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Thread: Anitpathy to the GAGB

  1. #1

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    Default Anitpathy to the GAGB

    What are each candidate's ideas as to how to reduce the apparent antipathy to the GAGB amongst certain groups of cachers, including those north of the Scotland/England border?

  2. #2

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    Hi,

    Personally I belive in fairness for all I would NEVER be prejudiced against any member of the GAGB and would try to do the best with in my power to make sure everyone is include I would attempt to to this (If Elected) by reaching out to the Scottish cachers across their forums and offer them a chance to have a voice and equal say just the same as the English and Welsh members do. I would try to help anyone who felt that they did not have a voice be heard across the the foums and try to make everyone feel that they are being listened to.


    Thanks
    Dominic
    Last edited by geocaching womble; 16th November 2012 at 02:22 PM. Reason: Forgot to add some relevant information

  3. #3

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    I do not understand the antipathy towards the GAGB and I have tried to find the reason behind the feelings. However I am a member of 21 regional Geocaching Facebook groups and I check in regularly to keep up to date with what is going on as I have friends in all of these groups.

    I am a member of one of the Scottish groups and hope I encouraged discussion about the GAGB and persuading JackieC to stand for election through a few hours on their forum earlier this week. Trust me they put me though the wringer but they did not frighten me off . I received a number of emails later thanking me for taking the time to explain what the GAGB was about, even though at times I felt I was not explaining things to the best

    A number of these Scottish cachers have since joined our active GAGB Facebook group and hopefully the word will continue to spread.

    We will not be able to persuade all cachers, irrespective of region, of the need for the GAGB but I will certainly do my best through the use of the forums, facebook and attending as many events as I can - just a shame Scotland is so far from S Wales :lol:

  4. #4
    keehotee Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by MBFace View Post
    What are each candidate's ideas as to how to reduce the apparent antipathy to the GAGB amongst certain groups of cachers, including those north of the Scotland/England border?
    A good question.......

    From What is the GAGB
    "Since the very earliest days of Geocaching in the UK it had become more and more apparent that Geocaching in the United Kingdom needed to be represented by a body recognised by UK cachers and which could act honestly and independently on behalf of UK cachers."

    Personally I think the GAGB has lost it's way in this. I am struggling to think of a recent example of us acting independently on behalf of any cachers, and honesty is very hard to gauge when proceedings and communications are kept behind closed doors with the minimum possible amount relayed on to the ordinary membership.

    In recent years the GAGB has been known for the GLAD and the forum.
    As has been demonstrated recently, the GLAD is largely unmaintained - and most input appears to be by individuals seeking landowner agreements by their own efforts before passing the details to the GAGB for listing. To be honest, there is no great need - other than a requirement for an easily and freely accessed central data location - for this to be hosted by the GAGB anyway, particularly when most of the agreements have been negotiated for use with only one listing site anyway.
    The forum too has now passed in it's usefulness. It's one major selling point in the past was it's non-partisan, barely moderated position. A place where (perhaps) a little more free speech was permitted than on another previously well-used forum. With the rise in popularity of Facebook and other social media sites, perhaps now is also the time to put the forum to bed?

    So - if the forum is as good as dead, and there is no need for the GLAD to be hosted here - what exactly is the purpose of the GAGB? We are only left with a representative body for cachers - of all persuasions and listing services - and this I feel is the only place the GAGB can now make a mark and win back a little credibility.

  5. #5

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    Before accepting the nomination to stand for the committee I asked a similar question to the members of Geocaching in Scotland, which became a most informative and enlightening discussion for me and gave me a new perspective on the GAGB (which also involved both Lilian/Mollyjax and Stephen/Boba Frett).

    From these discussions I noted that the GAGB is generally regarded with antipathy, and in some cases dislike, but few actually knew why. Many newer cachers did not have any experience of the GAGB, and as they'd never needed it then it couldn't be that relevant to them. Some cachers had been told that the GAGB is irrelevant, so had never bothered looking at the site at all.

    Now, whilst I'd love to be able to say that during 2013 I'm going to 'change hearts and minds' in the UK caching community above 54degrees North, but I know that that will require a long term initiative, and before that commences I think that the GAGB needs to make some major changes.

    Firstly I'd like to get some feedback on what today’s cacher wants from the GAGB. Ideas/suggestions have been asked for before, but this involved emails/messages (which identify the cacher), I'd like to use the survey monkey route to collect more information and ideas.

    With this information I hope to work with the others on the GAGB team to make the GAGB a more relevant resource for all cachers, and then look at re-introducing the GAGB to all areas.

    Hope this helps

    JackieC
    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better. - Samuel Beckett

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by keehotee View Post
    With the rise in popularity of Facebook and other social media sites, perhaps now is also the time to put the forum to bed?
    Not the best way to promote an 'inclusive' GAGB. Although the forum isn't the busiest it still serves a useful purpose. Removing it would alienate those who by choice don't want to become part of Facebook.
    And yes I'm computer literate and not over 50!

  7. #7

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    I would get in amongst the forums and networking channels and ask what people want from the GAGB.

    From these discussions I think we would be wise to take on board and positively act on as much of this feedback as we can. We want GAGB members to feel included and part of this association and the best way to start that ball rolling is open it up for debate through these channels.

  8. #8

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    Thumbs up

    In 2008/9 when Jacobite and I were on our committee we acted as liaison to almost all of the regional forums. Almost, because one Scottish one, had members openly hostile to GAGB and it was made clear to us that our intervention would be counter-productive. Clearly it was the wrong time then, so I hope this situation has improved and that the members concerned can view our new committee with open minds.

    I'm really pleased that Mollyjak has been doing a similar liaison role in the past year and evidently much more intensively than I was able to. I think this should continue however it's such a big task that I would prefer a GAGB member on each forum to act as their local focal point and advocate for GAGB. Whether it's Mollyjak or me, we lack the local connection in most of the country. However, there should be a committee member working actively with our advocates to ensure that the dialogue is ongoing, chip in where needed and recruit new advocates should any drop out. We should not be shy or reticent, but make it clear we intend to listen rather more than speak.

    With an advocate on every regional forum, listing site forum and Facebook group, we should be able to create and maintain a healthy dialogue. I think it is up to us to demonstrate through transparency and openness in what we do, that antipathy and hostility towards us are misplaced. If all is there to be seen then if there are any grievances, they can also be aired in a frank and honest manner and I am confident that with a little effort and understanding, we can put it all behind us.

    This is why I genuinely believe that transparency is the critical success factor for achieving this change for the better, and why I felt it necessary to bring our hustings debate for Chairman into this forum.

    I would like to thank Maple Leaf and our outgoing committee most sincerely for their decision to hold these hustings in our publicly readable forum. It means, when our new committee is elected, that we will already have embarked on this change, and there really is no better time to start than this! :socool:

  9. #9

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    Perhaps we could start with an anonymous survey to get the issues out on the table and then ask if some Scottish catchers would be willing to elaborate. This might allow us to address some specific concerns and begin a dialogue. Ultimately it's only though dialogue that relationships will be built.


    Caching since 2001
    Founder member of GAGB (2003)
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    Chair of GAGB (2010-2012)
    Negotiator of 18 Landowner Agreements
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  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Wombles View Post
    Perhaps we could start with an anonymous survey to get the issues out on the table and then ask if some Scottish catchers would be willing to elaborate. This might allow us to address some specific concerns and begin a dialogue. Ultimately it's only though dialogue that relationships will be built.
    I would agree with you on that one too Dave

    Thanks
    Dominic
    Last edited by geocaching womble; 17th November 2012 at 10:26 AM. Reason: Forgot to add a word to the post

  11. #11
    keehotee Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by eusty View Post
    Not the best way to promote an 'inclusive' GAGB. Although the forum isn't the busiest it still serves a useful purpose. Removing it would alienate those who by choice don't want to become part of Facebook.
    And yes I'm computer literate and not over 50!

    The forum IS another form of social networking, is it not?
    At the moment provision of a forum is neither in the constitution nor the stated aims of the association. Perhaps their inclusion somewhere should be a priority?
    __________________
    Last edited by keehotee; 17th November 2012 at 10:32 AM.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by keehotee View Post
    A good question.......

    From What is the GAGB
    "Since the very earliest days of Geocaching in the UK it had become more and more apparent that Geocaching in the United Kingdom needed to be represented by a body recognised by UK cachers and which could act honestly and independently on behalf of UK cachers."

    Personally I think the GAGB has lost it's way in this. I am struggling to think of a recent example of us acting independently on behalf of any cachers, and honesty is very hard to gauge when proceedings and communications are kept behind closed doors with the minimum possible amount relayed on to the ordinary membership.

    In recent years the GAGB has been known for the GLAD and the forum.
    As has been demonstrated recently, the GLAD is largely unmaintained - and most input appears to be by individuals seeking landowner agreements by their own efforts before passing the details to the GAGB for listing. To be honest, there is no great need - other than a requirement for an easily and freely accessed central data location - for this to be hosted by the GAGB anyway, particularly when most of the agreements have been negotiated for use with only one listing site anyway.
    The forum too has now passed in it's usefulness. It's one major selling point in the past was it's non-partisan, barely moderated position. A place where (perhaps) a little more free speech was permitted than on another previously well-used forum. With the rise in popularity of Facebook and other social media sites, perhaps now is also the time to put the forum to bed?

    So - if the forum is as good as dead, and there is no need for the GLAD to be hosted here - what exactly is the purpose of the GAGB? We are only left with a representative body for cachers - of all persuasions and listing services - and this I feel is the only place the GAGB can now make a mark and win back a little credibility.
    Definetly not there are a large number of cachers including myself who do not use social networking by choice so it would be unfair to exclude them

    Thanks
    Dominic
    Last edited by geocaching womble; 17th November 2012 at 10:33 AM.

  13. #13
    keehotee Guest

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    ...

  14. #14
    keehotee Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by geocaching womble View Post
    definetly not there are a large number of cachers including myself who do not use social networking by choice so it would be unfair to exclude them

    Thanks
    Dominic
    Use of the forum and membership of the GAGB are as much "social networking" as use of Facebook is.... I don't understand how you see them as different?

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by keehotee View Post
    The forum IS another form of social networking, is it not?
    At the moment provision of a forum is neither in the constitution nor the stated aims of the association. Perhaps their inclusion somewhere should be a priority?
    __________________
    Yes in principal you are right and I would if elected try to make the forum a key part of the constitution and part of the GAGB Mission Statement. By my comment I meant use of sites such as Facebook and Twitter which I feel are too intrusive to use as they allow the exposure of too much personal information online

    Thanks
    Dominic
    Last edited by geocaching womble; 17th November 2012 at 10:41 AM.

  16. #16

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    It would be easier to make suggestions if I knew the cause of the antipathy. Hopefully when the committee have collectively come up with a plan to make the GAGB more relevant to all geocachers, it may help ease the problems North of the border.

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    As one of the dinosaurs who regard social networking sites such as facebook and twitter I would be disappointed if the forum was abandoned in favour of them - however as most of you seem to prefer them it is goodbye from me
    Si vis pacem para bellum

  18. #18

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    There are many cachers who choose not to be on Facebook - I was talking to 4 today at Stan's event in Devizes.
    I know the forum has been quiet but that does not mean it is not needed.

  19. #19

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    the forum is a key part of the GAGB and needs to stay ( however the other forms of social media also play a key role with in the caching community) if elected i would like the forum to be more user friendly and to amalgamate all forms of social media there fore no one is excluded.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by geocaching womble View Post
    Yes in principal you are right and I would if elected try to make the forum a key part of the constitution and part of the GAGB Mission Statement. By my comment I meant use of sites such as Facebook and Twitter which I feel are too intrusive to use as they allow the exposure of too much personal information online

    Thanks
    Dominic
    I think Keehotee was pointing out that our GLAD being recreated elsewhere and our forum becoming quiet are a sign of GAGB losing its way and by implication that the logical conclusion would be to close them.

    Our call to action is to reverse this trend. I think this is definitely the case with our land owner database, and I consider the gauntlet thrown by the anonymous hand behind the new alternative database (see their entry for Bracknell Town Council, I don't want to link to it from here, PM me if you don't know the site name). Let's take back what's ours, by making it the most comprehensive and up-to-date resource available!

    For our forum, its decline is regrettably no different to that of other forums I belong to, most unrelated to Geocaching. Facebook is the lowest common denominator, the functionality here is much better, but the trend is towards the poor alternative of Facebook. (That said, I posted another reply to this thread yesterday and I can't see it here now!)

    I strongly disagree that our constitution should mention our forum, though it could affirm our commitment to effective communication.

    Policy determines how our constitution is implemented: it should set objectives for our forum. Given its decline, perhaps GAGB login could be cross-linked to Facebook to enable a seamless click-through from Facebook for users of both. Headlines from our forum could be propagated via URLs to Facebook and Twitter automatically. This 'push' mechanism would extend our reach and therefore could revitalise our forum.

  21. #21

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    Having searched for the above named council I found the site, basically ripping off the GAGB data (and I noticed your comment).

    But one thing is that the site is far better displaying the data than the GLAD.

    On a related point this forum looks very 'dated' (vbulletin is now v5), this gives the impression to first time visitors that the site is not updated, full of old data etc

    First impressions are important....

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by eusty View Post
    snip

    On a related point this forum looks very 'dated' (vbulletin is now v5), this gives the impression to first time visitors that the site is not updated, full of old data etc

    snip
    Is that because the site is not updated and is full of old data?

  23. #23

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    Well, I've personally brought in members from Skye and the Outer Isles. But you have to realise that they are far away, and are few in number. So I place new caches, and get the locals to maintain them. Neither Skye nor Harris/Lewis has over 100 caches. But distance is a big issue for them. Within 10km of my home there are around 1000 caches. Within 10km of Portree on Skye, there are fewer than 10.
    Isn't it amazing what you don't see, when you don't know what you're looking for?
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  24. #24
    keehotee Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by countrymatters View Post
    Well, I've personally brought in members from Skye and the Outer Isles. But you have to realise that they are far away, and are few in number. So I place new caches, and get the locals to maintain them. Neither Skye nor Harris/Lewis has over 100 caches. But distance is a big issue for them. Within 10km of my home there are around 1000 caches. Within 10km of Portree on Skye, there are fewer than 10.
    Not sure what relevance this has? Has it been cross-posted?

  25. #25

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    Thumbs up

    (Posted on Friday, did not appear, so have retrieved from browser and posted again!)

    Quote Originally Posted by JackieC View Post
    From these discussions I noted that the GAGB is generally regarded with antipathy, and in some cases dislike, but few actually knew why. Many newer cachers did not have any experience of the GAGB, and as they'd never needed it then it couldn't be that relevant to them. Some cachers had been told that the GAGB is irrelevant, so had never bothered looking at the site at all.
    JackieC, this corresponds very precisely with my experience, and why I know I cannot count on more than a modest proportion of my caching friends to vote for me in this election! The majority are not members and are not interested.

    I agree with you wholeheartedly, and that is why I want GAGB to reinvent itself. We have to offer a lot more to our Geocaching community to make the overwhelming majority consider us to be relevant and therefore wish to join. I'd like the benefits of membership to be so obvious that it doesn't require thinking about. Moreover, this is so important that it requires special focus - and then continuous review. We should have an open discussion about it just as soon as our election is over. :socool:

  26. #26

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    I'm not sure that getting into a social media debate is the answer to this question.

    Why is the GAGB regarded with antipathy? because players don't understand it. It is not relevant to them and it does not help them play the game better or get more enjoyment out of it.

    The committee needs to engage with all of the players, whether that means regional committee members or regional contacts/representatives. We need to make the GAGB a recognised central point of contact for all things Geocaching.

    The GAGB has a strong brand but a weak identity, the new committee needs to work as a dynamic team and be clear on it's aims and objectives.

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