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Commercial Caches
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bflentje
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Joined: 29 May 2006

Posts: 4043

PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 5:03 pm    Post subject: Commercial Caches Reply with quote

In an attempt to not railroad the other thread on the CHIRP, I thought I'd propose the following question..

Just what constitutes a commercial cache anyway? This is meant to be a healthy debate and not meant to indict anyone. I have my ideas of what a commercial is or isn't. But I seem to be wrong.

I contend that language used in my recent canoe event was NOT commercial but usage of the Broadway Pizza logo and related language graphics in the pizza party events IS commercial.

By the same token, if the CHIRP device is deemed as commercial then by default, you'd think WhereIGo caches would also be considered commercial (based on the device requirement).
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always thought it was a cache that required you to pay money or specifically promoted a business qualified but then the state parks blew that out of the water.
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speedysk1
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 29 Oct 2007

Posts: 1991

PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good question Bart.

Well, I guess all caches by their very nature are commercial to some extent. They all require everyone to purchase or borrow hardware the find and place the caches. Even if you found a cache by using a map, you had to purchase the map or borrow a computer, that someone had to purchase, your still requiring someone to purchase something. Ok, yea that the extreme view, and I don't really think all caches should be banned using that as a marker, but it's food for thought.

For me, I've always thought the whole commercial thing was a bit extreme anyway. Why not let Best Buy have a sponsored cache, so long as you don't have to go into the store to find it and they follow all the guidelines. I don't want to be walking around the store looking for the cache or have to wait in line to ask the person behind the counter for it. But that's just me. I also think that events should be excluded from that rule as by the very nature of an event held at a business it's commercial. So why not allow the cache page to have the website, phone number, logo, etc from the business as long as the information is used with permission. I can't see any business getting upset about someone having an event at their business. I know the BB locations have appreciated us coming to their stores even with the hiccups here and there. It's also helpful in events like your canoe event or MOGA to be able to point people to various businesses for things.

Today people offer gift cards as FTF prizes. Isn't that commercial?

What about geocoins? Again, by their very nature, they are commercial. So why are they allowed? We've already mentioned Whereigo, and that too I think is commercial as it requires even more specialized hardware to play.

Clearly it's allowed because GC get's a kick back on the things that are on their face commercial, thus their lack of consistency. I'm all for GC making money, but I think they often cut off their nose to spite their face.
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GeoPierce
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Joined: 16 Nov 2005

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.
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timewellspent
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Joined: 19 Mar 2008

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeoPierce wrote:
I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.


You must have called the cache "Dairy Queen"?? If not, I don't get it. I went after this cache which sounds like a billboard for a company and that gets published?
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Hunter-Killer
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Joined: 25 Apr 2009

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Where do you draw the line? Mall of America Cache III which we did during the geocoinfest weekend in Minneapolis. The final is in a store in the mall of America, is that not commercial ? I guess not because it is one of the most popular caches in the area, and nothing said. So Joe Blow Pizza can't have one ? I link in our profile to our friends business in Marathon Ontario, and she has a cache on her property, no problem. Strange how things are decided.
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GeoPierce
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 10:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hunter-Killer wrote:
Where do you draw the line? Mall of America Cache III which we did during the geocoinfest weekend in Minneapolis. The final is in a store in the mall of America, is that not commercial ? I guess not because it is one of the most popular caches in the area, and nothing said. So Joe Blow Pizza can't have one ? I link in our profile to our friends business in Marathon Ontario, and she has a cache on her property, no problem. Strange how things are decided.

There are many older caches that were allowed at the time but the crackdown has only been in the past year or so. I have no idea how the G-Nug cache got past SJ unless the cache page was modified after it was published?

Nooo, my puzzle cache was not called "Dairy Queen." Smile
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speedysk1
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2010 11:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeoPierce wrote:
I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.


I agree that's a pretty strict interpretation of the no commercialism clause.
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Moe the Sleaze
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

speedysk1 wrote:
GeoPierce wrote:
I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.


I agree that's a pretty strict interpretation of the no commercialism clause.


How can a statement that suggests that people can enter the nearby business to buy their product be considered anything but commercial??
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bflentje
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Joined: 29 May 2006

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 7:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moe the Sleaze wrote:
speedysk1 wrote:
GeoPierce wrote:
I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.


I agree that's a pretty strict interpretation of the no commercialism clause.


How can a statement that suggests that people can enter the nearby business to buy their product be considered anything but commercial??


But using Broadway Pizza, it's logos, graphics, etc is completely ok for an event listing? This is EXACTLY what I want clarified. Because how can you in good conscience deny the cache above but allow the pizza party cache listing?

Seriously, I am not angry, not mad, just confused. I want some kind of clarification. Between the inconsistencies in our own home area and throughout Groundspeak as a whole, I can guarantee that I am not the only one that wants to know. Just the only one with enough nerve to ask.
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spinowner
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Joined: 25 Nov 2004

Posts: 586

PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 7:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moe the Sleaze wrote:
speedysk1 wrote:
GeoPierce wrote:
I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.


I agree that's a pretty strict interpretation of the no commercialism clause.


How can a statement that suggests that people can enter the nearby business to buy their product be considered anything but commercial??


Fair point.

So let's expand this a bit. What if a cache encourages monetary donations to a non-profit organization? Strictly speaking, that's not commercial. Or what about caches that advocate for a cause, such as a religion or political candidate? That's not commercial either, but many, probably most, feel that's not appropriate. Where the line is drawn can be a difficult thing.
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GeoPierce
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 9:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moe the Sleaze wrote:
speedysk1 wrote:
GeoPierce wrote:
I recently tried to publish a puzzle cache and it was denied just because I said "NOT AT POSTED COORDINATES (but you can get ice cream there)." I think that's a bit extreme. I didn't name the business and wasn't trying to promote it either. I just needed to specify some bogus coordinates and decided to use an ice cream place because it's a kid themed puzzle.


I agree that's a pretty strict interpretation of the no commercialism clause.


How can a statement that suggests that people can enter the nearby business to buy their product be considered anything but commercial??

Quote:
Commercial caches will not be published on geocaching.com without prior approval from Groundspeak. A commercial cache is a geocache listing or geocache which is perceived by Groundspeak, Groundspeak's employees, or the Volunteer Geocache Reviewers as having been submitted to geocaching.com with the principal or substantial intent of soliciting customers or generating commercial gain. The geocache is presumed to be commercial if the finder is required to go inside a business, interact with employees, and/or purchase a product or service, or if the cache listing has overtones of advertising, marketing, or promotion.

I've never even been to this Dairy Queen or know anyone that works there so why would I be trying to solicit customers for the business? Finders are not required to visit the business to solve the puzzle either.
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speedysk1
Past MnGCA Board


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moe the Sleaze wrote:
How can a statement that suggests that people can enter the nearby business to buy their product be considered anything but commercial??


There is no requirement to visit the store, and it's simply meant to let people know not to visit the site for the cache. People "can" do lots of things that could be considered commercial, such as selling things at events. *cough* GCF. How is that not commercial? Again, I don't really care, I just wish they were a bit more consistent. I think they are a bit strict on the interpretation on commercial too.
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dornole
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think this is ever gonna be consistent. Like other things I think people "know it when they see it . . . ."

Personally I like knowing if a place has ice cream nearby . . . or certainly if canoes are available for rent (at the only place in town . . . . )

If it said "mention you are a cacher for a discount . . . ." maybe that could get creepy, or maybe I would say woo hoo!

Religious or nonprofit caches I think would creep me, and I work in the nonprofit sector. But again I think I look at, is it "grassroots" from a hider and that changes my mind. For example, cache in honor of breast cancer awareness and my aunt Jen the survivor -- sweet. 100 caches by Susan J Komen? Not as sure. Though the Diabetes TBs didn't bug me. Jesus trading cards? Bugged me some even though I'm Christian. Say some Scientology brochures? That would bug me even more.

Not consistent. Same issues in online group I moderate, what is "commercial" and what is people just sharing resources. It comes down to intent sometimes.
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Pear Head
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that its true in just about everything. Unless the rule is defined in clear terms that you can't interpret to mean one thing out another there will always be that gray zone. We see it here in moderating - each situation is handled on its own merits. Some are even handled incorrectly our unfairly. We're all human here - no one is perfect...
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