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Forums —» General Caching —» General —» Roadside Cache Ban
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Roadside Cache Ban
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Philatsea



Joined: Jun 17, 2008
Posts: 118

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 10:24 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

katcogo wrote:
The last 2 posts to this topic have been deleted as they are off topic. Groundspeak is working on the issue, and is keeping BCGA up to date with any progress. Phil is operating as an individual cacher, not as a representative of the BCGA. As frustrating as it is, the BCGA must deal through proper channels, that being through Groundspeak as it is their ultimate determination what will or will not be allowed for cache placements in BC.

I have to comment on this, as I am sure you knew I would.

This sets a very dangerous prescient in deleting posts that you say are off topic.
They were on topic as they dealt with calls and emails on the very topic Roadside cache Ban.
I was called out by the President of the BCGA and I responded. I responded showing an exact time line of events and emails between the President and Jenn of Groundspeak on this very topic, yet you say it is off topic?

So the question becomes who exactly removed the posts? One would assume it was "katcogo" since she posted the note I am quoting, which would be standard in any forum structure. The question is was it the President that removed the post and the board is left picking up the pieces, again?

No where have I ever said I represent the BCGA. In fact when Jenn from Groundspeak called me the other day I stared off at the start and said outright I DO NOT represent the BCGA other than I am a member. I have also done this with my MLA and anyone who I have talked to.

I don't have my own agenda as it has been put. If I had not contacted my MLA to have this matter clarified we would not be where we are today. Had anyone at the BCGA thought of contacting the Minister's Office of the MOT? The answer is no.

You say that the ultimate determination will come from Groundspeak. I am sorry you are wrong on this. It will come from the MOT in a Policy Letter to me which I will forward to Jenn and the BCGA. It will then be used as guidance to create a policy where caches can be placed along highways in BC.

I am asking that the two posts be re-posted as they were on topic and the members should have ALL the facts in this matter as to exactly what and when things happened.

An open discussion is necessary in a free and open society and even more so when they are on topic.

Phil
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Mr Kaswa



Joined: Oct 23, 2006
Posts: 43
Location: Surrey

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 12:26 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

While it may be best to work with gs, and I am sure gs isn't just throwing us under the bus on this, they and their legal counsel may look at things slightly differently than we do, and it is ultimately up to us to make sure we get the best arrangement possible, we are the BCGA not BCGC.comA, we do have that right.
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Cuddlefish



Joined: Oct 20, 2008
Posts: 291

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 12:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

It appears that after the BCGA and Groundspeak have discussed this matter at length, we may have reached a workable compromise until such time as we can get to the heart of the reasoning for this potential ban. Groundspeak, via the volunteer reviewers will make an announcement in the near future. (I hope soon!)

I can appreciate that we are all frustrated with this situation, but rest assured that the BCGA Executive have been following the most appropriate channels to communicate our members' frustrations.

We had a very successful joint effort with BC Parks in conjunction with their 100 year celebration of provincial parks and to have another branch of provincial government to be seemingly so unsupportive of geocaching has been particularly puzzling to us. Needless to say we are hoping for a positive conclusion to this situation and soon.
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1203
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 2:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Yes, the BCGA ultimately speaks for its members. It is not a puppet of groundspeak. But I can see no good coming from splitting into unilateral factions. If several groups dive into the cause from different angles the MOT will only come out feeling henpecked.

No protest or action was ever successful without a united front. I just worry that several different factions going in different directions and talking to different levels of government could cause more problems and result in fewer solutions. If there is anything I've learned from dealing with the government is not to upset them when asking for a favour.
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Fonty Family



Joined: Nov 15, 2009
Posts: 149
Location: Kelowna

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 9:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Phil - I just want to say thank you for getting the ball rolling. As I think without your involvement, we would likely still be waiting for a resolution.
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MaliBooBoo



Joined: Jan 06, 2007
Posts: 100
Location: Kamloops

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:38 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

I was just wondering when those two deleted posts were going to be re-posted as per philatsea's request since it sounds that they were indeed NOT off topic.
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cartguy



Joined: May 18, 2008
Posts: 77
Location: Abbotsford

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:22 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

I totally agree with the Fonty Family with out Phil stepping up to the plate we would all be in the dark. I would also like to see the deleted posts re-posted.
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Tugman_and_Wifey



Joined: Jan 01, 2008
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:58 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Ditto to the above three posts!
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Cuddlefish



Joined: Oct 20, 2008
Posts: 291

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:31 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

This was a complicated situation that alarmed us at the BCGA. We became involved back in August, and yes, it did take some time for us to be able to iron out the issues and work with Groundspeak and our local reviews to firstly 1. identify the problem and 2. find a compromise.

We appreciate Philatsea's concern - it was very much shared by all of us at the BCGA.

It is clear we did a poor job of communicating how we were working on the situation judging by some previous posts. For this, we apologise. However, our hands were largely tied and we were asked to follow a protocol that did eventually lead to a positive outcome, irrespective of external factors.
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Cuddlefish



Joined: Oct 20, 2008
Posts: 291

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Furthermore, on a personal note, I volunteer my time to the BCGA. Unsupportive posts such as the ones on this forum make me wonder why I bother at times.

The BCGA is the official body and representative for geocaching in this province. Groundspeak looked to us to be a voice in this matter and we responded. I am grateful to the members who are supportive of our unspoken and volunteer efforts. To the others, I ask, what do you think you hope to achieve by being so critical of our efforts? Would you prefer there be no BCGA?

This post is off topic, and if it gets deleted, so be it. But is saddens me that people think it is ok to make others - volunteers - regret ever taking a role in promoting geocaching in our province,
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scruffster



Joined: Sep 29, 2004
Posts: 1203
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

It is true that volunteering for the geocaching community can be a thankless job. Often I forget to thank the people working hardest for us. And for that, I apologize for not saying this sooner. THANK YOU to the BCGA executive for working on our behalf and working side by side with Groundspeak to bring the MOT fiasco to a successful conclusion. Great job!
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Mr Kaswa



Joined: Oct 23, 2006
Posts: 43
Location: Surrey

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 8:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

As Cuddlefish said, perhaps the BCGA executives efforts could have been communicated more clearly.

The appearance over the last several months has been that we were waiting to be told by gs what to do, backed up in my mind by posts in the last several days saying things like, "we have to go through "proper channels", those being groundspeak", and , "The BCGA has just been contacted by Groundspeak and have been reassured they are still actively working on this problem. It is Groundspeaks desire to have the BCGA become involved as the local representative in which the Ministry of Transportation can directly work with in addressing their concerns and to work out an agreeable solution for everyone involved." I cannot speak for anyone else, but making it clear that I felt that the BCGA should be doing more on our own, based on what I had seen, was what I was trying to accomplish with my "being critical of your efforts"

I try to make my posts as much about the issues and the least about the people as I can, however as the BCGA executive you are likely to be directly involved with the issue and I can see where you may take things personally, that is not my intention and if I went overboard somewhere I apologize.

If, as the latests posts state, the BCGAs efforts in this were greater than previously indicated I will indeed thank you for your efforts...Thank you.
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Mr Kaswa



Joined: Oct 23, 2006
Posts: 43
Location: Surrey

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:37 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

This was intended to be a part of my previous posting....it seems perhaps that I forgot to add it to the end.

As for this,
Cuddlefish wrote:

This post is off topic, and if it gets deleted, so be it. But is saddens me that people think it is ok to make others - volunteers - regret ever taking a role in promoting geocaching in our province,

Perhaps some posts seem harsher to others, or things were said in private that I am unaware of, but I do not see anyone trying to make anyone regret being a volunteer. In fact I see this statement as going too far in the other direction as an attempt to make others regret expressing their opinions instead of posting only praise.
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Cuddlefish



Joined: Oct 20, 2008
Posts: 291

PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 9:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Mr Kaswa wrote:
This was intended to be a part of my previous posting....it seems perhaps that I forgot to add it to the end.

As for this,
Cuddlefish wrote:

This post is off topic, and if it gets deleted, so be it. But is saddens me that people think it is ok to make others - volunteers - regret ever taking a role in promoting geocaching in our province,

Perhaps some posts seem harsher to others, or things were said in private that I am unaware of, but I do not see anyone trying to make anyone regret being a volunteer. In fact I see this statement as going too far in the other direction as an attempt to make others regret expressing their opinions instead of posting only praise.

Actually this is what I was specifically referring to there:

Fonty Family wrote:
Phil - I just want to say thank you for getting the ball rolling. As I think without your involvement, we would likely still be waiting for a resolution.

That is beyond an opinion, it is a disrespectful criticism.

The BCGA Exec have day jobs and families. We volunteer at personal expense. Indeed, the conference calls with Groundspeak occurred during working hours at cost to the Exec members who had to take time out of their day to participate. Emails back and forth take lots of time also. We have to balance this role with our professional duties and our family duties.

If anyone thinks they are better suited to this work, then please step up at the AGM. Until then, I would suggest that if people want to express their opinions, they do so respectfully, mindful of the fact that the BCGA Exec are volunteers and are doing this job at personal cost.
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katcogo



Joined: Feb 21, 2009
Posts: 522
Location: Burnaby

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 8:30 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

As far as what BCGA has done (or not done) in this regard, here is our timeline of contacts and copies of emails (some extraneous details have been edited out):

Aug 18, Lord Ed posts that there is a moratorium

Our immediate response:


Hi Wiz.

I just saw the following post on the BCGA Forums:

“Due to a recent complaint from the British Columbia Ministry of Transportation (MOT), reviewers have been asked by groundspeak not to publish any new geocache submissions along any highway or road that may be considered on or too close to the right of way property owned by the Ministry of Transportation. This is having a major affect on geocaching across the province as the MOT has not yet told groundspeak exactly what the boundary is. The notice is only a few days old and already there are over 200 caches on hold in geo purgatory waiting for a ruling.”

Is there a contact at MOT that BCGA can contact to discuss?


The response from Wizard of Ooze:

From: Wizard of Ooze [mailto:1wizardofooze@gmail.com]
Sent: August-18-11 9:59 AM
Subject: Re: BC MOT Geocache Ban


Hi ,
At this point, I'd suggest that you direct all questions and comments directly to Groundspeak, rather than contacting the Ministry. Groundspeak is working diligently on this issue and your input will be valuable, but I think if individuals start contacting MOT it could potentially muck up the negotiations. Feel free to email contact @ groundspeak.com and put BC Ministry of Transportation in the email header so it gets routed to the correct people who are working on this issue.

thanks


Our subsequent email to Groundspeak again on Aug 18:

Hi there,


I am on the executive of the British Columbia Geocaching Association. We have just found out that the BC MOT has made a request to Groundspeak regarding the placement of caches on the MOT Right of Way. Is there anything we as an association can do to work with the MOT to establish some guidelines?

Thank you,


We did not receive a response from Groundspeak until Aug 29th.

Edit - I have been advised that I may not post direct emails from Groundspeak as they consider all their emails to be privileged so I have paraphrased the content of the email:

The email was from Groundspeak Business Development
on Mon, 29 Aug 2011 at 15:32:39
regarding British Columbia Ministry of Transport

The email thanked us for contacting them. They gave us the name of the complaintant. they said they had been unsuccessful in explaining geocaching but were not ready to give up. They expressed a wish to call us to collaborate on a communication plan that would allow some geocaches to be allowed if they presented no danger to the public.

They asked for a contact number they could call so the phone bill would be theirs.


The executive saw this as a positive step and decided we needed more information before we could proceed further. We proposed the questions to Groundspeak in an email to the executive as follows:

What we should do first on this is contact Jenn at Groundspeak to get more information about what they have been doing on this so we can formulate a course of action on our part. We need to know the following:


1. What is the exact nature of the concern
2. Why do they seem to have put a moratorium on ALL public roadways in BC
3. Can they isolate the moratorium to only provincially designated highways and/or only in the Quesnel Highways District? (as a start before the rest of it is sorted out)
4. What have they already proposed to this manager?


We had no further direct contact with Groundspeak despite followup emails and requests for phone calls until October 27 when Jenn called Kelly. We could only assume that they were working on things in the background and would contact us further when appropriate. By this time they had decided on their course of action. I note that Groundspeak has now closed their case number on this.

The executive now has some basis with which to proceed and we shall.


Last edited by katcogo on Sat Oct 29, 2011 9:19 am; edited 1 time in total
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Philatsea



Joined: Jun 17, 2008
Posts: 118

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 8:49 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

So exactly who is katcogo?

Is there a name attached to this?

What is your position with the BCGA exactly to making a response such as this? Trying to locate this info on BCGA is almost impossible.

Shouldn't this information be coming from the President?

I have said from the outright that I do not represent the BCGA but in this case you appear to be doing so. It would be nice to start the post saying so and signing it.

Phil
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Cuddlefish



Joined: Oct 20, 2008
Posts: 291

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 9:47 am    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Philatsea wrote:
So exactly who is katcogo?

Is there a name attached to this?

What is your position with the BCGA exactly to making a response such as this? Trying to locate this info on BCGA is almost impossible.

Shouldn't this information be coming from the President?

I have said from the outright that I do not represent the BCGA but in this case you appear to be doing so. It would be nice to start the post saying so and signing it.

Phil

Phil, here are the minutes from the AGM: www.bcgeocaching.com/i...amp;pid=77

katcogo is Kathy Costello, your BCGA Treasurer.

Kelly, your BCGA President is away this week with his family and has no internet access where he is.

The other two Exec members are on Vancouver Island, and I believe also away this weekend on a geocaching related trip.
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Magicman65



Joined: Nov 02, 2009
Posts: 109
Location: Victoria

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:22 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Philatsea wrote:
So exactly who is katcogo?

Is there a name attached to this?

What is your position with the BCGA exactly to making a response such as this? Trying to locate this info on BCGA is almost impossible.

Shouldn't this information be coming from the President?

I have said from the outright that I do not represent the BCGA but in this case you appear to be doing so. It would be nice to start the post saying so and signing it.

Phil

Hi Phil,
here is my post from Jan 3rd/2011 as to who your BCGA Vice President is:

Hi there, I am Chris(magicman65) and I was recently nominated to run on the 2011 board for the BCGA so I thought maybe I should introduce myself to those that do not know me. I started caching on sept.7th/08 when I drove up to to Courtenay to visit my girlfriend(now fiance) and she had been caching for a couple of years already. She took me to my first cache and I was hooked!!! EDIT NOTE:(She is now my wife as of Feb 19th/2011)
I have since found over 1000 caches, (Now over 1600) placed about 20caches,(Now 32) held several events and even got 150 FTF's(Now 200). I have met a lot of friends thru geocaching and get together with quite a few even when geocaching is not involved. I live on Vancouver island but travel quite a bit, as I have a very unusual job, you see, I am an award winning Comedy Magician. and when I do leave home I cache wherever I go.
I am quite active in the caching community, I am a member of the Mid Island geocachers and am very interested in being a voice for the island thru the BCGA.

Thanx, Chris Yuill
www.cymagic.ca

_________________
Believe in Magic!!
www.cymagic.ca
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Fonty Family



Joined: Nov 15, 2009
Posts: 149
Location: Kelowna

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Roadside Cache Ban Reply with quote

Cuddlefish - for what it is worth, my original comment was solely to thank phil for his involvement it was not meant to put down the bcga but rereading my original post i can see how it could be as taken as an insenstive comment. So for that i apologize if it offended the bcga executive
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