A postal ring, traditionally, is a bunch of letterboxers who group together to create several postals—usually with a common theme linking them together. Each person typically creates one postal to contribute to the ring. On Atlas Quest, trackers have a looser definition. A tracker can be composed of single postal with a dozen people, or it could be a single person with a dozen different postals. (Though, admittedly, a tracker with just one person can get very dull, very quick.) Or the tracker can fit the traditional definition of a ring where each person in a ring contributes a single postal.
Imagine what this means. You can create trackers where a postal contribution is optional. Others could contribute multiple boxes to make up the difference, or just for the fun of it. Ultimately, the creator of the tracker can decide how many boxes and people will be part of the tracker.
The tracker owner will set the rules for the tracker, and has the authority to enforce them. The owner can add or drop anyone or any postal from the tracker.
Now, down to the nitty gritty details....
Clearly, you need a name to distinguish the multitude of postal trackers. This is where you include it.
Postal Trackers are not letterboxes, and therefore the status they can be set to are different from actual letterboxes. Here's a rundown of the possible status of a tracker:
open An open tracker means anyone is free to sign themselves up to participate. Assuming, of course, there are any positions still available. limited A limited tracker means that there are positions open in the tracker, but only the tracker owner can add the members. Typically the tracker owner is looking for specific people or types of people for the tracker and wants to 'pre-approve' new participants before they can sign up. If you see a limited tracker that you wish to join, contact the owner of it to see if you can join. closed A closed tracker means just that—all of the participants for the tracker have already been chosen and no additional others will be permitted. retired A retired tracker means just that—the tracker is retired. Done. Finished. Complete. This tracker is dead.
Enforce that only boxes that should be tracked can be added to the tracker by specifying the tracker type:
single Only one postal should be tracked, as specified by the owner of the tracker ring All members of the tracker can add one of their postals to be tracked other All members of the tracker can add any number of their postals for tracking
Specify the maximum number of people allowed to sign up for this tracker. Pretty straight-forward, but keep in mind if the average turnaround time to move one letterbox to another person is one week, allowing 99 people to sign up means it could take nearly two years to get through! And historically speaking, very few postals make such excellent time!
Trackers typically have a unifying theme to keep things interesting—which can be just about anything under the sun. Themes could be something that the participants have in common such as those with birthdays in a given month, those living in a certain state, those with more than 100 finds, etc. Or the theme could be what the postals have in common such as each starring a Disney character or each participant's favorite junk food. Use this box to tell people your trackers's theme.
The date that the tracker becomes active and postals will start traveling between members.