2019 mid year game suggestions

A place to talk about the Geocaching Australia dragonZone and other games
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caughtatwork
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by caughtatwork » 02 June 19 11:12 am

We're not an association and we do not produce "books". 100% transparency. As we are NOT an association we need to pay tax, so this all gets added to my income and tax is paid on the profits.

Our expenses are:
- Hosting $1,584.00 / year
- Domain $15.00 / year
We post the paid invoice details every year, so there is nothing hidden from that respect. Y'all can go and check for all the past years.

We have no GC account fees. We don't pay anything to geocaching.com

If we hold a game then there is the cost of the prizes and these vary depending on the AUD / USD conversion rate.
Tag $2.50
Stamp $1.00
Padded Bag or Envelope, plastic snack bag or mailer, paper, toner, address label $0.25 - $0.50
We go through 100 to 150 tags per game which is around $400.00 to $600.00 per game

Other than that, we have product that we purchase and sell and it depends on what we're buying and what we're selling to see the costs and profits.
We pay a designer for some of our tag designs ($25.00 plus two tags) but those costs are absorbed into the cost of the production of the tags.
In general anything I source I mark up by around 100% (some a little less, some a little more).
We lose fees to PayPal on the charges that go through them. 2.6% + $0.30 is paid on every transaction. So a $5.00 donation costs $0.43 and we end up with $4.57.
There are no "costs" to people for anything they volunteer to do for the site. If we stop our games we only have ther server and hosting to pay for.

If we published a statement of "how we're going" then today it would be $2,500AUD. Tomorrow it would be $600 as there are bills to pay and tags to order. Then it might be $650 as we sold some items, then $200.00 as we bought some stock. Then $300 as we sold some stuff, then $0.00 as we ordered more. You cannot tell from any of those numbers whether we will end up in the black at the end of the year or not. I will tell you that if we publish a number at the end of the financial year (June 30), based on what I expect to see in sales, then our financial position is between $100 and $200 in the red. i.e. We are making purchases so costs are incurred now for a profit in the next financial year.

The site is not run as a business or association. It is not under the control of a senate. The site is run entirely by volunteers who have do the activities of keeping the site going. Suggestions for change come from the community (including the volunteers) and if there are no suggestions then the site makes no change. If there is no-one who takes on a role then that role does not get done and whatever is dependent on that role also does not get done. e.g. If no-one steps up to designing or engatging designers for pathtags, then we sell no more new pathtag designs. If no-one steps up to suggest a game and be involved with the running / administration of the game then we have no more games. If no-one suggests we allow for new geocache types, then we stay with the the geocache types we have. These are just examples, but the result is across the site. If no-one does it, it does not get done.

If the community want to run Geocaching Australia as a not for profit they are welcome to set one up for financial purposes. Domain registration and hosting would remain with the site steward. You would need a shop keeper if you're going to take control of the finances as they would all need to be kept together, under a treasurer. You would need a designer for the tags to sell in the shop as well as any more stickers or custom items you would look to procure. If there is an association I would step back to being a site developer and steward of the site to retain the free and open aspect.

In relation to your question. The wiki contains the senate information and you can read all about it in there. The point is moot though as we do no have a senate any longer with the site now being directed by the community.
From the wiki:
https://wiki.geocaching.com.au/wiki/Sen ... ne_2018.29
If there are fewer than 10 nominations then one state, territory or island may be represented by more than one senator.

budgietas
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by budgietas » 02 June 19 12:09 pm

Thank you for the information. My question was more me trying to get my head around things than a complaint. Not looking at upsetting anyone

So without games and hardware failures, we need basically $1600 a year to run the site. So we need a way to raise this money each and every year at an absolute minimum.

Thank you for the information Caught at Work. It certainly has helped me put things in perspective.

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caughtatwork
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by caughtatwork » 02 June 19 1:50 pm

Money is always a grubby subject. You don't know me. I don't know you. I could be stealing thousands and thousands of dollars from the site. No-one would ever know as no-one else can see what goes through the shop. That's a feeling I get from a few "concerned" folks (not in this case) when it comes to a point in time where there is a chance we won't make the bills at the end of the year.

There actually IS someone else who can see what has come in through the shop if he wants to . CraigRat has as much administrative power as I do in the database and has the access and permissions to the shop admin account. I'm pretty sure if he ever felt the need to see what was coming in (but not going out) he can get the same reports I can.

For example for the calendar year of 2018 we had $10,528.86 on 282 orders through the shop.
So if everything is 100% markup and 50% profit, then why don't we have $5,264.43 profit.
I'm sure you can see from the costs and the games and we have to spend money to make money and some product sold is old and payed for in previous years and some product is new and paid in this year but will only be sold in the next year that it's not a case of year-by-year half the taking and derive the profit.

Again you don't know me, so you can only read my words when I say that if I was going to rip something off, it would not be for a few thousand bucks. The amount of money we take and the amount of money we spend onmm product and then take whatever is left over and pay the bills, it doesn't leave much for games and fees and things like that, much less any embezzlement.

For example at the moment we are minting one pathtag per month which means by the end of the year I will have spent $3,600 (in round numbers) on tags alone. That all comes from the profit which is re-invested in product. In future years that will return money as profit. We generally sell about 50 tags in the first month or so, then they trickle to minimal and take years to move. Check the shop for old Christmas, Halloweeen, etc tags and I think they go back to 2011 that we still have available. Unfortunately the belief that we buy $300 in tags and by the end of the month we have sold them all and made the costs back and another $300 in profit is simply not correct.

So we do have a larger than hoped amount of stock in boxes in my computer room which slowly sell and allow us to make different things and sell different things, but at a minimum, we need to sell about $3,500 a year to cover the hosting, domain and PayPal fees and then we have to do it again year after year after year with no games, no lost items in the mail, no goodwill, nothing else. If we run a few games then we need to cover an additional $400 per game which means 2 games a year means we're now up to $4,300 in sales a year just to break even.

We also have expenses which are unplanned. I'm sure you were told about the $800.00 in disk replacements we needed early this year as our two SSD's died. That's anopther $1,800 (fees, charges, costs, etc) that we had to sell to make a break even point again.

The real problem is the more information that is put out there, the more the people get confused (because they do not allow for fees, costs, paper, toner, bags, envelopes, TAX!!!, dead disks, new CPUs, lost items, etc) and think "hey we sold $10K worth of stuff why don't we have any money". The more it's explained, the more they nitpick and get to a question of "well how much is paid in toner and paper and strickers and labels and rubber bands and sticky notes and mailing boxes" and why is that even being considered. Because at the end of the year, those $0.25 to $0.50 per "mailed item" adds up to a hundred bucks or more and hey, I'm not going to pay for it out of my pocket. Also consider that we own a guillotine which is needed for some items we sell. We also have to have a printer (which is personally mine) but of course costs money to run including electricity and a drum and other parts which are not toner but are small per item, yet add up at the end of the year.

So, a long explanation of stuff that might help to educate those who would like to think they're being ripped off by letting them know there is an extreme amount of effort that goes into covering and working this all out. Again if I was going to rip someone off it wouldn't be for a few hundred or thousand dollars.

But if you want to set up a not-for-profit, then I would be more than happy for someone else to take the many hours of effort a week (all unpaid, just to be clear) and make good on the next years bills.

To be crystal clear. I do not own the site. I do not run the site. I code the site. I run the shop. I am the steward of the "free and open" mantra. That's it. Everything else is a community responsibility.

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Richary
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by Richary » 02 June 19 8:23 pm

And we are very grateful that you do it! Thanks so much.

budgietas
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by budgietas » 03 June 19 1:24 pm

Thank you Caught at Work for the replies and all the work you put into the site. I am certainly happy with everything as it is going. My only concern is you paying additional tax which is not quite fair.

I am sure I speak for the majority of Tasmanian Cachers in saying we are all happy to help where ever we can to make the site succesful

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caughtatwork
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by caughtatwork » 04 June 19 12:05 pm

Please don't wait to be asked. There is no-one to ask you. You are the asker. You just do it.

budgietas
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by budgietas » 04 June 19 9:29 pm

Ok. In December. The presidents cup golf is being held in Australia (Melbourne)

How about a game based around terms from golf? And other golfing ideas such as par 3 - get three trads in a day as an example.

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caughtatwork
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Re: 2019 mid year game suggestions

Post by caughtatwork » 10 June 19 5:55 pm

FYI I referred this suggestion off to Sol de lune who is one of the site games admin for review.

In order to run a game we would need a lot more detail to get the rules and the code in place, but as a suggestion it's work taking forward. If SDL can work with you to sort out the rules so it can be programmed, taking into account fairness and suitability and a view on ways people will "work around the rules" then this can be considered for inclusion.

As it stands right now, it's a great suggestion, but with no detail I can't do anything with it, so I'll leave it to SDL and you (or anyone who wants to get involved) to work it through.

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