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LaughterOnWater

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I'm a fan of Raspberry Pi. What about a Geocache where people can sign in on a local website served from a hidden Raspberry Pi. They could leave a message in a web-enabled guest book using a password supplied in the geocache hints. The website would only be available via wifi at that locale. It would in essence be an off-grid website that would give a unique code to prove you and your phone or tablet had actually been there. The cache owner could then transfer and publish (on an internet-available website on a regular basis) the visitors, their guestbook comments, photos and their unique codes.

 

The pi could be hidden/protected in a building with the permission of the owner. It might also serve as an educational experience or treasure hunt. QR codes could be hidden/obscured within wifi range that could reveal fun educational wildlife facts or local history facts.

 

Is this too far outside the concept of geocaching?

 

Chris

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You need a physical logbook. You can't enforce that the cacher "log" virtually.

 

What you could do is have the Pi serve up a page people have to go to on their smart phone or tablet, collect information or coordinates, that brings you to the actual physical cache with logbook.

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I'm a fan of Raspberry Pi. What about a Geocache where people can sign in on a local website served from a hidden Raspberry Pi. They could leave a message in a web-enabled guest book using a password supplied in the geocache hints. The website would only be available via wifi at that locale. It would in essence be an off-grid website that would give a unique code to prove you and your phone or tablet had actually been there. The cache owner could then transfer and publish (on an internet-available website on a regular basis) the visitors, their guestbook comments, photos and their unique codes.

 

The pi could be hidden/protected in a building with the permission of the owner. It might also serve as an educational experience or treasure hunt. QR codes could be hidden/obscured within wifi range that could reveal fun educational wildlife facts or local history facts.

 

Is this too far outside the concept of geocaching?

 

Chris

 

If you want to hide a cache to be published by Groundspeak:

 

The Guidelines:

 

http://www.geocaching.com/about/guidelines.aspx

 

Help Center → Hiding a Geocache

 

http://support.Groundspeak.com/index.php?pg=kb.book&id=19

 

The OP of this thread http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=329890 does not have any caches published. Whether he submitted his idea or not to be reviewed for a cache, I have no idea.

 

B.

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Looks like a totally new game. Find a marketing strategy and found a company. Make it big, sell it and get rich. Then you'll have time to get back to the simple game of geocaching. :)

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I would suggest you go out and find more caches first. Make it different types (and D ratings) to get an idea of what is being placed.

Then you can get creative and go hide something yourself (read the guidelines first).

 

BTW, you should delete 2 foundlogs on your first find, your statistics say 4 founds but it's really 2 as there are three logs for the same cache B)

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Just playing Devil's Advocate here, but the guidelines simply say that a traditional cache must contain a logbook. They say nothing about the nature of the logbook. Similarly they say you must sign the logbook but say nothing about the method of signature.

 

Electronically signing an electronic logbook seems to be within the letter of the guidelines.

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Just playing Devil's Advocate here, but the guidelines simply say that a traditional cache must contain a logbook.
Actually, that's more than just traditional caches. The guidelines require that all physical caches include a logsheet or logbook.

 

They say nothing about the nature of the logbook. Similarly they say you must sign the logbook but say nothing about the method of signature.

 

Electronically signing an electronic logbook seems to be within the letter of the guidelines.

Except that the current interpretation of the guidelines followed by the volunteer reviewers is that there must be a physical log that allows physical signatures.

 

And elsewhere in the guidelines, it specifically says that "The use of memory sticks and similar devices is not permitted."

 

I think the multi-stage approach is more likely to be published under the current interpretation of the current guidelines. Use the hidden Raspberry Pi to provide the coordinates for a physical cache that contains a physical logbook or logsheet.

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You need a physical logbook. You can't enforce that the cacher "log" virtually.

 

What you could do is have the Pi serve up a page people have to go to on their smart phone or tablet, collect information or coordinates, that brings you to the actual physical cache with logbook.

Thank you!

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If you want to hide a cache to be published by Groundspeak:

 

The Guidelines:

 

http://www.geocaching.com/about/guidelines.aspx

 

Help Center → Hiding a Geocache

 

http://support.Groundspeak.com/index.php?pg=kb.book&id=19

 

The OP of this thread http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=329890 does not have any caches published. Whether he submitted his idea or not to be reviewed for a cache, I have no idea.

 

B.

 

Thanks! That answers my question.

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Looks like a totally new game. Find a marketing strategy and found a company. Make it big, sell it and get rich. Then you'll have time to get back to the simple game of geocaching. :)

Thanks! Perhaps it does deserve a separate consideration.

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I would suggest you go out and find more caches first. Make it different types (and D ratings) to get an idea of what is being placed.

Then you can get creative and go hide something yourself (read the guidelines first).

 

BTW, you should delete 2 foundlogs on your first find, your statistics say 4 founds but it's really 2 as there are three logs for the same cache B)

Thanks! I've deleted the duplicate found logs. No idea how it happened. Perhaps I clicked the post button too long on the app.

 

I'll definitely check out some more caches before creating one.

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...

 

I think the multi-stage approach is more likely to be published under the current interpretation of the current guidelines. Use the hidden Raspberry Pi to provide the coordinates for a physical cache that contains a physical logbook or logsheet.

Thanks! A multicache might be the way to go. I'm absolutely a beginner, so it will be a while before I consider creating one.

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Just playing Devil's Advocate here, but the guidelines simply say that a traditional cache must contain a logbook. They say nothing about the nature of the logbook. Similarly they say you must sign the logbook but say nothing about the method of signature.

 

Electronically signing an electronic logbook seems to be within the letter of the guidelines.

Thanks! Elsewhere it says that webcams and virtual caches are no longer allowed as of 2005, so I'm not sure off-grid websites would be allowed under the Groundspeak publishing guidelines.

 

Virtual and Webcam Caches have been grandfathered.

 

Virtual caches and webcam caches are no longer available as options for new listings on Geocaching.com. Caches of these types that existed prior to November 2005, often referred to as grandfathered caches, are exceptions to this rule and may still be active. New listings similar to these cache types can be created as waymarks at Waymarking.com.

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Just playing Devil's Advocate here, but the guidelines simply say that a traditional cache must contain a logbook.
Actually, that's more than just traditional caches. The guidelines require that all physical caches include a logsheet or logbook.

 

They say nothing about the nature of the logbook. Similarly they say you must sign the logbook but say nothing about the method of signature.

 

Electronically signing an electronic logbook seems to be within the letter of the guidelines.

Except that the current interpretation of the guidelines followed by the volunteer reviewers is that there must be a physical log that allows physical signatures.

 

And elsewhere in the guidelines, it specifically says that "The use of memory sticks and similar devices is not permitted."

 

I think the multi-stage approach is more likely to be published under the current interpretation of the current guidelines. Use the hidden Raspberry Pi to provide the coordinates for a physical cache that contains a physical logbook or logsheet.

 

The way I see it is the pi IS the logbook. Guidelines don't specify that logbooks must be paper based, stone based or electronic just that there must be a logbook. You would probably struggle to get it past the reviewers if you were expecting people to go away and log on the website but since a device is provided at GZ... what's the issue?

 

On the USB stick issue. I think this guideline came along because a memory stick is a bit of a schrodinger's cat situation, it may carry a virus or it may not and until you plug it in there is no way of knowing, by that time it's too late. A raspberry pi is a standalone device that does not need to be plugged into anything so there is no risk to anyone.

 

It sounds like you're onto something here. I say run with it, will be interesting to see what you come up with.

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Just playing Devil's Advocate here, but the guidelines simply say that a traditional cache must contain a logbook.
Actually, that's more than just traditional caches. The guidelines require that all physical caches include a logsheet or logbook.

 

They say nothing about the nature of the logbook. Similarly they say you must sign the logbook but say nothing about the method of signature.

 

Electronically signing an electronic logbook seems to be within the letter of the guidelines.

Except that the current interpretation of the guidelines followed by the volunteer reviewers is that there must be a physical log that allows physical signatures.

 

And elsewhere in the guidelines, it specifically says that "The use of memory sticks and similar devices is not permitted."

 

I think the multi-stage approach is more likely to be published under the current interpretation of the current guidelines. Use the hidden Raspberry Pi to provide the coordinates for a physical cache that contains a physical logbook or logsheet.

 

The way I see it is the pi IS the logbook. Guidelines don't specify that logbooks must be paper based, stone based or electronic just that there must be a logbook.

 

You might see that way but I would bet that none of the reviewers could define logbook such that includes a digital log. This looks like yet another of case of someone trying to come up with a semantic interpretation of the language of a guideline that was clearly not intended in order to get a cache published.

 

 

You would probably struggle to get it past the reviewers if you were expecting people to go away and log on the website but since a device is provided at GZ... what's the issue?

 

 

The issue is that a Raspberry Pi is not a logbook in the context of how GS defines a logbook.

 

 

Edited by NYPaddleCacher

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If the pi is in a container, and I can use my sharpie to sign it, it could be a cache log. If I have to access it via phone, skip it for the same reason as the memory stick issues.

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The way I see it is the pi IS the logbook. Guidelines don't specify that logbooks must be paper based, stone based or electronic just that there must be a logbook. You would probably struggle to get it past the reviewers if you were expecting people to go away and log on the website but since a device is provided at GZ... what's the issue?

 

On the USB stick issue. I think this guideline came along because a memory stick is a bit of a schrodinger's cat situation, it may carry a virus or it may not and until you plug it in there is no way of knowing, by that time it's too late. A raspberry pi is a standalone device that does not need to be plugged into anything so there is no risk to anyone.

 

It sounds like you're onto something here. I say run with it, will be interesting to see what you come up with.

Tassie_Boy, these are things that run through my head when I think about geocaching.

 

1. Not all of us know what a pi is. For those who don't know, it's a tiny computer that can be made to serve a local website. It could fit in an altoid tin, but frankly, it's probably better suited to a spot inside a private/public building next to an outside wall in a public place with the owner's permission. It can be accessed via WiFi, but unlike other websites, it doesn't have a registered domain name. It only exists on a local intranet connection via WiFi. Hackers in Outer Badlandia and Nerdistan can't hack what they can't reach. A local domain could be given any name, like "http://smartypants" or "http://bulldog". The only people who can access it are those who can log within range of the wifi at that physical location.

2. As to the scariness of viruses, phone hackers, etc... On youtube, there are a lot of places under logs or hidden behind girders where you have to put your hand, but you can't see. One cache I saw on Youtube showed an active hornet's nest right next to the cache. Another looked like the guy was knee-deep in poison ivy. There is a smaller risk of serious personal damage from a curated local website than there is from some of the more adventurous geocaches that I've seen posted on YouTube.

3. That said, I can understand the need to have a physical log book. If a website loses power, I'd rather cachers have a pleasant experience. The wifi could be used to give clues to a physical cache, and online hints could be used as backup when power is out. At best, it can provide depth to an experience but cannot stand alone as a cache.

 

You might see that way but I would bet that none of the reviewers could define logbook such that includes a digital log. This looks like yet another of case of someone trying to come up with a semantic interpretation of the language of a guideline that was clearly not intended in order to get a cache published.

...

 

The issue is that a Raspberry Pi is not a logbook in the context of how GS defines a logbook.

NYPaddleCacher, I've been to two traditional beginner cache's so far. Neither of them had anything resembling a "log book". Frankly, it looks more like people bring a scrap of paper and write their name and date on it, and then others who have no paper write their names on the same scrap too. One scrap was a white tyvek airline luggage strip end. A real log would have consecutive name/date combos, and maybe enough room to write "TFTC". What I saw were names and dates written wherever there was a free space on the available scraps, fairly higgledy-piggledy.

 

Neither cache was specifically labeled "Geocache" on the outside, though there was room. One was listed on geocaching.com as a bison tube, but was actually a skoal tin. Both had money coins (not geocoins) in them. The altoids tin had a small unsharpened pencil. The skoal tin had no writing implement. I get the impression that while there are rules, not everyone plays by them, and when they do, those rules don't seem to be entirely set in stone, nor are all caches managed assiduously. I'm not even sure the skoal tin wasn't a throwdown, even though it had a lot of names and dates on its scraps of paper. Yet, while these were easy beginner caches that could have been more closely maintained, I had fun finding them.

 

Nowhere in the rules does it specify that all logs must be paper, nor does it say it cannot be digital:

Geocache Contents

Geocache containers include a logsheet or logbook.

For all physical caches, there must be a logbook, scroll or other type of log for geocachers to record their visit.

My question was an honest one. Most people today have a smart phone with browser capability. They could log into a simple site and leave a comment proving they had been there. But as I said before, it's obvious that a wifi-available website-only cache would likely come under the heading "virtual cache", so the point is moot.

 

If the pi is in a container, and I can use my sharpie to sign it, it could be a cache log. If I have to access it via phone, skip it for the same reason as the memory stick issues.

K13,

I have a extra pi. I'm looking for unique ways to make it do cool things. If it's going to cause a rift in a community, I'm certainly not interested in going there. There are too many other cool things to do with a pi, it's just not worth raining on anyone's parade.

 

Chris

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Chris,

I see you are very new to Geocaching and have a "child's-eye view" of the hobby, which can be a great thing. You are not burdened by the years of guideline interpretation that some of us see the hobby through. However, you seem to be missing what you have been told several times. Your pi can be made a part of the cache, just not the log. The log needs to be something in a container that a finder can sign their name on with a pen. Pretty simple, really.

Don't give up on using the pi as a part of your cache idea. I'm sure it can be a part of a fun cache, just not the log.

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You might see that way but I would bet that none of the reviewers could define logbook such that includes a digital log. This looks like yet another of case of someone trying to come up with a semantic interpretation of the language of a guideline that was clearly not intended in order to get a cache published.

...

 

The issue is that a Raspberry Pi is not a logbook in the context of how GS defines a logbook.

NYPaddleCacher, I've been to two traditional beginner cache's so far. Neither of them had anything resembling a "log book". Frankly, it looks more like people bring a scrap of paper and write their name and date on it, and then others who have no paper write their names on the same scrap too. One scrap was a white tyvek airline luggage strip end. A real log would have consecutive name/date combos, and maybe enough room to write "TFTC". What I saw were names and dates written wherever there was a free space on the available scraps, fairly higgledy-piggledy.

 

You're talking about situations that occur after publication. If, in the case of the two caches without anything resembling a logbook, they would not have been published (assuming the reviewer was aware of that fact) if they didn't contain anything resembling a logbook when the listing was submitted. Since a reviewer only publishes a cache based on the information submitted pre-publication and doesn't visit every location to monitor the status of every cache it's up to us to make reviewers aware when guideline violations occur after publication. If a cache isn't being maintained, we can post Needs Maintenance logs, and if they're not responded to in a timely manner, a Needs Archive log. If a CO doesn't respond to that they're cache may be archived.

 

 

Neither cache was specifically labeled "Geocache" on the outside, though there was room. One was listed on geocaching.com as a bison tube, but was actually a skoal tin. Both had money coins (not geocoins) in them. The altoids tin had a small unsharpened pencil. The skoal tin had no writing implement. I get the impression that while there are rules, not everyone plays by them, and when they do, those rules don't seem to be entirely set in stone, nor are all caches managed assiduously. I'm not even sure the skoal tin wasn't a throwdown, even though it had a lot of names and dates on its scraps of paper. Yet, while these were easy beginner caches that could have been more closely maintained, I had fun finding them.

 

Except with the cache label, these are all things that occur after publication, and have nothing to do with adherence to the guidelines at the time of publication.

 

My main point though is that you're trying to interpret a guideline based on a semantic interpretation of the language, and specifically the definition of "logbook" such that it would allow a cache of a certain type to be published.

 

The same sort of thing happens a lot with the "no buried caches" guideline. That language in the guideline used say something about "no digging with a pointy object" and some tried it interpret that to mean that if they could create a hole without using a pointy object (perhaps using a really powerful leaf blower or dropping a bowling ball from a great height) that the cache could be published. The issue, however, is that the no buried caches guideline isn't in place to keep geocachers from digging holes. It's to prevent the perception among land managers that geocaching is a game that allows it's players to dig holes. A land manager isn't going to care if someone used a shovel or a leaf blower to create a hole. They're just going to see a hole in the ground with a geocache in it and may just decide to ban geocaching on all the property they manage (which include multiple city/state parks) to prevent that from happening again.

 

I'm not trying to discourage you from using a Raspberry Pi to create a geocache and others have suggested way for how you might do so (make it a multi) but I would also suggest that rather than embarking on creating a complex cache where you have to consider issue with mulitple locations,

managing a digital device such that it's almost always available, and spending the time and money, you might want to consider placing a couple of basic traditional hides to get a sense of what cache ownership is about.

 

 

 

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K13, NYPaddleCacher,

We entirely agree. I'm not ready to create a hide. I'm an absolute geonoob with lots of enthusiasm. And from my replies to Tassie_Boy, you may see that we agree that a Pi might make a good addition to a multi, but could not stand alone as the cache and log. I've done more exploring on the web so far than I have out in the field, and I need to get at least a hundred or so caches under my belt before I would feel comfortable even hiding and maintaining a traditional. I'm looking forward to learning more as I figure out whether this is something I want to do more long-term.

 

@NYPaddleCacher, Regarding digging... I hear what you say, but here again, not everyone who creates a cache or hide seems entirely bound by the rules.

if the rules were strict. Knowing what I know about lawn irrigation, this hide was built to spec and did not take advantage of an existing valve box. It was dug purely for the purpose of being a hide. Because cachers themselves don't have to dig, and the cache is safe, I think it's awesome. Edited by LaughterOnWater

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That buried cache should have a NA placed immediately. And, no real cache isn't safe. It would make finders grab and test many sprinklers, possibly damaging them. In many areas, fake sprinklers like that are not allowed.

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That buried cache should have a NA placed immediately. And, no real cache isn't safe. It would make finders grab and test many sprinklers, possibly damaging them. In many areas, fake sprinklers like that are not allowed.

 

The best caches we've done were fake "things". Ever opened an accesspoint in a police station's waiting room? A security camera? A sewer lid? Water valve in a sidewalk?... all caches with plenty of favorites.

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That buried cache should have a NA placed immediately. And, no real cache isn't safe. It would make finders grab and test many sprinklers, possibly damaging them. In many areas, fake sprinklers like that are not allowed.

 

The best caches we've done were fake "things". Ever opened an accesspoint in a police station's waiting room? A security camera? A sewer lid? Water valve in a sidewalk?... all caches with plenty of favorites.

 

The popularity of a cache does not make it immune to compliance with the guidelines.

 

 

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The popularity of a cache does not make it immune to compliance with the guidelines.

 

I'm just glad that reviewers here use more common sense than sticking to the guidelines (which are just "guidelines"). It's all about creativity unless micro behind a lamppost is going to be the norm (at which time I will move to another pastime).

However I understand your point of view as "you guys" get into "claims" and "legal actions" a lot faster than we do.

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That buried cache should have a NA placed immediately. And, no real cache isn't safe. It would make finders grab and test many sprinklers, possibly damaging them. In many areas, fake sprinklers like that are not allowed.

 

That valve box cache was likely done with the blessing of that park's commissioner. Not that I have any anecdotal evidence, but I'm guessing that many parks embrace geocaching for the same reason so many communities have created skate parks. It's become popular. That hide is too perfect for it to be otherwise. It brings people into the park. If a park system allows valvebox hides, why would geocaching.com make so many happy geocachers miserable by archiving it?

 

Some people create unfortunate caches. One guy on YT put a film canister in a dip in the lawn and covered it lightly with lawn clippings. That cache will be mower fodder by next week when the city mower comes by. Another made an elaborate hide that looked like government weather station with cool physical puzzle challenges... that got vandalized even though it's a premium cache.

 

I may be a geonoob, but believe it or not, I can actually take care of myself. I'm up for an enjoyable time. It looks like those guys enjoyed themselves finding the valve box cache. I think most people who spend the time to make elaborate caches want people to enjoy themselves. Like on4bam, I hope most reviewers can be level-headed about what constitutes a reasonable cache.

 

Chris

Edited by LaughterOnWater

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Trying to creatively circumvent guidelines is just proof of being not creative enough to hide cool guideline conform geocaches.

 

Real creativity is to combine a nice & somewhat interesting location with a box that just fits there, as large as possible to carry swag (optional) and trackables (not so optional). That's not essy! Caching experience shows, that "clever hiding tricks" (including tricky mystery puzzles) often cover a lame location and/or a lame container.

 

BTW: the WiFi multi station already has bee done several times. I recall caches (from forum stories, not by own experience) to give out the next stations coordinates by means of the WiFi network name, so you just had to scan the area, not really logging in. However, even that excludes cachers without the needed equipment, if that is what you want.

 

A final having virtual logbook was tried before, too. I know of an USB stick somewhere. Having to access a website is the same thing as sticking an unknown device into the computer: a potential danger. I most probably wouldn't want to do it, same with sticking my hand in potentially dangerous areas.

 

Plus, a "website only logbook" cache probably would miss the space for trackables. We already have enough micros and nanos, no thanks...

 

Call me old fashioned, but I'm just glad every time I see a decent hide, not trying to be outstanding "creative", but just a plain good container at a cool place (location, location, location!) with an interesting listing under constant maintenance watch from the owner. Keep it straight & simple.

 

But if you want to take part in the run for Favorite Points (which really do NOT represent good caching habits) or "creative cache" marketing campaigns (see my first statement above), then take your idea to your local reviewer. That's the entity to present your interpretation of the guidelines for a specific situation. Please be honest in all aspects, to not produce another kind of evidence for land managers to shut the game down. Unfortunately such caches exists (you mentioned examples) and it has been done. :(

 

And no, even if there is approvement of the land manager, it doesn't wipe the guidelines out. Giving bad examples for others is just the next step to implement more guidelines, be it by Groundspeak, land owners or authorities. Geocaching used to be a playable simple outdoor game, with a minimal set of rules. Trying to stretch them just made things a bit more complicate. I fear, this will escalate further on.

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In the case of the fake valve buried in the park, it wouldn't matter if the Park Director gave permission. It is still a buried cache and against the guidelines. It needs a NA.

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In the case of the fake valve buried in the park, it wouldn't matter if the Park Director gave permission. It is still a buried cache and against the guidelines. It needs a NA.

 

It's not buried, you don't have to dig to get to it just open the "door". If you consider this "buried" I guess more than half the caches in Belgium need to get archived as many of them are in "a hole in the ground" just cover with a piece of wood and some leaves.

 

It's only buried if you need to dig in the dirt to get to it and I have yet to see that.

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The popularity of a cache does not make it immune to compliance with the guidelines.

 

I'm just glad that reviewers here use more common sense than sticking to the guidelines (which are just "guidelines"). It's all about creativity unless micro behind a lamppost is going to be the norm (at which time I will move to another pastime).

 

We really don't want reviewers making the decision for whether or not a cache should be published based on the level of creativity. Can you imagine what would happen if reviewers started to deny publishing a cache because it wasn't creative or good enough but let one which violated the guidelines because it was creative?

 

However I understand your point of view as "you guys" get into "claims" and "legal actions" a lot faster than we do.

 

These stereotypes aren't going to win you any arguments. Not all of "us guys" are the same.

 

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We really don't want reviewers making the decision for whether or not a cache should be published based on the level of creativity. Can you imagine what would happen if reviewers started to deny publishing a cache because it wasn't creative or good enough but let one which violated the guidelines because it was creative?

 

You seem to forget "common sense". As said before, these caches are not buried, you just open the lid. No violation of guidelines whatsoever.

 

These stereotypes aren't going to win you any arguments. Not all of "us guys" are the same.

 

It's not meant to be a stereotype (hence the " ") but a simple observation that things are handled differently in different places. I've never heard of anyone in Belgium or even W-Europe to be chased away at gunpoint as I already read on these forums happens in the US.

 

The extremes mentioned in the Florida powertrail and CO geoart threads seem impossible over here. I'm sure you experienced the differences yourself as you traveled different areas of the world. There's no "one size fits all".

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It's only buried if you need to dig in the dirt to get to it and I have yet to see that.

No, not really.

The guideline actually reads,"If one has to dig or create a hole in the ground when placing or finding a geocache, it is not allowed."

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The guideline actually reads,"If one has to dig or create a hole in the ground when placing or finding a geocache, it is not allowed."

 

In that case most of the caches here could not have been placed as they are "in the ground" in some way. Silly guideline.

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Sorry to the OP for going off-topic.

 

I'd like to see Groundspeak have rules separated from "guidelines".

To me, "not allowed" isn't a guideline at all, but a rule.

 

I'd think Reviewers in Countries other than the US, are still required to publish caches that conform to guidelines.

Probably simply not aware of 'em.

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We really don't want reviewers making the decision for whether or not a cache should be published based on the level of creativity. Can you imagine what would happen if reviewers started to deny publishing a cache because it wasn't creative or good enough but let one which violated the guidelines because it was creative?

 

You seem to forget "common sense". As said before, these caches are not buried, you just open the lid. No violation of guidelines whatsoever.

 

 

As cerberus1 wrote, the "no buried caches" guideline reads: "If one has to dig or create a hole in the ground when placing or finding a geocache, it is not allowed."

 

If you're referring to that fake sprinkler cache, I don't see you it could have been placed without digging a hole to place the pipe that contains the cache. Common sense might lead one to believe that if someone found a cache like that in a park (even if it had explicit permission) that there might be some that thought it was a great idea and decide to place a similar hide in some other park (and might not ask for permission to do so). Do you think the land manager of that park is going care if some geocacher doesn't consider it to be "buried". Most likely, they're going to see a whole in the ground that did not exist prior to *a geocacher* placing a geocache, and caches like this have the potential for giving geocaching a black eye.

 

BTW, I don't buy the argument that "most geocaches in Belgium are in the ground in some way". Yes, I have cached in many different places but that really has nothing to do with my ability to tell the difference between a cache that was created by "digging or creating a hole in the ground" and one that wasn't. Maybe your premise explains why I DNFd the first cache I looked for in Brussels. I had assumed that cache placements adhered to the same global guidelines we use here.

 

 

These stereotypes aren't going to win you any arguments. Not all of "us guys" are the same.

 

It's not meant to be a stereotype (hence the " ") but a simple observation that things are handled differently in different places. I've never heard of anyone in Belgium or even W-Europe to be chased away at gunpoint as I already read on these forums happens in the US.

 

The extremes mentioned in the Florida powertrail and CO geoart threads seem impossible over here. I'm sure you experienced the differences yourself as you traveled different areas of the world. There's no "one size fits all".

 

As you said, those are extremes. BTW, I've never chased anyone away at gunpoint either. I've never owned a gun.

 

The U.S. is a pretty diverse country. Places like farmland in Colorado and suburban developments in Florida are just two examples of the kinds of environments you'll find here.

 

 

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And no, even if there is approvement of the land manager, it doesn't wipe the guidelines out. Giving bad examples for others is just the next step to implement more guidelines, be it by Groundspeak, land owners or authorities. Geocaching used to be a playable simple outdoor game, with a minimal set of rules. Trying to stretch them just made things a bit more complicate. I fear, this will escalate further on.

BenOw,

Your arguments are compelling. But consider: For every rule there is an exception. It's true in physics, math and life. As soon as you create a rule, its exception is also nascent. Life is about change. Without change, we stagnate and die. So yes... Rules are important, but adaptation is even more important. Our concern is that some exceptions work for or against a community. A thriving organization will adopt amendments that navigate good and bad exceptions. In 2005, the rules on virtual geocaching and usb sticks changed. If the organization intends to thrive, exceptions that fly in the face of change will also cause amendment to existing rules. If the organization is more interested in avoiding liabilities and less interested in exploring assets, unfortunately, the same organization will be more likely to stagnate. 2005 was a decade ago... Smart phones hadn't even been widely available then. Now, they're ubiquitous. So much has changed. The world isn't standing still. Are you suggesting that geocaching.com rules couldn't be adapted to those changes?

Edited by LaughterOnWater

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BTW, I don't buy the argument that "most geocaches in Belgium are in the ground in some way".

 

If looking for a small regular or large container chances are it IS in the ground. People dig a rectangle hole 20-30cm deep and put a wooden "box" in it. The cache is then placed into that "cellar" and covered with a piece of wood and then with leaves and small branches. That's also why a lot of the caches have "prikstok" as a hint. That means you have to poke around with a stick until you hear "tock" when you hit the wood.

 

Feel free to come and cache here if you have the chance.

 

The U.S. is a pretty diverse country. Places like farmland in Colorado and suburban developments in Florida are just two examples of the kinds of environments you'll find here.

 

I know, We've visited the US a lot of times (since 1986)covering most of the country NY, CT, MD, D.C., FL, TN, TX, LA, ND, SD, IL, IN, CO, UT,NV, CA, WA, AK, HI and I forgot a few). Most were before we were caching.

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BTW, I don't buy the argument that "most geocaches in Belgium are in the ground in some way".

 

If looking for a small regular or large container chances are it IS in the ground. People dig a rectangle hole 20-30cm deep and put a wooden "box" in it. The cache is then placed into that "cellar" and covered with a piece of wood and then with leaves and small branches. That's also why a lot of the caches have "prikstok" as a hint. That means you have to poke around with a stick until you hear "tock" when you hit the wood.

 

Feel free to come and cache here if you have the chance.

 

I am glad you are admitting Belgium cachers go against the guidelines. It confirms my opinion.

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I am glad you are admitting Belgium cachers go against the guidelines. It confirms my opinion.

 

1: It doesn't stop at the border B) I have buried founds in Holland, France, Spain, Denmark too.

2: Your opinion being? (since it's your first post in this thread)

 

BTW, just wondering. Why is there a guideline "no burying"? Isn't the spirit of the guideline to not "dig a hole and after throwing in the cache fill it up with dirt again"?

 

buried.jpg

 

This is a pretty standard way to hide a cache over here. As this one was not in a wooded area it was more exposed than normal.

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You seem to forget "common sense". As said before, these caches are not buried, you just open the lid. No violation of guidelines whatsoever.

If there had to be dug or punching a hole in the ground when placing the cache, it's considered buried. As others may have explained: land owners thinking a geocache is a buried "treasure" are less likely to accept geocaching on their ground. We have a problem here with metal detecting (another stupid outdoor hobby), where digging is involved. Land owners are not happy with that. Would be bad if they mix it up with geocaching. It's a very fine line.

 

I've never heard of anyone in Belgium or even W-Europe to be chased away at gunpoint as I already read on these forums happens in the US.

Does being confronted with a dung fork in Germany qualify?

 

The extremes mentioned in the Florida powertrail and CO geoart threads seem impossible over here.

Already happened in Germany where a piece of geoart lead to a general ban of geocaching on city grounds, just bevause it looked impressive (to city authorities in a negative way) on the map. So again, not only in U.S. of A. It's already near you. And I don't think a general german farmer is mentally far away from a general belgian farmer or a general U.S. farmer as it comes to his property...

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Already happened in Germany where a piece of geoart lead to a general ban of geocaching on city grounds, just bevause it looked impressive (to city authorities in a negative way) on the map. So again, not only in U.S. of A. It's already near you. And I don't think a general german farmer is mentally far away from a general belgian farmer or a general U.S. farmer as it comes to his property...

 

It never happened to us, in fact the only "run ins" with farmers were enjoyable. One time he wondered why people were always looking at the tree next to his land and after a short explanation he found it to be "interesting", another time a farmer even stopped his tractor pointing to the cache that was a few meters off the given coordinates. Others just didn't bother or already knew.

I did read logs were people were chased away by angry farmers/neighbors but nearly all of them were for caches placed on their property without permission. Seems only fair that people are not happy with strangers "invading" their property.

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And no, even if there is approvement of the land manager, it doesn't wipe the guidelines out. Giving bad examples for others is just the next step to implement more guidelines, be it by Groundspeak, land owners or authorities. Geocaching used to be a playable simple outdoor game, with a minimal set of rules. Trying to stretch them just made things a bit more complicate. I fear, this will escalate further on.

Your arguments are compelling. But consider: For every rule there is an exception. It's true in physics, math and life.

Should have said this to my physics and math professors... :)

 

Talking about physics & maths: no, there are not much exceptions in basic physics and math rules.

Talking about life: I did some real cool and still lasting things just by really knowing and using existing rules instead of vaguely arguing around them.

 

As soon as you create a rule, its exception is also nascent. Life is about change. Without change, we stagnate and die. So yes... Rules are important, but adaptation is even more important. Our concern is that some exceptions work for or against a community. A thriving organization will adopt amendments that navigate good and bad exceptions. In 2005, the rules on virtual geocaching and usb sticks changed.

You should really differ between things that are acceptable for the general public (if virtual caches exist or not is totally out of interest for all others) and things that having potential to shine a bad light on our hobby, thus getting land owners and authorities involved. There already are area bans in Germany, not under control of Groundspeak rules/guidelines or the geocaching community any more. Just because of some a**holes thinking they could stretch or circumvent the basic rules. Now all are affected. :(

 

Unfortunately, reviewers and Groundspeak often don't react or far too late even when they're notified of possible problems until it's to late. BTDT. :( But it's the fault of the cache owner who tried to circumvent the rules (and probably lied in the review process) in the first place.

 

Are you suggesting that geocaching.com rules couldn't be adapted to those changes?

I'm suggesting:

• not all should be done because it's doable (kind of geocaching ethics)

• burying is not creative

• it shows more creativity to build an astonishing, surprising and excellent cache within the present guidelines than just digging it into the ground

• yes, geocachers should adapt, be creative, come out with new, surprising ideas. Yet, they bring out lame lamp post and guard rail boxes or buried tubes, just because they see it done elsewhere.

• the opposite of "creatively against the rules" is not "ugly guardrail cache", it's "creatively within the rules"

• Favourite Points don't tell much about the quality of the cache, much more about the actual state of mind of the finders (anyway, from a QM viewpoint, quality mostly is measured by rules not by likes)

• not damaging otherone's property (i.e. by digging a container into their ground) just doesn't need a geocaching rule, it should already be included in common sense and personal integrity

• expanding/stretching/leaving the basic rules may lead to more and stricter rules, in escalation from the geocaching listing site to land owners right-of-way and authorities. I don't want this to happen (unfortunately, it already does).

 

The examples given in the recent postings just validate the point of "monkey see, monkey do". I'd suggest to stop this by geocachers ("needs archived") before beeing stopped by others, when they see our own rules not working.

 

Regarding U.S. vs. Europe: especially in Europe the European Parliament is known to hop on anything of slightest interest just to have something to overregulate...so Belgium isn't just far away from my caching area, it could get pretty near soon if EU regulations about "GPS gameplay" come into effect. We'll see in 10-20 years... ;)

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I am glad you are admitting Belgium cachers go against the guidelines. It confirms my opinion.

 

1: It doesn't stop at the border B) I have buried founds in Holland, France, Spain, Denmark too.

2: Your opinion being? (since it's your first post in this thread)

 

BTW, just wondering. Why is there a guideline "no burying"? Isn't the spirit of the guideline to not "dig a hole and after throwing in the cache fill it up with dirt again"?

 

buried.jpg

 

This is a pretty standard way to hide a cache over here. As this one was not in a wooded area it was more exposed than normal.

Because it's a type of vandalism. We had someone put a container in the ground with the lid showing and it was trashed by locals because they didn't know what it was. They claimed to get permission but they didn't. Plus monkey see monkey do, others will start digging holes all over even where they aren't suppose to like parks and private property.

Rules are usually created because someone learned the hard way why something shouldn't be done. I am sure GS had a reason to create the NO BURY rule and as geocachers we should respect that and not think we are better then GS by doing anything we want and to hell with the rules.

And I don't have to post lots of comments to have an opinion. I have said this in many threads and will probably do it in the future.

Edited by jellis

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Because it's a type of vandalism. We had someone put a container in the ground with the lid showing and it was trashed by locals because they didn't know what it was. They claimed to get permission but they didn't. Plus monkey see monkey do, others will start digging holes all over even where they aren't suppose to like parks and private property.

Rules are usually created because someone learned the hard way why something shouldn't be done. I am sure GS had a reason to create the NO BURY rule and as geocachers we should respect that and not think we are better then GS by doing anything we want and to hell with the rules.

And I don't have to post lots of comments to have an opinion. I have said this in many threads and will probably do it in the future.

 

There's your problem. No permission.

 

Your opinion being?

 

BTW, a "one size fits all" rule or guideline doesn't cut it in a worldwide activity. I've said it before, what's unthinkable in the US may be normal practice in Africa, what's strictly forbidden in Asia might be common practice in Europe (areas given as an example of course, even between countries there can be differences).

 

I know of a series placed in cooperation with the city where several caches are buried. All perfectly legal, no laws broken. In that case a "nor bury" rule/guideline has no use as it was meant to protect against complaints which in this case is a non-issue.

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I know of a series placed in cooperation with the city where several caches are buried. All perfectly legal, no laws broken. In that case a "nor bury" rule/guideline has no use as it was meant to protect against complaints which in this case is a non-issue.

Nope, it's still not OK.

 

You have a contract with a company, that don't want you to bury geocaches (Groundspeak's terms of use, you click to "agree with", when publishing a geocache listing). So, you break at least that contract. Thus, Groundspeak may delete your listing from their server anytime. So easy.

 

There is even a reason for this: the danger to have geocaching as a whole in a bad light, when other land owners and authorities may have the impression, that geocaches are bad for their property (because buried or nailed to trees) and they won't have that on their grounds. So they deny geocaches at all. This has already happened and affects the freedom of geocachers worldwide. Thank you for affecting my geocaching habit...NOT.

 

Plus I really can't see why? There is exactly no reason to bury a cache. It makes it no bit more creative or better, instead it is simply lazy, since the owner takes the easy way instead of finding a more creative hide within the guidelines and terms of use.

 

Nuff' said.

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