Jump to content

Changes In Geocaching Members...


SixTen
Followers 1

Recommended Posts

Here is something I have been thinking about for a while...and I hesitated to post it because of the rash of "negative" threads that seem to be growing in number...but I do not mean this as a negative thread...so I decided to post my thoughts on the subject.

 

When I first started Geocaching (not all that long ago), I commented to just about everyone that I knew about how great this group of people called geocachers are....It seemed that each person that responded to my newbie posts in the forums, or helped me in chat, or just welcomed me in general were all EXTREMELY helpful and kind natured and polite. Wow I thought!...how odd that such a diverse group of people from all over the world could all share more than Geocaching...they are all "good people"

 

So I look at it now...same forum, same sport/hobby...yet there seems to be so much more negativity....arguments about rediculous things...attitudes and tempers flaring...So, if this is the same forums, and it's the same sport/hobby...what has changed...what has caused this "slide" of "goodness" that I first witnessed when I became aware of this group?

 

Well...the only thing left would be the people right?...is this sport becoming too mainstream?...is the influx of people that we see joining each day bringing in people who aren't the same as the people who I saw in here less than a half a year ago?

 

All I know is that there is a lot more of the BS that this sport can do without now...or maybe I am just paying more attention to it now?...if thats the case, shame on me for allowing it to get to me...

 

What are your thoughts?

Edited by SixTen
Link to comment

it's called life. some people just want to have fun. some people live to create pain. i like to have fun. maybe it's because i have a few health problems that limit my life span, and my ability to enjoy what time i have left. the sturm and drang of most of the threads just slip by me. i ignore the people who seem to be able to do nothing but post negativity. life is too short to dwell on why. just live.

Link to comment

Hi,

 

We've been around for a while, and it seems that every few months, people need to VENT! There are some great people here, and a few part-time jerks.

 

Tracy rarely posts here, and I have been on a self-imposed semi-hiatus. That time away allows me to keep the forums in perspective. I really like reading the posts, but don't need the negativity that sometimes pops up. In the big picture of living life, this place is a nice diversion, and when it ceases to be that, I check out and do other things.

 

Again, the people here are great, and I keep it in perspective and let it roll off my back. You joined in April, what until about January- it really gets fun then!!!

Link to comment

Democracy isn't always a pretty thing. People are using the GC.com forums to debate the future of geocaching from all angles. They discuss it with all the passion they bring to the hobby.

 

Fuel to the fire is that everyone is reminded time and again that this isn't a democracy.

 

My two cents on why these forums, and why it can get ugly.

 

Edit to add: If it wasn't the GC.com forums it would be whatever site is in the lead at the moment. I don't think any form of caching organization where all cachers from all over would be immune.

Edited by Renegade Knight
Link to comment

Could it also be that you spent more time in the Getting Started Forum back then?

 

There seems to be a great effort by everyone to be polite and non-confrontational in the GS forum, but in the General Forum people are more willing to speak their minds...

 

In the year I've been reading the forums I think the temperment has stayed pretty even. A few flare-ups, a few periods of eerie calm, but mostly business as usual.

 

I also think the community mirrors most other groups I've been involved with. The vast majority quietly go about their business, there are a few unquenchable do-gooders, and a few chronic malcontents.

Link to comment

just keep in mind that not everyone that vents is a not-good-person, none of us is perfect. I was stupid and vented in public, I should have said more of that privately. Sometimes I get a bit too blunt.

There are some that never post anything else though, and that is a big let down.

For people who feel angry when they read stuff here, try what my husband reminded me to do, Pretend that each person is your mother and be nice to them accordingly.

 

namaste :(

Link to comment

i've noticed that some do get really worked up over stuff.

i've got a few health probs aswell and try to live by a more leniant phylosophy (yeah i know i can't spell) whenever i get worked up i think to myself " i could get killed tommorrow, do i really want to spend my last day being annoyed about this?" so far i've not found anything worth staying mad at.

 

just my two pence worth

Link to comment

You come to the realization that life has a limited timespan, and for however long or short yours is, its just not worth it to be made unhappy by a few individuals that are miserable and make others feel that way. Take a few steps back from the situation and evaluate YOUR wants and needs, and do not let others influence you negatively.

Link to comment
My pleasurable free time does not need controversy.

 

When I am catching salamanders by a creek on the way to a fun cache, it really does not matter one bit that someone disagrees with someone else on a forum.

Very True...

Could it also be that you spent more time in the Getting Started Forum back then?

That could very well be the case.

just keep in mind that not everyone that vents is a not-good-person, none of us is perfect. I was stupid and vented in public, I should have said more of that privately. Sometimes I get a bit too blunt.

There are some that never post anything else though, and that is a big let down.

For people who feel angry when they read stuff here, try what my husband reminded me to do, Pretend that each person is your mother and be nice to them accordingly.

You are right norbu...I didn't mean it as "all-encompassing" as it sounded :(

And yes...thats a good rule to live by..."what would your Mother think?" :(

 

Don't get me wrong...I still think that Geocachers on a whole are a lot friendlier than a lot of other groups out there...I have taken part in my share of forums (gaming, auto etc) and I was literaly shocked by the change of attitude by this group...

 

And no, I don't let it get to me...I just seemed to notice more of it as we gain members...I just hope that it isn't the case where soon we will be just like those other forums I used to frequent...

Link to comment

Brian...

 

Your "don't" thread was started by a non geocacher.

Your "Think" thread was started by a first time poster...

Your "So" thread was resolved very amicably...and without any incident that I would take as un-friendly...

 

But thanks for trying to help... :(

Edited by SixTen
Link to comment
Brian...

 

Your "don't" thread was started by a non geocacher.

Your "Think" thread was started by a first time poster...

Your "So" thread was resolved very amicably...and without any incident that I would take as un-friendly...

 

But thanks for trying to help... :(

And the I?

The "I" is a good reference :(

 

Anyways...thanks for all of the good feedback...just wanted to know if it was just me or if things had changed....or if they had been like this always and I have just not been aware of a lot of it...

Link to comment
Brian...

 

Your "don't" thread was started by a non geocacher.

Your "Think" thread was started by a first time poster...

Your "So" thread was resolved very amicably...and without any incident that I would take as un-friendly...

 

But thanks for trying to help... :(

And the I?

The "I" is a good reference :(

 

Anyways...thanks for all of the good feedback...just wanted to know if it was just me or if things had changed....or if they had been like this always and I have just not been aware of a lot of it...

I found some better examples for the others.

Link to comment

I don't know Brian, I think I'd have to agree with the theory that there are a lot of new, generally hostile folks showing up. I lurked for quite a while before doing much posting, and it sure seems like things have changed in the last six months or so...

Link to comment
Geocaching is still the best hobby and we have met a lot of great people.  I hope the hobby stays positive, fun and family friendly.

The hobby always will be. The forums are a different story. Unfortunately some people confuse the two.

 

I don't know Brian, I think I'd have to agree with the theory that there are a lot of new, generally hostile folks showing up. I lurked for quite a while before doing much posting, and it sure seems like things have changed in the last six months or so

 

There have been hostile folk here from the beginning. Being that more people are visiting the forums now, of course there will be more hostile folk here as well, but as a percentage I doubt its changed much.

 

You do tend to see a spike in forum vitriol whenver there is a Groundspeak policy change or website design change. Changes usually bring the contrarians and negative people out of their holes. Being that we saw a recent policy change (the shutting off of Buxley's and similar sites) and a website design change (the search page), they will rear their ugly heads, spit and rant and poision other threads for a few weeks, then disappear for a few months until the next change comes along. It seems to be cyclical.

Edited by briansnat
Link to comment
Changes usually bring the contrarians and negative people out of their holes. Being that we saw a recent policy change (the shutting off of Buxley's and similar sites) and a website design change (the search page), they will rear their ugly heads, spit and rant and poision other threads for a few weeks, then disappear for a few months until the next change comes along. It seems to be cyclical.

"We report, you decide." How'd that "fair and balanced" comment slip through uncontested? :(

 

Actually, I agree that the percentage of codgers, curmudgeons, grouches, rebels and "chronic malcontents" remains about the same. So has the percentage of "unquenchable do-gooders." The percentage of sockpuppets seems to have gone way down, but the percentage of "trolling" threads seems to have gone way up. And hardly anybody seems to have learned to take advantage of that "search" feature yet.

 

So what is the fastest growing part of the community?

Edited by BassoonPilot
Link to comment

There have always been trouble makers in the forums, and there always will be. I can name a whole list of people over the years that kept the forums in turmoil. However like in real society they are isolated from the general community sooner or later.

 

Actually the forums have been relatively calm here of late. I really haven't seen any negativity in weeks. I've seen more threads like this one pop up that talk about negativity, but when I do a quick check of the topics I fail to see where poster finds it. Maybe I'm not paying attention lately. :(

 

With such a large community such as this one you will find a very diverse group of individuals with opinions that will differ from others. This will often lead to debates that can sometimes turn very heated and passionate. This is not neccessarily a bad thing. There are many people in here that I have great respect for, but I will go head to head with them in a debate over differences in opinoins. More than likely in the end we will agree to disagree and move on while maintaining respect for each other. :(

 

El Diablo

Link to comment
Actually the forums have been relatively calm here of late.

The wife did comment that the forums settled down right after I stopped posting a few weeks ago. :(

 

I said, "yeah, right, people won't even know I'm gone." Which turned out to be true. :( At least no one mentioned it on the forums anyway.

 

Actually, there has been angst from the very beginning. I guess it just goes in cycles.

Link to comment

SixTen, you've been around since June, and I've enjoyed your participation in the forums. Meaning no disrespect, but IMHO you ain't seen nothin' when it comes to flame wars. This week marks the first anniversary of having moderators in these forums. Prior to that, it was the Wild Wild West for the most part. And the very act of adding moderators, cracking down on off-topic posting, personal attacks, etc., caused some additional angst in and of itself. I think things started mellowing out a bit in January of this year and it has steadily improved, for the most part, since then. Most recently, the new Off-Topic forum, where you are active, has in my opinion been a huge success with very little flaming, etc.

 

And as for the arguments back and forth, I like to think of the old cartoon series where the wolf and the sheep dog each walked to work in the morning, punched the time clock, said hello to each other and then began their respective jobs of stealing sheep and guarding sheep. At the end of the day, they punch out at the time clock and wish each other a pleasant evening. Here in the forums, the veterans have similarly grown accustomed to each others' points of view. I have learned to stop banging my head against the desk every time when Coyote Red advocates open cache data exchange or when Renegade Knight says that an independent organization of geocachers is needed. Instead, by listening to their ideas, respectfully presented, I've found I can learn something or at least I can respect the fact that others have passionately held beliefs because they are passionate about the sport. I would hope they would say the same of me, a goodie two shoes who has his head so far up Jeremy's butt that I can see Mopar's feet.

Link to comment
I don't think any form of caching organization where all cachers from all over would be immune.

I think that may be exactly why the local organizations don't have the serious flaming problems we have here. After all, if you flame me here on this international forum, what's the chances I'll be at your door the next day? Pretty slim. The distance factor and the relative anonymity emboldens some to say things they'd never say to your face.

 

But if you flame me on our local group, this 6'4" 229lb scary-looking unemployed dude with the skin-head and ray-bans might be paying you a visit in person to "talk things over." So people are nicer on the local groups.

 

:(

Link to comment
I would hope they would say the same of me, a goodie two shoes who has his head so far up Jeremy's butt that I can see Mopar's feet.

That has GOT to be THE funniest thing I have EVER read on this forum!

 

I had to clamp both hands over my mouth lest I distrub my co-worker. Good thing I wasn't taking a swig of my coffee.

 

Ouch! I laughed so hard it hurt.

 

Ho, boy! Still wiping tears.

 

EDIT: BTW, the rest of the post was good, too. :(

Edited by CoyoteRed
Link to comment
SixTen, you've been around since June, and I've enjoyed your participation in the forums. Meaning no disrespect, but IMHO you ain't seen nothin' when it comes to flame wars. This week marks the first anniversary of having moderators in these forums. Prior to that, it was the Wild Wild West for the most part. And the very act of adding moderators, cracking down on off-topic posting, personal attacks, etc., caused some additional angst in and of itself. I think things started mellowing out a bit in January of this year and it has steadily improved, for the most part, since then. Most recently, the new Off-Topic forum, where you are active, has in my opinion been a huge success with very little flaming, etc.

 

And as for the arguments back and forth, I like to think of the old cartoon series where the wolf and the sheep dog each walked to work in the morning, punched the time clock, said hello to each other and then began their respective jobs of stealing sheep and guarding sheep. At the end of the day, they punch out at the time clock and wish each other a pleasant evening. Here in the forums, the veterans have similarly grown accustomed to each others' points of view. I have learned to stop banging my head against the desk every time when Coyote Red advocates open cache data exchange or when Renegade Knight says that an independent organization of geocachers is needed. Instead, by listening to their ideas, respectfully presented, I've found I can learn something or at least I can respect the fact that others have passionately held beliefs because they are passionate about the sport. I would hope they would say the same of me, a goodie two shoes who has his head so far up Jeremy's butt that I can see Mopar's feet.

No disrespect taken...I can see where you are coming from, and I think thats what Briansnat was trying to point out by linking some old posts...I can imagine that things were a lot less civil in the days before moderating.

 

Great analogy to the cartoon as well...I like to think that all debates should be done that way...but often times it becomes an argument instead of a debate.

 

I did not mean this to be a Negative post...hence my hesitation to post it in the first place.

 

I think I have my answer though...I guess I am just noticing these things more now than I did when I first started...and maybe letting them get to me more now...so as I stated in my original post...shame on me for letting that happen.

 

All in all Geocahers are great, and yes there will always be a few bad apples in the bunch wherever you go...

 

As Briansnat said, Geocaching is NOT the forum...I do think he is right when he says that a lot of people confuse that.

 

Thanks for the replies!

Link to comment
I don't think any form of caching organization where all cachers from all over would be immune.

I think that may be exactly why the local organizations don't have the serious flaming problems we have here. After all, if you flame me here on this international forum, what's the chances I'll be at your door the next day? Pretty slim. The distance factor and the relative anonymity emboldens some to say things they'd never say to your face.

 

But if you flame me on our local group, this 6'4" 229lb scary-looking unemployed dude with the skin-head and ray-bans might be paying you a visit in person to "talk things over." So people are nicer on the local groups.

 

:o

Good theory...I am sure there is a lot of truth to that...local forums are filled with people you will generally encounter at events or meetings...I could see how things may get less dramatic.

Link to comment

Every board I have ever participated in has had the same problem. I don't post a lot but I read a lot. I think it goes to the "too many chefs in the kitchen" theory. Everyone wants to have an important opinion and if someone disagrees with them, it makes them feel less important. I also think that the way people approach situations varies by what region you are in. I joke a lot in my posts but I notice that some people take every word very serious...so it becomes an issue when sense of humor varies or sense of what's said in good taste varies. I believe most come here in good faith but the ego is only concerned with the self.

Link to comment
It's just the sociology of messege boards. People like to be **** because they can and they see no consequences. Yet if they ever meet you in person, they are probably the most timid people on the face of the earth.

 

You have to realize how much self-esteem anonymity gives you.

Thats definately true...one of the reasons I found all of this to be interesting is that I have a degree in Sociology, and I minored in Psychology...perfect group of people to be surrounded with here huh?!! :o

Link to comment

also keep in mind that some posts get misinterpreted...i've never intended to offend--and in fact get annoyed by the flamers--but have inadvertantly p.o.'d some folks and moderators when i thought i was being cute, clever, and in the spirit of things...also a hazzard of quick posting that allows ones thoughts to fly quickly but get stuck in writing and amplified by others...perhaps we should start a pen-pal club for geocachers...bet this problem would disppear immediately!

Link to comment

No offense to any of the mods or Jeremy, but I think part of the reason for the heated debates and tempers lately is the new OT forum. Some of the people who tend to flair up may not be able to do this in a productive way. And since they are not premium members they may feel like they have no place to really explain their problems and they turn to flames and personal attacks as a result.(Somebody say something if I'm completely off my rocker.)

Link to comment
No offense to any of the mods or Jeremy, but I think part of the reason for the heated debates and tempers lately is the new OT forum. Some of the people who tend to flair up may not be able to do this in a productive way. And since they are not premium members they may feel like they have no place to really explain their problems and they turn to flames and personal attacks as a result.(Somebody say something if I'm completely off my rocker.)

I'd disagree with this. If someone has a problem relating to geocaching, this forum has been and is the right place to express it, and folks aren't shy about doing that. On the other hand, if someone had something off-topic to complain about, totally unrelated to geocaching, then since September of 2003 they had just one option: post to the Abject Silliness thread. Most folks didn't. By and large, the group of Abject Silliness regulars have not been the type to start other threads complaining about things. Rather, people complained that Abject Silliness could remain open, as a grandfathered exception to the off-topic rule, while other off-topic threads were quickly shut down by me and other zealous moderators. Now that there *is* an off-topic forum, there is no double standard. The Abject Silliness group is now the Cheers group, and there are dozens of other off-topic discussions going on alongside that thread.

 

Just as was the case prior to the opening of the new Off Topic forum, an OT post here in the Geocaching forum is subject to moderator action. No change here, except for the option to point the topic originator to the OT forum -- an alternative previously unavailable.

Link to comment

I read a news article the other day that claimed that Americans in general (by which they meant people who live in the US) are more apt to send rude and offensive emails than anywhere else in the world. When I read it, I was curious as to how they would determine what were deliberate acts of baiting or attacks and what were meant to be "all in good fun"---Anybody a regular reader of geocaching forums from other countries AND the US with insight?

Link to comment
I read a news article the other day that claimed that Americans in general (by which they meant people who live in the US) are more apt to send rude and offensive emails than anywhere else in the world. When I read it, I was curious as to how they would determine what were deliberate acts of baiting or attacks and what were meant to be "all in good fun"---Anybody a regular reader of geocaching forums from other countries AND the US with insight?

I'm not your foreign national but I can tell you that if I was living in Iraq my emails would be ever so much more polite. Not that I'm rude in them now, just not as formal and polite as I could be.

 

In the USA who is going to come knocking on your door in retribution over a rude email? You are just one of the masses with an opinion, an attitude, and a willingness to say something that makes you blend in with everyone else. Now if you did manage to stand out somehow. That's different. I've said things in a civil fashion in an accepted medium that have resulted in anonymous death threats. It sure gets your attention.

Link to comment
I don't think that I've been a forum regular for even 6 months yet. Not enough time to really compare. However, I'm guessing that the one new rant is this desire to take away Jeremy's ownership of the site. I know that it is impotent, yet it stirs up my indignation so. Is it new?

Sorry to quote myself, but I want to answer myself. In another thread about "an interesting thought," I found my answer. Jeremy responded and attachecd links to older threads. That rant goes back well-into 2002, at least. I would comment that it seems to have progressed in a number of ways.

Link to comment

OK I've been around for a little over two years and this is the funniest thing even written in the forums since Joefrog's monkey rant. I'll bump it in the thread just for those who don't get it further up. :P:P:):););)

Lep wrote:

I would hope they would say the same of me, a goodie two shoes who has his head so far up Jeremy's butt that I can see Mopar's feet.

But seriously I think lowracer hit the nail on the head-we are all virtually faceless here in cybersapce on an international forum. It is easier to give and forgive rude behavior. :P The chance of ever meeting the object of your rudeness is slim to none. Locally cachers tend to know one another better and have a different sort of community. B)

That said I have never met a cacher in person that I wouldn't want to hunt with again. But if attitudes and behavior in here are indicitave of someone's true personality, then I can think of a few avatars I wouldn't want to meet in person. B)

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 1
×
×
  • Create New...