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The Next Rant… The Armchair Cacher.

September 30, 2014

I have heard from other geocachers recently, about players in our game that basically cheat the game and log finds without actually finding the cache or being at a virtual cache location. I have never experienced this phenomenon myself personally, but it certainly seems reason enough for today’s rant.

From Pierre in Canada;

“Dear Bitchy; I have a geo buddy who recently logged all of my traditional caches in one day (which is impossible, unless you have a teleporter). I am absolutely sure he is wagering I won’t call him on it because we are friends. I am 99% certain he did not find any of my caches, he just padding his find count. I am at a loss for what to do. Do I delete his logs? Do I go and check all my caches for his signature? Is he just testing our friendship? Please advise.”

Dear Pierre,
From an outsider point of view, this is kind of a nasty position to put a friend in. First off, this is no friend. A friend would have at least asked “Do you mind if…?” In my bitchy opinion, yes, he is testing you, he is counting on the fact you probably will put your friendship first and not call him out on it. So, you are left with your original dilemma here, call him out and lose your buddy status with him, or let it slide, and know forever you aided and abetted a cheater. Your call Pierre, but if I were you I would at least let him know, he isn’t fooling anybody, least of all you.

From Mary in South Dakota;

“Dear Bitchy; I recently came across a list of virtual caches that can be done just using information found on the internet and not actually having to go to the cache location. I might be a little new at this, but I find this extremely unethical and immoral. Is this a common practice? What are your thoughts on this? Some of these caches have thousands of finds from all over the world, don’t the cache owners even care they were cheated?

Dear Mary,
Congratulations!!! you are the first, last, and only recipient ever of “The Bitchy Cacher Honesty Award” To answer your question, yes, this is cheating, if geocaching was meant to be done from the comfort of an armchair there would not be terrain ratings on them. I, also have been perplexed by this idea, and no, cache owners of virtuals just don’t seem to care how “finders” got the answers to their questions. (perhaps this is why the virtual cache has been grandfathered by Groundspeak.) Do what you know is right here Mary, actually get up off the couch and go find these if you want a smiley for them. If you feel you are under pressure form other geo-buddies to log them with actually making a find simply say “Thanks, but no thanks, I would actually like to go to these locations one day and log a REAL find”

From Mike in the mid-west;

“Dear Bitchy; A local association had put out a new challenge cache, of a cache-a-day for 3 months, and already after only a month it has several finders of it. Suddenly casual cachers have become die hards and have been struggling to find a new cache every day. I am one of the administrators of the cache listing and have noticed some of the finders have logged caches they claim they did months ago only a few days prior to finding the challenge cache. Without seeming like an asshole , how do I handle this?

Dear Mike;
There is no way to not be an asshole on this one. You and the others in the association are going to have to decide how tight you want to be on this one. Will it cause arguments at social gatherings? Will it cause animosity among others in the group? You may have to decide what is best for all concerned here and delete a few logs. The problem here is trust, you need to run a disclaimer on the cache page description for all to see “We trust you met criteria for your challenge honestly, if we hear from cache owners you did not sign logs you claim to have found, your challenge log will be deleted and your new 3 month challenge will start over again on this day.” It is a shame we can not seem to trust the moral compass of others in our sport, but in a user based game, it should not come as a surprise either.

Carry on caching folks, (honestly)

  1. dragon flyer permalink

    And then there are the cachers who brazenly throw down a film canister and claim a find everywhere they go rather than spend any time looking for the actual cache. Not only do they get a dishonest smiley, but this gets really bewildering for the cache owner: some cachers find the actual cache, and some in good faith find the replacement. But as the cache owner it takes months and quite a lot of work to figure out what’s happened and fix it…

  2. Infoferret permalink

    A couple of suggestions: for a challenge streak, state the date the streak must start? And / or put a note on your caches asking other finders to post photos of the logsheet if they see it hasn’t been signed by some of the claimants. That way, you have evidence as grounds for challenging / deleting logs.

    There was one ‘prolific’ cacher in NZ, who became notorious for ‘phantom logs’. He ended up having his account locked by Groundspeak – in effect being barred from the game. Only problem was that this led to all his caches being archived at the same time – which left a big gap in the caches available in his area.

  3. Cappy permalink

    I’ve recently lean red about lists that caters are finding online with trackable codes on them, all for the sake of discovering. To me, a trackable should only be discovered in the case of one actually finding it, and maybe, MAYBE if they see the tag in the trackable gallery with the number exposed and they really like it.

    What do you think?

    • I have heard of this, I also would consider this to be a bit of a cheat. It is like caching without ever having to leave the house. Why bother?, life is too short to waste time on such things. It is not like there is a prize or a trophy to be had for these players. Another cheat for sure.

    • Some do it to qualify for challenge cachers that require x-number of trackable discoveries.

  4. Andy permalink

    Why even fight the cheaters. If you want to play games and be dishonest with your loggings, then you will be ruining the game for yourself. The first time I had a streak going I thought about just backlogging a cache the next day to fill in the hole, but then realized it would just spoil the whole idea of a streak anyway.

  5. I don’t like false finds on caches that are missing or owned by delinquent cache owners who don’t want to check on their cache. They sometimes post an OM and point to the false finds, when someone logs an NM, saying that those logs are evidence that the cache is there.

    I’ve also wasted time going to caches that have had DNFs but had a couple of recent finds only to figure out later that the last finders didn’t actually say they found the cache. They’ll write “Cool” or “Thanks” or “Yeah”, etc. They are usually newbie app users. Sometimes I’ll read the last finder’s log to see, “I didn’t find it. I’m going to log it as a find because I won’t be back here again and I need this find for a cemetery challenge cache.” Ugggggghhhh.

    • dragon flyer permalink

      And lots of newbie cachers are unclear on the concept of signing logs; amazing how often they don’t have a pen! I even read one comment on a blog that said it’s no big deal if you don’t sign the log – you can always log it online…

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