CraigslistDigital PlatformNameInstitution CraigslistDigital PlatformCraigslistis an American classified advertisements website that has sections that arededicated to housing, jobs, personals, items for sale, services, gigs,community, discussion forums and resumes. Since its introduction 1995, thecompany has facilitated online exchange, giving, selling of goods and servicescommunally through their site. Craigslist is among the most visited website inthe world, for this reason, the site promotes the reselling of second-handgoods leading to a reduction in waste generation. Consumption of used itemsprolongs their durability thus encouraging sharing economyCraigNewmark started this digital platform in the year 1995 in San Francisco bayarea. At first, the service began as an email distribution list to family andfriends, containing local events in the Francisco region. Later in 1996, itupgraded to a web-based service that expanded into other classified groups InMarch 2008, Craigslist website was updated to accommodate French, Italian,German, Portuguese and Spanish languages.
As of August 2012, over 700 cities in70 countries had Craigslist websites (“craigslist | about |factsheet”, 2018). The primary activity of Craigslist platform is toenable people to help each other in a friendly, trusting and social waysthrough the internet. CraigNewmark, who is the founder of the Craigslist service, is the principalshareholder of the platform. The current CEO of the Company, Jim Buckmasteralso owns some percentage of the shares. Furthermore, in 2005, Newmarkannounced in his blog that Auction Company, eBay had purchased 25 percent ofthe shares of the company from a former employee.
Its foundation history is anexciting story. Craigslist company co-founder started the platform by just wordof mouth, which later led to rapid growth. Consequently, the number ofsubscribers who created accounts of the website grew tremendously (Halteman& Frank, 1997). Currently, the site serves over 20 billion views per month,placing it in 72nd position among the most viewed websites in globe and 11th inthe United States. Besides, the company also boasts more than 49 millionuniquely new visitors in the US alone and more than 80 million adverts eachmonth.Mr.Buckster, the Company CEO has contributed in designing the Craigslist websiteto include a search engine, flagging, discussion forums, self-posting process,personals categories, and homepage design.
According to information publishedby a data company in 2010, Compete.com, Craigslist is the leading classifiedsservice provider in any medium. The site receives more than million new jobadvertisements each month, placing it as one of the top job boards in theglobe. Furthermore, Craigslist leads the housing and rental market in the USwith millions of new job listings every month (Stephany, 2015). By 2011, 23 largest cities that arelisted on Craigslist homepage received more than 300,000 postings each day onthe “housing” and “for sale” categories. On the site, otherclassified advertisements ranging from traditional buy/sell ads to personal andcommunity ads are available.
This feature makes the site very reliable inbalancing between the various needs and demands of the users.Theflagging system is one of the digital technologies used by Craigslist toidentify inappropriate and illegal postings. In this method, users are allowedto flag any content posted that they believe to be violating the Craigslistterms and guidelines. One intriguing feature of the flagging system is that onedoes not need to register or require account login, it can be done anonymouslyby anyone. An automated system removes a certain number of flags raised by theusers.
Furthermore, the number of flags required to remove a post is variableand is unknown to all but the company staff. Flagging also enables the Craigsliststaff to identify content posted that requires manual oversight or deletion.However, some users have raised some concerns that flagging can occur as an actof vandalism by groups of people with ill motives, but no evidence of thematter has yet been identified. Craigslistcontributes to the sharing economy in the sense that people can access goodsand services online through the craigslist site.
For example, the “forsale’ section features subcategories like books, electronics, motorcycles,computers among others. Furthermore, other broad categories that include a widerange of sections and subsections exist, which make it easy to navigate to theappropriate category quickly (Nevo & Wong, 2014.).. Most of the posts onthe site include member’s email address. Craigslist offers a feature that hides the email of the person whoposts, so members do not have to worry about their address being disclosedopenly. In addition, all transactions are private, only between the person whoposts and that responding to it. The employees of craigslist do not getinvolved in any trade unless a flag is raised or someone reports a problem.
Incase someone wants to participate in discussion forums, Craigslist site offersover 100 different topics of discussion online. In this service, people withvarious problems in a local community get to meet others who have gone throughthe same problem for help. This forum is entirely cost-free, which is a greatpromoter of the sharing economy. Similarly, members of the same area meet todiscuss business, health, security among other topics (Norris, 2010). If ajobless member of a society is seeking for a job, Craigslist is a great site toenable employers to encounter prospects.
However, job advertisements are notallowed in discussion forums. Due to this, the craigslist staff moderatediscussions, and a flag is raised to remove the ads.Theexecutive team of craigslist believes that the main reason for the success ofthe platform is the user community. The team has designed the site to giveusers a place to discuss and help each other, promoting community spirit. Thesite’s stress on community affairs emphasizes the founder’s and CEO’s dream ofavoiding commercialism and promote culture in their organization.
The websiteis particularly appealing to a wide range of users because of its organized andstraightforward layout that contains a search engine to allow easy navigation.For this reason, craigslist boasts a variety of members from teenagers tosenior who post forums, make new friends, shop online and trade tips. Althoughthe site may not be the most visually attractive, users always report it aseasy to use because one can find what they are looking for in just a fewminutes of logging into the platform. CraigslistCompany has also faced challenges since its introduction in the early 1190s.Adult advertisements category, which was previously labeled “erotic” facedcontroversy on September 4, 2010, over claims by state attorneys general thatthe posts on that section encouraged prostitution.
In 2002, the sections”casual encounters,” “rants and raves,” “eroticservices” and “men seeking men had disclaimers that ensured thatwhoever clicked on that category was 18 years and above. However, nodisclaimers were put on “Women seeking women,” “men seekingwomen” and “women seeking men” board. Following the charges ofnegative stereotyping and discrimination, The Company CEO Mr. Buckmasterresponded by saying that Craigslist has a policy in responding to feedback fromthe users that contains very explicit content for example “men seekingmen” sections.OnMay 13, 2009, a formal announcement from Craiglist stated that the companywould close the entire “erotic category” replacing it with”adult services category. The changes came to effect after allegations bynumerous U.S citizens that the “erotic” posts promoted prostitution.
On September 2010, the company announced the closure of “adult”section from their site but only in the US. The service was, however, active inother countries outside the United States. The attorneys’ general office hadconstant claim that the section was promoting child trafficking in some partsof the country. Matt Zimmerman, an Electronic Frontier Foundation senior staff,defended craigslist stating that the site was not responsible for everythingthat was posted on their pages (Cullerton,2011). On September 2011, Craiglist removed the adult section services from alllocations in the US. Personally, I think the sanction for the closure of theadult section is a bit harsh; instead, the government should track down thecriminal who participate in child trafficking.
Besides, the right of speech andexpression is apparent in our constitution. Craigslisthas also played a significant role in reducing solid waste in most communities.Anders F.
Fremstad, a lecturer at the University of Massachusetts, led a teamof experts to study the impact of the site on the environment .the study whichwas conducted across California and Florida prove that craigslist reduced thedaily per capita waste generation by an estimate of a third a pound annually. Theresults show that the reduction of waste is mainly due to the exchange ofsecond-hand goods instead of discarding them. Selling of used goods or goodsthat one does not ensures that the products are fully exploited. Similarly,transfer of goods increases the lifetime of these assets. From the plausibilityanalysis of the research, about 200 million items posted on the”for-sale” sections by the Californians and Floridians each year, solidwaste is roughly estimated to reduce by that amount.Craigslisthas been successful in changing the way people consume durable goods and hasillustrated its dominant role in improving sanitation and environmentalresources.
By making it easier for people to buy used products, the site hasgained a mass following across the globe (Illing & Peitz, 2006). Furthermore, craigslist is workingwith government programs to and campaigns to encourage and promote people tobuy and sell used goods. The same way California glass bottle recyclingprograms have managed to reduce waste generation; craigslist may have mitigatedwaste production by the same magnitude.
Furthermore, economists have modeledthe relationship between transaction cost, waste and material throughput. Inthis model, the power to sell durable goods decreases the overall cost ofpurchasing a new one, promoting economic sharing. “Doescraigslist play a role in reducing solid waste?” Many internet sites haveemerged in the last decade in a move to improve the exchange and allocation ofdurable items. Craigslist, most notably, has reduced the cost of advertising,giving away, selling and buying second-hand goods (Samuels, 2009). The site hasalso facilitated the peer-to-peer renting of vehicles and other assets. Forthis reason, researchers have been motivated to carry out a study of theinfluence of online platforms in reducing solid waste. In their findings, thereis evidence that these online sites have promoted sharing of goods hencereducing waste and improving environmental resources. Evidence from the citiesof California and Florida suggest that craigslist has significantly reduced thetransaction cost in the market of used goods.
Floridaand California have collected county level waste for nearly two decades. Forthis reason, An American researcher, Anders Fremstad used the difference- in–difference method to combine data from annual post-recycling on wastegeneration since the launching of craigslist in Florida and California.electronic Disposal Reporting System(eDRS) from California recorded all thedata of the amount of tons of waste collected in 57 counties every year from 1994to 2014 (Harvey &Jowsey, 2007). By using the data, utilization of solid waste was determined.Information from the records shows that the mean post-recycling was around 5.
4pounds per head in both states in 1990. Fremstad found out that since the launch of craigslist, solid wastegeneration had reduced to around 2.7 pounds per person in counties thatcraigslist entered than those it did not enter. From his regression analysis, Fremstad concludes that craigslist isresponsible for waste reduction in the counties of California and Florida.In2014, Kroft and Pope, American economists, approximate the influence ofCraigslist on local apartment vacancy rates and unemployment rates as the sitestretches across the US. They used data ranging from job, housing, personal andfor sale sections of the site in 36 Metropolitan Statistical areas in 2005.Kroft and Pope compared the data with that of 162 MSAs in 2007 and found outthat Craigslist did not have a direct effect on unemployment rates.
Nevertheless,they noticed that the site reduced apartment vacancies up to an estimate of 10percent over the two years period. The two explain that Craigslist provides amore straightforward way of advertising apartments and houses as compared tonewspapers hence giving prospective buyers and renters with better informationregarding the homes and their property owners(Meyer & Shaheen, 2017). Theyconclude that the site increased utilization of vacant apartments, whichreduced the demand for new buildings hence conserving the environmentalresources.Craigslisthas also increased the resale of used cars; this is according to the studyconducted in 2013 by two authors Rapson and Schiraldi in the region of California.The two calculate the percentage of homestead with internet access inCalifornia regions using the Consumer Population Survey (CPS) (Rapson & Schiraldi, n.d.).
Applying the difference-in-difference formula, the two approximate how onlinemarket platform has affected the number of secondhand cars registrations.Rapson and Schiraldi found out that the resale of used cars has increased byalmost 7 percent. The According to the authors, reduction of search costs,improvement of match quality and provision of precise information about thecars on sale has played a prominent role in the increase in the sales. Theyfurther argue that reduction in transaction costs have public as well asprivate advantages. Craigslist increases consumer surplus for providing abetter allocation of second-hand cars hence the reducing the number of vehiclesmanufactured leading to the reduction of carbon emissions. DanielHocket, a lecturer at Duke University, led a team of experts in usingcounty-level data from Florida to approximate the per capita solid waste. Theresults they got reveal that demographic factors are insignificant in wastegeneration, while waste disposal fees and retail sales are the primarydeterminants of waste management (Hockett,Lober & Pilgrim, 1995).
Furthermore,the Environment Protection Agency estimates that the pre-recycling of wastereduced in the 1990s and almost ceased by 2000s. The EPA uses data on net-import, productionand durability of goods. While EPA does not know what accounts for the sharpdecline of pre-recycling, it suggests that the probable source might me sharingeconomy and exchange of durable items, most notably the craigslistplatform. Since its introduction andexpansion, Craigslist has contributed to better matching of consumers and useditems hence reducing solid waste disposal.”Craigslistis the primary contributor to waste reduction in the United States.” Theexpansion of Craigslist in Florida and California offers evidence that sellingand marketing of used items diverted a substantial quantity of waste fromlandfills. Fremstad’s results are consistent with another study by Kroft andPope, journalists of labor economics paper, found out that Craigslist decreasedapartment vacancy rates .The study, which was conducted in 2014, also revealedthat the site increased the use of used vehicle sales.
Although the studies donot directly approximate the environmental benefit of craigslist to themarketing of used goods, the results suggest that the site saved hundreds of millionsof dollars in waste disposal and collection costs. Data from the EnvironmentalProtection Agency reveal that online markets, most notably Craigslist havehelped in extending the lifetime of durable goods by approximately 24.6 percentof post-recycling waste by weight. This reduction shows that if craigslistcontinues to encourage people to sell used products instead of discarding them,it can lead to a significant decrease of solid waste.OnOctober 27, a journalist interviewed an economist named Richard Scott fromCalifornia. He is an expert in planning and a promoter of online marketingplatforms. The journalist asked him whether Craigslist had influenced the rate,in which waste is disposed at California area since its introduction in 1990.
He answered,” Craigslist is an important tool for our generation. Furthermore, the site promotes transactionsthat are communal in a local area, allowing people to share durable goodscommunally and socially.” He continued,” Since its introduction,Craigslist has advocated for exchange and giving of a used item that increasesdurability as a result.
Online platforms, not just craigslist should beencouraged to work with waste disposal programs of the public and government inensuring we keep our environment and resources safe “(Hemmingson, 2008).However, he did state that Californians cannot rely on online markets to reducesolid waste reduction but rather all agencies and people should work as a unitto reduce the waste menace in the state.Craigslistis among the most successful online platforms that enjoy millions of users. Thecompany has played a vital role in social sharing and exchange of used items.Besides, the site has championed in reducing transaction costs of resellingsecond-hand goods thus reducing the generation of solid waste.
Craigslist inconjunction with government and non-government organizations can help insolving the problem of waste management. On the hand, through their discussionforums, craigslist has helped people from the same area to socialize and adviceone another on the matters of the community. Craigslist is also a great avenueto championing the sharing economy ReferencesCraigslist| about | factsheet. (2018). Craigslist.org.Retrieved 29 January 2018, from https://www.craigslist.
org/about/factsheetCullerton,B. (2011). The Craigslist murders.
Brooklyn, N.Y.: Melville House.
Halteman,J., & Frank, R. (1997). Study guide to accompany FrankMicroeconomics and behavior. New York: McGraw-Hill.Harvey,J.
, & Jowsey, E. (2007). Modern economics. Basingstoke,Hampshire: PalgraveMacmillan.Hemmingson,M.
(2008). Cyber-Hookers AKA Providers: Off the Street and ontoCraigslist. SSRN Electronic Journal.http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1084415Hockett,D.
, Lober, D., & Pilgrim, K. (1995). Determinants of Per Capita MunicipalSolid Waste Generation in the Southeastern United States. Journal ofEnvironmental Management, 45(3), 205-217.http://dx.doi.
org/10.1006/jema.1995.0069Illing,G., & Peitz, M. (2006).
Industrial organization and the digitaleconomy. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.Meyer,G.
, & Shaheen, S. (2017). Disrupting mobility. Cham,Switzerland: Springer.
Nevo,A., & Wong, A. The elasticity of substitution between time andmarket goods.Norris,C. (2010). A quick start guide to online selling. London: KoganPage. Rapson,D.
, & Schiraldi, P. Internet and the efficiency of decentralizedmarkets.Samuels,W. (2009).
American economics. Bingley: Emerald Group PublishingLimited.Stephany,A. (2015). The business of sharing. Houndmills, Basingstoke,Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan in the UK is an imprint of Macmillan PublishersLimited.