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OMG What Happened to Geocaching?


GarminArmin
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You mentioned meta level caching impact, not numbers based caching impact. I agree that that's certainly something that's affected the game over time in a manner that I find disturbing but not overly concerned about because it doesn't affect the manner in which I cache. I'm not disputing that aspect.

 

The term meta level came from NiraD. I have explained before what I mean with number oriented and that I do not use number in the meaning that is restricted to counting something.

 

Seriously? How has that had an "unfortunate" impact? It's something that makes use of a rating on a cache that's supposed to be there anyway. Would cachers still go after a 3.5/3.5 cache if there were no grid to fill? There will always be cachers who will go after those types.

 

Of course but those would have more interest into something that comes close to a real 3.5/3.5 - they would not appreciate a .5/1.5 rated as 3.5./3.5. There are cachers out there who love T=5* caches for the challenge or experience. Those typically do not like T=5* rated caches that are rated T=5* because the owner likes to own a T=5* cache or because finder like a T=5* cache they can easily get.

 

There might not be as many cachers who would do it willingly unless the grid spot was needed to be filled, but it exposes them to caches they might not otherwise experience and that's usually a good thing when you get challenged to do something you might not do on your own and actually succeed. That would be a fortunate impact.

 

Again you assume that the rating is reasonable.

 

Logs are irrelevant with regard to the meta game and wet logs play NO part in filling a Fizzy or Jasmer. Are they a bit of an issue? Certainly but that's not unexpected or unusual for ANY cache that's out there.

 

Fizzy and Jasmer were just arbitrary examples. What I tried to say is that if not the cache itself but some other aspect of it makes it interesting for the cachers the likelihood that the caching behaviour reflects that increases which of course does not mean that this happens for every such cacher who also follows meta goals. There is of course a huge individual influence and also a huge regional one.

 

If the majority of cachers in an area does not comment any longer on the conditions of the caches they find, that's certainly an issue as a whole which you will not spot when you only look at individual caches where of course any effect will happen with a some probability (that can be larger or smaller).

 

They can provide more information to help on the hide and how to get there (if detailed enough) but I highly doubt those cachers who repeat the same log over and over are going after 3.5/3.5 caches since those cachers are numbers based cachers (find count) more often than not,

 

That's clearly wrong in my area. Many of those go for adventure caches that I would never be able to go for.

 

This is a problem regarding logging etiquette, which runs across the spectrum, not just number cachers (find count), although they certainly do have a tendency to post the same logs for multiple caches when on a cache run.

 

Not only on cache runs. I also experienced how the log behaviour of many local cachers changed once they discovered certain meta goals they have not been aware of before.

 

Again, seriously? I'm not finding that to be too much of an issue in my area. Perhaps your area but again, that's not related to meta level caching. That's about lazy loggers, which, once again, runs across the spectrum of cachers.

 

No, it's not about lazy loggers who always have existed. I clearly mean effects that are quite likely caused by following number oriented goals (in my sense not yours). When you approach individuals and ask them about their change of focus and behaviour, the answer almost always boils down to following such a kind of goal.

 

Faking find dates e.g. has never been a phenomenon in the early years - there it only could happen that someone confused the date. Now it's used in a systematic manner in many areas I'm aware of.

 

What? How is this an unfortunate impact due to meta level caching? That can happen on any cache at any time if people don't mention it or file the appropriate NM log.

 

Of course it can happen on any cache but someone who caches for the cache has a larger interest to mention issues because they do not appreciate to encounter such caches out there when caching. Those for which a cache is a data point, often do not care. This again does not mean that everyone who sets number oriented goals (D/T grids, day grids, max number of cache types found per day, max number of countries per day, etc) is not caring (much) about the cache itself and its condition. I'm just saying that the likelihood for that going to happen increases and this is something I find a lot of evidence for in the areas I'm familiar with (including a changed behaviour of one and the same person before and after they learnt about certain goals and including having talked to such people).

 

You're making an assumption that might be true or it might not. Making a claim like this doesn't prove anything because there's no way to show that it's a trend. How do you know that they didn't care about the 7 caches that they selected for 7 types in a day? Perhaps they chose those specific 7 because they had the most favorite points out of all the ones in the area. Perhaps they knew that the COs were really good at maintaining their caches and they knew they'd get a nice experience.

 

You can ask people and discuss about things with them.

What I wrote was not saying that every single cacher who also follows meta goals fits what is a clear trend in areas I'm familiar with.

 

In my opinion it causes problems at least in for example my country. I'm by far not familiar with the situation in North America. I have enough evidence for the areas I'm reasonably familiar with which once again does not apply that every cacher there matches the trend which is of course not true.

 

Are there some people that write logs that reinforce what you believe? Yes. Unequivocally, yes. Are there some people who cache like I used to (my Fizzy and Jasmer are complete), to fill a D/T spot or a calendar spot but who absolutely care about their experience to and from the cache? Yes. You're making broad generalizations that apply to some cachers while there are plenty of cachers who care about each and every cache they have filtered out. I do find that many of the unfortunate impacts you've described are more prevalent in cachers who cache for the find count but even there, I know a couple of really high number cachers who take the time to point out things about their experiences on each cache they find, so even that can be proven to be inaccurate in some cases.

 

This does not contradict my observations at all as it just says that the effects of the meta level are not the same in every region and that is not surprising as there are huge cultural and other differences as well (for example local reviewers and many other things).

 

I never said that everyone who follows meta goals harms geocaching. There can be cachers who only care about the cache which harm geocaching and others who only cache for meta goals who are extremely considerate cachers.

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Some other examples: D/T ratings and attributes are originally thought to be descriptive and to help the cache searchers and not to offer people a chance to fill a gap in their grids or obtain a badge..
Seriously? How has that had an "unfortunate" impact?
I guess you've missed the threads about listings with absurd ratings/attributes created so others can fill grids. Or the threads expressing angst because some cache owner dared to change a cache's ratings/attributes to reflect changing conditions.

I have NOT missed those threads but find them to be the exception, not the norm and frown on that type of practice. It's certainly not a prevalent practice where I've been fortunate enough to cache and it's my guess that reviewers catch that type of thing more often than not. Changing D/T ratings is up to the CO and is not relevant to the point that cezanne raised, which is D/T ratings can be used to fill a specific grid instead of what they're supposed to be used for, which is an accurate description of both the difficulty of the hide as well as the difficulty of the terrain. Also, the D/T combination, while perhaps used in a manner not originally intended, still actually provides the things that cezanne mentions, which are "...thought to be descriptive and to help the cache searchers...".

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So what would you suggest? All I've mostly heard is complaints and laments and the only suggestion that makes any sense to help filter out some of these things is the power trail icon.

 

That's not true. For example the idea of a recommendation system like the one on amazon (or something along the lines) has often been suggested.

I'm sure that if gc.com were a community project some gifted and engaged cachers would already have come up with such a system which of course requires access to the FP data (which also could have extended by some reason for a FP choice).

 

People who want to buy books are also very different in their tastes. Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

 

There's no way to guarantee that every cache is a well maintained cache. There's no way to guarantee that every cache is properly sized. There's no way to guarantee that the D/T ratings are accurate for every cache. There's no way to guarantee that loggers write meaningful logs that offer more than a simple recap of a cacher's day or a TFTC.

 

Certainly not but the unclearer the guidelines are in these respects, the more inconsistency will result.

Also when it comes to challenge caches, why do they recommend in the new guidelines that the T rating should be chosen according to the terrain difficulty and then publish challenge caches with 5/5 rating which clearly state that the terrain difficulty of the cache is 2* (and no it's not a challenge that requires one to find 5* caches).

 

There are many small aspects that add together. For example when it comes to trackables a clear statement by Groundspeak that I are not happy if lists of trackable codes are posted as logs for events, would help a lot. Right now a lot of local abuse arises in many aspects and the few cachers are not happy with it are not heard as they are not believed when they argue that it is not supposed to be done that way.

 

There's still no guarantee that the "recommended for you" type of list would guarantee the cache would be well maintained or properly sized. I've found plenty of things on my Amazon list that are recommended for me that are completely uninteresting and irrelevant to what types of things I'm looking for.

 

You went from unfortunate (negative connotation) to small so it seems you've modified your stance a bit. Bringing up trackables posted on an event page is once again irrelevant to the topic at hand as it doesn't relate to either numbers or meta caching. The original post doesn't even mention trackables but instead talks about caches every .10 miles and the lament over the spirit of what caching used to be like. I've been to over 100 events and have seen a trackable code posted once and it was for a single coin that the owner wanted people to make sure they discovered. I also fail to see how the codes really matter. If you don't want to log them, then don't log them.

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I have NOT missed those threads but find them to be the exception, not the norm and frown on that type of practice. It's certainly not a prevalent practice where I've been fortunate enough to cache and it's my guess that reviewers catch that type of thing more often than not.

 

Where I live it is not so rare (though I also would not say it is the norm but happens frequently enough) and moreover the reviewers here do not interfere at all.

But it was just one example anyway.

 

There are so many effects on many different aspects.

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There's still no guarantee that the "recommended for you" type of list would guarantee the cache would be well maintained or properly sized.

 

Of course not. There isn't a guarantee for anything in real life.

 

I've found plenty of things on my Amazon list that are recommended for me that are completely uninteresting and irrelevant to what types of things I'm looking for.

 

Me too but that does not mean that there are no ideas available which are better than the FP system which exists right now.

 

You went from unfortunate (negative connotation) to small so it seems you've modified your stance a bit. Bringing up trackables posted on an event page is once again irrelevant to the topic at hand as it doesn't relate to either numbers or meta caching.

 

No I have not changed my stance. The overall effect is not necessarily small - the small refered to the individual components that add together to the total effect.

 

Of course it relates to both due to the counters for logged trackables and available badges and it relates to actions Groundspeak could set. Groundspeak is not responsible for what cachers are doing but they are responsible for the framework they set and apparently it's the bigger issue to mention the M game with its full name than to for example routinely post lists of all trackables at an event.

 

Once again the original intent of something geocaching (for trackables that is that they travel and the owners and others can follow the travel) gets impacted by something which is not part of the original concept and is numbers oriented and ignores the underlying idea why trackables got invented.

 

The original post doesn't even mention trackables but instead talks about caches every .10 miles and the lament over the spirit of what caching used to be like. I've been to over 100 events and have seen a trackable code posted once and it was for a single coin that the owner wanted people to make sure they discovered. I also fail to see how the codes really matter. If you don't want to log them, then don't log them.

 

I neither visit those events nor do I log trackables from lists. I do not even write discover logs for trackables I encounter in caches but do not move along. It has not been about my own style of caching.

 

If such lists get posted, people all around the world can use the numbers and not only write discover logs, they also could virtually move these trackables wherever they want and create chaos (that's of course the worst case scenario but also in the case when just discover logs arrive from different corners of the world this is unfortunate for the owners of the trackables who often invested quite some money).

 

I agree that the original post did not mention events and trackables. The OP was not written with the intent to explain aspects that go wrong based on number oriented aspects in geocaching which have not played a role in the beginning.

 

I could bring up many more examples but of course you can debate about the importance of each single of them. If you take them all together they however provide a clear pictures of the impacts of what I call number orientation at least in the areas I'm familiar with. In your area a whole lot seems to be different and I have never been there.

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I never said that everyone who follows meta goals harms geocaching. There can be cachers who only care about the cache which harm geocaching and others who only cache for meta goals who are extremely considerate cachers.

You did but I might be able to chalk that up to a language issue. "If a meta level is what a cache visit is really about, the focus changes which has a number of unfortunate impacts." The implication is that a person who focuses on meta level caching creates several unfortunate impacts. Unfortunate is negative in connotation so that means negative impacts for those who focus on meta level caching. You made no statement that said it didn't apply to everybody. Instead, you made a generalization about those who focus on specific types of caches for specific goals.

 

I still fail to see how someone who only cares about the cache (per your definition) truly harms the game. Are their logs hurting the cache, or other cachers, other than being non-descriptive and unhelpful to other cachers? Are there so many false D/T ratings that there's an epidemic raging that we don't know about? How does someone who finds a hundred in a day multiple times affect someone else's ability to cache the way they want to? Are we now required to log about the condition of the cache down to the tiniest detail? Does a 3.5/3.5 cache somehow become less of a cache because someone chose that specific cache to fill in hole in their Fizzy? You care about a specific type of cache (a multi with a pleasant walk and some interesting sites or views along the way). Are you harming geocaching by caring about that particular style of cache? Of course not, yet you still claim that there are others who focus on a specific cache that harm the game. I claim that it's not really much of a negative thing, but is instead, a change in the way people geocache. I don't view that as a negative change while you do.

 

I'm not arguing against some of your points because they're valid in their own right. However, there's nothing inherently harmful about what you perceive to be the change in focus with regard to geocaching, specifically when it comes to goal/statistic/meta caching. Although I'm not a fan of power trails and they have had some impact that was unexpected and for many people, negative, I don't begrudge those cachers the opportunity to the power trails if they want to. It has no bearing on the way I choose to play the game. It has certainly created more of a logjam of caches to sift through in order to find what I would like to find but I accept that as part of what I need to do in order to cache the way I want to cache.

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If such lists get posted, people all around the world can use the numbers and not only write discover logs, they also could virtually move these trackables wherever they want and create chaos (that's of course the worst case scenario but also in the case when just discover logs arrive from different corners of the world this is unfortunate for the owners of the trackables who often invested quite some money).

 

So because a cacher has spent quite a bit of money, it's unfortunate for them to receive a discover log from someone who might not have ever seen it? Delete the log. Problem solved.

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If such lists get posted, people all around the world can use the numbers and not only write discover logs, they also could virtually move these trackables wherever they want and create chaos (that's of course the worst case scenario but also in the case when just discover logs arrive from different corners of the world this is unfortunate for the owners of the trackables who often invested quite some money).

 

So because a cacher has spent quite a bit of money, it's unfortunate for them to receive a discover log from someone who might not have ever seen it? Delete the log. Problem solved.

 

I said that discover logs are the more harmless part. One could do much worse things with the numbers.

 

Moreover along these lines hardly anything in geocaching is a real problem. One can delete, ignore, forget etc

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Once again the original intent of something geocaching (for trackables that is that they travel and the owners and others can follow the travel) gets impacted by something which is not part of the original concept and is numbers oriented and ignores the underlying idea why trackables got invented.

 

The underlying intent is actually still in place. It didn't get removed because someone wants to discover it for whatever reason. They can still travel from cache to cache regardless of how many cachers discover it either because they saw it in a list or they saw it in person. The impact is negligible here, other than an annoying issue that the owner can solve by deleting a discovery that they don't want attached to their trackable.

 

If you're going to continue to trot out the "original concept" with regard to all these impacts you claim hurt the game, you need to realize that the original concepts are still out there. They haven't gone away. Cachers still have access to caches placed in the woods, no less than .25 miles apart, with a nice hike and an ammo can at the end to swap out swag and enjoy the experience. Cachers can still put out trackables with the sole intent to travel from cache to cache and to be discovered in person rather than virtually. None of that has gone away. It's just much harder now to find those things because geocaching has changed and evolved since 2000. Some people believe it has changed for the worse, some for the better, and some for both. I'm on the "both" side but realize that what I find negative about the changes only affects me if I let it affect me. So, I don't. I go out, I cache, I enjoy my time and my finds and let other people cache the way they want to, even if it's done in a manner I don't personally approve of. I'll give them my .02 cents opinion if I feel it's warranted (especially if it destroys a cache or is against a specific guideline in place) but I'm not actively trying to get them to agree with my thoughts and ideas and have them cache the exact same way I do.

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I never said that everyone who follows meta goals harms geocaching. There can be cachers who only care about the cache which harm geocaching and others who only cache for meta goals who are extremely considerate cachers.

You did but I might be able to chalk that up to a language issue. "If a meta level is what a cache visit is really about, the focus changes which has a number of unfortunate impacts." The implication is that a person who focuses on meta level caching creates several unfortunate impacts. Unfortunate is negative in connotation so that means negative impacts for those who focus on meta level caching. You made no statement that said it didn't apply to everybody. Instead, you made a generalization about those who focus on specific types of caches for specific goals.

 

I'm aware that unfortunate has a negative connotation. However what I meant was negative impacts on the large scale - not negative impacts caused by every single cacher.

It has never ever been my attempt to make statements about the microcosmos of single cachers.

 

It might also be that you understood "what a cache is really about" in a different manner than intended by me. It can well be that someone follows meta goals and still values a cache as a real object and treats it with the resulting respect in some sense. What I referred to is rather the situation when the meta goals are what dominates everything else.

 

Let me use the example of streaks. I have no interest into streaks but I have high admiration for cachers who manage to maintain e.g. a year long streak under difficult personal conditions. However at least in my country many streakers are cheating in one or the other way and I have no admiration for their streaks. They do not harm me and my personal way of caching by maintaining their streaks with all their tricks, but it's just another sign of insincerity which I hardly ever encountered when geocaching started in my area.

 

I'm sure that the negative impacts of the meta game will be smaller in areas where the culture, caching ethics, local community and other factors that influence how geocaching evolves

are more immune against the kind of impacts that I mentioned.

 

I still fail to see how someone who only cares about the cache (per your definition) truly harms the game.

 

I'm confused. The meta argument is about those who do not care about the cache itself, not about those who care about the cache. Some cachers who wish to get say a 4.5/4.5 cache do not care about any aspect of the cache itself but only about the grid filling entry 4.5/4.5*. Whenever the actual cache out there is not of importance any longer, this naturally can cause issues. For example, someone who really values the cache and the container will have more reason to treat the container with care. This is not to say that everyone who is into filling their grid is careless with containers. This is also not to say that everyone who does not care about D/T grids treats containers carefully.

 

Are their logs hurting the cache, or other cachers, other than being non-descriptive and unhelpful to other cachers?

 

It depends on the situation. If they do not mention that a cache is not findable, or there is no container to be found, yes, they are hurting other cachers.

 

Does a 3.5/3.5 cache somehow become less of a cache because someone chose that specific cache to fill in hole in their Fizzy? You care about a specific type of cache (a multi with a pleasant walk and some interesting sites or views along the way). Are you harming geocaching by caring about that particular style of cache? Of course not, yet you still claim that there are others who focus on a specific cache that harm the game.

 

It has never been my intent to claim that someone who focuses on a specific cache harms the game (though it would be true for certain powertrails but that has not been my point and moreover it then again would not be about a single cache).

The point I tried to make is that someone who visits a cache for the sake of the cache or the sake of the walk or something else which is more real than data points will more likely value certain aspects that could become completely meaningless and irrelevant for those who only care about the existence of a cache as a data point. This "more likely" is at least in my area backed up by empirical evidence in the sense of "more frequently occurring".

Edited by cezanne
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I have NOT missed those threads but find them to be the exception, not the norm and frown on that type of practice. It's certainly not a prevalent practice where I've been fortunate enough to cache and it's my guess that reviewers catch that type of thing more often than not.

 

Where I live it is not so rare (though I also would not say it is the norm but happens frequently enough) and moreover the reviewers here do not interfere at all.

But it was just one example anyway.

 

There are so many effects on many different aspects.

 

Yes. But no matter what we point to as a problem, they dismiss it. Some suggested solutions would have no negative effect on numbers cachers - PT attribute, better filtering, 'if you like this cache, you might like' system, filter for owners we might like - they still say don't help the selective cacher. The selective cacher should quit, or conform.

Edited by L0ne.R
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I still fail to see how someone who only cares about the cache (per your definition) truly harms the game.

 

I'm confused. The meta argument is about those who do not care about the cache itself, not about those who care about the cache. Some cachers who wish to get say a 4.5/4.5 cache do not care about any aspect of the cache itself but only about the grid filling entry 4.5/4.5*. Whenever the actual cache out there is not of importance any longer, this naturally can cause issues. For example, someone who really values the cache and the container will have more reason to treat the container with care. This is not to say that everyone who is into filling their grid is careless with containers. This is also not to say that everyone who does not care about D/T grids treats containers carefully.

 

Your point about issues doesn't make any sense. What issues other than the mishandling of the cache do you find that could cause problems? It's also my guess that someone going after a 4.5/4.5 has been in the game for at least a little bit and won't purposefully mishandle a cache to the point of ruining it for the next cacher. It could happen to anyone going after a 4.5/4.5, regardless of their intent. Could it be a problem? Sure but do you honestly believe that a meta cacher, more concerned about the grid spot than the cache, is going to purposefully mishandle a cache or treat it with less care than someone who values the 4.5/4.5 for the experience of finding this D/T cache? I think that's a stretch and in no way describes a majority of meta cachers. In fact, I'm guessing that the example you provided applies only to a very small minority of cachers across the geocaching spectrum.

 

I get your point that the impetus for finding the cache has changed due to the grid possibly being more important than the cache itself. I do. I just don't think the unfortunate impacts are as negative as you believe them to be. I'll agree that they're different in nature and have changed the game, but not in a negative manner. Power trails have absolutely changed the game and I think "power" caching has also changed the game. I don' t lump goal/statistical/meta caching into the numbers game because there is an implicit selectivity to that part of the game that is NOT to be found when caching for find count (numbers). The ONLY exception to that is the goal to find 100 in a day. That leads to the numbers area and isn't so much a selective process as it is a find them all attitude in order to reach your goal.

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I have NOT missed those threads but find them to be the exception, not the norm and frown on that type of practice. It's certainly not a prevalent practice where I've been fortunate enough to cache and it's my guess that reviewers catch that type of thing more often than not.

 

Where I live it is not so rare (though I also would not say it is the norm but happens frequently enough) and moreover the reviewers here do not interfere at all.

But it was just one example anyway.

 

There are so many effects on many different aspects.

 

Yes. But no matter what we point to as a problem, they dismiss it. Some suggested solutions would have no negative effect on numbers cachers - PT attribute, better filtering, 'if you like this cache, you might like' system, filter for owners we might like - they still say don't help the selective cacher. The selective cacher should quit, or conform.

So you want to negatively affect the numbers cachers? You want to penalize them because they cache a different way? Is that what you're saying?

 

I'm on board for the PT attribute as it's really the only concrete thing that can help almost immediately.

 

Better filtering? Have you seen everything you can do? You can still filter by "Hidden by" so that point is debunked. If you're looking for hiders that are similar tin style o the pair you mentioned - BC & Miss Kitty and Dundeejim - that's not reasonable nor easily accomplished. There's NO way you could get a list like that based solely on what you can find via cache descriptions. That's unrealistic.

 

The "might like" is a nice idea but even that isn't a guarantee that you'll end up liking the caches that are recommended for you. As noted, many of the things Amazon recommends for me are not things I'd have any interest in. If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

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Improvements within this community can however still make sense too and there would be many more options than just a power trail icon.

Naturally improvements are welcome, but I'm saying that with geocaching heading in the direction it's heading, people interesting in heading in other directions might find that easier to do if they don't try to latch on to geocaching's coattails.

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Let me use the example of streaks. I have no interest into streaks but I have high admiration for cachers who manage to maintain e.g. a year long streak under difficult personal conditions. However at least in my country many streakers are cheating in one or the other way and I have no admiration for their streaks. They do not harm me and my personal way of caching by maintaining their streaks with all their tricks, but it's just another sign of insincerity which I hardly ever encountered when geocaching started in my area.

 

And this right here is the gist of all of your points, that when you started out it was one way and now it's a different way. No one is debating that. It IS a different game. However, you seem to claim that it's been an evolution toward a more negative manner, once all the small things are added up, of geocaching while others are pointing out that it's not negative, just different. Sure there are some negative aspects but that happens when you get more members. There are certainly some positive aspects as well to how the game has evolved.

 

That being said, I completely agree with your view of cachers who "manipulate" things in order to achieve whatever it is they're trying to achieve. I agree because I don't choose to play that way either. However, I don't let their tricks and manipulations affect my enjoyment of the game. It's certainly a negative thing but it's a negative thing that doesn't affect me in any direct manner. I don't approve but I know that their choices affect them, not me. When their choices cause me problems, then I'll take issue with the way the game is being played by them. They go out and steal a cache, then we have an issue. They go out and trespass to find a cache which causes it to be archived, then we have an issue. They go out and deface public property, then we have an issue. They go out and cut and paste logs, so what. They go out and find trackable codes listed on an event page and discover them, so what. They go out and find a 4.5/4.5 cache because it's the last spot in their Fizzy, so what. They go out and find 600 caches in a day, so what. They go out and hide 50 caches in a week, so what. While I wouldn't do some of those things that many of us find undesirable, it has no bearing on my caching enjoyment because it's not about ME, it's about THEM. When them crosses into me, then I'll become upset about how the game has changed.

 

When it first started out, there was a MUCH smaller population that went caching. It was a more homogenous group, meaning that they were all pretty similar in what they thought geocaching should be. As the game slowly expanded, so did the volume of caches and cachers, which meant more people were exposed to geocaching. Instead of a smaller group that behaved in a certain manner, there was now a larger group with varied manners as it pertained to geocaching. With the advent of the smart phone and the subsequent apps, the game expanded even more, letting in more people with more ideas and more access to all the things related to geocaching. Instead of a homogenous group, we now have a heterogenous membership with a multitude of caching manners and methods. Geocaching HAD to evolve or it wouldn't be around today. I don't personally agree with all the changes and I find it hard to believe that there's someone out there who agrees with everything Groundspeak has done. I disliked the second coming of "challenges", which ended up being short lived. I dislike Lab caches. I'm not a fan of the challenge moratorium and the subsequent authorization of the new policy. However, in spite of these differences with their policies, I still enjoy the game. I realize that I'm fortunate enough to have the ability to go out and find a cache because I found something that I like to do. My participation is dependent on MY proclivities and enjoyment, not the proclivities and enjoyment of someone else, and if that enjoyment ever disappears, it's time to leave.

Edited by coachstahly
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If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

 

Yes, they could as they could actively engage the cachers and not rely only on what someone bought or looked up.

It's in some way easier to do for geocaches.

However of course there always will be outliers but looking through some recommendations is easier and less tiresome than looking through hundreds or thousands of caches in areas one is unfamiliar with.

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If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

 

Yes, they could as they could actively engage the cachers and not rely only on what someone bought or looked up.

It's in some way easier to do for geocaches.

However of course there always will be outliers but looking through some recommendations is easier and less tiresome than looking through hundreds or thousands of caches in areas one is unfamiliar with.

 

+1

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If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

 

Yes, they could as they could actively engage the cachers and not rely only on what someone bought or looked up.

It's in some way easier to do for geocaches.

However of course there always will be outliers but looking through some recommendations is easier and less tiresome than looking through hundreds or thousands of caches in areas one is unfamiliar with.

So it's going to be a cacher based recommendation list that Groundspeak is going to create?

 

How about people actually use a public bookmark list to create a list of favorite caches (like LOne.R has on her profile) so people can view it to determine if it would be worthy of a visit. Seems to me there's a tool in place already.

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If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

 

Yes, they could as they could actively engage the cachers and not rely only on what someone bought or looked up.

It's in some way easier to do for geocaches.

However of course there always will be outliers but looking through some recommendations is easier and less tiresome than looking through hundreds or thousands of caches in areas one is unfamiliar with.

 

Actively engage cachers how? Which cachers? Aren't the majority of cachers just going to lead to the same caches the so-called selective cachers are upset about?

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If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

 

Yes, they could as they could actively engage the cachers and not rely only on what someone bought or looked up.

It's in some way easier to do for geocaches.

However of course there always will be outliers but looking through some recommendations is easier and less tiresome than looking through hundreds or thousands of caches in areas one is unfamiliar with.

 

Actively engage cachers how? Which cachers? Aren't the majority of cachers just going to lead to the same caches the so-called selective cachers are upset about?

 

The majority does not play a role when it comes to how the recommendations of a cacher that seems to like similar caches than you look like.

 

What I meant with actively engaging is that GS could obtain more data than just the FPs - they could e.g. provide some common reasons for why someone awards a FP.

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So it's going to be a cacher based recommendation list that Groundspeak is going to create?

How about people actually use a public bookmark list to create a list of favorite caches (like LOne.R has on her profile) so people can view it to determine if it would be worthy of a visit. Seems to me there's a tool in place already.

 

The system should identify those who might have a similar preference - this is important to make it work also in areas one is not familiar with. It's also less tiresome than looking manually through the lists of a larger number of cachers (BTW: favourite lists are public anyway - however they do not offer space for explanations and comments.)

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If Amazon can't get it right, do you think Groundspeak can do it better?

 

Yes, they could as they could actively engage the cachers and not rely only on what someone bought or looked up.

It's in some way easier to do for geocaches.

However of course there always will be outliers but looking through some recommendations is easier and less tiresome than looking through hundreds or thousands of caches in areas one is unfamiliar with.

 

Actively engage cachers how? Which cachers? Aren't the majority of cachers just going to lead to the same caches the so-called selective cachers are upset about?

 

The majority does not play a role when it comes to how the recommendations of a cacher that seems to like similar caches than you look like.

 

What I meant with actively engaging is that GS could obtain more data than just the FPs - they could e.g. provide some common reasons for why someone awards a FP.

 

And they would probably find that FPs are being awarded for reasons that are not relevant or useful to small factions of highly selective cachers.

 

At a certain point, the cacher has to accept some responsibility for the way he/she chooses to play the game. Constantly raging at the system and all the other players isn't rational.

 

There is nothing wrong with being selective, but how much can we expect Groundspeak to redesign the site to appease these highly specific tastes?

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And they would probably find that FPs are being awarded for reasons that are not relevant or useful to small factions of highly selective cachers.

 

The majority of FPs, yes but in that case that's useful information.

For example those who like creative containers will be interested into caches that have been awarded many FPs because of the container.

 

At a certain point, the cacher has to accept some responsibility for the way he/she chooses to play the game.

 

I never said anything else.

 

Constantly raging at the system and all the other players isn't rational.

 

I do not think that a system like the one I have in mind (things along these lines btw have been suggested for many years and even before the FP system got finally introduced) can be referred to as being raging. It's a constructive suggestion which you do not need to like of course. I also do not have any hopes that Groundspeak will introduce such a system.

What stays true however is that such a system would be helpful and not that difficult to implement. If gc.com were a community controlled site, I'm quite sure that such a system already existed.

 

There is nothing wrong with being selective, but how much can we expect Groundspeak to redesign the site to appease these highly specific tastes?

 

What I have in mind would be useful for much larger groups of cachers and not only those with highly specific tastes. However I agree we cannot expect Groundspeak to redesign their site - they are a business which makes their own decisions.

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And this right here is the gist of all of your points, that when you started out it was one way and now it's a different way.

 

No, that's not the gist of all my points. I mentioned the comparison because I think that many of what I regard as unfortunate effects are in fact results of the temptations created by number oriented sites (statistics pages, project-gc, badge systems etc).

 

While it is certainly due to the more heterogenous cacher group that there are now many more drive in caches and much less hiking caches, I would not tend to think that the things like using wrong dates on logs to maintain streaks and many other things along these lines (I do not want to list them again) are a result of larger groups of people taking part in geocaching.

 

That being said, I completely agree with your view of cachers who "manipulate" things in order to achieve whatever it is they're trying to achieve. I agree because I don't choose to play that way either.

 

I just wonder how large the proportion of cachers is who do it that way in your area. I somehow feel that it is a small minority and given that caches in your area get far less visits than in mine this even strengthens the effect.

A multi cache like your Carmel cache would have >100 visits in a city like Vienna in one year.

 

However, I don't let their tricks and manipulations affect my enjoyment of the game. It's certainly a negative thing but it's a negative thing that doesn't affect me in any direct manner.

 

I listed the examples as developments that I regard as unfortunate. I did not list them as examples that affect my enjoyment of geocaching (though of course there are examples where there are negative effects on the activity of geocaching and that ultimately hards all cachers in an area).

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While it is certainly due to the more heterogenous cacher group that there are now many more drive in caches and much less hiking caches,...

 

Come again? I'd need to see some evidence that the absolute number of hiking caches has decreased. I have seen no evidence of such a trend.

 

Of course it depends on the area and how you define hiking cache. The number of hiking caches is larger if you count series caches as hiking caches that can be both reached by a walk of 200-300 m from the previous caches but also by a walk of roughly the same length from the nearest parking location. That's not what I regard as hiking caches. There are a lot of areas in my country where it is hard to hide real hiking caches which are not caches with multiple stages and multi caches have become a whole lot less popular.

Edited by cezanne
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While it is certainly due to the more heterogenous cacher group that there are now many more drive in caches and much less hiking caches,...

 

Come again? I'd need to see some evidence that the absolute number of hiking caches has decreased. I have seen no evidence of such a trend.

 

Of course it depends on the area and how you define hiking cache. The number of hiking caches is larger if you count series caches as hiking caches that can be both reached by a walk of 200-300 m from the previous caches but also by a walk of roughly the same length from the nearest parking location. That's not what I regard as hiking caches. There are a lot of areas in my country where it is hard to hide real hiking caches which are not caches with multiple stages and multi caches have become a whole lot less popular.

 

You made the claim that the absolute number of hiking caches (whatever the definition) went down. I don't believe you. The total number of available caches has increased so much that, even if the proportion of hiking caches is much lower, the absolute number is still higher.

 

It may be that you have done most of the hiking caches in your area, but that simply means that the number available to you has gone down. Still not the absolute number.

 

Absent some pretty convincing evidence, I consider your claim most likely a result of your conflation of relative numbers with absolute numbers.

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You made the claim that the absolute number of hiking caches (whatever the definition) went down. I don't believe you. The total number of available caches has increased so much that, even if the proportion of hiking caches is much lower, the absolute number is still higher.

 

I did not confuse absolute and relative numbers. When we talk about 2002 and 2003 then indeed even now more (real) hiking caches get hidden in my area. Comparing 2006 with ten years later however provides a different picture but of course what's again essential is what counts a hiking cache. If one counts the series caches of the type I mentioned then the (absolute) number of newly hidden hiking caches even went up.

 

It may be that you have done most of the hiking caches in your area, but that simply means that the number available to you has gone down. Still not the absolute number.

 

I had the (absolute number of) newly hidden ones in mind and not the total number of all available ones but I need to admit that I did not state this explicitely in the statement you cited (as I have mentioned it several times before).

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Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

Yes they can: View user profile -> Lists -> Favorites.

 

What I meant with actively engaging is that GS could obtain more data than just the FPs - they could e.g. provide some common reasons for why someone awards a FP.

I would not be opposed to having the ability to add a comment to my Favourite point flag. View my Fav list, and see why I made it a favourite. Additionally, like Bookmark lists, I could choose to have my favourite flag visible on the cache listing (instead of only through my profile), so that people could peruse the Favourited comments. FPs can still be PM only.

 

Here's a little venn diagram I whipped up attempting to group these stereotypes everyone's tossing around in the discussion. Regions not necessarily to scale: (red would denote what most seem to consider the "problem cachers")

geovenn.png

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Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

Yes they can: View user profile -> Lists -> Favorites.

 

Of course I'm aware of the view command.

I meant displaying all caches at the same time (with one command) without visiting the FP lists of all cachers who have favourited a cache.

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Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

Yes they can: View user profile -> Lists -> Favorites.

Of course I'm aware of the view command.

I meant displaying all caches at the same time (with one command) without visiting the FP lists of all cachers who have favourited a cache.

I don't understand what you're looking for.

 

Caches favourited by a user: https://www.geocaching.com/profile/?u=username --> Lists

Users who favourited a cache: https://www.geocachi...ited.aspx?guid=cache-guid (or go the listing and click)

 

I agree the latter is cumbersome to see the list of users, but that's not what I read from your comment. You want to "display all caches at the same time (with one command)" - which caches? Those favourited by a user? See #1. What other context is there? List all caches favourited by all users who've favourited a cache? shock.gif

Edited by thebruce0
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I meant displaying all caches at the same time (with one command) without visiting the FP lists of all cachers who have favourited a cache.
I don't understand what you're looking for.
As I understand cezanne's desire:

 

1. Get a list of all the users who favorited the current cache. (This can be done already.)

 

2. For each of those users, get a list of all the caches favorited by that user. (This can be done already.)

 

3. Merge these lists of caches, to produce a list of caches favorited by users who favorited the current cache. (This cannot be done currently.)

 

For bonus points, when you produce the merged list in step 3, you could emphasize the caches that appear in multiple lists in step 2.

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I would not be opposed to having the ability to add a comment to my Favourite point flag.

That's a cool idea. I would like to be able to explain, too, and it seems like it's goes a long way to giving cezanne what she needs.

 

Having said that, I don't actually think anyone would use it to help find caches they like. Even cezanne.

 

Here's a little venn diagram I whipped up attempting to group these stereotypes everyone's tossing around in the discussion. Regions not necessarily to scale: (red would denote what most seem to consider the "problem cachers")

geovenn.png

I admit, I have no idea what's motivating people, but I think most caches most of the time are motivated by the experience. Yes, some -- perhaps many, although I doubt even that -- are then proud of their statistics, but I think they see the statistics as a reflection of the experience, not the motivation for it.

 

But let me ask: How many people participating in this thread see themselves in any part of the diagram other than the right most section?

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Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

Yes they can: View user profile -> Lists -> Favorites.

Of course I'm aware of the view command.

I meant displaying all caches at the same time (with one command) without visiting the FP lists of all cachers who have favourited a cache.

I don't understand what you're looking for.

Apparently cezanne is looking for a portal to the past, where she can enjoy geocaching the way it used to be. Until then, nothing you type in the forums can help her, and it will only incite her to reply how wrong you were to try to do so.

 

(I now await cezanne's post explaining how I am wrong in thinking so, or at least being unfair.)

Edited by hzoi
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I would not be opposed to having the ability to add a comment to my Favourite point flag.

That's a cool idea. I would like to be able to explain, too, and it seems like it's goes a long way to giving cezanne what she needs.

 

I did not make the suggestion specifically for me and similar suggestions have been made many years ago by many people.

 

And I do think that people would use it to some extent - of course as only tool and not in all situations. Suppose e.g. someone likes cool containers and he encounters a number of caches on someone's lists of favouriteswhich are labeled "cool container". You can imagine a number of useful searches the system then could allow on such data.

 

There are many FPs in my area which are e.g. awarded because someone enjoyed the cache day due to a nice company or being FTF - I do not expect those people to categorize their FPs systematically but those who would make use of categories can then be more trusted as one knows why someone liked the cache.

 

For someone like Lone.R I think the system would be helpful to weed out a lot of the cache which end up with a disappointment for her.

Edited by cezanne
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But let me ask: How many people participating in this thread see themselves in any part of the diagram other than the right most section?
For me, it varies. So maybe I'm in the middle section.

 

When I was maintaining a streak, I was very much in the "statistics as motivation crowd", and the "experience" often didn't matter as long as I got my find for the day. There were times when I found caches that provided an interesting experience, but that was not usually my primary motivation.

 

Other times, I'm looking for the "experience" and don't care much about statistics. But the "experience" may be directly related to the cache (e.g., the camouflage, the location, the puzzle), or it may be related to the group I'm with, or it may be simply that the cache was conveniently nearby when I had a few moments to do some geocaching.

 

And occasionally, I'm back to being a goal oriented geocacher, when I'm in an area where I can get another quad (or four) for the Bay Area Quadrangle Challenge. Then I focus on caches in quads that I don't yet have, and everything else is secondary.

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I would not be opposed to having the ability to add a comment to my Favourite point flag.

That's a cool idea. I would like to be able to explain, too, and it seems like it's goes a long way to giving cezanne what she needs.

 

Having said that, I don't actually think anyone would use it to help find caches they like. Even cezanne.

 

Here's a little venn diagram I whipped up attempting to group these stereotypes everyone's tossing around in the discussion. Regions not necessarily to scale: (red would denote what most seem to consider the "problem cachers")

geovenn.png

I admit, I have no idea what's motivating people, but I think most caches most of the time are motivated by the experience. Yes, some -- perhaps many, although I doubt even that -- are then proud of their statistics, but I think they see the statistics as a reflection of the experience, not the motivation for it.

 

But let me ask: How many people participating in this thread see themselves in any part of the diagram other than the right most section?

 

I'm in the middle. I don't want high numbers, I want good numbers. I like seeing my D/T averages inch upward. I like the badge gen thing and set short goals for myself to achieve new badges. The interest in stats helps motivate me to seek out things that are sometimes outside of my comfort zone, and that's what leads to good experiences in the end.

 

I think my diagram would need to include another circle to indicate interest in other people's statistics. I like keeping track of my own but I can't be bothered to click on someone else's profile, let alone track someone's else's statistics in relation to mine. I think there are cachers in each zone who are more or less motivated to compete with other geocachers in a similar category.

Edited by narcissa
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Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

Yes they can: View user profile -> Lists -> Favorites.

Of course I'm aware of the view command.

I meant displaying all caches at the same time (with one command) without visiting the FP lists of all cachers who have favourited a cache.

I don't understand what you're looking for.

Apparently cezanne is looking for a portal to the past, where she can enjoy geocaching the way it used to be. Until then, nothing you type in the forums can help her, and it will only incite her to reply how wrong you were to try to do so.

 

I referred to a functionality a competing site offers since many years. It has not been about my own geocaching experiences, preferences or whatever. I tried to explain how I think a better recommendation system could work. I neither expect Groundspeak to build such a system nor would it solve my main personal issue in my local geocaching area. I still however think that there would exist quite some potential for providing a better recommendation system (also better than GCvote).

 

Suppose you happened to have liked cache X. Now there could be (among others - many more refinements are possible) a command that suggests to you a list of all caches which have been recommended by those cachers who favourited the cache X. Of course you can arrive at this list by clicking at the favourite lists of every single cacher manually but that's not very efficient.

Edited by cezanne
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When I was maintaining a streak, I was very much in the "statistics as motivation crowd", and the "experience" often didn't matter as long as I got my find for the day. There were times when I found caches that provided an interesting experience, but that was not usually my primary motivation.

OK, thanks for the insight. I guess I'm kinda blind to that way of looking at it, but I guess that's what puts me in the right side. Even when I was maintaining a streak, it was still because of what the streak represented -- going out and pushing myself to have a geocaching experience every day -- not because I cared about what the numbers on geocaching.com said.

 

And I do mean the experience, not interesting experiences. Sure, the more interesting the better, but walking to GZ, looking for a cache, and signing the log is the motivation itself regardless of whether anything interesting enhances the experience. At no point does +1 on geocaching.com enter into my thinking.

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Right now the Groundspeak system cannot even list all caches that have been favourited by people who favourited a particular cache.

Yes they can: View user profile -> Lists -> Favorites.

Of course I'm aware of the view command.

I meant displaying all caches at the same time (with one command) without visiting the FP lists of all cachers who have favourited a cache.

I don't understand what you're looking for.

Apparently cezanne is looking for a portal to the past, where she can enjoy geocaching the way it used to be. Until then, nothing you type in the forums can help her, and it will only incite her to reply how wrong you were to try to do so.

 

I referred to a functionality a competing site offers since many years. It has not been about my own geocaching experiences, preferences or whatever.

 

Suppose you happened to have like cache X. Now there could be (among others - many more refinements are possible) a command that suggests to you a list of all caches which have been recommended by those cachers who favourited the cache X. Of course you can arrive at this list by clicking at the favourite lists of every single cacher manually but that's not very efficient.

I am referring to your overall tone, not to this specific post. It would be awesome if you would lighten up.

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I am referring to your overall tone, not to this specific post. It would be awesome if you would lighten up.

 

As the overall tone is regarded, I know very well that there does not exist a time back machine.

 

I try to use the caches available to me in the best way I can even though this can be quite difficult at times.

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And I do mean the experience, not interesting experiences. Sure, the more interesting the better, but walking to GZ, looking for a cache, and signing the log is the motivation itself regardless of whether anything interesting enhances the experience. At no point does +1 on geocaching.com enter into my thinking.

 

Perhaps experience does not fully describe it. I thought about your diagram and was somehow missing exercise.

 

While you certainly enjoy more types of experiences than I do, we are pretty similar in the sense that for us it's about experience and exercise. I think that there are many cachers who are not smiley-oriented but who are "numbers oriented" while experience and also exercise (at least the exercise itself) are not mainly measured in terms of numbers.

 

I think that bruce is right and that the big majority of the cachers is left of the right circle.

Edited by cezanne
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I would put "exercise" in the "experience" region. If you're only in it for the exercise and don't care at all about statistics, then you are in it for the experience, whatever experience it is you like most - the walk, the sights, the air, the exercise, whatever.

No analogy is perfect, no venn diagram is without room for adjustment and higher details; problem cachers exist in all regions of that diagram.

But you cezanne are very much in the experience region. I think the problem was you referred to "numbers" cachers in the tone of negativity, when clearly it's not a 1-to-1 relation. Numbers as quantity is different than numbers as statistics, and one can certain value the experience and still find value and motivation in statistics.

 

Caring for cache quality or being careless about cache quality isn't something linked to any one particular region; however I highlighted "smiley" (quantity) cachers as the prime region for problem cachers. By caring only about quantity of finds, not the experience they may individually provide or even having a rounded out statistical experience, it has a much stronger chance of containing cachers who don't think about community, or followup cachers, or taking things slow and careful... in-and-out, get the find, anything for the smiley, leave the rest up to other people. Some people do think like that, and those are the cachers I think we all agree are problematic. Even though they're not doing anything technically against the rules, though one could argue have bad etiquette. They are playing "their own way", as they say, but without regards for the greater experience beyond their own. And again, those cachers can exist in any region, but I think it's safe to say they'd be more clumped in the style of play that focuses on speed and self over experience and others.

 

Being goal-oriented, or motivated by statistics is not inherently a negative geocacher trait.

Edited by thebruce0
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I try to use the caches available to me in the best way I can even though this can be quite difficult at times.

 

And we appreciate that. However, because you seem (to me, at least) to have a very specific, very narrow, and very inflexible set of criteria for what you enjoy, it is hardly surprising that you are frustrated that caching is no longer well-suited to your tastes.

 

Everything changes over time. Everything. If your preferences are sufficiently narrow, and you can't change them, then any activity that is perfect for you at some point will necessarily become less so over time, because any change would move you off the optimum.

 

I have had to continually re-invent what geocaching is for me in order to keep enjoying it, because the changes in the activity have required that. For example, in the first early years I enjoyed keeping a certain radius around my location "clean" by finding all the caches. As the number of cache hides I didn't enjoy got higher, that goal became less fun, so I gave it up.

 

A friend of mine put it to me this way: Caching was once a tiny trickle, where you would eagerly lap up whatever water came your way. but today it's a wide river, and you can't hope to ever drink it all. The challenge today is to filter through the torrent to find the parts you enjoy.

 

For example, you dismiss hiking caches that are part of a series as not "true" hiking caches. From the perspective of somebody who started caching in 2002, I can understand that; we used to do big, long hikes for a single cache. But there is nobody holding a gun to your head making you find all the caches in a series; you can still perfectly well do that long hike for the one cache at the end.

 

Yet somehow in your mind, the existence of the other caches in the series along the hike makes the one at the end less valuable to you. I would suggest that perhaps your thinking is getting in your way of enjoying caching more than caching becoming worse.

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I have had to continually re-invent what geocaching is for me in order to keep enjoying it, because the changes in the activity have required that.

 

Actually my main focus is on how can I keep geocaching useful for my purpose and not necessarily on enjoying it but that might be a philosophical issue and also will depend on how one interprets enjoy.

 

While I agree with you that these sort of adaptions you mention are required it does not mean that one needs to welcome the changes.

 

For example, you dismiss hiking caches that are part of a series as not "true" hiking caches. From the perspective of somebody who started caching in 2002, I can understand that; we used to do big, long hikes for a single cache. But there is nobody holding a gun to your head making you find all the caches in a series; you can still perfectly well do that long hike for the one cache at the end.

 

Actually I did not intend that it comes across like dismissing. I just wanted to explain what I regard as hiking cache. This plays a role when describing how the caches that get hidden have changed in my area. It does not influence my actual cache selection. I cannot afford to be very selective when to comes to selecting the caches I go for in my home area. When I visit other areas, things change of course.

 

What you refer to as doing the long hike for the cache at the end might sound more appealing to you than it actually is in most cases in my area. It's not about a trail in the forest where the cache which is the farthest away from the nearest parking coordinates is say 10km away and there are closer caches of the series as well. It then would be quite trivial to end up with a nice walk/hike.

I try to look for starting points further away or walk from one cache to another one not intended for doing together but it can be hard in an area with many roads and settlements in between. It's different if a cache has been designed to be done entirely on foot.

 

Another problem I have with series caches around here is that I cannot rely on the logs, descriptions and D/T ratings which makes it difficult for me and even more so in winter where I'm even more dependent on information of this type to find out whether a walk/hike is manageable to me. The extra information compared to say hiking guide books has been one of the key reasons for which I learnt to appreciate geocaching as a means to select physical activities for me. It allowed me to follow the virtual steps of some people from the hiking scene which I never could have followed in the real world due to my physical limitations - I neither could join a hiking group of one of the alpine associations nor join some private group of say those who left geocaching and are back to only hiking. That's also why what dprovan suggested as an option (hiking communities) also does not fit for me as I do not fit into them either.

 

I think that part of my issues are difficult to understand from the point of view of someone from a completely different area with a different culture. While geocaching has changed for us all enormously since 2002, the changes are not the same everywhere. I once in a while have a look at cache pages and logs in the area of some of the posters here and I realize big differences in the caching and log culture.

 

My claim is not that geocaching got worse in my area but rather that it got much more difficult to make geocaching useful for my purpose. The worse relates to the situation that got worse for me as an individual and for those who with a similar focus which made many leave geocaching. There is a now a much larger variety of caches available and there are many creative and well crafted containers out there something which did not exist at all in my area when I started. However these caches are typically less than 500m away from a road and it is hard (or even impossible) to find a nice route to them involving a longer walk. Sometimes a reasonably nice route would exist but only a local insider can find them and while earlier caches focussed on pointing out such routes, this has become very rare which is understandable if the cache focuses on the hideout and the container and it's not the goal of the person designing the cache to make the cachers take a longer route than absolutely necessary.

 

In my personal case I do not end up to invest a lot of time in cache selection but a whole lot more in planning how I could use the available caches for my physical activities. A single multi cache or traditional that is set up to provide me with a walk/hike of the right length requires hardly any extra work on my side while for many of the newer caches the planning how I could end up with reasonable walks/hikes takes longer than the walk.

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We have taking a few years off from Geocaching only to return to Log only caches placed every .10 a mile in bushes for numbers.

This is not what Geocaching started out to be. When we started it was to bring hunters to a location interesting or a nice view.

Shame on Groundspeak and the approvers for letting this get out of the scope and sprit of the hunt.

I used to feel that way, until a local cacher pointed out that there's no need to get them all and there's something for everyone. I think power caching is stupid, but no one's forcing me to do power trails. There are plenty of quality caches out in the woods I can go for that provide exercise and make me happy. For those people who only care about numbers or tiny hides in urban areas, there are caches for them, too. Geocaching has plenty of room for everyone.

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I used to feel that way, until a local cacher pointed out that there's no need to get them all and there's something for everyone. I think power caching is stupid, but no one's forcing me to do power trails. There are plenty of quality caches out in the woods I can go for that provide exercise and make me happy. For those people who only care about numbers or tiny hides in urban areas, there are caches for them, too. Geocaching has plenty of room for everyone.

 

It seems however that your area does not have many repetitive trails and even for the series that exist like for example the Ram Fan geoart (which catched my attention on the map) the behaviour seems to be different than around here where the first or last cache of such a series would accumulate high numbers of FPs which makes FPs per se not very useful for cache selections in such areas. That's also why I think that additional data on why someone liked a cache would be helpful.

 

I firmly believe that the area we cache in has a lot of impact on how difficult it is for us to select attractive caches. There seem to be very large differences even within the same country or within areas with comparable cache density. Some live in areas that are much more affected by some issues than others. For example, there have never been many challenge caches in my area while the area of Lone.R seems to have been heavily affected. In my area copy and paste logs and cachers leaving throwdowns are quite common meanwhile while they are much less common in other areas. There are many more examples along these lines.

 

Moreover I think that experiencing the change continuously is easier than returning suddenly after a long break - this must be like a shock in many areas and certainly would be in my area.

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