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Metro NY Geocaching Society • View topic - Not Signing the Logbook

Not Signing the Logbook

General conversation related to Geocaching

Moderator: addisonbr

Not Signing the Logbook

Postby addisonbr » Sun Mar 23, 2008 7:55 pm

I got an interesting email today. It was a little difficult to understand because although it was in English, it was written by a native French speaker. I would like to add that he did a far better job of writing in English than I ever would have in French. Nevertheless, it's required some deduction. Here's what I gather...

The cacher was looking for , our first hide. Although the GPSr was being difficult, he thinks he found the hiding spot - but there were three policemen nearby and he dared not put the cache at risk. He was hoping to log a find in New York, but lost the waiting game with the men in blue because he eventually had to catch his flight back to France. He took photos of where he thinks the cache spot is and has offered to email them to me, and is asking if I would allow him to log the cache despite not physically logging in. I haven't responded and haven't seen the photos yet, so I don't know if he actually found the correct spot or not.

I'm debating how to handle this. On the one hand, I am a believer that part of the game is to physically sign the log - if I can't sign the log for a cache, even with the cache in hand (such as if I can't get the container open), I won't log it as a find. On the other hand, I never have worried much about how other people play the game and don't expect that to change any time soon.

Snug as a Bug is approaching its 1-year anniversary in a very populated area of the park and so far it has avoided being muggled. As a non-micro that averages more than a find a day, I'm pretty amazed by this. I think part of the reason is that people (most of them tourists on a schedule) have been very respectful and careful when hunting this one, and I really do appreciate that the emailer didn't put his personal glory ahead of the cache's safety. But I can't deny that sending a photo of the assumed hiding spot seems like a strange way to earn a find.

I'm thinking of writing back with a thanks (for the discretion) and a challenge - that if he can convince any other cacher to find Snug as a Bug and sign his name, I'll happily endorse the log. I probably won't tell him this, but in reality if he decided to log it without doing anything more, I wouldn't delete it - life is too short for me to be a hard butt about how other people want to score themselves. Especially when this cache relies so heavily on people protecting it with their judgment. But I was thinking if he actually wants my blessing, this might be an entertaining compromise.

How would you respond, or what would you do?
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby Tatanka49 » Sun Mar 23, 2008 8:10 pm

Considering the circumstances, I would go with the photos and let him post. I had one today by Fats277 that I couldn't open...but he let me post since I did have it in hand.
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby peeves79 » Sun Mar 23, 2008 9:09 pm

Dude, this is a hard one. There have come a few times I gave up on a cache because of the muggle factor would compromise the cache itself. I have always gone back another time to retrieve and sign the log. Then again I can take the Subway or drive back to the cache site. I have only used pictures once. That was because the log was so wet it was mush and I could not write on it unless I wanted to rip it to shreds. I also found myself with no paper on me. So I took a picture with my cell phone of the container and the log and posted it with my log. If the picture of the container would have been a spoiler I would have emailed the owner and not put the picture in the log. As the owner of the cache it is entirely up to you. If it was my LGM cache in Flushing Meadow and given the same person and situation, if the photos showed and pointed at the hidey hole of my cache and they can describe where it is in detail, I would give them the better of the doubt and allowed them to log it. But in the log state what happened and that you gave him special permission to log it. But then again if we learned any thing from Monte Python is that the French cannot be trusted! Run away! Run away!!!!
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby EastVillageFamily » Mon Mar 24, 2008 10:27 am

I have both allowed logs in this situation, and not allowed logs. I have allowed the log when sent photos of a full log, or a damaged cache, or a container that has fallen out of reach. I have not allowed logs when a cacher has written me saying that they felt they made a good faith effort to find the cache and they have convinced themselves that the cache must be muggled because they couldn't find it, and since they did their due diligence and searched they should be allowed to log it, since they are now back home far away. In this case the cache was not muggled. In other cases I have nudged cachers with a hint.
In your case, if the photos clearly show the hiding place, I would give the cacher far from home the log.
If it helps any, I'm reasonably fluent in French, having helped run a French production company for 5 years. Let me know if you need help translating. I used to do a lot of French correspondence.
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby addisonbr » Mon Mar 24, 2008 11:16 am

Thanks much for the replies. I have been convinced. EVF, I appreciate the offer - I'll send you a private message about it.
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby majormajor42 » Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:28 pm

It brings up a good point to keep in mind so I don't end up on the other end of a similar situation. If I were to be caching in another country (or state) and I really wanted to get that county checked off but only had a limited time to do it, I would pre-plan finding a virtual. It would really suck if I had a lay-over in Paris and got caught up in a similar situation of waiting for muggles/LEOs to clear out so I can make the grab. For now on, when travelling, I'll get the vitrual done first to avoid any potential heartbreak.
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby mmacgown » Fri Oct 10, 2008 2:38 pm

I've had numerous issues regarding signing the log too! Last year, a cacher from CA went and supposedly found my Centerport cache. But, in her log, she stated that she didn't sign the log, because she didn't have a pen. So, I emailed her and told her that she needed to go back and sign the log and that the cache page specifically states that you needed a writing utensil that writes on the Tyvek I use for the micros. She responded irately that, she didn't know that she needed a writing utensil when she went looking for it, and then snidely told me that someone suggested that she search for my caches when on LI and that if I wanted to, delete her log, since she wasn't traveling all the way back here for it. No apologies, just rudeness. So, I eventually and regretfully, I deleted her log. Another cacher logged a find on my RVC micro, saying she found it again with a friend. I had to email her and explain that it's one log per GC# unless it's an event, and then deleted that one too. Numerous cachers have mentioned that they didn't sign the log, with no justifiable reason. So, I'll email them and ask that they return to sign the log in order to get credit for the find. Most comply. :)
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby Harry Dolphin » Mon Nov 17, 2008 9:47 pm

I guess that I'm just an evil dolphin. I don't generally check signatures (with one noted exception). But if a cacher has the nerve to log a find with "But I didn't bother to sign the log", I will delete the find. (And usually get very angry responses.) Sign log, get smiley. If I think I might compromise the cache, I either wait out the muggles, or continue on to another cache. There are exceptions, of course, and discretion is left up to the cache owner. I had a letterboxer find one of my evil mystery caches. I have no idea how she found it! But I enjoyed the log, and let it stay.
My worst experience is with my webcam cache. "Post a photo taken by the webcam in order to claim a find". Not an easy webcam cache (but mmcgowan and Sakiman logged it!) It's close to 30% of loggers claiming a find with "Here's a photo of the webcam", "No one at home to take the photo", "Picture of us at the location". Sorry. It is a webcam cache, for goodness sake!
Mow, Marilyn, if you can tell me how to find your cache in Roslyn! :roll:
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby buttaskotch » Tue Nov 18, 2008 6:47 am

Doplh, I found that one! ;)
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby BLAA » Fri Apr 03, 2009 1:45 pm

We had a log deleted last year for not signing the proper log. Here's what happened. We had a trip to Florida so naturally we downloaded the caches along the route we would be taking.

The sun was setting and we had time for one more cache - the cache description implied that it was in a tree near an Outback Steakhouse. We get to ground zero and we see a bison tube covered by a fake leaf hanging in the tree. We found the cache (or did we?) we open the tube and added our name to the long list of signers ... and then we drive off to our hotel.

A couple of weeks later the CO deletes our log as well as dozens of others. It seems that some time ago another cacher couldn't find the real cache and left a replacement (seems he/she did not leave this information in their log) - the CO was investigating some anomolies he observed in the on-line logs and discovered that his original cache was still there (in the roots of the tree) and he found the ersatz cache hanging in the tree. He deleted all the logs that were on the phony cache - we were a bit miffed and researched it further. Seems that there were several DNFs and then suddenly a lot of people began finding it - but a couple of logs were from cachers who apparently knew of the cache and had indicated that something might be wrong. The CO did not archive the cache or modify the cache description but left a note that he needed to check on the cache ... he checked in on the cache about two months later (as I recall) which means his note got buried deep in the log list at the time we download the cache.

Now I don't know about you but we do not scour the on-line cache logs unless we have a reason to (hard to find cache - hard to solve puzzle, etc) - so given that the CO was on notice we felt that either should have gotten himself out there sooner to investigate, took the ache off-line or at least added something to the cache description. There were a lot of angry notes posted by some very experienced cacher (2000+ finds) and eventually the cache was permanently archived.

Now we have never found and signed a log and said "wait a minute - lets keep searching" - If the cache decription was vastly different than what we found we might have questioed the find ...Now we're not talking about a cache called "High in the tree" with a 4 star rating where the bogus cache was placed on the ground. From what I can tell the two caches were about 4 feet apart on the same tree. And in my opinion either container reasonably met the cache description on the cache page.

Actually I had forgotten all about it until I was reading this thread... But ever since we are always comforted by a container with a full set of papers (but that is more the exception than the rule) -- which reminds me that we need to do a better job of papering our caches :idea:
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby gerkmax » Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:24 pm

Same thing happened recently with one of childofatom's caches. He had a cache named "West Side Zoo" that many cachers thought they (we) found. But in reality, we had found an older cache that had been placed in in the same area ("Million in Cash Cache") . He deleted the incorrectly logged finds, contacted the cachers, and gave them the option of logging the archived cache. He then archived his own cache, and created/placed a new (and similar) cache nearby ("New West Side Zoo").

I thought that situation was perfectly handled. A model for other such situations.
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby addisonbr » Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:51 pm

I'm a pretty laid-back CO as far as this stuff goes. If I had been the CO in BLAA's case I'd have happily let all of the logs stand and considered it part of the lore of the cache. If you were going to delete logs I guess I can sort of understand deleting the log of the guy who left a replacement cache... But I can also look at it from the perspective that the cacher may have been honestly trying to be helpful. I've replaced more than one cache container, for more than one CO, in my day, and I didn't think I was being a bad guy (although I never did it after failing to find the cache in the first place, and then claiming it as a find).

But as far as the people who found the replacement cache - I don't really see how they acted in bad faith by any definition, especially if the coordinates match and the description and hint make the two containers tough to tell apart.

Pretty clever of CoA to direct people to relog their finds at the archived listing!

But this opinion is from a CO who rarely audits his Traditional caches for physical / online log continuity, so keep that in mind. Even though I am strict with my own caching (I never claim a find unless I actually sign the log, no matter what the circumstances), I'm a bit of a softie for letting people play the game their own way. I have three kids! They take enough of my energy. (Although I did audit B&A after I noticed those suspicious lilagul Found It's a few days ago...)
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby BLAA » Sat Apr 04, 2009 11:54 am

Last edited by BLAA on Sat Apr 04, 2009 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby Child Of Atom » Sat Apr 04, 2009 12:17 pm

Is your culture a counter-culture or an over-the-counter-culture?

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Re: Not Signing the Logbook

Postby gerkmax » Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:17 pm

JERK!

haha! Just kidding. It's just that that line reminded me of something that happened at the "Thirsty Cachers" event.

I'm sitting with Peeves and Bonick, when suddenly someone (Behistun) walks up to me and says (loudly) "Are you Jerk!?" I quickly realized who he was, and added "It's a good thing I am, because it's 'Gerk' with a soft 'G'!" fun-nee!
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