First, the new board has not ducked this issue. It has just now been brought to our attention by Ekidokai and we will deal with it. I have a specific plan in mind and that involves starting at the top, not with the underlings. It is not helpful for ANYBODY to suggest that this site "represents nothing." GCM is an incorporated entity that can, in fact, represent its members in issues of this sort. This is exactly what I stated when I was asked why I wanted to be on the Board. Give us a chance Mike and I'm guessing we can make some headway with the State and the Nature Conservancy. If you want to help, you would be welcome. If all you want to do is dump on this organization and suggest we're not capable of dealing with an issue like this, then please take it elsewhere. And my last thought, don't suggest for a second that my professional training and chosen career makes me "manipulate and twist" things. I'll stand on my track record, don't apologize for being an attorney and think I can help address these access issues, especially with the help of the current board and any others that want to help and not just criticize.
This site has a ton of none participating people that signed up and never came back. they signed up just to check out the site or buy a coin or something. Do you represent them? Do you also represent the people that have not signed up on this site? Do you represent the people that participate in Opencaching.com or Letter Boxing or Troll Find and others. I don't believe you do. You do not have permission to represent me or mine and I doubt you have the right to speak for any of them.
Originally Posted by dubord207
As I said I have been an information source and worked on this for a long time. Working with the people that have the hands on participation.
Mike, I hear you. Take a deep breath and let us work on it. The GCM board and myself represent the "members" on this site, what and whoever that might be. I know nothing about the other groups you mention and obviously don't "represent" any of them or their members. If you don't want me or the board to mention you or to somehow exclude you as somebody we don't represent, I understand. But if you're to the extent that you are an "information source" why not pitch in and help? I never turn away a resource. You in, or you out, my friend?
I'm not going to say much until I log my caches and take time to re-read everything.
I will say this site is not designed to have authority over it's members. Nor should it.
Hopefully with the help of the site, a few of our members are capable of joining forces and maintain good relations with land owners, whether they wish to allow caches on their property or not.
A quick comment here - this is true BRDad - BUT when, now that we have changes, an incorporation, etc., will there be an determination of WHO is a "member".
Originally Posted by brdad
I personally don't believe it should be everyone who considers themself a member. Nor should it just be all of the folks who were here "from the beginning" or whaever.
The organization - "a corporation" - should be able and willing to speak for member(s) but there should be some guidelines like a constitution and by-laws, membership meetings and the like. Folks who are members should have a voice, a report and not here on this website (necessarily) where everyone else has access to the information.
JMHO - and as for the State Park Issue - NCL issue - I prefer to allow the board time to adopt a position - share it with "members' and then go forward in a professional and organized manner. One where, if I ask, who did you talk to? I can get a name! Who knows, it might be someone I know. Just saying!
Yes, I'd love to see maps, contact information, and details of properties which officially allow caching as well as those that officially do not, all publicly available to all cache hiders and finders.
For the Town of Orrington Conservation Land I can tell you - for the land owned by Penobscot County Conerservation Association I can tell you - I don't think what you suggest is practical. It is up to each individual who hides a cache to do the research required to ensure they have permission. I do not believe in any type of universal map or anything where anyone can "assume" all is well to place a cache here. And - what may be current today ~ could change tomorrow!
Originally Posted by brdad
I know the PCCA was not aware of caches on their land.......but the ones there are ok now. I have convenienced them it is ok. As for others, it will be individually evaluated so don't just assume caches in Brewer or on our Stetson land are ok.
For example, I went to the Town of Hampden to a boat launch to find a cache this weekend. As you drove into a Boat Launch (the cache description said it was a "public boat launch" but there was a tube for folks to pay a "fee"), I clearly saw a NO TRESPASSING sign along the edge of parking. Presumed this to mean, launch your boat, park your car and don't swim or wander aroung. So - the cache was not at the edge of the boat launch but way beyond that and beyond the NO TRESPASSING signs! So - was permission obtained, were cachers trespassing???? - certainly there is not a water right of way like on roads...........so, after a quick look I left, uncomfortable like may others after reading the logs. I posted a DNF and suggested if permission had been granted to so state in the page.
I have an Earthcache where the placement is beyond an 'Authorized Vehicles Only' sign. It was placed with permission - as per the Earthcache guidelines. My cache page clearly states it was placed with permission and folks are "authorized".
With the vast expance of this State and Nation, and the ever changing ownership/owners desires/wishes/permissions, I don't see whereby the publishing of any that data would work. It changes sometimes on a daily basis - it is not grandfathered - it would never work!
A great concept but just not practical or workable on all lands. Public lands such as state parks or perhaps Land Trusts, maybe BUT some of those change quite often too.
Fully understood, but that does not make it not worth doing.
Originally Posted by hollora
I think it is very practical for those landowners who explicitly say they do not want caches on their property. If the Nature Conservancy meets this definition, it would be a great resource to have a map or even a GSAK macro so cache hiders could easily check to make sure they did not place caches there. Then there is the Allagash, Tribal lands, Appalachian Trail, Acadia, etc.. Some of these areas may allow EarthCaches, but that could easily be stated in the overview of the property as well.
It would also be practical for landowners who like the idea of caches being placed on their property but would like to either be informed of their placement or would like to be able to control their placement. The state park system of Pennsylvania has a full application process for caches placed there. If that were the case here, we could easily post maps and other pertinent information and links.
If we maintained communication with these entities and both ends had contact information, hopefully we would be alerted if the rules changed either direction. If that communication does not exist, the only way we find out is when someone places ten caches on property they should not be.
BRDad, your comments are good points but who is the "we". GCM? There are tons of folks who used to come to this site who don't anymore. And they are still placing caches. I don't believe publishing maps would be a true motivator for them to come back.
There are many groups who own land in Maine - and if you want to work on permission - starting small with State Parks would be just that - a start. I don't believe most folks would just blanket say - yeah, place a cache anywhere on my/our property. To contact the owner and obtain permission is the only correct way (and it sounds like PA State Parks has ensured that).
We need to look at how many active people are here on this site to have an interest in, time to do it, and the abliity to work on this project. And - what projects are being worked on? This one probably should be put in a que for priority along with some others (and I do realize the State Park accepting Geocaches has been on the table for this site for years).
In the statement I posted, the "we" is merely those who participate by posting or viewing the site. The people that comprise the "we" change on a daily basis, and also changes on the topic, members often participate in one subject but not another.
Correct, it would not be a tool for drawing members (new or old) to visit the site; it would only a be a tool for those who do choose to visit - just like most of the articles posted on the front page do. We are pondering ways to draw and keep members on the site - I think having content outside the forum posts is one thing that can help. If anyone has any ideas that may draw members or that would encourage our active members to participate more, I am all ears, and hope the rest of the board and active members would listen as well.