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GrouseTales
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-18
Posts: 3399
Location: West Allis, Wi

PostPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2006 7:47 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I used to be able approve all new caches they same day they were submitted. Last year it was starting to take several days. This year folks, we are going to start looking a weeks instead of days.

Lately I've been seeing days where 25 new caches are submitted per day. At this rate, the approval process will start taking weeks instead of days.

What seems to be compounding the issue is single people hiding 3, 4, 5+ caches per day. If everyone does this, we are going to see some very long turnaround time in cache approvals.

I can't blame people for wanting to enjoy these beautiful spring days geocaching. I'd just offer some food for thought... please know the more caches a person submits, the longer everyone will have to wait.
 
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Uncle_Fun
WGA Member



Joined: 2003-12-26
Posts: 267
Location: Franklin, WI USA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:04 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Please do not take this the wrong way!

Is it time that Wisconsin thought about adding 1 or even 2 approvers. Maybe a second layer that during busy periods or vacations they can take on some of the burden?

Just a bit more food for thought.

Uncle_Fun
 
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kbraband
WGA Historian



Joined: 2002-02-19
Posts: 2461
Location: Mequon, WI US

PostPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:04 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I think there should be a self-imposed guideline that geocachers should only post one new cache per week. I know some will disagree, but come on folks, how many caches can you reasonably manage as the owner?
 
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greyhounder
WGA Member



Joined: 2004-01-18
Posts: 3342
Location: Fort Atkinson, WI, USA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:21 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I don't believe we have any control in the number of approvers for Wisconsin. That's overseen by gc.com.

Bec
 
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Jeremy
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-19
Posts: 3249
Location: Milwaukee, WI

PostPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2006 10:01 pm Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by greyhounder:
I don't believe we have any control in the number of approvers for Wisconsin. That's overseen by gc.com.


It is true that geocaching.com is ultimately in control of how many approvers there are and who they are. But if the WGA were to ask for another two approver spots, explaining that our current approvers are being swamped and approval times are getting long, it is likely that gc.com would add some more approvers for Wisconsin.

Asking people limit the number of caches they place in a certain time period and limit the total number of caches they own are good ideas, but even with these restrictions we will eventually reach a point where the number of hides will simply consume too much of the current 2 approvers' time. And I'd rather lighten the load on the current approvers now rather than see them burn out and just quit (you guys are doing a great job and certainly don't get enough thanks... we don't want to lose you!).

Sounds like working on acquiring a couple new approver spots (wga3 and wga4? Image) from geocaching.com, as well as recruiting, selecting, and training these folks should maybe be a topic of discussion for the Board following the campout...

 
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Commander Bob
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-04-07
Posts: 45
Location: Trevor, WI USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 1:23 am Reply with quote Back to top

Self imposed restrictions? I think different cachers have different abilities to maintain as many or as few caches as they see fit. As long as they have the time and resources to keep their caches in good maintenance, I believe they should be allowed to have as many caches as they like. I do understand submitting 4 or 5 at a time might be a bit much, unless it's all part of a series. If the burden of approval is getting to be too much, then by all means, let’s add more approvers.
One question I do have is this, do approvers have to be WGA board members? It seems to be an added burden to be both an approver and a board member. Maybe with one less iron in the fire, the approval process wouldn't seem so taxing.
It seems kind of hypocritical that people get all giddy over seeing Geocaching in the news, broadcast on television, and generally becoming more exposed everywhere, and then upset when the growth begins to become a burden.
I miss the old days, when hardly anyone knew what we were up to. When it was a real treat to run into a fellow cacher on the trail. When you recognized almost every name in a logbook. When you got a personalized e-mail from the beast welcoming you to the family. And when a breakfast event didn't shut down the entire restaurant. Ahhhh well...
On the other hand, with the cost of filling the tank almost equal to the monthly car payment itself, it is good to see more caches pop up closer to home. So I guess it's a win-lose proposition.
Just my 2˘
~CB
 
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GrouseTales
WGA Member



Joined: 2002-02-18
Posts: 3399
Location: West Allis, Wi

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 6:36 am Reply with quote Back to top

Yes, we might need to look at adding another reviewer to the mix. Currently Tie (wga2) and I alternate weeks for approving caches. We each spend a week reviewing caches, but on our "off week" we end up spending the whole week answering emails regarding caches with problems from the week before.

I agree with CB that it's nice to have some close caches, especially with the gas prices these days. I think we can still have close caches without swamping the system.

Some voluntary restrain would help the reviewers situation. If we pace ourselves out and not submit them all at once, I think it would help the situation. Rather then submitting 5 caches in a day/week, why not submit them over the course of a couple week?

I'm not sure what the best solution is, but I felt a need to share some of the problems with our fellow members. I wouldn't expect people to know of the difficulties unless we tell them.

Personally speaking, from a psychological standpoint, I would rather see 30 caches waiting from 30 different people, then 30 caches waiting from 1, 2, 3, or 4 people.

Thirty caches from 30 individuals would just be an indication of growth in the sport. Thirty caches from a couple people seems to be an indication of something else.


 
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kbraband
WGA Historian



Joined: 2002-02-19
Posts: 2461
Location: Mequon, WI US

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 10:22 am Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Commander Bob:
Self imposed restrictions?


I said "guidelines," not "restrictions." The difference might not be clear, so let me explain. As it was stated, different geocachers have different abilities to maintain a few or a lot of caches, depending on their zeal and the amount of free time they have. I'm suggesting that each owner think carefully before shotgun-placing a multitude of new caches in one fell swoop. Ask yourself: Do I have the time and resources to keep all these caches in good maintenance? Even if your answer at the time is "yes," what's the harm of pacing yourself -- taking things slowly to ensure quality of the location rather than quantity for sake of "having new caches out there." Over the years, I have seen geocachers come and go and many of those no longer active left behind containers that were abandonded in the woods or adopted by others.

Quote:
It seems kind of hypocritical that people get all giddy over seeing Geocaching in the news, broadcast on television, and generally becoming more exposed everywhere, and then upset when the growth begins to become a burden.


I agree that would be hypocritical, CB, but I don't believe the same people are in both camps. Personally, I don't believe geocaching needs more publicity. I too liked it better when we were "under the radar." But that's no longer the state of geocaching. The old days were fun, but they're gone. We have to adapt to today's reality and work to ensure the future for geocaching.

 
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Bushwhacking Queen
WGA Member



Joined: 2004-09-30
Posts: 463
Location: West Bend, WI, USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 7:15 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Regulate and monitor how many caches a person puts out but not regulate what a person says on these forums? Hmm......

There are seekers and there are hiders. Some people get more pleasure out of hiding than seeking; likewise, some people get more pleasure out of seeking than hiding. If there becomes an issue with a geocachers caches (i.e. muggled, no finds, no maintenance) then by all means I say don't approve any more caches for that cacher.

It is evident that this sport is growing by word of mouth and by the help of various media outlets. I appreciate the notification and the concern that the approvers have with the delay in approving caches. I don't believe, however, that we should try to persuade cachers not to hide caches. Maybe we should consider (with the growth in WI caching) adding a "flex" approver that can help on overflow for the week or maybe a third approver. The last thing we want to do is reject growth, right?
 
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Cathunter




Joined: 2003-09-10
Posts: 1263
Location: Bristol WI

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 7:59 pm Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by Bushwhacking Queen:
The last thing we want to do is reject growth, right?


I'm not so sure....

Will it be considered a good thing when there are several caches within every square mile?

Will it be a good thing when people loose interest because most of the caches lack the qualities that attracted many of us to geocaching in the first place?

In many places and for many people, it might already be too late.
 
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AstroD-Team
WGA Member



Joined: 2004-05-19
Posts: 779

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 8:53 pm Reply with quote Back to top

My opinion, add approvers to keep up with the flow. If you need volunteers, ask. I am sure there are people that would be more than happy to assist.
 
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Uncle_Fun
WGA Member



Joined: 2003-12-26
Posts: 267
Location: Franklin, WI USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2006 8:54 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Wisconsin has nearly 4,000 active caches. There is a never ending flood of exposure to noncachers, turning many into cachers. Will they be like me 3+ years ago and stay on board, or will they like many others fall to the wayside, no one can predict.

These forums are full of comments praising the growth of geocaching. Do I miss the old days that I was just at the tail of? Sure, but we can't go back. Nor should we.

Should everyone have the right to hide or find as many caches as they desire as long as they fit into the guidelines? I believe yes. Would the Clue event been a success if Cheesehead Dave had to release the caches 5 per week over a 5-6 week period? No. Would the Flag series have been as popular released over 3-4 weeks? No.

Do I think that there are areas of the state that are over saturated? Yes. Can there be anything done about it? No. As long as they are with in the GC rules, I'm told there is nothing that can be done.

They way to deal with expanding growth of anything is to increase and strengthen the infrastructure. Attempting to harness the growth or suggesting self imposed restrictions is solving or addressing the problem.

Waiting for 2-3 weeks to have a cache approved is a problem. Having submitted caches in the field for up to a month only to have them rejected could along contribute to geolitter. Think back to your first cache hides. You are excited, you check your email and GC every hour waiting for that cache to be approved. Now imagine you waiting 178-267 hours for an approval.

The remedy is clearly to add additional reviewers and have reviewers that are not also holding board positions. I have read many board meeting minutes that show significant amounts of time being spent with the boards duties. While we are all very appreciative of everyones time, it doesn't make sence to have these individuals wearing dual hats. Part of increasing the infrastructure is to build and maintain and effective number of board members. Individuals with dual roles doesn't strenthen the infrastructure it weakens it, making it more suseptable.

With a total of 4 non-WGA board member approvers there would be better approval times, there would be more opportunity for following up on temporarily disable caches that have been disabled for far too long, and a more proactive approache to abandoned caches that need to be retrieved and archived.

Growth is great, growth is challenging, growth is painful, adapting to change is essential.

Uncle_Fun

 
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NSLP#1
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-09-19
Posts: 182
Location: Mt Horeb, WI

PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 8:28 am Reply with quote Back to top

actually I beleive that cache approvers/reviewers do have alot of latitude in approving a cache, even if it does meet all of the GC guidlines. If they deem an area oversaturated, they can reject further caches in that area. (I've seen that discussed quite abit in the GC forums)

I haven't seen many of the series caches pop up all at once myself, maybe they are out of my area though. But you know they likely weren't all scouted and placed the same day.
The Geocaching x01 series has been going out slowly. I don't think doing a series spread out detracts from its attractiveness. Unless we are already making a trip to an area we wouldn't rush out to find them regardless of it was a series or not.

Most of the series that I've done are a series in name only. Though they may be along the same trail, they are still individual caches.

I know that someone may put one where one of the series was going before you place the request, the same can happen if you are holding off on the early ones that are in place until they are all ready.

Though I agree that if the volume is picking up then it would be a good idea to get more involved in the process.

And I want to express my appreciation of our reviewers on a job well done.

------------------
Mike of team: Not So Lost Puppies
 
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Team Deejay
WGA Member



Joined: 2005-10-02
Posts: 2390
Location: Rochester, WI, US

PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 12:18 pm Reply with quote Back to top

quote:
Originally posted by NSLP#1:

I haven't seen many of the series caches pop up all at once myself, maybe they are out of my area though. But you know they likely weren't all scouted and placed the same day.
....
Most of the series that I've done are a series in name only. Though they may be along the same trail, they are still individual caches.




The two series mentioned by Uncle Fun are true series where it is necessary to find all the component caches in order to find a final cache. These are quite different from the Yellowstone Trail/Geocaching 101 type series where the series is a loosely connected series of independent caches. That said, I am sure that placers could contact the approvers in advance for this special sort of series so that the approvals could be released "all at once", if that is desired.
 
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Uncle_Fun
WGA Member



Joined: 2003-12-26
Posts: 267
Location: Franklin, WI USA

PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 9:02 pm Reply with quote Back to top

[QUOTE]Originally posted by NSLP#1:
[B]actually I beleive that cache approvers/reviewers do have alot of latitude in approving a cache, even if it does meet all of the GC guidlines. If they deem an area oversaturated, they can reject further caches in that area. (I've seen that discussed quite abit in the GC forums)

Actually from my discussions with the Wisconsin approvers this is not a true statement. I have been informed that if it doesn't violate any rules, they cannot NOT approve it to keep an area from being oversaturated.
 
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