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My response to accusations


Guest jeremy
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Guest jeremy

ks that I should have better defended my position. So here goes...

 

I think people are having difficult looking at the forest through the trees. I want to make some points here. Afterwards any further postings by me will cease on this subject.

 

Regardless of the legal ins and outs of Geocaching, the coordinates posted to the web site were voluntarily sent to Geocaching.com. I am given permission by the geocacher to post these coordinates on the Geocaching.com site. It is my role, duty and responsibility to protect this data with which I have been entrusted, and allow the owner of the cache the ability to modify, update, and archive that cache on the site.

 

You the web surfer, are obligated to agree to the disclaimer whenever you view a web page on the site. It reads -

 

"To use the services of geocaching.com, you must agree to the terms and conditions in our disclaimer"

 

Part of the disclaimer protects Grounded, Inc (Geocaching.com) from content theft. What is content theft? Creating a program that downloads the contents of the Geocaching.com database and creating your own web site with this data. Regardless of Copyright violations, in exchange for the use of the services provided by Grounded, Inc. a/k/a Geocaching.com, you agree to

comply.

 

Why do I care? I take a serious approach to the requests of all geocachers. I respect their need for privacy, and their requests. In the past I have had issues with archived caches, and have had previous experience with Ed Hall's lack of respect for removing lost caches from his site. That's why I took

the hardline approach in his case. In addition, if there are multiple databases concerning identical caches, then the data may become corrupted or outdated without anyone even becoming aware of it. Gradually, the integrity of the data and locations, contents, etc., of all geocaches would become compromised. I consider it my

responsibility and that of all other geocachers' to ensure that this does not happen.

 

Does this mean you can't use the data? Of course not! You have the right to take the data and do whatever you want with it, using a personal mapping program, downloading it to your GPS, playing with the data in ArcInfo or some other sophisticated mapping program. In fact I'm working with Topografix to provide a way for you to download caches from the site. Once it is complete (and soon, as we're finalizing some work), you'll be able to visit the web site, log in, and click on a button to download the data.

 

However, you do not have and never will have the right to post this collection of data on your web site, without the written permission of Grounded, Inc.

 

I've seen a lot of emails of people who are frustrated why I don't let them help me with the work I've been doing on the web site. I receive a lot of requests by companies who have developers interested in helping me with the web site, as well as individual geocachers that want to me more involved.

The reason why I turn down these requests can be explained in my "relationship" with the Ed Hall maps. The assistance of someone can be considered work done for me, and as a result I (well, Grounded, Inc.) can be responsible to give some sort of compensation for that work done. Maybe less

so for individuals, but as a whole I maintain this standoffish approach to protect Grounded, Inc. from any lawsuits.

 

As for cache owners, you always have the rights to your own caches. When Geocaching.com claims ownership for the contents posted on the site, it doesn't mean you can't go to another site and post your cache coordinates and descriptions. Of course you can! It's your property. However in posting it to the site I have the role to protect this data, and I do so through the

legal contract and with copyrighting the site.

 

Like other folks have said, anyone can feel free to take the concept of hiding containers filled with goodies and posting them online, coin a new term, and create your own web site. People who post information on my web site can post it to yours. However, we will aggressively attempt to prevent any attempt to steal the data contained on the geocaching.com web site if it is being used to create other sites, without the express permission of each

and every cache owner that posts a cache to the web site. In that, I am solid in my resolve.

 

I have invested many hours and dollars to maintain the web site and offer the services it provides. I do this for the community of geocachers and will continue to do so as long as there are caches to be placed and found.

 

Jeremy

 

(Edited it due to spacing issues)

 

[This message has been edited by jeremy (edited 01 June 2001).]

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Guest Nemesis

Well said Jeremy! Now that everyone knows where they stand, we can all now get back to the game and enjoy it. icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cheers,

Donovan Govan.

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Guest Nemesis

Well said Jeremy! Now that everyone knows where they stand, we can all now get back to the game and enjoy it. icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cheers,

Donovan Govan.

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Guest Scout

goodies and posting them online, coin a new

term, and create your own web site.


 

"Coin a new term?" Does this mean that you are laying claim to a copyright

or trademark for the word geocaching? Is that somehow in protection of the

privacy and trust of people who submit information to your site, too?

 

quote:

I have invested many hours and dollars to maintain the web site and offer

the services it provides. I do this for the community of geocachers and

will continue to do so as long as there are caches to be placed and found.


 

Will you continue to allow free access forever? Or, when you can no longer

continue to afford such free access, commit to seeking out someone that you

can donate it to, who can continue to make that commitment to the community

of geocachers?

 

[This message has been edited by Scout (edited 01 June 2001).]

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Guest Farqhuarson

quote:
Originally posted by Nemesis:

we can all now get back to the game and enjoy it. icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cheers,

Donovan Govan.


 

i have yet to understand this, although it has been said several times. i was unaware that every geocacher on the planet came to a complete standstill while this argument was going on.

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Guest Farqhuarson

quote:
Originally posted by Nemesis:

we can all now get back to the game and enjoy it. icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cheers,

Donovan Govan.


 

i have yet to understand this, although it has been said several times. i was unaware that every geocacher on the planet came to a complete standstill while this argument was going on.

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Guest Farqhuarson

the reason he won't follow Yahoo, is because if he doesn't claim ownership now, and do what he can to establish that everything submitted to this site is his, when he does go commericial and starts offering geocaching.com as a fee based service, he will then have what he needs to defend himself at the outrage of all the cache's he will then have stole from the cache hiders.

 

much agreed about Ed Hall, how many people in that thread didn't want ed's maps back? How many were asking for them back, and these requests were from the very people that HIDE the caches and SUBMIT the data. and supposedly you can do whatever you want with your data right? he obviously doens't respect your wishes in regards to your caches that you ahve submitted to your site now. What makes you think he's going to repsect your wishes regarding your cache later?

 

as for volunteer assitance. considering that verbal agreements are legally binding, and email conversation agreeing to voluntary assistance with out the expectation of compensation would also be. So there really isnt any threat of someone coming back and suddenly demanding to get paid. Unless jeremy suddenly starts charging for services and starts using other peoples products that were supposed to be free to collect a fee? Anyone else feel that coming on? But oh yeah, he's only looking out for OUR best intrest. I guess i forgot about that.

 

"I have the role to protect this data, and I do so through

the legal contract and with copyrighting the site."

 

i agree with Scout that this finally admits that the data copyright was crap. and a "contract" as such that exists now on the submission page, as it did not exist before can't apply to all the cache's before since they were submitted without any such agreement. So pertaining to the data that Ed already has, this is still a hollow threat.

 

""Coin a new term?" Does this mean that you are laying claim to a copyright

or trademark for the word geocaching? Is that somehow in protection of the

privacy and trust of people who submit information to your site, too?"

 

oh no, it has never been about the people or community of geocachers. It's always been about protecting jeremy. Otherwise why would he have gone after Quinnow to remove the very word geocaching from his Navicache website? Was that in the intrest of spreading the word of geocaching? Of promoting the activity around the country? By trying to force out another website? Of course it wasn't about geocaching.

 

It has always been about jeremycaching. which is what he should have called his site. considering that's what he thinks this is.

 

(uh oh, ive used the term geocaching in this post, anyone want to lay odds on an email informing me that i'm going to get sued for copyright infringment?)

 

to paraphrase,

i'm not an a******, i just play one on geocaching.com

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Guest Iron Chef

quote:
Originally posted by jeremy:

Why do I care? I take a serious approach to the requests of all geocachers...In the past I have had issues with archived caches, and have had previous experience with Ed Hall's lack of respect for removing lost caches from his site. That's why I took

the hardline approach in his case.


 

Archived caches are still appearing on the maps that Mr. Irish has availiable (wasn't this one of the problems that you had with Buxley?). And there must be a problem with the plotting, because several caches are being displayed as being in the Pacific Ocean even though they arn't.

 

-Iron Chef

 

"Lets drive fast and eat cheese!" -Dick Soloman

 

[This message has been edited by Iron Chef (edited 01 June 2001).]

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Guest cache_ninja

ugh.

i dont see why people have to be so confrontational. its really good that jeremy has attempted to explain his intentions/actions. and well, generally speaking, it _is_ his web site and he can do what he wants with it. if you had put the time into all this that he had, maybe you'd feel differently about how things shoudl be run/done....

 

its really amazing to me how many people are posting on the forums and the lists with this well, sense of entitlement...so as to not risk stooping to your level, i'm not going to attempt to articulate what you all sound like.

 

jeremy seems to be flexible, and considering what people have been saying/asking for, i think running geocaching.com and making decisions concerning this whole venture based largely on the url takes some well thought out planning and decisions, perhaps it might take awhile for things to be changed/worked out. i dunno, people need to relax.

 

c/n

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Guest rediguana

der has the right to go and remove their cache, and place it elsewhere, and not submit the new location to geocaching.com. If they are really peeved, then they will not notify geocaching.com that the cache has been removed, and this would introduce questions about the integrity of the data in the geocaching.com database, when people go looking for non-existing and relocated caches.

 

Don't get too hung up about the caching data that Jeremy has. He has done a great job on this site and all credit to him. Don't assume though that if it goes commercial tomorrow that the cache-hiders will get screwed. The transition to a pay4play service would create a void which people would act to fill. I enjoy geocaching, but am I prepared to pay a subscription... only if it is a non-profit society aimed at meeting costs. And that involves a whole host of issues that from what I have read don't seem on the cards - think elected officals etc.

 

Geocaching.com does not maintain the physical caches, nor can they dictate conditions to the cache maintainer re: removal, relocation etc - not yet anyway. Same goes for exclusive listing. If you have a problem with what geocaching.com does with their version of your submitted data, you can always let the data grow old and whither in the database. It is not your problem to maintain it for them.

 

Cheers RedIguana

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Guest Exocet

Just to throw my two cents in...

 

I've said it before and I will say it again:

 

Jeremy has certain legal rights. He has chosen to accept them and to make sure that no one violates them.

 

As for everyone else here, you too have certain rights. You have the right not to post your cache(s) on geocaching.com and you have the right not to visit caches you find on geocaching.com. If you chose to ignore those "rights" then I don't really think you or anyone else has the right to complain.

 

A lot of people have gone off half-cocked, worried Jeremy is going to "own" their caches or worse yet, somehow add value-added services to the site! Cry me a river! Someone should start a poll guessing how much time Jeremy has dumped into this site. I'll start the bidding with about 500 hours over the last 5 months.

 

BTW: I wouldn't have bothered posting this, but almost everyone seems to be on Jeremy's back (Ed Hall's NOT one of them, ironically).

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Guest Anton

My turn...

 

You know, this kind of bickering and nastiness are some of the reasons why I stopped teaching 6th grade, and went into staff development work. I never liked having to discipline children, including my own, and I still don't. So, it's like this:

 

"Please stop all the rudeness, and behave, or I'll have to send you down to the office to see the principal. Your parents will get a phone call, too. What do you think they'll have say when you get home from school? And if I hear one more word, you'll stay in for recess. Yes, I really mean it, so don't test me!

 

Now class, please open your books, and get ready to tell the us something you learned about latitude and longitude. It's only 10 minutes to lunch, and then we can go outside and play. Remember to bring a water bottle and your GPS."

 

Problem is, none of that stuff works anymore!

 

Anton, 8H/9F

 

------------------

Anton Ninno - N2RUD

Syracuse, NY 13210

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Guest JasonW

quote:
Originally posted by Scout:

I am uncomfortable with Grounded Inc making any kind of claim of ownership

of content I submit.


 

It does - if you don't like it - don't post your caches here and remove any you have previously posted - then everyone's happy.

 

quote:
Originally posted by Scout:

I wish Grounded Inc would follow the lead of Yahoo,who post in their terms of service "Yahoo does not claim ownership of

Content you submit or make available for inclusion on the Service."


 

This isn't Yahoo.com - get over it.

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Guest Hawk-eye

Jeremy, there must be days when you think "... is it really worth it."

Some of the things I have seen on these forums are hilarious. It's like being in some of the corporate meetings I've been "privilaged" to attend over the years.

 

All I want to say is ... thanks for the "game" (really, that's what it is guys .. and gals) and you're doing a great job. Just remember ... in this life there are always people with too much time on their hands.

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Guest Nemesis

quote:
Originally posted by Hawk-eye:

...there are always people with too much time on their hands.


 

The copyright issue has been beaten to death by some with too much time on their hands. Stating the same position again and again does not make it any more true, valid, or interesting.

 

I think a majority of us are happy with Jeremy's explanation of why he runs geocaching.com as he does. He appears to be very open to suggested improvements to the site, within reason. Those who don't like it are free to submit their stash reports to other sites.

 

Cheers,

Donovan Govan.

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Guest ClayJar

I don't have much to add to anything here, but consider this my vote of confidence for Jeremy, Grounded, Inc., and Geocaching.com. You have shown yourself, at least in my opinion, to be working for the best interests of geocaching, and any minor philosophical differences I may have, my personal opinions will not change the fact that I am exceedingly grateful for all the work you do.

 

(Having been the sole developer on a few moderately sized programming projects, I have seen how unpleasant it is to be "nibbled to death by cats", and I figured I should speak up and thank you personally, since for me that tends to make it easier to put up with the constant nitpicking.)

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Guest Anton

quote:
Originally posted by Hawk-eye:

Just remember ... in this life there are always people with too much time on their hands.


 

Right, and they're all on the School Board.

 

Anton, 8H/9F

 

[This message has been edited by Anton (edited 03 June 2001).]

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Guest jagfan

quote:
Anton stated,"You know, this kind of bickering and nastiness are some of the reasons why I stopped teaching 6th grade, and went into staff development work. I never liked having to discipline children, including my own, and I still don't."

 

If you don't like a debate then don't participate - you can still play the game without going to the forums and commenting. Or maybe you do like to discipline after all.

 

quote:
Hawk-eye stated, "All I want to say is ... thanks for the "game" (really, that's what it is guys .. and gals)"

 

That is really the problem isn't it Hawk-Eye? For some it is no longer a game, right Mr. Irish?

 

BTW: I am a registered user, WJJagFan. For some reason my username is not recognized in the Forum. Perhaps I offended someone.

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Guest Haps

I'm not a regular and am a newbie to the whole geopcachine scene but I have to add my two cents.

 

I think it's great that someone has set up a site to act as a resource for geocaching. Had it been me I would fight my hardest to make it so that I was "THE RESOURCE". Not because of ego or becuase of money, but because I want a geocaching resource out there that is complete and up to date.

 

How would it be if there were 10 different phone book companies in town. You had 10 phone books in your house and everybody in town submits there phone number to one of them. Imagine searchging for anumber. Isn't it nice that there is "1" database that provides you with the information your searching for.

 

And as for this talk of going commercial and pay to play etc etc etc. You guys really have to be crazy to think that someonbe would do this. Or they would have to be crazy to do it. There is no money in it. Companies out there on the internet that offer far more valuable services are going broke on the net.

 

The only way to maintain a pay to play caching system is to have well maintained caches that are hard to find and offer decent cash prizes.

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Guest Scout

quote:
Originally posted by Haps:

How would it be if there were 10 different phone book companies in town.


 

Do a search on "FEIST PUBLICATIONS, INC. v. RURAL TELEPHONE SERVICE CO., 499 U.S. 340 (1991)" in the earlier forum topic Pin Map Link Disappeared !! for an explanation why your example undercuts your own argument.

 

[This message has been edited by Scout (edited 03 June 2001).]

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Guest jeremy

quote:
Originally posted by Scout:

Do a search on "FEIST PUBLICATIONS, INC. v. RURAL TELEPHONE SERVICE CO., 499 U.S. 340 (1991)" in the earlier forum topic


 

I object!

 

Forgot your disclaimer that you aren't a lawyer. Oops.

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Guest jeremy

quote:
Originally posted by jeremy:

Forgot your disclaimer that you aren't a lawyer. Oops.


 

I forgot to mention that the post wasn't talking about legal matters, just using ancedotes to make a point.

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Guest Scout

quote:
Originally posted by jeremy:

I forgot to mention that the post wasn't talking about legal matters, just using ancedotes to make a point.


 

Oops, I forgot my usual disclaimer that I'm not a lawyer. Thanks for reminding me, Jeremy.

 

As for anecdotes, I smiled at Haps' asking how it would be if there were 10 different phone book companies in town. I don't know about his town, but my phone books stretch for two feet across my shelf. I haven't bothered trying to compare them listing by listing, but where they overlap in cities, the contents are pretty much the same. That's thanks to the FEIST VS RURAL ruling I cited, which pretty much assured that the phone book companies can reuse each others' data. That way, you don't have to worry about which phone company the person you are calling uses. You can look him up in any phone book. Pretty nice result of that system.

 

Sure would be nice if we could learn to share geocaching data, too. But I understand your stated reasons for keeping the data on Grounded Inc's commercial site. Your agreement to give geocachers an easy way to express a willingness to let people like Buxley use the data on his great map site is a good enough compromise for me. I'm not pushing it beyond that, but I may now and then refer newcomers who begin to rehash old ground to some of the history of this thread so they can catch up more quickly.

 

[This message has been edited by Scout (edited 03 June 2001).]

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Guest Cobalt

. Look at the current situation between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Both groups are so wound up that it doesn't matter who is right or wrong because nothing can get done with emotions so high.

It is good however to see that the majority of people posting here are willing to think before they type and don't end up wanting to put their foot in their mouth. I would hope that the majority of geocachers, which are reasonable in their emotions, will continue to make this discussion productive and not throw gas on the fire.

 

-Cobalt

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Guest fumble

I agree with *most* of Scout's big post "posted 01 June 2001 08:47 PM" (3rd post down).

 

Since I agree with most of it, it's easier to post the stuff I disagree with:

1. Scout says: "The only way compensation can become an issue here is if there is some

anticipated future profit"

 

That's incorrect; profit does not equal compensation. They are two seperate things. Example 1: Most business starting up do not profit until 2 years down the line, yet they must pay their employees during that time. Example 2: Non-profit org's must pay their employees, yet they do not profit. Non-profit *volunteers* are another matter.

 

2. The over all tone. I agree with his statements, but not the over all negative tone of the post.

 

Lastly, here is a link to Jeremy's trademark on the USPTO site.

http://tarr.uspto.gov/servlet/tarr?regser=serial&entry=78045228

 

fumble

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Guest Scout

fumble, like you, I focused only on the parts of the original message that I had issues with. That contributed to the overall negative tone of my post.

 

Since my original response, Grounded Inc has addressed all of the concerns I expressed. I am satisfied with the changes in its positions. I'm sorry that it took a contentious exchange to resolve. I never had any ill will towards Jeremy, even if I did disagree with some of the positions he was taking.

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Guest brucebridges

As far as I'm concerned Jeremy has provided a more than reasonable response to concerns raised in the past few weeks. Glad that is....over?

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