MeFi's own Craigslist? June 9, 2009 6:01 AM   Subscribe

Is there any kind of site, alternate page, forum, etc. set up for MeFites to post announcements about locally-specific things that are not gatherings? If not, could there be?

This came to mind because I'm starting to look for a new roommate, and I'm trying to confine my search to smaller circles at first before I go the Craigslist route. But that's the kind of thing I'm talking about -- a place to post "I have a spare room in my apartment available" or "I'm selling my car if anyone's interested" or the like. There's the job board already, but that's different.

And no, I'm not envisioning a separate page for each location -- more like "here's the forum set up for local announcements, look for the single thread that has to do with your city" and that one thread has all the "roommate wanted", "kittens for sale," etc. announcements.

Thanks!
posted by EmpressCallipygos to Feature Requests at 6:01 AM (68 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Hold on....I feel a presence...now channelling one of the mods:

"Yeah, this isn't something we're going to implement on the site. There are plenty of other websites out there for this. This is not what MetaFilter is for."
posted by Deathalicious at 6:14 AM on June 9, 2009


Ooh ooh. Channeling mods? I can do that!

"Know what MetaFilter needs? Some pictures of a guy fucking a chicken."
posted by educatedslacker at 6:21 AM on June 9, 2009


Me too, me too!

"Hey guys! You might be interested to know that my new novel is available right now. Information wants to be free, so it's available via a Creative Commons license. I know! But I would actually like to make money, so please buy it. I made it out of blog posts! Would you be interested in learning more about me? Where to start! Well -- "

Oh, wait. You meant a Metafilter mod.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 6:30 AM on June 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


I am favoriting kittens for breakfast SO HARD right now.
posted by Loto at 6:33 AM on June 9, 2009


Speaking of which, if this Craigslist-esque page would let me post kittens for breakfast, I would be 100% for it.
posted by Lemurrhea at 6:40 AM on June 9, 2009


Gigfilter has been discussed a few times. I know there's more threads I'm too lazy to find. Personally, I don't really see a need to Mefi-Craigslist, because Craigslist already, you know, exists.

Unless there's an Erotic Services catagory.
posted by Juliet Banana at 6:59 AM on June 9, 2009


Gigfilter has been discussed a few times.

Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter. Gigfilter.

If we keep saying it, we're sure to get it eventually.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:06 AM on June 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Channeling a mod: "Hey you! Yeah you, in the pants that are almost as tight and well-tailored as mine. Hop on my scooter and let's zoom to this club I know that plays Motown and rocksteady records."
posted by Kattullus at 7:15 AM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


This is on the "might happen but if it does it will happen slowly" list. I think we looked at planning the 10th parties and using an interface that might also work as a gigfilter.

The problems we're worried about include a lot of stuff that isn't so region specific [someone goes on tour and they post 20 separate gigs to 20 different towns - is that the site working as it's supposed to or is that a hassle - what about other categories that are Against The Rules, CL takes a lot of moderating and has a lot of back-end to keep it running decently - what about people who only join MeFi to post to gigs?] as well as admin-intensive. I'd love to see something that was a bit more like Projects [i.e. you can post something once a month MAX so make it count and don't hound us if you need a new post after 27 days] but that did serve the MeFi community.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:34 AM on June 9, 2009


I'm looking forward to a little area of the site I can chill in by myself.

mostly
posted by ODiV at 7:44 AM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Can we have an easily-hidden "what's this mystery car" ghetto for AskMe instead?
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:48 AM on June 9, 2009


I'm looking forward to a little area of the site I can chill in by myself.

That's easy
posted by clearly at 7:50 AM on June 9, 2009


Can we have a Boyzone? Preferably in a tree in the backyard with an endless supply of Tang and Rice Krispie squares?
posted by clearly at 7:52 AM on June 9, 2009


I'm about to go into the kitchen and make some coffee if anyone wants to join me.
posted by tula at 7:53 AM on June 9, 2009


Meetups:Metatalk::Gigs:Projects

A gig is just a self-serving meet-up thread, so just add all the meetup functionality to 'projects', and then add a widget to the side of the metatalk listing upcoming gigs under upcoming meetups.

Seems pretty simple to me.
posted by empath at 7:53 AM on June 9, 2009


(or not add it to metatalk, could just add it to the projects sidebar instead, though nobody will ever look at it)
posted by empath at 7:54 AM on June 9, 2009


Seems pretty simple to me.

Trust me, it's not.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:57 AM on June 9, 2009


I volunteer to moderate gigfilter. You know, for money.
posted by Eideteker at 8:14 AM on June 9, 2009


As simple as the mods coming to my house and giving me backrubs.

When will the BackrubFilter be finished?
posted by klangklangston at 8:17 AM on June 9, 2009


I'm looking forward to a little area of the site I can chill in by myself.

Here you go!
posted by SpiffyRob at 8:21 AM on June 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


It saddens me to have to inform you, klangklangston, but the BackrubFilter is finished.
posted by cgc373 at 8:22 AM on June 9, 2009


a place to post "I have a spare room in my apartment available" or "I'm selling my car if anyone's interested" or the like.

IT'S GREAT THAT YOU HAVE TIME TO POST ON METAFILTER, BUT YOU HALF OF THE RENT IS A WEEK LATE, SO WTF?! AND STOP DRINKING ALL MY ROOT BEER!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:27 AM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Meetups:Metatalk::Gigs:Projects

Setting aside the "to what extent can we supplant current meetup functionality with the guts of the 10th subsite" question that we're currently chewing on, we don't really want to half-ass Gigfilter by just doing a quick clone of the meetup stuff.

We've talked a couple times about getting really good location and calendar functionality worked out ahead of time and trying to accommodate a reasonably wide net of potential gigs/events with one centralized tool, and once we come up with something we're satisfied with and have the time to get it built and tested, we will.

Trust me, this is my personal absolutely most-wanted new feature for the site. We'll get there eventually.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:30 AM on June 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


("This" being the previously-discussed Gigfilter stuff, not the ostensibly-currently-being-discussed Craigslist stuff, which, yeah, I'm not so hot on for a number of reasons.)
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:31 AM on June 9, 2009


I also think that I should have my own channel on MetaFilter.
posted by Mister_A at 8:39 AM on June 9, 2009


Can we have a Boyzone?

Boyzone? You're soaking in it!
posted by burnmp3s at 8:53 AM on June 9, 2009


Can we have a Boyzone? Preferably [...] with an endless supply of Tang

I see what you did there.
posted by harmfulray at 9:19 AM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


We just need to add some XML. That will solve it.

Maybe we could open source the code base, and have an "add your favourite section" drive?
posted by blue_beetle at 9:49 AM on June 9, 2009


blue_beetle: We could randomize the sub-harmonics of the shield generator while the dilithium matrix is re-energized, simultaneously allowing the jeffries tubes time to recondense.
posted by boo_radley at 10:12 AM on June 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


We just need to add some XML. That will solve it.

Yeah, that may have worked two years ago, but things are different today, pal.

I think this'll take at least two full barrels of JSON.
posted by ignignokt at 10:13 AM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Trust me, it's not.
posted by jessamyn at 9:57 AM

Trust me,
posted by cortex at 10:30 AM

I trust them. Do you?
posted by Sailormom at 10:45 AM on June 9, 2009


not the ostensibly-currently-being-discussed Craigslist stuff, which, yeah, I'm not so hot on for a number of reasons.

Not that I'm 100% convinced it needs to be on MetaFilter, but I really don't understand why people think a BST/Freecycle/Craigslist/eBay type thing wouldn't work. Those things actually run remarkably smoothly on sites that are much more likely to attract a lot of scammers. There are well established ways to eliminate the problems, like Heatware, escrow and meet in person rules. Buying and selling stuff really isn't any less of a useful community function than gigs...
posted by Chuckles at 11:15 AM on June 9, 2009


One of the things that worries me is how the community responds when someone, inevitably, gets ripped off. Do we declare jihad like the Something Awful forums? Do we just ignore it?

The upcoming 10th anniversary meetups show Mefites have a greater sense of trust and comradery than the average website. A lot of people will think that it means they can trust other members of the community when it comes to financial transactions, which is not always going to be the case. I don't want to be around when someone pisses all over what we stand for by ripping one of us off.
posted by Juliet Banana at 11:25 AM on June 9, 2009


Because being the arbiter of something involving money is sketch territory, and because all those sites exist and can be used by MeFites already we've been less-than-enthusiastic about getting into a situation where we'd have to ramp-up admin time to reinvent the wheel.

Also, and this is more minor, places that involve in person exchanges work better in places where there is already a good chunk of people. I think somethng like this would be great for people who are already in a population-enhanced area and less good in places where I live where there are not many MeFites [though the ones that are here are a devoted bunch] and not a lot goin gon on CL either.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:26 AM on June 9, 2009


Trust no one.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:27 AM on June 9, 2009


Buying and selling stuff really isn't any less of a useful community function than gigs...

Sure, and I'm not against the idea for ideological reasons.

But managing (and managing the fallout of) buy/sell/trade stuff is a whole giant kettle of fish, and introduces a whole crapload of new work and unique vectors of personal and community liability to the site. All to accomplish something that doesn't have a larger platform's benefits of scale and which creates potential for weird unpleasant overflow of the real-life logistics of buy/sell/trade stuff into normal mefi stuff.

Folks who have been involved in the mix-CD swaps over the years here can attest to the fact that even there there's some weirdness that comes from the intersection of sort of general mefi enthusiasm with real life flakiness or bad luck or so on. That's really low-stakes, know-what-you're-getting-into stuff, so it's not a great big deal, but generalizing that dynamic into a whole buy/sell/trade thing strikes me as asking for a lot of trouble for relatively little benefit.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:33 AM on June 9, 2009


Maybe we could open source the code base, and have an "add your favourite section" drive?

It's not a good day unless I laugh hard enough to wonder whether I'll be fired over it.

hold me, MeFi, hold me.
posted by candyhammer at 11:40 AM on June 9, 2009


I'm personally okay with having MetaFilter not be my entire internet.

Sorry!
posted by Sys Rq at 11:43 AM on June 9, 2009


Heretic!
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:45 AM on June 9, 2009


I'm actually chuffed that this idea was given serious thought in the first place; I was expecting more of a "GOD, no, it'd just be way too much of a logistics nightmare" and I was prepared to be out of luck.

That said, yeah, the whole honor system behind buy-sell-trade things seems problematic, but I still can't help thinking that "I need a roommate" kinds of things may be a slightly different situation. Although, this may indeed be because of my own present interest in the matter, so hey.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:46 AM on June 9, 2009


Could there be some sort of non-MeFi gigfilter site that gets the SocialApp treatment on user pages, complete with one of these? Is that possible with Craigslist or Kijiji?
posted by Sys Rq at 11:49 AM on June 9, 2009


I don't want to live with any of you.
posted by desjardins at 12:01 PM on June 9, 2009


There are some people who still hold grudges about CD swap loafers, and we've seen MeFites who used to live together snarking at each other all over the site (to the extent that we've had to be "shut up you two") and these are instances where MeFi has only facilitated these interactions in the smallest of ways.

Unless we want to "grow our business" [i.e. increase revenue models, hire more staff, become a bigger thing] this is a lot more work for not that much return, even though I can see the appeal. GigsFilter actually solves some problems - getting more exposure for musicians and other performers, keeping "hey come to my local gig" threads of of Meta proper - and we're a bit more psyched about it generally.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:12 PM on June 9, 2009


But managing (and managing the fallout of) buy/sell/trade stuff is a whole giant kettle of fish, and introduces a whole crapload of new work and unique vectors of personal and community liability to the site. All to accomplish something that doesn't have a larger platform's benefits of scale

I understand why MetaFilter doesn't want to get into the business of hosting these kinds of deals, but in my opinion the large scale of sites like eBay and CraigsList is as much of a hinderance as it is a benefit. Both of them were far better before they got popular enough that it became profitable to scam people on them full-time. In my opinion peer-to-peer buy/sell/trade activities on the scale of eBay and CL are inherently broken at this point, and unless someone figures out to keep scammers out on that scale only small-scale solutions will work.
posted by burnmp3s at 12:29 PM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


^klangklangston: "As simple as the mods coming to my house and giving me backrubs. When will the BackrubFilter be finished?"

Having beta-tested one of the BackrubFilter units thoroughly, I must report emphatically that this feature is not ready for general use. It has a lot of kinks to work out. Ask again in 50-70 years.
posted by not_on_display at 12:45 PM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Ii.e. increase revenue models, hire more staff, become a bigger thing

But you could be Senior VP of the Eastern Division and wear a suit everyday and get into turf wars and have power lunches before losing it because of alcoholism and that dalliance with Yahoo Answers!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:46 PM on June 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Social App! Social App! Social App!

Kijiji and eBay seem totally doable, assuming the only necessary component is a user page with an RSS feed. Pleeeeeeeease?

(And also: All y'all Etsy people have got to figure that shit out. I want craftinesses, dammit!)
posted by Sys Rq at 12:48 PM on June 9, 2009


I trust them. Do you?

After that night in Istanbul? Never again.
posted by InfidelZombie at 12:51 PM on June 9, 2009


I'd love some kind of swap meet, where we'd barter instead of use, you know, actual money to get and give stuff.

For example, I have an old ibook and a copy of Panther that, when we get the new laptop, I'd rather see go to a fellow Mefite than anyone else. But there's nowhere to post a, "Hey, anybody need one of these?" thread.
posted by misha at 12:58 PM on June 9, 2009


Can we have KnitterFilter?

I don't even knit. I just want to watch people talk about socks.
posted by katillathehun at 1:04 PM on June 9, 2009


I'll admit too that I have a couple instances where it might have been nice to have some sort of thing to let mefi people know about something.

When I moved out of San Francisco, I ended up not having enough time to sell stuff and so was finally just manically giving stuff away. Books, mainly. But also other stuff: A 1930's Royal typewriter, for example, which I advertised on Craigslist as free. But I had to sort through obvious scammers who were looking to resell it until I found someone "deserving." Still, a lot of hassle. I would have rather given it to the first local mefite that wanted it.
posted by vacapinta at 1:07 PM on June 9, 2009


For example, I have an old ibook and a copy of Panther that, when we get the new laptop, I'd rather see go to a fellow Mefite than anyone else. But there's nowhere to post a, "Hey, anybody need one of these?" thread.

sure there is - metachat.
posted by desjardins at 1:12 PM on June 9, 2009


"I don't want to live with any of you."

No, you've made that abundantly clear, what with your... your... marriage. And to a non-mefite of all things!
posted by Eideteker at 1:14 PM on June 9, 2009


What about a way for other people to leverage (ack did I really use that word? That's OK because I'm acknowledging what a tool I am, right?) the MetaFilter community? If MetaFilter had support for openID (probably as just a provider) then anyone could build a site that gains all the existing users and their reputation.
posted by aspo at 1:19 PM on June 9, 2009


I'd love some kind of swap meet, where we'd barter instead of use, you know, actual money to get and give stuff.

I demand implementation of MeFiBucks immediately!
posted by Rock Steady at 1:48 PM on June 9, 2009


No, you've made that abundantly clear, what with your... your... marriage. And to a non-mefite of all things!

To be fair, I met him before I joined MeFi. Otherwise god knows what I would have ended up with. Probably some Linux-installing guitar-playing fixie-riding vegetarian typography nerd. The horrors.
posted by desjardins at 2:11 PM on June 9, 2009 [5 favorites]


To be fair, I met him before I joined MeFi. Otherwise god knows what I would have ended up with.

Well when you brought him along to the meetup we both went to he was pretty much indistinguishable from a mefite. If we had a Guess Who's Not A Mefite contest I probably wouldn't have picked the guy who went through the all of the pros and cons of the Matrix MMO.
posted by burnmp3s at 2:44 PM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


We'll get there eventually.

Yay.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:05 PM on June 9, 2009


Hey, my ibook just broke (the screen died and Apple no longer supports repairs). What would you want in return? (I actually got my swap cds out this time, so I feel OK).
posted by klangklangston at 3:18 PM on June 9, 2009


Well when you brought him along to the meetup we both went to he was pretty much indistinguishable from a mefite. If we had a Guess Who's Not A Mefite contest I probably wouldn't have picked the guy who went through the all of the pros and cons of the Matrix MMO.

Hahaha, touché. He is definitely a geek in his own right. I think he'd probably join up if we had the IMG tag, which is a good enough reason not to ever bring it back. Otherwise, the site is too much TL;DR to him.
posted by desjardins at 3:32 PM on June 9, 2009


jessamyn: Unless we want to "grow our business" [i.e. increase revenue models, hire more staff, become a bigger thing] this is a lot more work for not that much return, even though I can see the appeal.

Right, I totally understand that, and it is the reason I said that thing about not being convinced.

jessamyn: GigsFilter actually solves some problems - getting more exposure for musicians and other performers, keeping "hey come to my local gig" threads of of Meta proper - and we're a bit more psyched about it generally.

Well, like EmpressCallipygos, I have a personal interest; for me in BST, but whatever. I kind of see the distinction between BST and gigs to be more about interest than reality. If the gig sucks, am I less likely to feel ripped off? I mean, I understand that there is a different legal framework.. People who sell tangible goods or a technical services have legal obligations that just don't apply to gigs, but.. Well, I'm not that interested in the arty-farty V tangible stuff debate, and I'm not sure how else to frame the issue, but I think the double standard is obvious.

Also, gigs are in-person-only by definition, yet that doesn't seem to be an issue?!?!

Vacapinta: A 1930's Royal typewriter, for example, which I advertised on Craigslist as free. But I had to sort through obvious scammers who were looking to resell it until I found someone "deserving."

Let it be known far and wide that I AM ONE OF THOSE "SCAMMERS". I mean, lots of stuff I get actually is used by me for a while, but.. Anyway, if you aren't willing to put in the ebay effort, and somebody else is, what's the problem? The world needs arbitrage too, you know.. Here is how I handle it (don't just stop at that single comment), and calling it "scamming" isn't very thoughtful.
Vacapinta, I certainly don't take your comment personally. I do see an overall issue of bias here though...

As aspo says, an OpenID type system seems like a great idea. It solves the whole grow-your-business issue quite nicely. And, you can always just shortcut these kinds of threads with "sure, go ahead and try it, good luck."

I bet this needs a couple more edits, but I've got to run...
posted by Chuckles at 3:34 PM on June 9, 2009


Also, I am dragging him to the Chicago block party in case you want to discuss more videogame stuff. I will warn you all, he is a Microsoft fanboy who refuses to use the FireFox I've installed at home. However, he has nice hair.
posted by desjardins at 3:36 PM on June 9, 2009


desjardins: Oh hey, I'm also involved with a non-MeFite nerd with nice hair! We should start a club!

'moonMan has actually considered joining up. I apologize in advance if this actually happens. Living with him is often like living with Borat II: Son of Brüno - I recognize that in theory, it's funny, but really, I am trying to find a way to burrow deeper into my hoodie.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 4:29 PM on June 9, 2009


I'd love some kind of swap meet, where we'd barter instead of use, you know, actual money to get and give stuff.

I like that idea, too. I've met some of the most awesome people through bartering, and it can strengthen community ties as well. I imagine it'd be a pain to implement, though, and there are probably potential liability issues I haven't even considered, so I won't hold my breath.
posted by velvet winter at 7:01 PM on June 9, 2009


nice hair

That's nice.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:17 PM on June 9, 2009


What if instead of a new subsite people could post stuff for barter and gigs coming up in their profile, and on the front page or MeTa there was a widget that showed "most recent profile updates", prehaps with a line or two like:

vacapinta: Royal typewriter in SF, free to first...

EmpressCallipygos: in search of nice-smelling roommate for 7/1...

flapjax at midnite: who here likes pancakes? Electric griddle for...

I suppose things might easily get lost in the scrum if people use it to post all sorts of silly crap, but I very much doubt anyone here would ever do that.*

*lol
posted by oneirodynia at 7:37 PM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


I've sometimes wondered if contact activity could include 'major profile page changes' say if someone's added text more than a 100 characters in length to their profile page.
posted by Kattullus at 7:57 PM on June 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Ooh ooh. Channeling mods? I can do that!

Wait... I'm getting a message. The mods are saying that you should give me ten bucks each. And that if you live within burrito-defrosting range of Providence, RI, you should bring me some microwavable vegetarian burritos.
posted by Uppity Pigeon #2 at 1:35 AM on June 10, 2009


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