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+4 votes
1.0k views
When caches are archived, some cachers that have added favourite points to that cache now retract these points to hand them out again to other caches. While geocaching.com has stated that they are ok with this practice (and even sponsor reapplying favourite points), to me this has always felt a little unfair. As it has an impact on the statistics and people who had gained favourite points for their caches when they were alive are now no longer recognised for the work done before.

What do you think?
in Miscellaneous by NLBokkie (3.0k points)
I've consistently removed favorites from caches that archive and added the cache to a list called Old Favorites Gone Away that I leave public and shared. Good caches that have been archived say on bookmark lists and are recognized in some way, but I use favorite points to find good caches and direct to good caches.
I agree that removing a Fav point on a cache that has been archived is not good practice - what has changed about that cache that no longer makes it a favourite - nothing, it is just no longer active - I feel that it is likely because some people hand out fav points far too easily and so run out - I have never run out as I genuinely obly give them out to ones that have really inspired me or are so different from the norm - which in an area where micros are often hidden on road signs doesnt happen that often ;-)

14 Answers

+7 votes
I agree. If I awarded a favorite point to a cache it stays there, regardless of whether the cache is archived or not.

For that matter, it's not impossible to have an archived cache reactivated.
by pinkunicorn (Moderator) (158k points)
+5 votes
My Favs stay at the caches where I awarded them.

I reward a nice scenery with a good cache or very skilled COs with elaborate caches. I don't give out FPs very often, so every single one stays where it is even if the cache got archived.
I see it as an appreciation of the CO's work.
by clappy (13.6k points)
+4 votes
We think it is better to leave a given favourite point on an archived cache. There was a reason why you gave it to the cache. When the cache has been archived it is not bad automatically. We never take Fav points away from archived caches.
by willi&trine (2.2k points)
+3 votes
I never thought of that. It would never have come to my mind to look at my list and retract the points from the archived caches.

I give my favorite points to caches, where I liked the idea of the work, or when I had some real fun while on the hunt for that cache. Sometimes I give a favorite point for the whole scenery the cache is hidden in.

My favorite points are a "reward" for the owner for hiding a good cache in a nice scenery. Also, they are some kind of "reminder" for me. When I look in my favorite points-list I remember the nice day or trip.

A favorite point stays in the cache it was awarded to.

Edit: Do you get a notice, when a favorite-point is retracted, and who retracted the point?
by NoobNader (Expert) (15.9k points)
No, I've never seen a notice that a favourite point is retracted or by who. I just noticed the dwindling number of favourites once a series of my caches was archived while I had no new caches published. So obviously favourite points were retracted. When talking to some other cachers about this, I've heard that some cachers do indeed retract these points when the caches are archived in order to hand them back out again. Why this is done exactly is a bit behind my comprehension too, as I never do that myself. Like you, I keep a once given favourite point with the cache I gave it to as a reward and never retract them.
You can activate a report from Project-GC that will tell you what favorite points are added or removed to caches you own, but for most users they have no idea when FP are removed. Or added, for that matter, unless the logger writes about it in the log (and it's not uncommon that people write in their log that they'll add an FP but then forget about it).
As a paid member of PGC you can get automatic notifications when favourites are added or removed from your caches.  See your settings.
Today i got a report that on one of my archived caches one favourite point was retracted. It showed the name of the user.
I don't know if there would be all the (or at least one of the) users mentioned, if there were more than one fav-point removed.
+3 votes
The whole point of favourites is to encourage others to visit this cache. A little hard to do if the cache has been archived.

Or if you want, it is to show which caches are awesome. If the cache is not there, is it awesome? I would suggest that it is not.

(I am with pinkunicorn - my assigned favourites stay, even if archived)
by the Seagnoid (Expert) (43.2k points)
+2 votes

 Geocaching (formerly Groundspeak) has decided that it is possible to assign and remove favorite points to geocaches at any time for any reason. From their FAQ:

When a geocache is archived the Favorite Point remains with the geocache. Removing a Favorite Point from an archived geocache and awarding it to a new one is up to you. Visit your Favorites List and look for geocaches with the red strikethrough indicating that they are archived, and then remove the geocache from your Favorites List to free up the Favorite Point. There is nothing wrong with leaving a Favorite Point on an archived geocache if you prefer it.

I would personally never retract a favorite point that I assigned on purpose. To me, that point is earned by the cache and its owner. Even if we ignore the question of belts and badges it gives an impression on a given geocacher's ability to make quality, worthwhile caches. If favorite points are removed from that CO's caches, information that could be used to judge who is generally good at making worthwhile caches and who aren't.

Part of the exercise is to pick the one cache in ten that is slightly better than the others. The experience you had finding it did not deteriorate when it became archived. If you really live in an area where you feel that all the caches you find earn a favorite point, you are blessed with good cache owners and should not complain. The solution to not having enough favorite points is IMO to go find some more caches wink. 

by Funky_Boris (9.7k points)
Before there were the favorite points, I sent the owners of caches that I liked very much a code of a geocoin, that I only wanted to be logged as discovered by owners of caches that I liked most.

When they then came out with the favorite points, I awarded those caches, even if the they have been archived already at that date.
+2 votes
I think favs should stay with the cache. I give a fav becaue the owner made a good job with this cache. Either the container, the whole multi, the location or everyting together has earned this. And I think this is still the case when the cache is archieved. Or is the work nothing worth anymore then? I'd say no.

Nevertheless I also got aware of cachers retracting their favs just because they have any kind of problem with the owner. Although the cache is still online. I don't think this is okay eithr. But that isn't the topic ;)
by Team Just-T (2.2k points)
+2 votes
My thoughts are this... I think that active caches should be able to have favorite points added or removed as individuals wish.  I've had a number of times that I've given favorite points to caches when logging at the end of the day only to realize I assigned it to the wrong cache.

As far as the archived caches, I think that the favorite points should be locked in, and individuals should not have the opportunity to remove favorite points from them.

I see both sides of it, and I understand why they are allowed to be removed from archived caches and added to active caches which potentially make the active caches more attractive to go after.
by stickboy26 (330 points)
+1 vote
I think that Favourite Points should sty with caches in most cases, and have some of my favourites archived, including one with 1,200~ FPs (GC2C1NN) that was going, may I say, for a good reason, although it was nice when it was there!
by Moore4us (4.6k points)
+1 vote
We agree that once we have awarded a favourite point, it stays with that cache. Although we never have a great stash of fp's in reserve (as we give them out when we can and when we get great enjoyment from a cache's hide, fun container, fabulous location etc), we do think carefully about each award and we even sometimes wish that we could give particularly great caches more than one.

Although the cache can no longer be found, if someone retracts a favourite point it has effects in the present caching world - the CO's FP's are reduced and their statistics, Badgegen etc change. This doesn't seem fair considering the effort they have probably put into making the cache which a lot of people have got enjoyment from. Also, some challenge caches depend on cumulative fp's on found caches, and if the numbers start to vary, it might affect whether someone has qualified for the challenge or not.
by GCZ Team (20.2k points)
Then the favorite points should not be counted in the statistics and Badgegen..
0 votes
In my opinion there are two sides of this "problem"... one is, as you wrote, retracting Fav points from archived caches and using them somewhere else. Yes, owner of this cache get some points and some awards or belts for received points and now are these numbers changed... but geocaching is not just about numbers or some belts, I think it is or better originally it was about adventures and exploration of new places. And together with that is there the second side ... if cache is archived, there is some reason for archivation and we can ask if this cache needs some favorite points. In the time when was active fav points could bring new geocachers and FI logs (yes, I'm one of people that travel to some places and try to find caches with lot of Fav points - local geocachers in my opinion have some reason for that appreciation).
Number of FAV points is contingent on number of finds therefore I think that geocacher should think twice if some cache gets this point or not and if this point is given it should be given forever without any chance remove it.
by drobec (4.5k points)
0 votes
That's the best thing about geocaching. Everyone can play the game their own way.
by DARKSIDEDAN (3.7k points)
–1 vote
je pense qu'un point favori vaut dix caches trouvées. parfois cela peut representer beaucoup de kilometres. le joueur est libre de ses choix d'affectation. les caches archiver ne sont plus vivantes et je comprend sue les point favoris soient repris meme si je ne le fais pas systématiquement.  le mieux c'est quand on arrive a reprendre les caches et eviter les archivages pour maintenir les caches vivantes .
Traduit du français par Google :
I think a favorite point is ten caches found. Sometimes it can represent many kilometers. The player is free of his assignment choices. The archive caches are no longer alive and I understand that the favorite points are resumed even if I do not systematically. The best is when you get to take over the caches and avoid archiving to keep the caches alive.
by Chup'a (11.2k points)
–4 votes
Well, I'm going to give the opposite opinion. The purpose of FPs, as I see it, is to tell other cachers that this is a cache worth visiting. If the cache is archived, they become meaningless. Therefore I will retract FPs from caches that are archived, in order to give me more to post to caches that are up and running (I tend to use FPs to the limit, and rarely have more than about 3 or 4 in hand).

In my experience the majority of archived caches I've found have been archived because of lack of maintenance, owner stopped caching etc. Therefore the loss of 1 FP in their hidden statistics is unlikely to bother them, and if it does they should have taken better care of their caches.
by Optimist on the run (Expert) (18.2k points)
reshown by Optimist on the run (Expert)
I just had a look at my favorites in my local area that are archived. A fair number of the older ones are indeed by people that are no longer active, but then I've been around since 2004 and have quite a few very old caches logged (and went back through my logs and awarded FPs retroactively when FPs were introduced, in some cases to caches that were archived even then).

For more recent logs (which means at least the last five years), there are a few where the cache owner isn't active but the bulk belong to active cache owners where the cache is archived due to special containers being muggled, changes at ground zero or other things like that.
Hmm, thanks for this answer, Optimist on the run. I certainly don't agree with you on this, as I think that favourite points are there for a different reason than you mention. But at least this opposing view gives me some insight in why people would retract favourite points handed earlier at all.
To me it looks like a lot of not fun work though, chasing caches you've visited before to see if their favourite points are now "available" to be handed out again. But then I'm never really running out of points to hand out either, getting a new point after every 10 caches I find . . .
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