Hier nun das niederländische Posting als Originalkopie, wobei nur die Aussagen Bryans wörtlich zitiert zusammengefasst wurden:
Here are the basic details of what happened:
We worked with an agency who was representing Timberland. We put them in touch with local reviewers who would help with cache placement. Due to some serious miscommunication between Groundspeak and the agency, the caches were placed in locations that were ill adised and also placed without permission. This is obviously a significant issue since most of the violated rules are ours, and the landowners. The local reviewers did what they were asked to do and even told the agency how to request permission. So, we now have a new solution...
Basically, Groundspeak, and myself personally are responsible for the poor manner in which these caches were delivered. The reviewers did everything they could to make it work. In our haste to please the client, we cut some corners that never should have been cut. This is primarily my fault.
But, I can tell you, this is not going to happen again. If the caches in Amsterdam do not have landowner permission by tomorrow morning, they will be archived.
Certainly, it is too late to make it perfect, but we are going to do what we can to fix it.
Additionally, caches in the other countries will be archived on Monday if they don't have permission.
Going forward, there is a second aspect of the promotion that will be for the public.
It will not begin in any form until the details are corrected and all guidelines are properly met. This is also the plan for any future promotion, include ones in development now.
The first part of this promotion was supposed to be very limited and allow pre-selected bloggers to write about the future promotion. Only the second part was going to be more broadly announced. We made sure the cache pages were non-commercial but didn't consider that geocachers wanted to know about the commercial containers too. So, after learning, we made a change to the pages. Hopefully the commuity based promotion is better received when it is done correctly.
Because it is a limited promotion, we didn't consider a special icon. We will probably add a commercial attribute, as well as info on the cache page.
The first phase of this promotion will end on Monday. The second phase is planned to being in May. But, based on what we've learned, it may be a little while longer to make sure everything is good.
Please consider for a moment that our internal motivation for working with Timberland and previous promotion partners was not financial. We are extremely impressed with their Nature Needs Heroes campaign and we simply wanted to be a part of it. Timberland is a very well regarded hiking boot manufacturer (among other items) and their audience is very similar to that of geocaching. We felt that by working with them on this promotion, that we would be able to introduce more people to geocaching and broaden the exposure for the activity. I am not suggesting that we haven’t been compensated for the development work we’ve done to deliver the promotion. As a small company, we simply can’t commit development resources to a promotion without covering our internal costs. However, promotional programs for Groundspeak are generally not viewed as profit centers. Rather, they are viewed as an opportunity to introduce new audiences to geocaching while providing an entertaining new element, temporary or otherwise, to the community. As I mentioned in my post yesterday, although our intentions are 100% positive, we may not always get it 100% correct, but we will learn with each new opportunity and do our best to deliver the best features, functions and services to the global geocaching community. Our financial goal is simply to cover our costs while delivering a fun an engaging promotion.
The point is not to win a pair of boots, although that would be nice. The point was more to get people out and having fun finding new caches. As always, it is not so much about the find, it is about the journey. In this case, we needed to do a much better job with the journey.
The difficult part was that the promotion you have seen was not designed for geocachers. It was designed for bloggers. The next phase of the promotion will be better explained. Yes, there are prizes too, and everyone will be able to participate, so no 'blogger code' needed.
They are primarily based in cities so that more people can participate.
We have had *many* chances to do commercial caches in the past but we usually say no because commercial caches promoting banks and such do not feel right. Timberland, as an outdoor company, felt like a good fit.
The Terms and Conditions will be changed for the next phase of the promotion.
Although it was a good fit, we didn't execute properly. So, we have some work to do to get t right, but we will also apply the lessons learned to all future promotions. It is not our intent to blanket the world with commercial caches. We only want to add them when we feel there is a benefit to geocachers.
Most people don't realy understand how we feel about geocaching at Groundspeak. It is our responsibility to do this right...for you and the rest of the community. If this was just about money, we would have sold the business or taken funding from other sources a long time ago. This is about serving the community and building a long term business that can guarantee the future of the activity. Anything that we do which messes things up really hurts us as well. And, personally, it is embarrassing to make mistakes...and a good incentive not to make them again.
Second phase... there is much that I can't tell because I don't want to spoil it. But, It will likely be the same citities with new caches (that do follow the rules). There will be a contest with prizes. No blogger codes (of course). But, if we can't get permission for certain cities, we will have to choose other cities.
I hope they wont be ripped too. The negative comments, violent comments and ripping of caches is not the kid of behavior we would expect from cachers. Well, we will make sure the promo adheres to all local laws.