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PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 7:35 am 
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It's time to vote for your 2014 MGS Core officers! Please read the following carefully:

1. Please send your votes along to 2014vote@mdgps.org
2. Please be sure to use the subject line: 2014 MGS Vote. Using this subject line allows us to better keep track of all the votes.
3. You MUST include geocaching.com/MGS username in your vote

You may cast your vote for the following members, using the names below:

President - cooley1103 or LPYankeefan
Secretary - eissak or Tazscouter

Since the following positions are running unopposed, no vote is necessary:

VP - DeepDish23
Treasurer - Trainbug
PR - KSullivan

Voting runs 12/1-12/31 -- thanks for doing your part, and thank you to those who have stepped up for next year! Good luck!!!

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 9:01 am 
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When will the candidates platforms/goals be posted, or didO miss them somewhere else on the site? Seems odd that voting would be solicited before the constituents are empowered to make an informed decision about the candidates.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 9:23 am 
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I have created the platform thread at viewtopic.php?f=77&t=8403

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:41 pm 
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Added the requirement to include MGS/geocaching.com username.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:19 pm 
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Thanks to LPYankeefan and cooley1103 for posting their platform info. Hoping to see the same from eissak and Tazscouter, soon.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 9:43 pm 
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Likewise as DudleyGrunt said.

DudleyGrunt wrote:
Thanks to LPYankeefan and cooley1103 for posting their platform info. Hoping to see the same from eissak and Tazscouter, soon.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:13 am 
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We've had a great turn out on voting thus far -- don't forget to send in your votes if you haven't done so yet!

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 7:16 am 
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Simon and I were discussing voting last night, and as we got ready to forward a voting email, we realized that we were not really very clear on how the whole process worked. As a result, we reviewed the bylaws and the forum posts, and discovered that we had a number of questions that were still unanswered. We've listed them below, in the hopes that the current officers and board members can shed some light on the process. While we do not question the integrity of the process, and have no reason to believe that this or any previous election has been compromised, we are not clear on how many votes we have (we log all caches as a couple under one handle, and we share one account at Groundspeak). We were also curious to know how votes are processed, and the validation of voter legitimacy is conducted. We created a list of specific questions below:

- How is the membership/eligibility of a given voter verified? The bylaws define a member as follows: "An active member shall be defined as an individual whom attends at least three or more club events annually or otherwise actively contributes to the club via the Website or other Society related activities." Are the folks who submit votes bounced against the attended logs of MGS events? How do you know that the email received is legitimately from that member? What specifically constitutes "active contribution to the website or other related activities?" A certain number of forum posts? A certain amount of purchases made in the online MGS store?

- Do couples who cache under one GC handle have one vote or two?

- Who counts the votes and makes the election determination? By what process is the membership assured that this individual or group of individuals are independent and unbiased? Based on the process presented (email votes to an anonymous email address) there does not appear to be a formal, verifiable and fraud resistant process in place. There probably is one, but could you enlighten us as to what it is?

We did not see specific answers to these questions in a review off the bylaws, in fact the bylaws seem to be lacking specificity with regard to these issues. Any clarification would be appreciated. As transparency seems to be a theme of this election, we encourage the board and either outgoing or incoming officers to consider these issues and how they might be addressed to provide more transparency to the membership.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 7:34 am 
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I had the same questions. This is my thinking on the matter.
(I make no claim that I'm right. So, no one should quote me as an official answerer.)

- How is the membership/eligibility of a given voter verified?
In my email ballot, I included the list of events that we attended this year.

- Do couples who cache under one GC handle have one vote or two?
Since Mrs. Cajun55 and I cache as one, we voted as one.

- Who counts the votes and makes the election determination?
I assumed that the current core selected one or more non-returning members to do the counting.
Since they have no stake in the out-come, they should be unbiased.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 9:52 am 
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Hi Zekester & bneeriemer,
These are very good questions.

I will try to answer everything and I ask for Robert and other Officers or Board Members to chime in as well.

Couples who share one geo-name (like me & Mark – Calvertcachers) you get two votes.

Votes are sent to Robert and one other member of the Board, and it is held in strict confidence. After the election, the number of votes and/or percentage of votes are posted on the MGS website. This began about two years ago. Since our group as grown tremendously over the past few years, this was initiated to maintain transparency.

Membership eligibility is based on your MGS account, when it was created and if the person has contributed via the website, and if they participated in an MGS event during the course of the year. Generally this is pretty easy and can be verified if needed. This was initiated many years ago to eliminated folks from creating bogus accounts for voting purposes.

Since our organization has grown, it may be time to update the Bylaws to provide more detailed or specific instructions for voting. Since we are a volunteer based organization and no one receives any compensation or reward whatsoever, this has never been an issue in the past. Folks who have served over the years have done so because they love the sport of geocaching, want to contribute/volunteer time to the MGS (and yes, it does require many hours of volunteer time) and to the game that we all love.

We are fortunate here in Maryland to have an organization like the MGS, and we have been leaders in geocaching nationwide. This is thanks to all of our members and to everyone who has volunteered.
So, whether you win or lose, or if you are just interested in helping the MGS, there are always many opportunities and everyone is welcome!

I hope this helps.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 10:26 pm 
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Hi all,

I've been on the vote tally for a number of years and it's usually been two of us. This year I asked _Johnnycache to tally and added JPatton as well since he typically has counted along with me. So the 3 of us will tally independent of each other as we always have, compare notes on 12/31-1/1 and post the results (either percentage or "score" method). We have not had any reason to disqualify votes in prior years that I can recall, and I don't believe any to be disqualified this year either. We do communicate if something looks odd, or when some folks voted twice because they forgot something we made sure we were on the same page. We will continue to communicate throughout the process.

As Sue pointed out, this is all volunteer and the MGS has been lucky to have many fine folks step forward each year to take turns steering the ship :) If the voting system needs adjustment I'm certain the new officers can put it on the list of items to tackle during the year!

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 9:14 pm 
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When will the results be released?

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:24 pm 
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Voting ends 12/31, results to be announced 1/1.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 7:04 am 
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When we start the voting each year, I would suggest at least specifying that each individual gets a vote. What about age? Some teams include infants.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:24 pm 
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I agree there has to be some specific guidelines with regards to membership and voting.

Age - There needs to be some type of cut-off. This not only applies to voting, but also CAM. A good caching friend mentioned that they should at least be able to write their own log. I have heard ages as low as 7 and some people have said start it at 13.

Votes and coins per household - Things should be limited to user names. Some households maintain a single user name that they use whether the whole family is there or a single member. My house uses 2 names because there are times where we cache apart (work, travel, etc) and we wanted to have ownership of each of our accounts (kinda like a mini-competition). There are many caches I have she never find and vice versa.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 5:04 pm 
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I'm swapping the order of Brian's comments, since I think the age question follows on the individual or team vote one.

cooley1103 wrote:
Votes and coins per household - Things should be limited to user names.


I agree that CAM or other trail award (free) coins should be one per username. If a person wants their own coins / recognition, they only need to create their own account and do a little work to log their own finds.

I do, however, believe that votes should be individual, as they seem to be in the charter. In theory, each person in a team could serve in a position in the MGS. At the same time, each position must be filled with an individual, not a team.

cooley1103 wrote:
Age - There needs to be some type of cut-off. This not only applies to voting, but also CAM. A good caching friend mentioned that they should at least be able to write their own log. I have heard ages as low as 7 and some people have said start it at 13.


I do think some age limit would be good. At very least, they should be able to write their own logs (or vote e-mail), as Brian stated. Do we have a minimum age or people holding an elected position? I'd assume 18? I could accept the voting age being equal, but thing think it should be at least 12 or 13. And, while it would be hard (or impossible) to enforce, it should be stated that each person voting needs to cast their own vote. We have some adorable infant cachers with accumulating find totals, but I don't think they have the necessary grasp of MGS politics (or reading comprehension and typing skills) to cast their own votes.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 26, 2013 6:37 pm 
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Brian and Dave have both made great points.

I have to agree on the age restriction. As a parent of two children who geocache, I can see where some people might get angry. The first year my girls and I finished CAM, they didn't have accounts (they were 7 and 9). The next year, they wanted to log their own caches so they made their own accounts on GC.com. Once kids are about 8 they can log their own caches and I think this is a good requirement. Most 7 year old kids don't care about a coin, if they want one, the parents could easily pick one up for them. I have no issue with having to buy a coin for my children under the age of 12 or 13. I know my kids enjoy the certificate, maybe offer a discount on the coin?

As a previous officer I can tell you that CAM coins, pathtags and events are EXTREMELY expensive. The MGS has grown larger each year which means the core has to rent larger and larger event venues to host picnics and events; which comes at a higher cost. The core is a group of volunteers and they stress hard about funds. The 50/50, raffles and the summer picnic are usually the biggest way to generate funds to fill the coffers to have more events. In a typical year, the MGS shells out over 3k for free coins and event rentals. It's amazing how much things cost. I have nothing but empathy for any one in the core knowing how much time and work they put in to keeping the MGS running.

Running for office: I believe the individual running needs to be able to drive themselves to events. So, 16+. I've seen many young adults in the MGS who would be responsible enough to hold an office.

Voting: I believe the individual should be old enough to understand who they are voting for and why. I like to think my girls know what they are doing but we should count on the parents to make sure the their children are able to vote properly.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 10:27 am 
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2014 MGS Core announcements! See viewtopic.php?f=77&t=8447

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