Giving it all away

Freecycling is basically giving stuff that you don’t want away. Direct to those who want or need it. Good for the environment, good for your emotional health too. Birmingham Freecyclers hang out here.

For historical reasons I assume, it’s based around the fairly clunky Yahoo Groups system — basically an email list with a web interface. That’s not the easiest of systems – and email groups are prone to SPAM if they’re not kept moderated. There are also rules, which the moderators enforce (things like no asking for stuff until you’ve given, that sort of stuff) — which makes moderation a fairly big job. If it seems like a job that you’d like to help out at, then they’re looking for a few people to help out.

Last time the call went out I was surprised at the way it was handled — basically asking for a small number of people to do a lot of work, instead of the much more web efficient lots of people to do a little bit — maybe any offers are going to be greatfully received this time.

Personally I’ve found it great for getting rid of stuff, although sometimes the tone of emails (as with any systems, message boards, forums) is a bit harsh — it’s still nowhere as annoying as selling on ebay (“will you split it up into two packages”, “how much to post by snail to the Outer Hebrides”).

Go and have a look, you might find that Pannini Football 87 sticker you’ve been missing.

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