Control Freaks & Hobbies

I am a ham radio operator. I hold the highest license, the Amateur Extra Class. I got this license back when there was a 20 WPM Morse Code requirement, not the multiple-choice elementary school tests that exist today. I was also a Volunteer Examiner for 2 different coordination bodies, and I have personally conducted hundreds of license test sessions. I originated the test session program in the very early days of the Boston Amateur Radio Club.

I no longer associate with any clubs because of my experiences with control freaks in clubs. It seems to me that the only reason that clubs exist is to enable certain individuals to gather information about what others who share their interests are doing, and then try to establish some set of rules governing their activities and subsequently control them. Since pursuing my hobby of ham radio entirely on my own, I found that I have been considerably happier, as what I want to do is dependent upon no one else but myself.

Alas, I have found another hobby that is being run by control freaks. This is very unfortunate as I was looking forward to the pursuit of this hobby. It looks like I will have to go it alone again.

I am referring to the hobby of geocaching. The people who run the self-appointed “official” geocaching site are not pursuing any hobby that I can detect. They are, however, pursuing dollars. Not that making money in of itself is bad (I make money too, don’t you?) but when it gets to the point that ridiculous demands are made upon the participants, its time to throw in the towel.

The people who run the geocaching site also run a site called Waymarking (there are no links because I don’t want to encourage people to visit these sites). “Waymarks” are their word for “waypoints” the correct work for a record position used in navigation. Their waymark site encourages people to input information about interesting points on the planet. The waymarks are organized into categories to make it easy to located points on interest.

I submitted a new waymark to them, and in the appropriate category, “Hot Springs.” Such submissions require moderation of the category “owner” before being enabled on the website. My waypoint was rejected, and the following is an excerpt from my rejection email:

“Those are very beautiful pictures! Unfortunately I also need a picture with your GPS in the shot. This looks like a very nice spring so I hope you can get this extra photo soon.”

Notice that they say it looks like “a very nice spring” but they hinge the acceptance of the waymark upon the existence of a photograph of my GPS.

what?

Here is an excerpt from my response:

“like i’m gonna go drive back there just so i can take a photograph for this control freak!

is this the kind of crap that goes on in waymarking.com? do you actually allow individual people to exercise control of this type? how can such individuals be allowed to deny the entry of a useful waymark (waypoint in reality) because of not having a specific photograph that isn’t even directly required for its use?

yeah, i don’t think i’ll be “submitting” any more waymarks on your site after this excellent experience.

btw, i re-submitted my waymark with a comment to the so-called “owner” to forget it.”

Not only is that photograph of any real use, the “requirement” for such a photograph wasn’t specifically stated in the requirements for submission. This is nothing more than some control-freak’s appetite for trophy photographs.

Readers of my blog will not be affected by this. Here are the coordinates of the hot spring resort: N 24.85960 E 121.55831 Here are the photos

The blogosphere will deal with these assholes. I encourage all bloggers to share waypoints and especially geocaches for free!

I can just hear Danny T.D. Lemon 1900 now…. ____ __________, too.

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