September 6, 2010

Turning A Great Thing Bad

It's always nice when something helpful and useful comes along. What never ceases to amaze me is how fast the wrong type of person/company shows up to ruin it for everyone else. I see this a great deal in my local Freecycle groups. There are always people who show up for no other reason than that they're hoping for something free. Then there's the people who show up hoping to garner pity and get things they claim to need such as laptops, tv's, Nintendo's, etc. They always seem to be asking for those for special needs children too. Not saying they're all lying of course, but I mean's getting to be a bit ridiculous if you ask me. It's gotten to the point lately where i just really don't want much to do with Freecycle at all. It's not the organizations fault, it's not even the group moderators fault. It's some of the people who use it and make it a pain in the butt for those of us who use it for the right reasons. The good thing about Freecycle is that there ARE moderators who try to help keep things running on an even keel. I have come to really appreciate that as of late.

Same thing is happening with Craigslist. Craigslist is an awesome free way to make a few extra bucks and/or get great deals. WAY better than Ebay and the local newspaper if you ask me but like with Freecycle, bad people mess it up. In my local Craigslist there's a big issue with a few companies who just don't seem to get it. I don't understand why Craigslist doesn't do anything about them. Craigslist has a flagging system that is just useless. Supposedly once a post is flagged so many times the post is removed. I DO see that happen but you can't tell me there's no way for Craigslist to say "hey this same account is being flagged on a daily basis, perhaps we should close their account and ban them!".

I heard this morning that they are making millions of dollars with their Adult services section, or were anyway. Perhaps they could use some of that to come up with a better system? For instance, It's ridiculous that everyday the Houston area is spammed all day every day by a company called Fabriplast. It's apparently a low rent shop that has way too much time on it's hands because any other reputable company wouldn't be able to sit and spam Craigslist all day. When people complained to this company about their spamming practices they began posting things about how "they can do whatever they want and no one can stop them", which sounded much like an argument a 5 year old would make and turned people against them even more. Personally if it were me, I wouldn't want to give my company a bad name like this. I'd want to be sure that I had a good relationship with potential customers rather than equate my company with a very unprofessional attitude. Customers are going to go where they feel the most comfortable. I'd personally be afraid to use this company just because they don't seem to have enough work anyway.

This company is not the only offender of course. It's just one of the most annoying. There are plenty others who make Craigslist a pain in the butt. It's not JUST the sellers and businesses either. There's the people who swear they are on their way and never show up. There's the ones who show up and want to buy the item but "forgot" to bring cash and want to write a check. Yeah right! I understand that Craigslist can't help with these issues. I'm okay with that. The spammers though.........that's another story. I feel like Craigslist could do something about it or implement a new system that will get rid of these people so that those of us who use it properly aren't bothered by them. I have a feeling I'll be wishing for that for a very long time though.

I suppose in the long run I'll just stop using the Craigslist service and find something that isn't so irritating to use. It's sad that grown people just can't follow basic rules and use decent manners but apparently not everyone was raised in such a way. Too bad really, but it happens all the time. A good thing comes along and inevitably bad apples show up to ruin it.


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