Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Techniques, equipment and issues. Also visit the NSS Survey & Cartography Section.

Moderator: Moderators

Would you be interested in this feature?

Poll ended at Jan 1, 2012 8:50 pm

Yes, I would use and contribute to it.
20
37%
I would probably contribute to it.
1
2%
I would probably use it.
9
17%
Undecided.
4
7%
I do not like the ideal.
20
37%
 
Total votes : 54

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby Aaron Addison » Jan 15, 2012 11:23 am

This seems to be overcomplicated? IMO it is simple, do not publish a cave map anywhere at any time without knowledge and consent of the landowner. The owner should be made aware of all the concerns (especially those of Stan and Jim), the benefits weighed and their decision respected. Once published, it is your responsibility to provide hard copy and/or digital reference to said landowner.

It is not ours to decide.

Cheers,

AA
------------------------------
Aaron Addison
Stop and ask yourself - "What is this map for?"
Aaron Addison
Prolific Poster
 
Posts: 180
Joined: Apr 11, 2006 8:03 am
Location: St. Charles, MO
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby trogman » Jan 15, 2012 11:29 am

One thing I would like to suggest concerning the limiting of this resource to NSS members: I do think that the access should be set up to require a password, and not just entering a zip code. The membership-only sections of the NSS website currently only require your NSS # and home zip code. Anyone who obtains my NSS # (which is not too difficult to find out), can probably figure out my zip code fairly easily as well. Any member-only web pages should be more tightly controlled than that. The AL Cave Survey maintains an online database of both maps and cave data; all of it is strictly limited to members, by not one, but two user names and passwords. I believe this double-layered protection is neccesary for protection of this information. I know it is not entirely foolproof, and there is nothing to stop a member from downloading and posting all the cave info. But it is the best compromise between making the info easily available to the people we hope will use it responsibly.

Trogman :helmet:
User avatar
trogman
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 1015
Joined: May 2, 2008 8:35 am
Location: North Alabama
Name: Stephen Brewer
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Gadsden Grotto
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby David Grimes » Jan 15, 2012 2:48 pm

Trogman, we acknowledged the severe security flaw in the current NSS sign in system from the beginning. A more secure system is in the works. I knew we would not be able to use the NSS number with a zip code since anyone with a members manual could easily get that information. We do not have a complete solution yet but the map section will not be added until we complete the new login setup.

Aaron, I also agreed to an extent with Roppelcaver on this same issue but I believe it should be up to the person adding the map to contact any owners of the map or cave to determine if they should add the map. This may be what you are saying and I am just not reading it that way. I would have no problem adding a comment telling people that they are responsible for contacting land owners before adding maps to the database. There is no possible way for Cavechat to personally contact every land owner and seek permission. We have a small team of mods here and myself who volunteer our time so as much of this map section as possible needs to be automated so we do not add too much work for the current staff.
User avatar
David Grimes
Admin
 
Posts: 1297
Joined: Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Location: Port Richey, Fl / Harrison County, In
NSS #: 59533
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Indiana Underground Society
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby Roppelcaver » Jan 15, 2012 4:30 pm

I see. A self-policing map distribution system will certainly work splendidly.
Roppel Caver guy
Roppelcaver
Prolific Poster
 
Posts: 158
Joined: Sep 4, 2005 11:23 pm
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby NZcaver » Jan 15, 2012 4:49 pm

Roppelcaver wrote:I see. A self-policing map distribution system will certainly work splendidly.

For what it's worth, numerous self-policing map distribution systems (online and not) are already in place around the US. I suspect you're part of at least one of these, and I am too. As far as I know they do work splendidly. The only difference with this seems to be the scale of the operation.

For this proposed project, I agree the wishes of the landowner or agency and the cartographer/project should be paramount. Any shared database should be held to the same standard as maps published in the NSS News, guidebooks, and other accessible grotto/conservancy/survey publications.
User avatar
NZcaver
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 6364
Joined: Sep 7, 2005 2:05 am
Location: Anchorage, Alaska
Name: Jansen
NSS #: 50665RL
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby David Grimes » Jan 15, 2012 4:50 pm

Not self-policing, I said as much as possible needs to be automated. It will not be as simple as uploading the file and it appears on the site. The maps will be reviewed before being listed on the site but asking the Cavechat team to personally contact and verify information for every map is preposterous.

Just out of curiosity how many people here have ever help put together a guidebook for their grotto? Did you contact every land owner and map creator to seek permission?

In the case of guidebooks you know positively it will result in increased visitation but every time I have bought a guidebook at a grotto event I am told we have to contact the land owner for permission first.

I still stand by my opinion that contacting land owners should be the responsibility of the contributor. Considering you will not have access to any information about the land owner from this resource other people would still have to direct you to the cave. I know several people here claim that a cave is too easy to find if you know the county and state but I would challenge anyone to show me proof they can find a cave they have never been to (that is not well traveled) with just the county and state. If anyone wants to take this challenge I will add a little extra, get the owner's contact information as well. The rules are that you cannot rely on another caver to tell you where it is since the claim is that you can get the information on the Internet. If you are able to do this please PM me with the details of the cave and what steps you took to find it.
User avatar
David Grimes
Admin
 
Posts: 1297
Joined: Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Location: Port Richey, Fl / Harrison County, In
NSS #: 59533
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Indiana Underground Society
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby GroundquestMSA » Jan 15, 2012 5:01 pm

David Grimes wrote:I knew we would not be able to use the NSS number with a zip code since anyone with a members manual could easily get that information.


Or anyone browsing this website who sees the name, NSS#, and hometown of many of the users in their little info box.

NZcaver wrote:Any shared database should be held to the same standard as maps published in the NSS News, guidebooks, and other accessible grotto/conservancy/survey publications


Exactly, isn't this an extension of the same organizational resource. Does the editor of the News contact landowners personally to make sure the cartographer has permission to submit a map? I don't believe so. What's the difference?
User avatar
GroundquestMSA
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 1384
Joined: May 5, 2011 1:32 pm
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby LukeM » Jan 16, 2012 9:32 am

NZcaver wrote:
Roppelcaver wrote:Any shared database should be held to the same standard as maps published in the NSS News, guidebooks, and other accessible grotto/conservancy/survey publications.


Can we identify what those standards are? I see a wide variety of standards among the different resources.

No one has argued against the idea that the majority of cave maps that have been added to guidebooks and the like were probably not done so with the blessing of the landowner for that specific publication. Is this not true, and if it is, was it wrong to have been done in this way? Until we can identify what these unwritten standards are I think it's going to be hard to decide what they should be like for this resource.

Personally, I pretty much agree with what David has said that it will have to be the responsibility of the submitter to ensure that there will be no objection by the landowner. If these people submitting maps are verified to be the cartographers themselves, or are getting the expressed approval of the cartographer then those that are most likely to have a close relationship with the landowner are already involved in the process.

I also want to point out that we're all setting up a double standard here, given that some state surveys distribute any and all maps given to them, not just those approved by landowners. Sure, the access is somewhat more limited, but you're still faced with the possibility of increased visitation for all of those caves. How many members does an org like the ACS have? Surely at least hundreds, right? The NSS resource would not be able to direct anyone to the cave itself. The same cannot be said of state survey data.

In the spirit of constructiveness here are some ideas for map submission requirements:

    - By default you already have the person's name and contact info by way of their NSS number.

    - The submitter should either have their name on the map, be able to attach a signed letter of permission from the cartographer, or provide contact info (NSS#/phone/email) for a cartographer who they have already verified approves of the map being submitted.

    - All references to location specific enough to locate the cave must be removed.

In addition to these requirements I would also suggest that:

    - All maps will be reviewed by moderators for issues that may arise with their being made available. If rejected, the submitter will be contacted with the reasons, and will be able to state their case if needed.

    - A system be in place for protesting a map being available, with comments being reviewed and responded to regularly.

Finally, I would submit that any and all maps available in NSS guidebooks be made available on this resource, as they are now in printed form. If we aren't ok with this I think we need to review whether we're ok with NSS guidebooks existing at all.
Last edited by LukeM on Jan 16, 2012 10:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
LukeM
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 705
Joined: Jan 30, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: Albany, NY
Name: Luke Mazza
NSS #: 59317
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Syracuse University Outing Club
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby BrianC » Jan 16, 2012 10:04 am

If someone downloads a map from cavechat, does that map become property of that person? Obviously, they would have met what requirements and standards were needed for their trust. What if that person want's to freely circulate that property online or in person? The surveys in place have had no issues with this to my knowledge (maybe one). When maps are printed for an event, the land owners will be aware of the event, and preparations for the few cavers during that event, who would partake in that event, and for that time period. Just some questions.

Also, I want to ask about Kentucky's protection of their cave map source. A number of years ago I asked for a copy of a map from a cave that I had helped map more than thirty years ago. I Had lost contact with the cavers from that period, and so I went through the proper channels trying to acquire this map, purely for personal memorabilia, not anything scientific. I needed to fill out a PDF file for this purpose, and the PDF would not convert for me. I made some personal attempts to bypass this process to no avail. What I am getting at, is there are some state surveys that no matter how much you want a copy from their archives, unless you have a scientific necessity, you will hit a brick wall.
User avatar
BrianC
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 2061
Joined: Oct 2, 2006 2:34 pm
Location: up on this here mountain
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby David Grimes » Jan 16, 2012 10:58 am

Brian, I will try to address your concerns. I have thought about the chance someone would try to post maps from Cavechat elsewhere. While I think the chances of it happening are pretty slim we could always look into automatically watermarking uploaded maps so we could show legal authority to have them removed from another site. We will likely include something in the TOS stating that the maps are for personal use and may not be duplicated or distributed without permission.
User avatar
David Grimes
Admin
 
Posts: 1297
Joined: Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Location: Port Richey, Fl / Harrison County, In
NSS #: 59533
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Indiana Underground Society
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby Leitmotiv » Jan 17, 2012 2:01 pm

I missed the vote, but I'd be against it. I think sharing maps should be with consent of the map maker and like one of the posters said, requests for cave information should be directed through local grottos. That way if a potential member is interested they can be properly educated and perhaps taken under their wings.

With the internet becoming a way to disclose information for free and willy nilly, it may make the NSS and grottos irrelevant entities. "Why should I join your grotto when I can find coordinates on Google?" "Why should I join your grotto when I can find maps online?" The only reason someone would then want to join the grotto is to help conserve caves, which basically means clean ups. And who the heck wants to do that? Free information makes whores of us all; cheap and not respected. To make these entities more relevant, you basically need IP (Intellectual Property). People will come to you, if you have something they want.

If you are for uploading coordinates and maps for basically free access, the NSS and it's grottos become irrelevant to the greater populace.
Leitmotiv
Prolific Poster
 
Posts: 166
Joined: May 17, 2006 4:39 pm
Location: Salem, Oregon
Name: Matt Skeels
NSS #: 53428
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Oregon High Desert Grotto
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby LukeM » Jan 17, 2012 2:33 pm

Leitmotiv wrote:I think sharing maps should be with consent of the map maker...


Matt, you might want to read through this thread as there are a lot of important points that have been made and ideas thrown out that address your concerns. Specifically, note the requirements for the approval of the map maker that we've been discussing as well as the NSS membership requirement.

With the internet becoming a way to disclose information for free and willy nilly, it may make the NSS and grottos irrelevant entities.


If this resource requires NSS membership (as we've been discussing) it would be a reason for joining the NSS, not a deterrent.

"Why should I join your grotto when I can find coordinates on Google?"


This is not a resource that would include locations, and if password protected, these maps would not be discovered through Google searches.

The only reason someone would then want to join the grotto is to help conserve caves, which basically means clean ups.


Or, you know, camaraderie, cave locations, all the maps that this resource doesn't include, events, training, borrowing gear, and legitimacy within the public sphere. I'm sure I'm forgetting a few.

Free information makes whores of us all; cheap and not respected. To make these entities more relevant, you basically need IP (Intellectual Property). People will come to you, if you have something they want.


So if I get this straight, giving something away is whoring, and keeping it to yourself until someone pays you and joins your club isn't. Got it.
User avatar
LukeM
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 705
Joined: Jan 30, 2008 2:53 pm
Location: Albany, NY
Name: Luke Mazza
NSS #: 59317
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Syracuse University Outing Club
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby Leitmotiv » Jan 17, 2012 3:27 pm

LukeM... yeah I see some people have posted the same sentiments. I'm echoing them. Regarding your comment on being an NSS member to gain access... that's fine... "if" as you put it, that does become the requirement. Most maps are copyrighted though aren't they? So basically, you'd need an awful lot of consent.

By Google I meant Google Earth which does have coordinates. Wikipedia also comes up in Google searches, and they do list coordinates and more caves on there will have coordinates as time goes on. And I'm not referring to solely cavechat for access to info. I'm taking about the resources of noncavers. If they can find the information they want, there's no reason for them to join the NSS or grotto.

My proposal, is why have a public internet forum (albeit, membership required) for a map share site, when you should have a private one. Even then, it doesn't take much to be a paid NSS member to get access, and you still haven't proven that you follow it's procedures on caving ethically.

For the average spelunker, they don't want the cave gear access, training, events, camaraderie... they just want access to the info so they can go do it themselves. I've seen it time and time again. Luke, you're right that grottos offer more than cleanups, but to the spelunker... not much more if coordinates are to be had on Google Earth and Wikipedia, and maps easily had online.

Convenience breeds lack of respect, it's that simple. If you want to make the NSS relevant, then you will need a reason for people to join. Number one reason people join: "Where is that one cave located?"
Leitmotiv
Prolific Poster
 
Posts: 166
Joined: May 17, 2006 4:39 pm
Location: Salem, Oregon
Name: Matt Skeels
NSS #: 53428
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Oregon High Desert Grotto
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby BrianC » Jan 17, 2012 4:42 pm

Matt, I don't see any BOG member, or at least consensus allowing this through to fruition, just much talk about potential future means of inevitability. This does have some interesting discussion though! :waving:
User avatar
BrianC
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 2061
Joined: Oct 2, 2006 2:34 pm
Location: up on this here mountain
  

Re: Cave map resource poll! (Read First Post Before Voting)

Postby wyandottecaver » Jan 17, 2012 8:37 pm

Im surprised no one has brought this up.......

ANY demand strong enough will be met eventually. Colorado and others have found out that when you frustrate people past a certain point....they dont play nice anymore.

In Indiana our cave survey has lots of rules for getting locations....and cavers have found lots of ways past them. I have met 3 different cavers who had complete datasets who werent even Survey members let alone directors or officers. None of those cavers felt an obligation not to share themselves because they themselves had benefited from yet others who had ignored the rules.

As more and more maps become digital, eventually somebody will gather a goodly number and post them somewhere where they will "get out" It will happen. The question is do we want to be the ones to do that thus negating some of the incentive for someone else to, and have some control...or let someone else do it and have no control.
I'm not scared of the dark, it's the things IN the dark that make me nervous. :)
User avatar
wyandottecaver
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 2902
Joined: Aug 24, 2007 8:44 pm
Location: Indiana
  

PreviousNext

Return to Survey and Cartography Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users