

 

Moreover, as I mentioned some of my non virtual caches would much more heavily affected.

 

 

You're not going get any argument from me there. I'm an old schooler. I've always preferred email for one on one correspondence. That's why, when I send someone a PM I *always* check the "include my email address" box and if it looks like it's going to be more than a single back and forth exchange I'll ask the other member to use my real email address. Guess what? You can do that with the new message center too?

 

Yes, but it still requires constant logging into the system and checking for new messages and handling them there in a very uncomfortable manner. If you get many 5 part messages and all the time need to explain that e-mail should be used it starts to become annoying and I cannot see any reason for doing away with the old system.

Edited by cezanne

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I want a way to send a message that automatically carries a referral to a cache
When I take a trip I find myself logging 20 or more earthcaches/virtual at one time, what I'd like is what you mention, one click from the cache page to a message/email with prefilled info, the cache name.

 

This is coming.

 

Is this going to replace the e-mail functionality on geocaching.com? Are we going to suddenly have no option but to use this message system? I hope not. I would much rather stay with the e-mail.

 

As stated in the FAQ: http://www.geocaching.com/blog/2015/04/faq-your-new-geocaching-message-center/ "Does this mean you’ll be taking away the old Send Email to User page?

 

Nope! This page will continue to exist for the foreseeable future and is the best way to contact your local Community Volunteer Reviewer. However, we hope that you’ll find the Message Center to be the best way to communicate with your fellow geocachers!"

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Deselecting the checkbox will only turn off the email notification; people will still be able to send you a message through the MC

 

So in this case I may have messages stacking up and people getting annoyed I am not responding. Couldn't you disable the ability for people to message me (if I opted out of receiving Message Center emails) so they know I won't be seeing the messages?

 

Any response from the lackeys on this?

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Deselecting the checkbox will only turn off the email notification; people will still be able to send you a message through the MC

 

So in this case I may have messages stacking up and people getting annoyed I am not responding. Couldn't you disable the ability for people to message me (if I opted out of receiving Message Center emails) so they know I won't be seeing the messages?

 

Any response from the lackeys on this?

Not trying to be Captain Obvious here, but you could just add a line to your Profile page: "Don't contact me through the Message Center".

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Deselecting the checkbox will only turn off the email notification; people will still be able to send you a message through the MC

 

So in this case I may have messages stacking up and people getting annoyed I am not responding. Couldn't you disable the ability for people to message me (if I opted out of receiving Message Center emails) so they know I won't be seeing the messages?

 

Any response from the lackeys on this?

Not trying to be Captain Obvious here, but you could just add a line to your Profile page: "Don't contact me through the Message Center".

That wouldn't work though, because if I want' to message BBW with the new system I don't need to go anywhere near his profile page so I would never see a line on there telling me not to message him through the message centre.

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[...] That wouldn't work though, because if I want' to message BBW with the new system I don't need to go anywhere near his profile page so I would never see a line on there telling me not to message him through the message centre.

 

Right. And that's a reason for the strong need of an optout.

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I want a way to send a message that automatically carries a referral to a cache
When I take a trip I find myself logging 20 or more earthcaches/virtual at one time, what I'd like is what you mention, one click from the cache page to a message/email with prefilled info, the cache name.

 

This is coming.

 

Is this going to replace the e-mail functionality on geocaching.com? Are we going to suddenly have no option but to use this message system? I hope not. I would much rather stay with the e-mail.

 

As stated in the FAQ: http://www.geocachin...message-center/ "Does this mean you'll be taking away the old Send Email to User page?

 

Nope! This page will continue to exist for the foreseeable future and is the best way to contact your local Community Volunteer Reviewer. However, we hope that you'll find the Message Center to be the best way to communicate with your fellow geocachers!"

 

Have you had any thoughts about integrating the new message center with existing cache listing pages with a link that would go directly to the message center with the CO or the reviewer that published the page filled out as the recipient?

 

The "how do I contact my reviewer" question comes up frequently and it seems to me that having a "Send a Message" icon on cache pages would make this much easier.

 

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Have you had any thoughts about integrating the new message center with existing cache listing pages with a link that would go directly to the message center with the CO or the reviewer that published the page filled out as the recipient?

 

The "how do I contact my reviewer" question comes up frequently and it seems to me that having a "Send a Message" icon on cache pages would make this much easier.

This is a great idea for cache owners, but not for reviewers.

 

1. The reviewer who published the cache may be retired, or was just covering for a friend on vacation or during a busy period.

2. As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center.

3. The "Needs Archived" log already exists to attract the correct reviewer's attention to a particular cache listing.

4. Many reviewers are dogs. The only thing worse than a "Conversation" with a dog is trying to get an answer from a cat.

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2. As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center.

 

Is there any rationale behind the statement in the FAQ that Groundspeak hopes that commmunication with cachers is best done by the message center. In my opinion, the approach which is best

for reviewers (e-mail) is best for me also when I want to contact cachers and when I'm contacted.

 

I'm strictly against linking cache pages with a link to the message center for sending a message to the cache owner. If such a link is provided it should use the old message tool that is e-mail based and offers all the comfort of e-mails.

Edited by cezanne

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Deselecting the checkbox will only turn off the email notification; people will still be able to send you a message through the MC

 

So in this case I may have messages stacking up and people getting annoyed I am not responding. Couldn't you disable the ability for people to message me (if I opted out of receiving Message Center emails) so they know I won't be seeing the messages?

 

Any response from the lackeys on this?

Not trying to be Captain Obvious here, but you could just add a line to your Profile page: "Don't contact me through the Message Center".

That wouldn't work though, because if I want' to message BBW with the new system I don't need to go anywhere near his profile page so I would never see a line on there telling me not to message him through the message centre.

 

Direct links to message someone via their profile page are coming very soon.

 

There are currently no plans to make Message Center an opt-in/opt-out feature.

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Have you had any thoughts about integrating the new message center with existing cache listing pages with a link that would go directly to the message center with the CO or the reviewer that published the page filled out as the recipient?

 

The "how do I contact my reviewer" question comes up frequently and it seems to me that having a "Send a Message" icon on cache pages would make this much easier.

This is a great idea for cache owners, but not for reviewers.

 

1. The reviewer who published the cache may be retired, or was just covering for a friend on vacation or during a busy period.

2. As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center.

3. The "Needs Archived" log already exists to attract the correct reviewer's attention to a particular cache listing.

4. Many reviewers are dogs. The only thing worse than a "Conversation" with a dog is trying to get an answer from a cat.

 

I agree with pretty much everything here. Especially in the case for someone that lives in an area with multiple reviewers it may be difficult to determine who the reviewer is. I know that there are many places in the world where the reviewer isn't "local" but is one or more people that cover regions that don't have a dedicated reviewer.

 

I have also seen cases where different reviewers prefer a different method of correspondence, but of course that was before the message center was available. I don't know how the username lookup mechanism works, but if reviewers really don't want correspondence using the message center, perhaps the auto-suggest feature should exclude reviewer user names. If I type keysto into the "To" form in the message center, your reviewer username appears 3rd on the list of suggestions.

 

You're right about the Needs Archived log, but there may be other reasons why someone would want to correspond with a reviewer (perhaps to find out about local permission policies in an area that the reviewer covers). There are a quite a few threads in the forums which "Contact your reviewer" is suggested in response to a question.

 

My dog is old and doesn't hear very well, or at least pretends not to hear.

 

 

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I want a way to send a message that automatically carries a referral to a cache
When I take a trip I find myself logging 20 or more earthcaches/virtual at one time, what I'd like is what you mention, one click from the cache page to a message/email with prefilled info, the cache name.

 

This is coming.

 

Is this going to replace the e-mail functionality on geocaching.com? Are we going to suddenly have no option but to use this message system? I hope not. I would much rather stay with the e-mail.

 

As stated in the FAQ: http://www.geocachin...message-center/ "Does this mean you'll be taking away the old Send Email to User page?

 

Nope! This page will continue to exist for the foreseeable future and is the best way to contact your local Community Volunteer Reviewer. However, we hope that you'll find the Message Center to be the best way to communicate with your fellow geocachers!"

 

Have you had any thoughts about integrating the new message center with existing cache listing pages with a link that would go directly to the message center with the CO or the reviewer that published the page filled out as the recipient?

 

The "how do I contact my reviewer" question comes up frequently and it seems to me that having a "Send a Message" icon on cache pages would make this much easier.

 

We do have plans to add a Message Center link directly to the cache owner from the cache page that will auto-link to the GC code of the cache in reference (and with Trackables pages as well, similar functionality).

Edited by seandynamite

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2. As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center.

 

Is there any rationale behind the statement in the FAQ that Groundspeak hopes that commmunication with cachers is best done by the message center. In my opinion, the approach which is best

for reviewers (e-mail) is best for me also when I want to contact cachers and when I'm contacted.

 

I'm strictly against linking cache pages with a link to the message center for sending a message to the cache owner. If such a link is provided it should use the old message tool that is e-mail based and offers all the comfort of e-mails.

 

If such a link is provided you don't have to use it. Some people might might like the convenience of a shortcut to the message center though. Can't you just ignore the link and go to a users profile and click on the Send Message link.

 

 

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If such a link is provided you don't have to use it. Some people might might like the convenience of a shortcut to the message center though. Can't you just ignore the link and go to a users profile and click on the Send Message link.

 

The main issue I have is with messages sent to me and not with messages I'm sending. Ignoring a link will not help me thus. There are reasons why people ask for an option to opt out because they do not want to be contacted via the new way as they cannot make sure or are not willing to reply that way.

 

If the link on the profile and on cache pages links to the message center that causes a major issue with me also with respect to the response times I can typically achieve when someome asks me something being out in the field when I'm sitting in front of my PC. e-mail is received immediately and I can react quickly. With this new message system in many cases no notifications are sent and if they are sent, they do not contain anything useful.

 

You mentioned that you did not use the system - I have tested it with a friend and I realized that because I was in the system writing something to her and then looking at something else, I did not receive any notification about what she replied and only found her message by chance the next day when I clicked on message center. In that case it did not matter because it was not anything of relevance - just test messages. However in case someone would have needed quick help at a cache of mine, it would have been very annoying. Sometimes these people spend only a single day in my town.

 

Cezanne

Edited by cezanne

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Direct links to message someone via their profile page are coming very soon.

 

Will these links come in addition to the old link? I sincerely hope that this will be the case.

 

There are currently no plans to make Message Center an opt-in/opt-out feature.

 

That's bad news as long as the new system stays not e-mail based. when e-mails are used those users who suffer from slow connections to the Groundspeak server are not affected while they are heavily affected when they have to login into the gc.com server and this is very slow to not possible at all. While Groundspeak is not responsible for these connectivity issues, it would a good idea to take into account when making decisions about whether to enforce a message system to all cachers.

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2. As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center.

 

Is there any rationale behind the statement in the FAQ that Groundspeak hopes that commmunication with cachers is best done by the message center.

Yes. And I'd like to publicly thank the developers for listening to the reviewers during early beta testing of this feature.

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Is there any rationale behind the statement in the FAQ that Groundspeak hopes that commmunication with cachers is best done by the message center.

Yes. And I'd like to publicly thank the developers for listening to the reviewers during early beta testing of this feature.

 

Is it something you can write about or is it secret?

 

I really wonder why a system with so many drawbacks for the cachers should be of advantage and wonder even more why a reviewer cares whether I receive a question for my cache via e-mail or the new system. I cannot see any advantage as with the e-mail based system I can quickly reply and within one go while with the new system I might even overlook that someone needs quick help.

 

I fully understand why e-mail is better than the new system to contact reviewers. I just wonder why what should be better for reviewers should not be better for other cachers too. The most important thing of electronic communication in my opinion are timely reponses adequate to the situation (that does not need to mean immediate of course but why inserting additional barriers and delays?)

 

After having thought about the issue I came up with another question: Do reviewers have access to the messages sent by cachers via the new system and or can even read them? Then I could see why some some reviewers would prefer the message center over the e-mail system but in that case I think it would be necessary to inform all cachers of the situation.

Edited by cezanne

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There are currently no plans to make Message Center an opt-in/opt-out feature.
For cache owners who prefer email, will their non-use of the Message Center be used as evidence that they are non-responsive? Could their caches be disabled/archived because someone tried to contact them via the Message Center and didn't get a "timely" response?

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After having thought about the issue I came up with another question: Do reviewers have access to the messages sent by cachers via the new system and or can even read them? Then I could see why some some reviewers would prefer the message center over the e-mail system but in that case I think it would be necessary to inform all cachers of the situation.

Holy Big Brother Batman! I never thought about whether sending e-mail via the other "send message" option was secure let alone this new system. Thanks for the heads-up.

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As stated in the FAQ: http://www.geocaching.com/blog/2015/04/faq-your-new-geocaching-message-center/ "Does this mean you’ll be taking away the old Send Email to User page?

 

Nope! This page will continue to exist for the foreseeable future and is the best way to contact your local Community Volunteer Reviewer. However, we hope that you’ll find the Message Center to be the best way to communicate with your fellow geocachers!"

That "for the foreseeable future" is the scariest part of this whole thing. The message center is really an entirely different feature. Even thinking that they might get rid of the existing message system at some point in the unforeseeable future is like thinking I'll delete my e-mail program because I've installed instant messaging.

 

The key observation here, which a few people have brought up in various ways, is that the person receiving the message has no choice in the matter. The reviewers think mail is better, but do they recognize that people might like to use the message system, anyway? Or, to express this sentiment another way, can we change the FAQ to say "the old Send Email to User page is the best way to contact your reviewer and dprovan and cezanne and..." because, I dare say, my justification for wanting to receive communications via e-mail is as good as the reviewers'.

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That "for the foreseeable future" is the scariest part of this whole thing. The message center is really an entirely different feature.

 

Actually, Keystone's statement that the reviewers prefer the new messsage center for communications between cachers (assuming that I did not misunderstand something completely) scares me even more (which does not mean that for the statement about the foreseeable future is not scaring in its own right). Keystone's post raises many questions including the one asked by NiraD.

Somehow I'm now worried about new arguments for disabling/archiving caches due to non communication when I would ever have thought of before.

 

Suppose e.g. cacher X sends ten messages to cache owner Y for a hint for Y's D=5* cache, does not get a reply with a hint and then posts a NA log.

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Direct links to message someone via their profile page are coming very soon.

 

Will these links come in addition to the old link? I sincerely hope that this will be the case.

 

There are currently no plans to make Message Center an opt-in/opt-out feature.

 

That's bad news as long as the new system stays not e-mail based. when e-mails are used those users who suffer from slow connections to the Groundspeak server are not affected while they are heavily affected when they have to login into the gc.com server and this is very slow to not possible at all. While Groundspeak is not responsible for these connectivity issues, it would a good idea to take into account when making decisions about whether to enforce a message system to all cachers.

 

I hope that you're not trying to suggest that the use of email for communications makes it immune to connectivity issues. About 8 years ago or so I developed a robust application that disseminates reports from a U.S. government agency via email. It manages about 1700 distribution lists with some of those lists containing over 10,000 users. While I can demonstrate that every report sent to use was sent there is no way to determine that it was received by each user.

 

 

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There are currently no plans to make Message Center an opt-in/opt-out feature.
For cache owners who prefer email, will their non-use of the Message Center be used as evidence that they are non-responsive? Could their caches be disabled/archived because someone tried to contact them via the Message Center and didn't get a "timely" response?

 

Those are some interesting questions. If users can't opt-in/opt-out of the message center then what the system needs is a auto-reponse mechanism, similar to how some will create a "I'll be out of the office until April 19, if your message is urgent please call me at nnn-nnnn" as a canned email response. Reviewers could create something like "Please contact me via my user profile at http://www.geocaching.com/email/?guid=83868a3c-a214-4434-aef4-c49a47a4b3c6 for reviewer issues"

 

 

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Actually, Keystone's statement that the reviewers prefer the new messsage center for communications between cachers (assuming that I did not misunderstand something completely) scares me even more (which does not mean that for the statement about the foreseeable future is not scaring in its own right).

I'm pretty sure you misunderstood him (unless I'm misunderstanding you). His point #2 was "As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center."

 

Keystone's post raises many questions including the one asked by NiraD.

Somehow I'm now worried about new arguments for disabling/archiving caches due to non communication when I would ever have thought of before.

 

Suppose e.g. cacher X sends ten messages to cache owner Y for a hint for Y's D=5* cache, does not get a reply with a hint and then posts a NA log.

I doubt this specific case will ever be a problem, but I do agree that the message center won't be very useful if it's widely ignored as I expect it to be. Since all the advantages, including the futures, seem to be with the sender, it will be more and more appealing to send messages with it even though receivers -- such as reviewers -- continue to have no reason to use look at it.

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I hope that you're not trying to suggest that the use of email for communications makes it immune to connectivity issues.

 

No, of course not. However, communication via the old message system works quite well also for the many cachers for whom at certain (regularly occuring) times the site gc.com is almost unusable.

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Actually, Keystone's statement that the reviewers prefer the new messsage center for communications between cachers (assuming that I did not misunderstand something completely) scares me even more (which does not mean that for the statement about the foreseeable future is not scaring in its own right).

I'm pretty sure you misunderstood him (unless I'm misunderstanding you). His point #2 was "As noted in the FAQ, correspondence with reviewers should be done by email, not through the message center."

 

I'm not referring to his point #2, but to his reply to my question in post #39. I had asked about the rationale behind Groundspeak's belief that the usage of the new message system is the better option for contacting cachers and was very surprised about his reply. How did you understand that reply?

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One of the biggest drawbacks to the "new" message system is that it presumes that the intended receivers of messages regularly log-in to gc.com, but ample evidence and experience shows that many cachers and COs sometimes go for long periods (i.e., days, weeks and even months) without logging in.

 

Why on earth would I send a "gc-message" to a cache owner or cacher without some certainty that they'll actually log in to read it in a timely manner?

 

Email and normal smartphone text messaging are far more reliable in actually contacting someone who isn't expecting the contact.

 

Just my opinion.

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