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TriciaG

Map of Cache Publishing Policies

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Posted (edited)

This is cool:
(Edit to add: The image is a link.)

EDIT2 April 22: Updated links:

EDIT3 May 6: Updated links again:

North America: https://www.tephra.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/NorthAmerica.png

Europe: https://www.tephra.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Europe.png

World: https://www.tephra.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/RestOfTheWorld.png

Edited by TriciaG
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That is cool.  :)    I guess Utah has that funny argyle sock-like pattern because there's no policies in the wiki ?

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You guessed wrong.  See the map legend.  Utah is "might publish events, publishing caches."

 

This map is independent of anything which may (or may not) be published in the Regional Geocaching Policies Wiki.

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There's nothing to indicate this, but is this map intended to  represent publishing policies during the pandemic? 

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Yes.  Typically, the map has been presented in a local social media group with an explanation from a local Community Volunteer Reviewer.

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2 hours ago, Keystone said:

You guessed wrong.  See the map legend.  Utah is "might publish events, publishing caches."

 

Thanks.  Zoomed in so I could see it, and completely missed that.     :)

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Looks like a map for the "new" Jasmer.  No longer is Aug-2000 the iconic find.  It will be Apr-2020.

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6 hours ago, BG2015 said:

Looks like a map for the "new" Jasmer.  No longer is Aug-2000 the iconic find.  It will be Apr-2020.

I guess it depends on where you are, but there were 19 new caches published near me last week. I have to travel several hundred miles for August 2000.

 

It seems this hobby is all about location.

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8 hours ago, BG2015 said:

Looks like a map for the "new" Jasmer.  No longer is Aug-2000 the iconic find.  It will be Apr-2020.

Jasmer uses the date the cache was placed, not when it was published. So there shouldn't be a problem with finding Apr-2020 caches. :)

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What's odd is that Colorado is red.  We hope to be partially released from limbo on the 26th of this month, and caches have been published as recently as 3/24/20. 

 

All along we've been allowed outdoor exercise (incl hiking & etc) provided we keep a proper distance from anyone we might run across along the way.  Per the Gov's order, such outdoor activity is considered 'essential' as is travel to anything 'essential'.  That's a good bit less restrictive than some states, but we got a month of reviewer lock down for publication.

 

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6 hours ago, ecanderson said:

What's odd is that Colorado is red.  We hope to be partially released from limbo on the 26th of this month, and caches have been published as recently as 3/24/20. 

 

All along we've been allowed outdoor exercise (incl hiking & etc) provided we keep a proper distance from anyone we might run across along the way.  Per the Gov's order, such outdoor activity is considered 'essential' as is travel to anything 'essential'.  That's a good bit less restrictive than some states, but we got a month of reviewer lock down for publication.

 

Same for NY - wear masks if you can't stay away from non-household members.  In Erie County outdoor exercise is encouraged as it is essential.  Driving to essential activities is also permitted.  Granted that our governor has declared nonessential stuff to be closed until mid May, so we're still not out of the woods.

I was still surprised to see cache publication suspended for our entire state.

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Posted (edited)

If I was in a state where the deaths numbered in the hundreds and a cumulative plot of new cases still looked kinda like an ice-hockey stick I really can't imagine being puzzled by reviewers being reluctant to publish new caches.

I can more easily imagine muttering "thank goodness our local geocaching reviewers are such sensible folk" or similar.

 

 

Edited by BendSinister
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The thing about NY state is that it's a big state: there's NYC and then there's the rest of the state.  We're closer to Cleveland and Pittsburgh than we are to NYC.  (But a regional approach based on proximity to NYC would cause no caches in NE PA to be published.)

That's why I was surprised to see this applied at the entire state level - I never said I was surprised that caches in some areas weren't being published or that I disagreed with the decision.  But I suppose the line needs to be drawn somewhere and "state" as a unit is a pretty good one.

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26 minutes ago, GO Geiger said:

The thing about NY state is that it's a big state: there's NYC and then there's the rest of the state.  We're closer to Cleveland and Pittsburgh than we are to NYC.  (But a regional approach based on proximity to NYC would cause no caches in NE PA to be published.)

That's why I was surprised to see this applied at the entire state level - I never said I was surprised that caches in some areas weren't being published or that I disagreed with the decision.  But I suppose the line needs to be drawn somewhere and "state" as a unit is a pretty good one.

I live in between you and NYC.   I'm about 3 hours from Buffalo and 4.5 hours from NYC.  We're close enough to NYC that we get visitors for a weekend getaway and as a owner of a house on AirBnB (and manager of another) we've seen a lot of request from people from NYC to rent the house here for a month.  The line is pretty fuzzy.  I've got a spreadsheet where I've been keeping track for testing results, including those that are hospitalized, and unfortunately, deaths.  There has only been two deaths at the hospital in our county.  Both were people from NYC that were transferred here. 

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The challenges with getting more granular than statewide involve (1) where to draw the line, and (2) technical limitations with how the new cache review process is set up.

 

The review queue is organized by country and then by state/region/province.  Once a reviewer looks at the queue for the desired filtered region(s) then it's also possible to filter by coordinates.  In regions with more than one reviewer, some teams divide their "territory borders" by latitude and longitude.  This includes New York and its neighbor, Pennsylvania, where I am one of the reviewers.  My portion of Pennsylvania is everything south of N81 degrees and everything west of W077 degrees.

 

The first problem is, the virus does not respect latitude and longitude boundaries.  It is not easy to draw an arbitrary line and tell a cache owner that their cache to the west of that line can be published, but the cache east of that line is too close to a major city with thousands of COVID-19 cases.  Where would that line be in New York State?  50 miles west of NYC or 100 miles?

 

What about publishing/not publishing new caches based on what county they are in?  There are good mapping sites available to indicate the number/percentage of COVID-19 cases per county.  A rule could be constructed saying that caches could be published in a white, yellow or light orange county, but not in a dark orange, red or black county.  The problem with that is Geocaching.com does not have data fields for counties or for current COVID-19 statistics.  In the early days of "Stay at Home" orders, Pennsylvania added counties to the covered list one or two at a time.  The reviewers tried to keep up with this, limiting cache publications in counties subject to the "Stay at Home" order.  It was a bit of extra work when one's review territory includes dozens of counties.  When the order became effective statewide, the reviewers were quite relieved.

 

Based on the above, it makes sense for Reviewers to adopt cache publication practices on a statewide level.

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To go along with @Keystone's post, most of the states have been issuing policies at the state level, though some have been issuing at the county level.  Reviewers are also typically allocated by state, though some (like Keystone) have carved up portions of states.  But we don't operate in a vacuum.

 

If we had to do this by county, it would make things very difficult.  OK, easy enough for Arizona, since there are only 13 in the state (the smaller ones are about the size of Connecticut).  But in the United States overall, we'd have 3,143 different sets of rules to worry about, not including territories.  For my 10-state area, I'd have 887 different policies to contend with.

 

The whole intent is to try to be transparent, ensure consistency, and ensure compliance with restrictions.  We have all been trying our best to keep caches flowing when and where we can.  In some places, that's just not possible given restrictions in place.

 

We're all cachers as well as volunteer reviewers, and we're all looking forward to not having to deal with these restrictions, both on the reviewing side and as geocachers.  For now, we ask your patience.

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Still wondering what the plan is here in Colorado.  Posted over in the West/Southwest to see if the reviewer was reading/responding, but no reply as yet.

Hoping he knows what our actual status is at the moment, and what's anticipated for April 26.

 

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Hooray for Georgia.
Where some people are even publishing new teamwork caches.

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4 hours ago, ecanderson said:

Still wondering what the plan is here in Colorado.  Posted over in the West/Southwest to see if the reviewer was reading/responding, but no reply as yet.

 

I'd guess that a majority of the Reviewers do not monitor their country or regional forum due to low activity.

Colorado is indicated in Red on the above map.  Currently, no caches are being published there.  I can confirm that the Colorado Reviewer is very aware of the transition on 4/27 from "Stay at Home" to "Safer at Home" status in that State.

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Very good.  Appreciate the update.

Local public golf courses here in Longmont open tomorrow!  No driving range, though, so we're invoking 1st tee Mulligan rules!

 

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3 hours ago, HoochDog said:

Hooray for Georgia.
Where some people are even publishing new teamwork caches.

Boo Georgia.

They're in the news today because the governer is planning on reopening businesses before any other state  (Georgia was also one of the last to shut things down) despite the fact that medical experts and the mayors of some Georgia cities (including Atlanta) oppose the idea.  I just hope that the decisions doesn't lead to a significant outbreak in the virus in the state but the virus knows no political borders.  

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That said, I could sure use a haircut.  Looks like THAT will be a while coming.

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1 hour ago, ecanderson said:

That said, I could sure use a haircut.  Looks like THAT will be a while coming.

 

Capture.JPG

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Posted (edited)

They've updated the links!

North America: https://s3.amazonaws.com/gs-forums-rev/monthly_2020_04/Northamerica_13.png.ead7612db38e94755aeb270fbc4e1f6a.png

Europe: https://s3.amazonaws.com/gs-forums-rev/monthly_2020_04/Europe_8.thumb.png.c649b0d373404509fc9eb415a94d12cd.png

 

ETA: Doesn't look like any of the data changed, but the views of Europe and N.A. are nicer.

Edited by TriciaG

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15 hours ago, NYPaddleCacher said:

Boo Georgia.

They're in the news today because the governer is planning on reopening businesses before any other state  (Georgia was also one of the last to shut things down) despite the fact that medical experts and the mayors of some Georgia cities (including Atlanta) oppose the idea.  I just hope that the decisions doesn't lead to a significant outbreak in the virus in the state but the virus knows no political borders.  

 

I was strictly referring to the state of geocaching, not the state of politics.  I could fire off a well-reasoned rebuttal, but I think most of us would like to keep politics out of our hobby...  Thank you.  

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14 hours ago, TriciaG said:

They've updated the links!

North America: https://s3.amazonaws.com/gs-forums-rev/monthly_2020_04/Northamerica_13.png.ead7612db38e94755aeb270fbc4e1f6a.png

Europe: https://s3.amazonaws.com/gs-forums-rev/monthly_2020_04/Europe_8.thumb.png.c649b0d373404509fc9eb415a94d12cd.png

 

ETA: Doesn't look like any of the data changed, but the views of Europe and N.A. are nicer.

 

New Jersey moved from "yellow" to "red" - no new caches are being published there, as of a couple days ago.

 

There could be other changes, but that's one I had personal awareness about.

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2 hours ago, HoochDog said:

 

I was strictly referring to the state of geocaching, not the state of politics.  I could fire off a well-reasoned rebuttal, but I think most of us would like to keep politics out of our hobby...  Thank you.  

Way too late for that.

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I can't get the posted links of the maps to show up?  Help?

 

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The  tephra.ca site itself is timing out at the moment.  Not even  www.tephra.ca brings up a page.

 

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It's up and running again.  Wyoming with NO cache publications?  Is the map right???  They're in much better shape than most states.  Even the Cheyenne Great Clips shops are open already :mellow:

 

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Caches are indeed being published in Wyoming.  The map is updated regularly, but not in real time.

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