Victor & Greg,
Some of your policies such as effective screening appear pretty good! However, I disagree with some of them (certainly with the idea that we need to do away with anonymity or that policing the users -- reporting all crime to the police -- is realistic or a really good idea). That doesn't mean that I agree with what craigslist is doing or rather not doing...
Removing the adult/erotic sections was good! And it did cost them quite a bit of money...(in lost revenue) but it certainly does not appear that it was done for the right reasons if they want to stop there. I certainly agree that craigslist should spend a lot more of its vast resources on combating crime, especially horrible crime. And I've said this on this blog, over and over... Unfortunately, they appear to hide behind their size in an attempt to continue to do little more than give potential victims some advice.
Will the government step in at some point? I think so... But the way to prevent that is not by giving up what I consider fundamental rights such as not being forced to give up your privacy unless you have done something wrong or not being reported to the police for anything and everything that some screening software/person might deem to be a crime.
Still, I agree with the general idea: craigslist's removal of the adult/erotic sections was but one step in the right direction...
P.S. sorry, this comment is all I can contribute towards this; I do wish you luck with the brain storming and everything else! D.
----- Original message -----
Sent: 2011/03/09 11:05:53
Subject: Re: Open letter to craigslist, others to make classifieds sites safe
In recent days, there’s been a blogging war of words between craigslist and the authors of a report that last month referred to the classifieds site as a “cesspool of crime.” The online classifieds site has taken exception to the report and fired back by accusing competitors of skewing the facts.
Greg Collier, the CEO of Geebo, an online classifieds site that is not involved in the back-and-forth exchange, has taken it upon himself to interject in an attempt to navigate the debate into a positive. He has penned an open letter to his industry counterparts, asking them to join him in his efforts to deter criminals from preying on people through online ads.
Geebo already does not accept adult-natured ads and reviews each ad before it goes live to make sure that the content is appropriate. Collier is asking the operators of the other sites not only to take those same steps but to join him in brainstorming policies that could become the new standards for the industry. The alternative, he warned, could be government regulation.
The official release is attached and a copy of Greg’s letter is available online. Greg is available for interviews to discuss his efforts and why he chose to interject in an attempt to shift the debate.
Thanks so much for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you soon.