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CITO Day Cache - Archived
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King Boreas
Geocacher


Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2442

PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2005 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I think this cache served a great purpose and find the argument that it discourged others from hosting CITO events to be laughable.


http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=ee5bd241-5eaa-4f7c-a915-94a70ded60b8&log=y&decrypt=

The April CITO was sometime around the 9th, Saint Paul Parks clean-up was the next weekend, and our (mucluck and me) event was the following weekend.

After being the third choice that month, I think we still had a good event and did some good work.
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Centris
Past MnGCA Chair


Joined: 27 Nov 2002

Posts: 620

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 2:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Msg from the President... Reply with quote

JT wrote:
On March 26, with a 5-0 vote by the Board, Centris was given the following options:
* Transfer the cache back to Centris and Centris maintains this cache as a "Centris" cache, not an "MnGCA" cache.
* Transfer the cache back to Centris and Centris archives the cache, and the MnGCA will decide if they want to start a new monthly CITO cache.
* Keep this cache on the MnGCA account, have the MnGCA continue to maintain it, and edit the description and add a short story about the actual origins of this cache to correct the inaccurate perception that this was created by the MnGCA.


When the board understood they had hijacked my personal cache on March 13th without my permission or foreknowledge (should any state geocaching organization have the power to do this?? There is a good question!), it should have been returned to my account IMMEDIATELY! No secret vote over what to do, no options, no rules over why, when and how. Was it transfered? No. (in hindsight I should have made a big public uproar over this when the hijack first happened)

Yes indeed, this was a footnote on a lengthy and (what I thought) a sincere apology on March 26th. I foolishly thought I had pleaded my case successfully and the cache would be maintained - I was wrong. I felt like it was on loan and would be used to continue to do some good for the organization. Was it ever edited (as promised) to give me any credit at all or to tell the story of the cache? No. The cache is worded exactly as it was when it was taken over.

JT wrote:
On June 9, Centris requested that the cache get transferred to her account and archived.

Ah - the key words here are transfered to my account THEN archived -- I specifically stated that in my email to Aaron. I wanted it back in one piece and alive!!! I received it ALREADY ARCHIVED.

Did you honestly think that I would have put two and a half years of effort and time into a cause I felt SO strongly about, only to turn around and allow it to be archived by a 3/1(1) vote? Anybody who knows me, knows I would not let this happen. I am sure this is why I received so much email over the first post in this thread.

Were the MNGCA members in general given any say in this or allowed opinions? THAT is one reason why people are upset, everything was done in secret and it seems sneaky to just announce it after the deed was done. There are other members of the organization besides me who think this cache was a good thing and a part of the geocaching legacy in Minnesota.

On June 8th, Aaron told me I had "the option to decide the fate of this event", but not archiving was never an option..... if that had been a given option I would have taken it. This was presented to me as a done deal.

So I started writing the HTML for an updated cache page and re-vamping it and making sure it was perfectly clear that it was not endorsed or affiliated in any way shape or form by the MNGCA. But if I made these plans known, I knew I would not get it back because my plans were contrary to the "MNGCA master plan" and I was supposedly squashing out structured CITO efforts by all the good members of the organization.

You assured me I could decide where the cache ended up so I specifically asked to have the cache back ASAP in my reply email on June 9th (yes I did, look and see). I also expressed my opinion on the timing of your decision. However, my request was not to be..... It was finally requested by Aaron to transfer it back to me on June 20 (instead of ASAP) and I received it back already archived later that same day. Yes, I did say I would archive the cache myself in my email -- please note I did not say WHEN I would archive it, I worded it that way *on purpose* in order to get my cache back.

You all knew this was my favorite cause/cache (after all, the entire board received an email from me in late March that made it abundantly clear what my feelings were about this cache). I think you suspected I had no intention of archiving it in June. This is why you all waited to transfer it far past the time I asked for it and archived it yourself.

I would like the MNGCA Board to use their influence on my behalf to restore my cache to the same condition it was in when it was taken. I think that is fair.
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sui generis
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Apr 2004

Posts: 608

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Were the MNGCA members in general given any say in this or allowed opinions? THAT is one reason why people are upset, everything was done in secret and it seems sneaky to just announce it after the deed was done. There are other members of the organization besides me who think this cache was a good thing and a part of the geocaching legacy in Minnesota.


This statement is pure lunacy. The board makes decisions for the organization. That is what the board is elected to do. It would be completely counter productive to bring every decision before the membership as a whole for input. IE: Last years Jeep fiasco. This is why boards exist. Again, if you do not like the decisions they make, elect someone else next time around. The reason this board was put in place, in part, is because some members were unhappy with the way MNGCA was being run before. As far as the accusation of secrecy goes, the Board is required to keep minutes of their meetings on file for six years. They must make these available to anybody who wishes to see them. Unless you have asked to inspect these records and either 1. the records were silent on the matter, or 2. you were denied access, then can the accusations of secrecy, as they simply come off as hystrionic rhetoric.
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5704

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 6:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not wishing to get in the middle of this (not now at least), I would like to know if the minutes are somewhere for review now, or if we need to request them of someone, and if so, who?

Thanks!
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Marsha and Silent Bob
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 02 Sep 2003

Posts: 6261

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Use the contact form at http://www.mngca.org/board-contact.php and ask that the secretary provide them to you.
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Sad state of affairs.
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Moe the Sleaze
Geocacher


Joined: 10 Jan 2003

Posts: 1146

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sui generis wrote:
The reason this board was put in place, in part, is because some members were unhappy with the way MNGCA was being run before.


Not exactly. The previous board's term was up and they were ready to pass on the torch.
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5704

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 8:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Msg from the President... Reply with quote

Ok, now I'm stepping my foot in the water a little...

Centris wrote:
When the board understood they had hijacked my personal cache on March 13th without my permission or foreknowledge


I've seen Centris use the word "hijack" twice now in this thread. While I've seen the board's response to parts of her emails, I haven't seen the board's response to what's she's said regarding this.

What is the board's position on Centris saying that the cache was taken from her without her permission? Was this the case (according to the board), or does the board have some documentation that we're missing?

This bothers me. Will this happen again? I know if it were me, I would be upset about it as well. I've organized two events for local cachers to get together - if MNGCA as an organization took over my event without my prior knowledge and consent, I would be upset too.

Thanks!
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sui generis
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Apr 2004

Posts: 608

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Not exactly. The previous board's term was up and they were ready to pass on the torch.


My recollection is different. It took quite a bit of doing to even get a meeting set up so new officers could be elected. While some may have not been interested in maintaining their offices, there were certainly discussions among some members of the organization (who were not officers) that changes in the leadership were needed. I know for a fact that a desire for a change in leadership was PART of the reason as I indicated.
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I am amazed by how many people harp on the need to speak and write English in this country while exhibiting a fundamental lack of skills in the areas of spelling and sentence composition. Would this be irony, hypocrisy, or both?
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sui generis
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Apr 2004

Posts: 608

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I've seen Centris use the word "hijack" twice now in this thread. While I've seen the board's response to parts of her emails, I haven't seen the board's response to what's she's said regarding this.


From what I have seen in the records, the confusion seems to be created because the cache owner was listed as MNGCA. It is my understanding, (and, sure, I could be wrong on this count), that the cache owner was listed as MNGCA before this board took office, even though the cache was under a different account (an account belonging to a board member). So what is the intention behind listing something in a private account under the organizations name? Is it unreasonable to believe that the cache was supposed to be controlled by the organization listed as its owner? This type of commingling of accounts can only lead to trouble. If she really felt it was "her" cache, and not MNGCA's cache, she should have listed it as such. She is just as responsible for any misunderstanding as the current board is. I imagine if the board told Geocaching.com to archive a cache that was listed under your, or any other owners name, the request would be denied unless there was a good reason(safety, illegal placement, etc.) Keep in mind, ANY cacher can request that ANY cache be archived by posting an SBA note. Whether it happens or not is up to GC.com.
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I am amazed by how many people harp on the need to speak and write English in this country while exhibiting a fundamental lack of skills in the areas of spelling and sentence composition. Would this be irony, hypocrisy, or both?


Last edited by sui generis on Tue Jun 28, 2005 9:12 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5704

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I fail to see where this (side) part of the thread is going. The board changed. What's the difference WHY it changed. It was one group of people, now it's a different group of people.

I don't see any reason to bring up shortcomings, whatever they may or may not have been, of the old board. The topic at hand apparently only concerns the current board.
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sui generis
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Apr 2004

Posts: 608

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I fail to see where this (side) part of the thread is going. The board changed. What's the difference WHY it changed. It was one group of people, now it's a different group of people.

I don't see any reason to bring up shortcomings, whatever they may or may not have been, of the old board. The topic at hand apparently only concerns the current board.


I haven't mentioned any specific shortcomings, because the specifics are not relevant. The relevance as to WHY the board changed is simply to illustrate the point that the board is elected to make policy and lead the organization. If you don't like the way it is being led, or the policies in place, then the remedy is to elect persons who will establish policies that are more in keeping with what you, the voter, see as a favorable direction for the organization.
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I am amazed by how many people harp on the need to speak and write English in this country while exhibiting a fundamental lack of skills in the areas of spelling and sentence composition. Would this be irony, hypocrisy, or both?
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5704

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 9:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can see I'm getting drawn into this now.. Confused

sui generis wrote:
From what I have seen in the records, the confusion seems to be created because the cache owner was listed as MNGCA.


I've since seen some of what you are referring to.

It's an important point that the owner was listed as MNGCA, even though the cache belonged to Centris.

Although I'm having a little bit of a hard time with what I've read on this, it appears that Centris contacted the board fairly quickly once the transfer of ownership took place.

Personally I would like to see what Centris asks. That being that the board do what it can to get the cache reinstated the way it was before it was taken by MNGCA. Based on what I've read, I see WHY it was taken, don't fault the board for it, but hope that the board will now correct the situation on it's own.

Without going further on this, I would like to give the board a chance to respond if they are going to. No sense in beating it to death before we let them come out with a collective response if they are going to. Very Happy

Just remember, in the end, it's just a hobby. No one was injured or killed.
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sui generis
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Apr 2004

Posts: 608

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Without going further on this, I would like to give the board a chance to respond if they are going to. No sense in beating it to death before we let them come out with a collective response if they are going to. Very Happy

Just remember, in the end, it's just a hobby. No one was injured or killed.


Well stated and fair enough Pearhead. I'll shut up now. Wink
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s4xton
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 23 Mar 2003

Posts: 1070

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A long time ago, I was cleaning out the MnGCA account on Geocaching.com. It was a bit of a mess that was inherited.

I changed a lot of "finds" that the MnGCA had for dropping Yellow Jeep Travel Bugs to "notes."

I was also working with Groundspeak directly to make the following changes:

* There were some Yellow Jeep travel bugs that for some some reason were still on the account that we were not holding.

* There was a Centris Beanie-Baby cache that was on the MnGCA account for some reason. I had them transfer it to her account. Figured this was an oversight.

* The CITO Day cache I noticed was on Centris' account for some reason. It said it was "by MnGCA," and zero mention of Centris was on the cache other than if you clicked it, it went to Centris' account page. I assumed this was an oversight the same way that the Beanie Baby cache was an oversight. The MnGCA Board assumed it was an MnGCA cache. I saw no reason at the time to believe that the cache was intended to be a personal cache by Centris. I never thought she intended to have it be her cache, while using the MnGCA name on everything, and saying on the cache page that it was created due to to an idea from the first MnGCA meeting.

I carbon copied Centris on all changes that applied to her.

Groundspeak looked at the caches and agreed completely and made the changes without question. They carbon copied the MnGCA, me personally and Centris on all changes.

My mistake was that I could have informed Centris of these changes before I asked Groundspeak to make them. At that point, Centris would have been able to correct our understanding of the ownership of the CITO Day cache before the change happened.

When Centris spoke out about it later (it was two weeks later I believe), the Board immediately formed a reply, and I personally apologized to her for the error.

The Board, as described above, gave her three solid options of where to go next, with the addition of the option of going with any other idea she may have for the outcome of the cache. Of course, one of these options was to return it to her. We were in direct contact with Groundspeak about this and it would have been no problem to put it back on her account.

She read the email and never replied.

At the latest Board meeting, over two months later, we decided that in lieu of Centris not replying, and for a new direction of where we wanted to take MnGCA's CITO activities (we never disagreed that CITO Day did good for the organization in the past), we decided to archive it after the next CITO Day. We know that many members liked the CITO Day cache, but we voted that it did not reflect the kind of CITO Event the MnGCA wanted moving forward.

In addition, we decided that will inform Centris that's the direction we wanted to take -- and in addition to that -- still allow her any of the previous options to overrule us. We wanted to make sure she had every opportunity, again, to choose what happens to the cache.

She chose to agree with us on archiving it after the last CITO Day and transfer it to her account.

With one additional request: She also wanted an old archived event cache on the MnGCA transferred to her account from when the MnGCA was called GEM. After doing research on this (the Board used towlebooth for most of the historical information) it was determined that the additional request was not appropriate and was not honored.

She also suggested we get a historian.

***

There was a death in my immediate family that kept me away from MnGCA/Geocaching activities for more than a week. When I started to return to my duties, it was two days after the last CITO Day. Silent Bob reminded me that I needed to take care of it.

I archived it, and passed on to Groundspeak to give her the cache for her account. Silent Bob pointed out to me right afterwards that Centris put in one of her emails the language said that she would archive it. After the fact, I realized it was a mistake for me to archive it.

At the time, I didn't think it was a big deal. What's the difference if the MnGCA archives it versus Centris archiving it?

We find out later, that she actually wasn't going to do what she said, and was going to continue to have the cache run. Nobody on the MnGCA Board knew this.

Sorry.

Now, the cache is in her hands, and it's between her and Groundspeak if she wants to do anything. Personally, I don't care what she does or does not do with it, just as long as it does not say "MnGCA" all over it. If this is a Centris cache, then it should have said it was a Centris cache. If it's an MnGCA cache, then it's an MnGCA cache. If this was her idea and not the MnGCA's, it should indicate such and not imply that it was an MnGCA idea.

In my time on the Board I've had to deal with 3 other specific situations where individuals were acting as the "MnGCA" or saying they were "endorsed" by the MnGCA and I've helped to correct those problems. It's important for an organization that does serious work with park systems and represents a large body of members to preserve and control their name and how it's used. It was more difficult in this situation, because Centris was one of the initial leaders of the early MnGCA.

***

If you are interested in all of the details of this, do request a copy of all the meeting notes and many of the email transactions. We have already given someone all of the meeting minutes, some of the documented forum discussion and most of the documented email communication about this by request.

If anything, it will show you how we have conducted ourselves as a Board. Unfortunately, it does not paint a pretty picture of everyone but it shows how much time was consumed by this organization on this issue and how we did it.

***

The amount of time spent on managing this issue now rivals the time spent on working with the City of Duluth Parks and Recreation Department.

***

That all being said, I find it personally very disappointing how much of a fiasco was created over a very small and very reasonable misunderstanding that was apologized for promptly. After that, every single intent we had as the Board was to do as Centris wished. She didn't take us up on it and let us make the decisions, and then she agreed with our decisions. But yet the explosion on this thread happened after that.

Again, the MnGCA Board's every intent was to do as Centris wished.

...and again, don't just take my words for it. Request from the secretary the meeting notes, documentation and the emails and you'll see everything from all parties.

***

I'm not going to talk about it further. I cannot spend more time on this issue. Nothing more I can say without repeating myself.

Things I should have been working on instead, which I will begin to work on tomorrow:

* Finalizing Bylaw corrections that were approved in the last Board meeting.

* Setting up new CITO events.

* Working with the rest of the Board on the Autumn Event (JT, Silent Bob and Kitch primarily have been doing this without my involvement due to time constraints).

* Working with the rest of the Board on matters concerning the upcoming Board nominations and elections, including a new area on the Forums for nominations and voting-member discussion.

* Working with JT on establishing a new checking account.

* Working with JT and the Board on establishing a meeting with representatives from the MN DNR. JT has headway on this and have offered to meet with us soon but we have not replied yet -- been busy with this issue primarily. Sad, I think.

Keep in mind that this is a 100% volunteer organization. None of us are paid, and none of us are compensated for our efforts, and we do not keep time sheets for our work.

***

In closing, the CITO Day cache isn't on the MnGCA account any longer, and it is now an issue between Centris and Groundspeak, Inc.

***

-Aaron
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5704

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aaron,

In short, thanks.

I understand from what you wrote and from seeing some of the previous emails regarding this more about the situation. I'm not saying here that I agree with the final outcome or not, only that I understand how we got to where we're at. Although the cache was taken from Centris when (the way I read it) it shouldn't have been, the offer was made to return it.

Thanks again to you (and the others involved as well) for putting the time into the organization. For me in particular, your efforts in the Duluth Parks & Rec policy and the Lester Bash haven't gone unnoticed at all.

You're right - it is disappointing to see how much of a fiasco was created over this. I believe lack of information was perhaps a large fuel to this fire.

I'm not a fan at all of keeping most of the business of the board, of most any board, from the members. By making the members request the board minutes is another step to keeping the information from the members. I know the reasoning behind it sometimes - there are things that are delicate that would be best handled by not advertising them to the membership. That being said, I'm still not in favor of it. I'm also not in favor of closed board meetings, although that's a topic for another thread (as is this I guess).

Anyway, thanks again!

- Matt
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