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TerraViators

Great Story and Helpful Log Options

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I noticed there are 'Great Story' and 'Helpful' option to select in e-logs.  There is also a sort menu - sortable by newest, oldest or best story.  I really like the idea.  I'm hoping it will encourage geocachers to write better stories.  When was this feature implemented?

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Posted (edited)

Check out the other thread to see the comments on this feature.

 

 

Edited by Max and 99
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On 10/8/2018 at 5:53 AM, TerraViators said:

When was this feature implemented?

 

I thought this was still in beta, first tested in Norway and currently being tested in Canada.  Did you see it on a Norwegian or Canadian cache, or somewhere else?

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I love this idea. Similar to reputation points in the forum.

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After much consideration, as attractive as this initiative sounds, I think I'm against it.

 

My concern is that people will naturally set their preference to "GREAT STORY FIRST" or whatever instead of the current chronological order.

 

Therefore, the funny ones among us will get their logs read, and everyone else will have their logs pushed down into obscurity.

 

Now, I'm told I write amusing logs, so mine might float, but that's not fair. My log shouldn't have any more prominence that the one that says, "Thanks for the cache - I had a great time introducing my kid to his first caching experience. Here's what he liked about it....". Probably, no one will up-vote THAT log, but it expresses the kind of information that Geocaching has always celebrated!

 

Also, things like:

  • "TFTC - Watch out for bees!"
  • "Log is moldy. I replaced it."

 

Current, recent information is frequently IMPORTANT! The ability to sort logs, especially as a settable default will relegate many cachers to IMMEDIATE oblivion.

 

So, I feel that this might just have the opposite of the intended effect; to make many people simply write "TFTC" because they know that they're not good enough to be seen.

 

Some more reasons:

  • The 'up-voting' will be done by the cache-reading public. If my humor doesn't match the tastes of the local college kids, for example, I don't stand a chance of getting any buoyancy.
  • Even if it's not humor-based (and it will be in many places) What I think is important may not be what others think is important, and others will get to down-vote me (by not up-voting me).
  • I cache alone, or with my wife. Despite my caching name, I have no 'team' or bunch of caching buddies. However, in my area, there are several groups that hang out together, hide together, search together, etc., and OF COURSE people will up-vote their buddy's stuff. I tried running for Class President in school once, WITHOUT the crowd of friends. I don't want to be back there.

 

This turns log-writing into a competition, and I don't need another damned competition in my life, especially in my relaxing hobby.

 

The worst part of THAT point is that it's a competition that YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO OPT OUT OF!

 

Even if YOU don't up-vote any logs, and don't care about that feature, YOUR logs will be playing the game, and losing.

 

Yup - the more I think about it, this feature is antithetical to the basic community nature of our hobby. It's a way to hold up the shiny stuff for adoration, and everyone else falls by the wayside.

 

Even though it ain't perfect, "TIME" should the only discriminating factor that fades logs.

 

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I've always felt a little bad when I write a creative log anyway on a BUSY cache, because I know that very soon, very few people will ever read my work.  Of course, my #1 target audience is the CO, but the general caching crowd is a CLOSE #2.

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So, let's say a cache gets published in January of 2019.

 

The FTF and his or her two buddies writes logs, and each up-votes the other's.

 

Five years later, a thousand people have found it and written logs, which no one up-voted.

 

Guess who's still at the top?

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1 hour ago, TeamRabbitRun said:

So, let's say a cache gets published in January of 2019.

 

The FTF and his or her two buddies writes logs, and each up-votes the other's.

 

Five years later, a thousand people have found it and written logs, which no one up-voted.

 

Guess who's still at the top?

 

1. Mostly I read logs because I want to see what's been going on with the cache recently (both mine and ones I'm searching for), not years ago, so my default order will be most recent first.

2. Sometimes I read logs on caches I'm searching for to see if there's any extra hint, in those cases I  might sort by "Most Helpfull" to see if I can glean anything.

3. If I want to read a great story I'll get out a book, not go reading cache logs, so I can't see me ever sorting by "Great Story" (for that reason I don't see much point in that classiication).

 

I'm unlikely to ever read your (or anyone elses) logs unless they are in the first two categories.

 

If others choose to sort logs another way then I really don't care, and I don't see why anyone should be  fretting about how others choose to order their logs.

 

To be honest I really didn't expect such stringent opposition to the idea and I just can't understand it.

 

 

Edited by MartyBartfast
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3 minutes ago, MartyBartfast said:

 

I'm unlikely to ever read your (or anyone elses) logs unless they are in the first two categories.

 

If others choose to sort logs another way then I really don't care, and I don't see why anyone should be  fretting about how others choose to order their logs.

 

To be honest I really didn't expect such stringent opposition to the idea and I just can't understand it.

 

 

 

Well, I thought I laid out my point of view pretty clearly. I do care about that.

You explained how and why it wouldn't matter to your own caching experience because you wouldn't sort by "Great Story", but my concern is also for the general state of and trends in the hobby, and the seemingly inevitable march toward Social Media, of which I am not in favor.

 

OF COURSE newer cachers would take advantage of the sorting options. Just signing on, who wouldn't?

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13 hours ago, TeamRabbitRun said:

So, I feel that this might just have the opposite of the intended effect; to make many people simply write "TFTC" because they know that they're not good enough to be seen.

 

Majority won't care about the upvoting system at all. Others already write descriptive logs about how they liked a specific cache, what happened on their way to find it etc. (like me) and I am not going to stop whether or not my logs get upvoted. I write them for the CO and for me as well to be able to enjoy my past adventures again while reading my old logs.

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15 hours ago, TeamRabbitRun said:

Current, recent information is frequently IMPORTANT! The ability to sort logs, especially as a settable default will relegate many cachers to IMMEDIATE oblivion.

 

 

 

Even though it ain't perfect, "TIME" should the only discriminating factor that fades logs.

 

Just remove the sorting portion of it, problem solved. People get to leave a "helpful / good story" tag, but unloved logs don't get pushed to the bottom. Like the reputation points on this forum, as opposed to the upvote model on Reddit.

 

I stopped playing for about a year, and came back to the game this summer. After I wrote my logs from last week, a few days later I thought, "I wonder if anyone liked my log or found anything helpful in it, or if the CO has seen it?"

I'm so used to Facebook and other forums that it was second nature to want to circle back and see (realizing that I have that little tug now, is a *whole other* psychology thread...) 

"Oh, yeah", I thought, "it just goes into the void. I don't even know if the CO even ever sees it. That's kinda too bad." I think "helpful / good" tags would encourage thoughtful logs. 

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3 hours ago, nericksx said:

 

Just remove the sorting portion of it, problem solved. People get to leave a "helpful / good story" tag, but unloved logs don't get pushed to the bottom. Like the reputation points on this forum, as opposed to the upvote model on Reddit.

<...>

 

I could go with that.

 

I think part of the initial concept was to include the ability to designate your viewing options, and that IS the part I guess I object to most strongly.

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Yikes, it seems this test is spreading.  Besides the way it looks on the cache page, there are multiple reasons that I don't like the new feature - reasons that I think are reasonable.  I think people like the 'idea' of these log indicators, but the feature should be judged after thinking about how it would actually be used.

 

Instead of rearranging logs on a cache page, then just have the counter and maybe have a page on the website where logs that have a lot of points are displayed, across all caches. They will get more eyes on them that way.  Cachers might see a log that gets them interested in a cache they wouldn't have looked at previously and cachers will get ideas of how to write 'great story' logs from a wider range of cachers than in their local area.

 

Quote

I'm concerned about how it's being tested.  From what I can tell, the 'helpful and 'great story' options are only available when viewing cache logs on the website.  If not available in the app, then the test is only in regards to cachers that read logs on the website.

 

Many cachers only refer to previous logs while they are searching for the cache, which means they are looking at the cache logs in an app or GPSr. They are not able to 'upvote' previous logs using those devices. So, they search for caches, then submit their logs. How many of those cachers are then going to open the cache page on the website just to flag the previous logs that they read during their search?  Wouldn't someone need to find the actual cache to judge whether a log was "helpful" or not?

On 6/16/2018 at 11:48 PM, noncentric said:

Will a cacher's selection of "Newest", "Best story", or "Most helpful" be sticky?

 -- If not, then certainly come cachers will complain and want their selection to be sticky, since they don't want to have to re-select "Most helpful" every time they look at a cache page.

 -- If yes, then it's certainly possible that cachers could miss recent DNF's and/or changes to the cache hide.  For example, a cache might have 3 DNF's in the past week, but they were not flagged as "Helpful" as much as the older "Found It" logs from last month. The cacher will not see that the cache has a string of DNF's.  Another example, the CO might've adjusted the hide two weeks ago - a log from one week ago mentions the new hide and gets 1 Helpful vote, but logs from last month that mentioned the old hide got 5 Helpful votes - a cacher that sorts by "Most helpful" will see last month's logs that don't apply to the current hide.  These examples are problematic whether the selection is sticky or not.  At least, if the selection is not sticky, then maybe the cacher will see the recent DNF's before selecting "Most helpful" and ending up with a not-so-helpful view.

On 6/17/2018 at 10:05 PM, noncentric said:

The problem with trying to treat cache logs like product reviews, where 'helpful' is actually helpful, is that product reviews are for a static product that doesn't change over time the way caches do.

 

For example, someone reviews a particular phone like an iPhone 7. Those reviews are for that specific phone model, which doesn't substantially change over time. When the phone gets an upgrade, then it's a different model, like an iPhone 8. That upgraded product would then have a separate page with different reviews that are relevant for that upgraded phone model.

 

Cache logs are only helpful if the cache doesn't change. As long as the cache is always hidden the same way and never goes missing, then previous cache logs are accurate. But caches change over time, so the best way to present cache logs are chronologically.

 

If cachers really, really, really want to have logs 'judged' - then maybe add a 'helpful'/'good story' counter to the log, but don't change the order of the logs because cachers need to see the sequential activity of the cache.

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noncentric makes a good point regarding helpful logs, that they should be sorted in date order, newest to oldest. Great story logs can be sorted by count (I don't really care, I probably would not use a great story filter.)

 

Back to helpful logs, IMO the count can be displayed, but should not be used for the sort order. And, I'll go back to my suggestion, there are a number of log types that should automatically be considered helpful. All of the status type log entries (NM, NA, OM, Reviewer Note, HQ Note, etc.) should automatically be consider helpful. Without them included, the filter is simply a 'spoilers that may still be valid, I have more research to do' filter. With them included as helpful logs, I can see that the old log that 10 people found helpful because it suggested updated coordinates has been rendered moot because the CO moved the cache afterwords. If the sort order is based on date, I start with the most recent, and review up until I get to the log that shows the cache was moved. No sense in continuing, the cache has changed. This would partially address noncentric's point that "Cache logs are only helpful if the cache doesn't change."

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