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Thread: Is a truly fair vote possible on GAGB as it stands

  1. #1
    washboy Guest

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    Today I saw the appearance of (what I would bet money is) a sock puppet in the forums here. Specifically one "Lady Jane".

    Now, while I don't have a major problem with sock puppets in the context of discussion groups and forums, I do have concerns about the ease with which anyone can create multiple memberships of GAGB. I've just created one myself to be sure.

    Multiple membership IDs means multiple votes in any poll or election. This is unacceptable.

    I'm disappointed that membership of GAGB can be gained merely by provision of a username, password and working e-mail address. Why don't we have to provide our real names and postal addresses plus the username(s) we geocache by (and on which listings sites)? In my view there's a big difference between membership of a representative organisation and simple access to an on-line discussion group.

    I've reservations too about whether candid and meanigful discussion can take place in public forums but let's leave that for the moment.

  2. #2

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    How could the GAGB confirm that any addresses given were genuine ?

    Unless the address given was very obviously bogus, like "10 Downing Street", how would we know ? I can find loads of addresses in the phone directory ! And how many people would want to give their address ?

    Assuming that people were prepared to give their addresses, I suppose we could send each one a letter with a pin number and they would have to use that pin to access the forum. Would you like to pay for the postage ?

    If we insist that the ID and which site the member caches on was given, that would exclude new cachers from joining and one our aims is to assist new cachers. Also, We know of a number of cachers who have multiple ID's on GC.com. One of those has several usernames (we know many of them) and even plants caches and finds them himself !

    Also, what's to stop anybody from creating a user ID, logging a few false finds, and hey presto ! instant credibility !

    I can't see a way of making this workable. As this was your suggestion, perhaps you have some ideas we haven't thought of. If you have, please do let us know.

    A watch is kept for bogus sign up's, and yes, yours was noticed. I guess it is likely that we will miss some though. If people have few scruples and want to cheat, they will find a way, but that is a pretty low-life outlook.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  3. #3
    BugznElm&#39;r Guest

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    Yes, this is a problem.

    At best I think that internet voting based on a forum will equal a shambles because of sock puppets and the like.

    Let me offer one idea that may bring some credibillity to results - that a voter must have been a member for X period of time before the vote counts (X needs to be decided - say 14 days). Some organisations make it 3 months but that won&#39;t work here because of the embryonic position of the GAGB.

  4. #4
    TheCat Guest

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    Dont kick me but could you not ask for a small amount like 2.00 to register with GAGB. You would then have a small amount of cash to use for postage etc. It would also get rid of some of the trolls as they would not be bothered sending it in. You could also send a reply with the pin etc as mentioned. payed for from the 2.00. OK I know it would take some work but it might make the poll a bit more credible. The 2.00 could be a one off payment.

  5. #5

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    Alternatively, let&#39;s just not bother at all.

    Simply disband the GAGB and call it a day.

    Why should we worry about any cachers outside Hampshire, after all, HCC have given us blanket permission, so perhaps "I&#39;m OK Jack" should be our watchword.

    I have to ask myself, "is the pain worth the gain ?" Well, June and I have nothing to gain, so I guess the answer is No &#33;
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  6. #6
    Icenians Guest

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    Originally posted by Tim and June@Aug 7 2003, 12:34 PM
    Alternatively, let&#39;s just not bother at all.

    Simply disband the GAGB and call it a day.

    Why should we worry about any cachers outside Hampshire, after all, HCC have given us blanket permission, so perhaps "I&#39;m OK Jack" should be our watchword.

    I have to ask myself, "is the pain worth the gain ?" Well, June and I have nothing to gain, so I guess the answer is No &#33;
    Is it not a valid point that anyone can create alternative logins at present and vote multiple times? If this is the case then surely it is in everybodies best interests if that is at least addressed rather than dismissed out of hand.

    Members are simply discussing their concerns. That is what a forum is for.

    Kev

  7. #7
    Chris n Maria Guest

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    <Reality Check>
    Just a point - but I think people are getting a little carried away here.
    What are people standing for?
    The chance to do a lot of hardwork for very little payback.
    So they rig an election.
    They end up doing a lot of work they wouldn&#39;t otherwise do, not get much credit and probebly some abuse.

    Maybe it&#39;s just me, but my experiencees of voluntary organisations is that few people want the jobs at the bottom of the heirachy and even less want the ones at the top. In Scouting I am an Assistant District Comissioner (ADC) -sounds posh dosn&#39;t it, till you realise thatI , and all of the ADCs and even the District Comissioner are only in those positions because no one else wanted to be lumbered with the job.
    </Reality Check>

    As soon as people realise that the positions we are talking about are hard work. I doubt that "fixing" will become much of an issue.

    Just my thoughts.
    Chris

  8. #8
    Teasel Guest

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    GAGB is far bigger than one person, or even one County, so even if Hampshire cachers pulled out, the problem of sock puppets in votes would not go away.

    Given all the cheating seen in the Groundspeak polls during the "troubles", I think it&#39;s fair to say that people will cheat in the GAGB elections. (Hell, even the G:UK logo poll had multiple cheaters on both sides&#33 :angry: So what can we do to minimise it? As T&J say, we can&#39;t really restrict membership of GAGB to existing cachers. Nor would that help, since many sock puppets are active cachers&#33;

    If we required members to send in an SAE if they want to vote, that would certainly make it more difficult (though not impossible) to cheat. However it would effectively give more voting power to people with stronger feelings. It is said that votes in general elections are correlated with whether it&#39;s raining or not; this would take that even further.

    The founder members placed great importance on privacy and confidentiality when setting up GAGB. Was this just a sensible precaution against possible abuses (eg bulk mailings), or is there reason to believe that people are particularly nervous about giving their details to GAGB? If the latter, then registering for voting via SAEs could further exclude legitimate members from the votes. Any comments / anecdotes from the current Admins about how much of a risk it would be to ask for postal addresses?

    Even without the cheats, there&#39;s still the question of what to do when there is more than one legitimate team within a single household. One-team-one-vote means that teams who log their finds separately have twice the voting power of those who do not. Eg the Harrises would have two votes, but the Prowtings would get only one

    Is there time to nail down the best voting procedure before the forthcoming elections, or should we just run with something and task the new committee with coming up with more formal arrangements? Presumably we&#39;re going to need some sort of constitution / standing orders at some point?

    Apologies for the length of this. The ability to express myself concisely will not form part of my manifesto

  9. #9

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    Originally posted by Teasel@Aug 7 2003, 01:53 PM
    Apologies for the length of this. The ability to express myself concisely will not form part of my manifesto
    I think you put your point over very well.

    You have my five votes.
    Muggle - One Voice - One Vote

  10. #10
    BugznElm&#39;r Guest

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    Originally posted by Tim and June@Aug 7 2003, 12:34 PM
    Alternatively, let&#39;s just not bother at all.

    Simply disband the GAGB and call it a day.

    Why should we worry about any cachers outside Hampshire, after all, HCC have given us blanket permission, so perhaps "I&#39;m OK Jack" should be our watchword.

    I have to ask myself, "is the pain worth the gain ?" Well, June and I have nothing to gain, so I guess the answer is No &#33;
    Yep, that&#39;s an option too.

    However, your post surprises me. Going over recent days messages I&#39;d say that 50% of the messages have been pure pro-GAGB with the other 50% being made up of opinion and constructive ideas/comments/criticisms (yes&#33. Isn&#39;t this how we thrash things out? We are all pro-geocaching and want to see a bright future for it in the UK and if ideas aren&#39;t placed in the pool now there may never be another time for them.

    Whatever happened to:

    Please do not be offended by the posts of others who might not agree with you 100%, they have a right to be heard also. Please do not be offended by the posts of others who might not agree with you 100%, they have a right to be heard also.
    However, if comments and constructive criticisms are not welcome, fine, let me know and I won&#39;t waste another moment suggesting anything (not only do I make it a rule of not being a member of any organization/association that wants to be closed to ideas but equally from my point of view the HCC guidelines have no effect on me here - we have 5 "with permission" caches to go in that have had no opposition and a possibility to arrange a geocaching event during the next years "walking festival" in North Wales - I&#39;m OK too, Jack).

    So, we can share ideas and plans or not ...

  11. #11

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    By Teasel
    The founder members placed great importance on privacy and confidentiality when setting up GAGB. Was this just a sensible precaution against possible abuses (eg bulk mailings), or is there reason to believe that people are particularly nervous about giving their details to GAGB? If the latter, then registering for voting via SAEs could further exclude legitimate members from the votes. Any comments / anecdotes from the current Admins about how much of a risk it would be to ask for postal addresses?
    Not just sensitivity to giving details to the GAGB, the Internet is an environment where on the whole, people are reluctant to disclose any details about themselves. This is a mindset which has been getting more and more deeply rooted. I see no reason why this case should be any different. Admin has recieved two emails saying something similar to "If you adopt the snail mail method I will be excluded from voting."

    By Teasel
    Even without the cheats, there&#39;s still the question of what to do when there is more than one legitimate team within a single household.
    Yep &#33;

    If we did adopt the smail mail method of validating voters, what do we say to the cacher who says "But what if the person who deals with that system cheats with his friends and he/she swings the vote ?"

    So whichever way we go, we will be wrong. The only way I can see of preventing someone objecting to whichever is decided upon, is to call in an independent body like ACAS to handle our polls. :

    You&#39;re damned if you do, You&#39;re damned if you don&#39;t.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  12. #12

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    BugznElm&#39;r,

    Yes, of course comments are welcome. The problem is that we cannot do right for doing wrong.

    Which ever way we go there will be objections from somebody, and frankly it is getting very tedious.

    The nominations have been open for three weeks, and now, just before the election actually takes place, there are delays.

    At this rate, we will never have a committee and little or no progress can be achieved until we do. We cannot even decide on a constitution or aims until the elections are over.

    We do have some methods in place to prevent bogus voting. It may not trap all, but it will trap many of those who try to cheat.
    <span style=\'font-size:10pt;line-height:100%\'><span style=\'color:green\'><span style=\'font-family:Arial\'>totally brassed off </span></span></span>

  13. #13

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    Originally posted by Teasel@Aug 7 2003, 01:53 PM
    Even without the cheats, there&#39;s still the question of what to do when there is more than one legitimate team within a single household. One-team-one-vote means that teams who log their finds separately have twice the voting power of those who do not. Eg the Harrises would have two votes, but the Prowtings would get only one
    For give me, Teasel, but shouldn&#39;t it be &#39;one GAGB member - one vote&#39;? As far as I am aware, GAGB membership is open to all who are interested in geocaching, not just teams or individuals who are registered with cg.com (or any other site, for that matter). If there are four people, for instance, in a household who are interested in geocaching then they are all entitled to be members of the GAGB and as such are entitled to their vote. The fact that they cache together as one team is irrelevant.

    John
    John
    Age and treachery will always triumph over youth and ability.

  14. #14

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    Why is everyone in these forums getting so upset with everything.

    Just remember Geocaching is only a HOBBY so just chill out and enjoy it .

  15. #15
    BugznElm&#39;r Guest

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    Originally posted by Tim and June@Aug 7 2003, 04:09 PM
    BugznElm&#39;r,

    Yes, of course comments are welcome. The problem is that we cannot do right for doing wrong.

    Which ever way we go there will be objections from somebody, and frankly it is getting very tedious.

    The nominations have been open for three weeks, and now, just before the election actually takes place, there are delays.

    At this rate, we will never have a committee and little or no progress can be achieved until we do. We cannot even decide on a constitution or aims until the elections are over.

    We do have some methods in place to prevent bogus voting. It may not trap all, but it will trap many of those who try to cheat.
    Well, just to set the record straight I don&#39;t expect anything I post to be put into practice either in the short or long term - they are just ideas for the melting pot.

    No offence meant or taken&#33;

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