Earth Cache

Earthcache rules changed!

I just stumbled upon a tweet about a change in earth cache listings.

I know in the last year that I tried to get an EarthCache published but with no luck. We won’t go into details about that. We will continue on with the subject at hand.

In particular a BIG change will be number 7 of the rules listed at GSA EarthCache Guidelines.

7. Requests for photographs must be optional. Exceptions to this guideline will only be considered if the requested photograph is related to an Earth Science logging activity such as recording a phenomenon. This particular guidelines was updated on 1 January 2011. All EarthCaches must conform to this guideline as photo requests are considered “additional logging requirements” (ALRs) and follow the guidelines set forth by Geocaching.com.
Existing EarthCaches that do not meet this guideline must be updated to comply.
Cache owners may not delete the cacher’s log based solely on optional tasks.

The way I read this is that if previously you required a photo in order to log the EarthCache, you may no longer delete a log if the finder does not supply an image. I knew they had changed the policy for including yourself in a picture for privacy concerns. I was quickly notified of that guideline while setting up mine.

So what does this mean? Does it mean that if you require a picture to be taken at your EarthCache that they will delete your listing? I doubt that will be the case. But they won’t allow you to delete a log if the finder did not supply an image as requested to log. If the finder’s log is deleted, I imagine a quick email to GSA or GC will get your log back.

I imagine this is going to cause some headaches for the reviewers if the information isn’t delivered to all EarthCache owners in some manner. Possibly if you find an EarthCache that requires you to post an image in order to log that you show due diligence and post the “Number 7″ rule with your log.
Will this affect any of your EarthCaches?
What do you think of this ruling?