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Team On

worldwide mystery caches using fun browser games wanted

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Hi guys,

I am looking worldwide for mystery caches where you have to solve a game online in your browser, flash games etc.. If you succeed, the coordinates are revealed. 

It can be everything: flash games like super mario, or where you must navigate an airplane through a cave (once solved a geocache like that), or memory, or tetris like, or connect four, or drag and drop items in a certain order, or move the mouse trigger through a maze. As long as it is used specially for a mystery cache and FUN to do. If there are some, I might publish a global mystery cache, where you have to solve several games related mysteries.

If you came across such geocaches in your geocaching career, please share them here! Thanks!

 

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On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 3:45 AM, Team On said:

If there are some, I might publish a global mystery cache, where you have to solve several games related mysteries.

Are you thinking of taking these existing mystery caches and integrating the puzzles into a mystery of your own? If so, be very careful. I learned this past weekend that someone had integrated a custom-designed puzzle of mine into a cache of their own, without my permission. Needless to say, I was not happy. The cache has now been archived, and discussions are underway at the reviewer level about this type of listing. IMO, this is a clear violation of the Terms of Use, and possibly larger copyright laws. Make sure you get explicit permission from someone before using their work.

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29 minutes ago, The A-Team said:

I learned this past weekend that someone had integrated a custom-designed puzzle of mine into a cache of their own, without my permission

As in recreated, copy-catted your puzzle without credit? Or made reference to your puzzle (eg by using its solution) in a new puzzle of theirs? The former definitely... the latter may be problematic for them, but I'd be interested to see how that could be a violation of TOU or introduce legal conflicts. Most puzzles refer to something out there; even if they are other puzzles.
I guess, to what degree do you mean by "integrated"?

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On ‎1‎/‎9‎/‎2018 at 0:44 PM, thebruce0 said:

As in recreated, copy-catted your puzzle without credit? Or made reference to your puzzle (eg by using its solution) in a new puzzle of theirs? The former definitely... the latter may be problematic for them, but I'd be interested to see how that could be a violation of TOU or introduce legal conflicts. Most puzzles refer to something out there; even if they are other puzzles.
I guess, to what degree do you mean by "integrated"?

They created a mystery listing of their own, which contains a link to my listing. A seeker of their cache would need to solve my puzzle and get the coordinates (which are completely irrelevant for that other cache), then plug those coordinates into a geochecker on their listing to get the real final coordinates. In effect, my puzzle is the entire puzzle for their cache, which is why I objected so strongly. The icing on the cake is that my puzzle is running on a hosted web server service that I pay for, so I don't appreciate them piggybacking on my investment in addition to the co-opting of my work. They did at least give me credit for the puzzle, but giving credit without also getting permission doesn't give someone the right to use someone else's work.

Looking at that other CO's account, it looks like they've done the same thing with about 100 other puzzles. I'll be interested to see what happens with the reviewer and HQ.

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Wow. Yeah, that's bad form. Plus they have no control over your listing. Bad form and just a bad idea in general. What if you move your cache and update the puzzle. Actually surprising the cache was published, unless they lied saying that they had permission. You could contact the publishing reviewer and ask if it was ok'd in the current state, and if it's possible to have it disabled and 'fixed' so as to no longer reference yours. hm.

Edited by thebruce0

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38 minutes ago, The A-Team said:

They created a mystery listing of their own, which contains a link to my listing. A seeker of their cache would need to solve my puzzle and get the coordinates (which are completely irrelevant for that other cache), then plug those coordinates into a geochecker on their listing to get the real final coordinates. In effect, my puzzle is the entire puzzle for their cache, which is why I objected so strongly. The icing on the cake is that my puzzle is running on a hosted web server service that I pay for, so I don't appreciate them piggybacking on my investment in addition to the co-opting of my work. They did at least give me credit for the puzzle, but giving credit without also getting permission doesn't give someone the right to use someone else's work.

Looking at that other CO's account, it looks like they've done the same thing with about 100 other puzzles. I'll be interested to see what happens with the reviewer and HQ.

I'm surprised that has been allowed by the reviewer: years ago some friends and I planned a linked set of puzzles where we each set a cache and puzzle but you needed  to do them in order and the first container held the puzzle for the next etc etc. We were told in no uncertain terms when the first went for review that this would constitute 'Daisy Chaining' and was against the rules.

I'd have thought the same would apply here at the very least, with the infringement of your intellectual property adding insult to injury !

 

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49 minutes ago, The A-Team said:

They created a mystery listing of their own, which contains a link to my listing. A seeker of their cache would need to solve my puzzle and get the coordinates (which are completely irrelevant for that other cache), then plug those coordinates into a geochecker on their listing to get the real final coordinates. In effect, my puzzle is the entire puzzle for their cache, which is why I objected so strongly. The icing on the cake is that my puzzle is running on a hosted web server service that I pay for, so I don't appreciate them piggybacking on my investment in addition to the co-opting of my work. They did at least give me credit for the puzzle, but giving credit without also getting permission doesn't give someone the right to use someone else's work.

There might be something wrong in this logic.

You have made a puzzle to be solved, right? Then someone "recommends" your puzzle to be solved and you object this?

What is your primary reason to object something you originally wanted?

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It's nor "recommended", it's "required". You have to solve his puzzle to get the answer for this piggy back cache listing puzzle. There's no additional puzzle, but my understanding. Solve his, and you solve two caches, one of which is A-Team's, and the other is not. It's published without permission, so not even a condoned daisy chain. It's another thing if that other CO had copied the puzzle and run it as their own with their own resources. But it sounds to me like the listing just basically says "Go solve the puzzle for GCXXXX and enter the solution in this geochecker."  That's not a puzzle cache.

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19 minutes ago, hal-an-tow said:

We were told in no uncertain terms when the first went for review that this would constitute 'Daisy Chaining' and was against the rules.

How about THIS?

 

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Also, with daisy chaining disallowed (insofar as requiring finding a different cache before finding the next), you can still hide something in a cache that's required for another cache (effectively making a physical stage hidden at the location you have to determine, then go and retrieve the needed info; a minor difference to merely solving another cache's puzzle).  Assumedly having permission, or each being your own cache.

Series Final caches do this; that is allowed - Find each cache, get the needed info from them to dermine the location of the final cache.

That's vastly different than a virtual/online/listing puzzle, and just providing the answer from some other cache to get the answer for this one, as is the case of A-Team's issue.

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11 minutes ago, thebruce0 said:

It's nor "recommended", it's "required". You have to solve his puzzle to get the answer for this piggy back cache listing puzzle. There's no additional puzzle, but my understanding. Solve his, and you solve two caches, one of which is A-Team's, and the other is not. It's published without permission, so not even a condoned daisy chain. It's another thing if that other CO had copied the puzzle and run it as their own with their own resources. But it sounds to me like the listing just basically says "Go solve the puzzle for GCXXXX and enter the solution in this geochecker."  That's not a puzzle cache.

It definitely is a puzzle cache. :D

It is not daisy chaining because you do not have to find the another cache at all.

It is not a copyright infringement if nothing is copied from the original description. This kind of link is not a copyright infringement even the material is copyrighted.

Why CO shoud worry, if the puzzle is meant to be solved by anyone? And if not, what options CO have to prevent this?

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Yep, that's the question. It is technically a puzzle cache. It's not daisy chaining, as we agree, and I don't think anyone said it's copyright infringement. But it's abusive (just like GS deplores website scraping and apps that do it for geocaching data, but they can't stop it by the nature of the internet).  So the question is - does Groundspeak willingly allow a CO to skimp off another CO's listing without permission, especially if the target CO uses their own resources to provide the listing content?  That judgement might open a can of worms with a potential wide variety of implementations, making it another subjective reviewer judgement call... =/

Edited by thebruce0

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43 minutes ago, arisoft said:

How about THIS?

 

There's one just outside our "cachingday radius" but it looks fun. Selected it in GSAK in case we get to that area on a (long) weekend outing.

I've been looking on and off at a cache with 100 checkers where after answering the first question the checker gives question #2, that checker shows #3... to 100... these are the things that keep us busy during winter.

 

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12 minutes ago, thebruce0 said:

So the question is - does Groundspeak willingly allow a CO to skimp off another CO's listing without permission, especially if the target CO uses their own resources to provide the listing content?  That judgement might open a can of worms with a potential wide variety of implementations, making it another subjective reviewer judgement call... =/

Cache descriptions are not the property of Groundspeak. We know that Groundspeak allows links to YouTube without owner's permission. Also links to geocaches are allowed as far as I know. The problem is not the link. This system is full of links to cache descriptions. You call it "abusive" but is it really the best word for this? If you publish something, it is not private anymore. One have legal right to abuse it if they do not harm anyone or break the law.

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39 minutes ago, arisoft said:

Cache descriptions are not the property of Groundspeak. We know that Groundspeak allows links to YouTube without owner's permission. Also links to geocaches are allowed as far as I know. The problem is not the link. This system is full of links to cache descriptions. You call it "abusive" but is it really the best word for this? If you publish something, it is not private anymore. One have legal right to abuse it if they do not harm anyone or break the law.

No, that isn't how it works. As per the Terms of Use:

Quote

3.-B. Others’ Content and Products. Our services display content that does not belong to Groundspeak. Except as part our services, you may not use third party content from our services unless you have our permission, obtain the permission of the content owner or are otherwise permitted by law.
...
3.-C. Your Content. All content you submit through our services remains yours

 

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2 hours ago, thebruce0 said:

You could contact the publishing reviewer and ask if it was ok'd in the current state, and if it's possible to have it disabled and 'fixed' so as to no longer reference yours. hm.

I did contact the reviewer, and their response said that they're looking into the matter. The CO has already archived the cache.

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38 minutes ago, arisoft said:

Cache descriptions are not the property of Groundspeak. We know that Groundspeak allows links to YouTube without owner's permission. Also links to geocaches are allowed as far as I know. The problem is not the link. This system is full of links to cache descriptions. You call it "abusive" but is it really the best word for this? If you publish something, it is not private anymore. One have legal right to abuse it if they do not harm anyone or break the law.

Let me clarify.

Just as some apps scrape the geocaching.com website to get data without the behest of Groundspeak and without using the API they intend people to use, so also is the cache A-Team describes directing people to resources that he uses to provide a puzzle he intended to be used only by visitors to his cache listing. That CO is directing more people to make use of resources he pays for, without his behest. So yes, while the descriptions are not property of Groundspeak, if his listing makes use of internet resources outside of gc.com, then there's extra strain on his resources for a use that he didn't intend.  While there's technically nothing he can do about it, Groundspeak can surely understand the concern, especially if the CO in question is merely telling people to solve his puzzle in order to find this otherwise completely unrelated cache.

It's abusive (of his own paid resources) in the same way as scraping gc.com without their permission is abusive of Groundspeak resources. That's the context. All legally permittable, but is it right? Is it ethical? Is it good form? Is it something Groundspeak should allow? That's the question.  If they do, then A-Team's only effective action is to move his puzzle off his own resources.

Youtube is a major 3rd party resource. Pointing to someone else's youtube video wouldn't be an abuse of a CO's personal resources since the CO isn't paying to provide that content. And actually in the case of YT, it may be doing that CO a favour if the video is monetized :P

But were that CO, for example, offering the video off their own hosting plan for their puzzle which might get a handful of visitors a week - a planned bandwidth cost - and some other CO in another country links his puzzle to that one but they attract hundreds of visitors a week, then suddenly the first CO is paying through the nose for bandwidth they did not expect nor, really, desire. They're forced into an action they wouldn't otherwise want to take (whether moving the content, or outright archiving the listing).

But we can come up with loads of examples of various ways one listing can 'piggy back' off another, which is why this could be opening a can of worms were Groundspeak to make a simple ruling. That, or it could be that simple.

 

10 minutes ago, The A-Team said:

I did contact the reviewer, and their response said that they're looking into the matter. The CO has already archived the cache.

Neat!

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9 minutes ago, thebruce0 said:

All legally permittable, but is it right? Is it ethical? Is it good form? Is it something Groundspeak should allow? That's the question.

If it turns out that I'm completely wrong and cachers can use other listings in the way I've described, then so be it. I wouldn't be thrilled and would have to think carefully about my listings in the future, but I wouldn't leave the game or anything drastic like that. It then comes down to not whether someone can do it, but should they do it? Even if you're allowed to do it, it would still be highly preferred to get the other cacher's permission before doing so.

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40 minutes ago, The A-Team said:

Except as part our services, you may not use third party content from our services unless you have our permission, obtain the permission of the content owner or are otherwise permitted by law.

Content ≠ Link

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1 hour ago, The A-Team said:

Even if you're allowed to do it, it would still be highly preferred to get the other cacher's permission before doing so.

That is right. One of my own mystery cache is used by an another mystery same way as you described earlier. The owner asked my permision. Using this kind of volatile information from 3rd source without agreement is hazardous because the solution can change without warning.

What I do not understand clearly, is the point when your tolerance has been exceeded.

Do you mind if someone put a link to your mystery in a blog or cache log?

Or is it worse if the link is inside cache description?

How about if the author recommends your cache generally or only asks to solve your mystery?

Maybe everything is ok, until the author check somehow that they have solved your mystery?

Edited by arisoft

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Thanks guys for all the answers! 

If I intended to use another mystery for my mystery (as it is done in the Master of Mystery series: Solve first mystery, get info about the second mystery to solve, solve second, and so on), I would respect if an owners does not want his or hers included in my cache. I thought that would be obvious, that is why I did not mention it.

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9 hours ago, thebruce0 said:

Youtube is a major 3rd party resource. Pointing to someone else's youtube video wouldn't be an abuse of a CO's personal resources since the CO isn't paying to provide that content. And actually in the case of YT, it may be doing that CO a favour if the video is monetized :P

The A-Team could put ads on his puzzle site and then he would benefit from the linking as well <_<

But yes, I agree asking would have been the best from the CO.

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10 hours ago, Team On said:

If I intended to use another mystery for my mystery (as it is done in the Master of Mystery series: Solve first mystery, get info about the second mystery to solve, solve second, and so on), I would respect if an owners does not want his or hers included in my cache. I thought that would be obvious, that is why I did not mention it.

Yeah, I'd err on the side of caution and etiquette - if using someone else's cache stuff for your own cache, check with them first. :)

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I've, uh, borrowed puzzle cache ideas from others in the past.  But I wouldn't use someone else's puzzle software without clearing it with them first.

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20 hours ago, arisoft said:

What I do not understand clearly, is the point when your tolerance has been exceeded.

Do you mind if someone put a link to your mystery in a blog or cache log?

I wouldn't mind, but I'd prefer that they let me know in case it would cause a significant increase in the number of people solving my puzzle and therefore traffic to my website.

Quote

Or is it worse if the link is inside cache description?

Same as above.

Quote

How about if the author recommends your cache generally or only asks to solve your mystery?

Same as above, however if it's just a single person wanting to solve it, they don't need to ask me.

Quote

Maybe everything is ok, until the author check somehow that they have solved your mystery?

Sorry, I'm not quite sure what you mean here.


I'll try to summarize why I was angry with what happened:

I devised and constructed a puzzle of my own invention. It was not based on any other puzzle that I'm aware of. I host this puzzle on a web server service that I pay for. Another cacher came along and submitted a mystery listing. Their listing didn't contain a puzzle at all, but rather simply linked to my listing and used the solution from my puzzle to get cachers a solution for their cache. The work of creating the puzzle was all done by me. They then "piggy-backed" on my work without my permission, also creating increased traffic to my website that I wasn't expecting. Does that better explain things?

In all honesty, if they had simply asked for my permission to do what they did, I probably would have gladly given them my approval. However, they did it without letting me know, which is where I feel they crossed the line. Just because something is available online does not necessarily mean that it's there for anyone to use in any way they wish.

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3 hours ago, The A-Team said:

I devised and constructed a puzzle of my own invention. It was not based on any other puzzle that I'm aware of. I host this puzzle on a web server service that I pay for. Another cacher came along and submitted a mystery listing. Their listing didn't contain a puzzle at all, but rather simply linked to my listing and used the solution from my puzzle to get cachers a solution for their cache. The work of creating the puzzle was all done by me. They then "piggy-backed" on my work without my permission, also creating increased traffic to my website that I wasn't expecting. Does that better explain things?

When thinking about this, I remembered challenges. Challenges does the same to physical caches without asking any permission from CO and then you see Found it logs telling only that some challenge needed this cache and that's it.

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6 hours ago, arisoft said:

When thinking about this, I remembered challenges. Challenges does the same to physical caches without asking any permission from CO and then you see Found it logs telling only that some challenge needed this cache and that's it.

That's a completely different situation that's not relevant to The A-Team's point.

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3 hours ago, MartyBartfast said:

That's a completely different situation that's not relevant to The A-Team's point.

Situation is different but relevancy is not too far because challenges sometimes raise the very same issues.

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7 hours ago, arisoft said:

Situation is different but relevancy is not too far because challenges sometimes raise the very same issues.

The only relevance is if the property owner cares about the amount of traffic around a cache that was relatively quiet before a challenge was released that now has the cache as the target for hundreds of geocachers.

Now think about The A-Team as that property owner, with crowds of geocachers trampling over his resources without his prior knowledge or consent.

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20 hours ago, arisoft said:

When thinking about this, I remembered challenges. Challenges does the same to physical caches without asking any permission from CO and then you see Found it logs telling only that some challenge needed this cache and that's it.

I feel that way when my caches get used as a tool to qualify for someone's challenge cache.  Not quite the same thing as what has happened to the A Team but a similar feeling. My caches which I put a lot of work into and created themed handcarved stamps for each, end up mostly valued as pawns to attract people to someone's more favored (mostly neglected) bison tube on a tree. I have no say in the matter. My only recourse is to archive my caches if it bothers me enough. Which I have done with most of my non-trads. I got tired of all the logs saying, thanks for the non-trad, I now qualify for xxx's 10-10-10 challenge. 

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3 hours ago, thebruce0 said:

The only relevance is if the property owner cares about the amount of traffic around a cache that was relatively quiet before a challenge was released that now has the cache as the target for hundreds of geocachers.

Yes ... you got it right. In either case, the real problem seems to be unsolicited traffic - not a complicated legal or contractual problem.

Edited by arisoft

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On 1/12/2018 at 6:01 PM, arisoft said:

Yes ... you got it right. In either case, the real problem seems to be unsolicited traffic - not a complicated legal or contractual problem.

I don't think anyone said there was a legal problem. Closest was referring to the TOU, or what Groundspeak could do to assuage the issue. No one claimed a copyright or trademark infringement was the problem.

But I wonder if claiming a creative commons license type could be used as a means to actually stop that kind of uncondoned use... the created content hosted on your own resources could be made to only be used with permission. Someone else making use of it could be forced to not use it (though out of GS's hands), indirectly saving your own resources. hm. But IANAL. :P

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2 hours ago, thebruce0 said:

But I wonder if claiming a creative commons license type could be used as a means to actually stop that kind of uncondoned use... the created content hosted on your own resources could be made to only be used with permission. Someone else making use of it could be forced to not use it (though out of GS's hands), indirectly saving your own resources. hm. But IANAL.

In The A-Teams's case no content was actually used. The CO just gave link to another cache and only checked the answer. It is like asking someone to read a specific book and then asking some question to check that the book was read. What do the author of the book think when someone is "abusing" the book this way? :o Next time you think about using a book in your mystery cache, don't forget to ask permission. :D

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