Joho the Blog » What’s wrong with Craigslist?

What’s wrong with Craigslist?

That’s more or less the question that prompted Wired’s cover story, according to its author’s blog post:

The cover story of this month’s Wired started when the magazine’s editors asked me a pointed question: How can a site that’s so good be so bad? Serving a vast community at an irresistible price (mostly free), craigslist nonetheless seemed the antithesis of what a modern web business should be. Oblivious to innovation and stuck in a 1997 mindset, craigslist was hogging the sector and holding things back. When the editors invited me in to propose that I write the story, they wanted an exposé.

That helps the dissonance in the article. I read it feeling like Gary Wolf, the author, was out to get Craig, but couldn’t find anything negative, so he wrote a weird Attack of the Positives article.

Sure, Craigslist’s site design is cramped, prosaic, and old Webbish. Sure, Craig is quirky and eccentric. So? Instead of writing a piece titled “Why Craigslist Is Such a Mess,” why not write one called “What Craiglist Gets Right,” because, Craigslist gets just about everything right: It offers a service of immense value to users, but prices it not by that value but by its cost. And there isn’t a thing on that cramped, prosaic, old Webbish page that isn’t for the benefit of the user. Craigslist is so much for us and about us that many of us feel it’s actually ours. That’s why we trust it — a classified ads site, for Lawd’s sake! — so much that we’ve built communities there. And the folks who run it, do it with the utmost humility, out of a sense of service.

Cripies, what more could you want? And yet we end up with a story that seems to want to be an expose … except the further it digs, the better Craig looks. So, Gary’s blog post helps to explain what happened. I wonder if the headline was Gary’s; the writers often aren’t even told what the headline will be. (This happened to me here: I don’t think copy protection is “a crime against humanity.”) I also found Bobbie Johnson’s posting about the Wired story to be helpful.

We could do with a WHOLE lot more Craigs.

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22 Responses to “What’s wrong with Craigslist?”

  1. My reaction to the attitude posited as an accepted opinion about Craigslist (in the title of that article) was far less analytical:
    http://twitter.com/sotirov/status/3543760747

    “Cripies”… ? That, I like.

  2. Amen, and Jakob Nielsen’s (the Web’s “usability guru”) group rates Craigslist as one of the most useable sites online.

  3. [...] that because you’re bigger wigs than they are, everything you do will automatically be better. As David Weinberger notes in his response to the Wired article about Craigslist, the most important thing about such a [...]

  4. Bobbie Johnson’s post is really getting to the point… and, btw, I like much more his selection of picture of Craig and Jim (together!) than the tired narcissistic Leibovitz-wanna-be “portraits” in Wired.

  5. I think it’s partly a question of marketing. Craigslist doesn’t try to promote itself as anything except exactly what it is, and that’s tough for journalists trained to sift through marketing material when researching a company or a product.

  6. No, the headline was not mine. But it was my choice to frame the story with a section at the beginning that made the case “against.” I knew this risked contaminating impressions of the piece as a whole with a sense of bias, jealousy, or resentment, so I tried to express the case against with a certain irony. If what craigslist is doing is right, then at least some of what is typically recommended – here on this blog also – must be wrong. Right? Or do we live in that happy condition where everybody is always right? I’m not , myself, a business consultant or social web guru, but I consume a lot of this material as a consequence of the work I do. The theatrical expression of how BAD craigslist must be if the conventional wisdom of the social web entrepreneurial culture is a way to put this contradiction before you. It’s inevitable that this challenges produces some anger. But I think a fair reading of the story will show how thorough my research on the company, ditto it’s description of the often unacknowledged refusal of “openness” and other taken-for-granted geek values.

  7. Please forgive the typos above – had to send this while on the move.

  8. Gary, first, thanks for replying. I appreciate it, especially as a long-time reader.

    Second, I don’t question the piece’s factual accuracy. It was richly informative, for which I thank you.

    But, your opening few paragraphs didn’t work for me the way you wanted. I didn’t take them as ironic. I took them as an attempt to find genuine negatives, in order to set up a contrast between the site’s awfulness and its success. As a result of the comment you left, I now understand that those opening paragraphs were intended to show that the goodness of Craigslist shows the wrongness of “the conventional wisdom of the social web entrepreneurial culture” that it violates. But, man, I did not get that from the article! And, frankly, re-reading the article, I still don’t entirely get that from it.

    Since I thought the article was saying that Craigslist is a “mess” because it doesn’t do what it should, I continued to read the article thinking that it was going out of its way to be negative, to justify its theme. To take just one passing example, you write: “Public spirited and mild-mannered, politically liberal and socially awkward, Newmark has one trait that mattered a lot in craigslist’s success: He is willing to perform the same task again and again.” You list four of Craig’s traits, clustered in a way that doesn’t make sense to me — do the pairs go together in some way, or are they intended as contrasts? — dismiss their effect on site’s success, and then grudgingly (seemingly) find one personal trait that helped. Just one? Really? And that one trait is Craig’s dogged willingness to do the same thing over and over? Craig’s other virtuous traits — his focus on keeping it simple, his commitment to the health of the community, his refusal to put profits first, his insistence on sticking to his principles, his humility — do come come through in the article to one degree or another, but sentence by sentence the article read to me (given my initial missing of your irony) as if you were out to demean and belittle him.

    And, yes, that did put me out, and did cause me to read your piece less sympathetically than I should have. Craig to me is a hero. And although I wouldn’t put Craigslist forward as a design model, I would enthusiastically endorse the principles that drive its particular implementation. Would that more sites took them to heart!

    Thus my reaction to your piece. It didn’t work for me the way you intended. It happens.

  9. To Gary…

    I just wanted to say that my angry twit was not against you as author of the article (I sensed the irony mode and liked the article) – but against this entrenched lack of understanding of what is sometimes called the “undesigned” or “messy” web (positive terms in my book)… exemplified by the mighty lineage of early Yahoo, Amazon, eBay, Craigslist, Google, etc.

    It’s been over ten years… of repeated successes of the undesigned/messy web vs. all kinds of highly designed/orderly failures – and otherwise intelligent people still don’t (want to) see this. So, irony seemed a bit mild to me – as a treatment for this persistent refusal to understand.

    The web is almost the exact opposite of an Apple-pretty thing.

  10. Now that I’m back at my desk I can touch this conversation again without typos – thanks for your tolerance. David – I think these criticisms are fair. I’m going to state my best case first, then come back to your criticisms, because I dislike it when a writer makes a quick acknowledgment of some problems then goes on attack. I’ll do it in reverse.

    There should be a lot more vehement back and forth in our world than their is, and I think one of the side effects of social media, operating both consciously and unconsciously, is that conventional wisdom tends to get amplified, giving an appearance of false consensus. Craigslist is an amazing company, but it ought to be discussed critically. I won’t deny finding it sort of rewarding that some of the people who felt that the story stung too much, including yourself, are advocates of an approach to business and media that Craigslist often violates. Shouldn’t this make you reflect on your own advice? Is it wrong, or is craigslist wrong, or is everybody right, or what? You deserve some specifics to go with this counter-attack. Let’s just take the most important. Surely it hasn’t escaped you that craigslist’s listings cannot be tagged, commented on, mashed up (except in very limited cases). A key argument of your own work is that when content can be organized by the community it gains value. Shouldn’t you explain why it is also correct for craigslist to guard its private party listings so carefully, to reject business cooperation, to deprecate the requests of technically sophisticated users? This isn’t a small aspect of the strategy, it is a crucial aspect. I think, in reading my story, I explain some of the reasons Jim Buckmaster takes this approach, and I am explaining more of them in my series of blog posts over at wired.com/epicenter. But I’d like you to try to explain it as well. It’s a good challenge! You disagree with the case against, and found it harsh and baffling. But you, among a handful of others, were one of the people I had in mind as I wrote. I decided to take the risk of articulating the shock/anger/frustration craigslist can produce or ought to produce among people who take the openness ethic seriously. In the story I wrote, of course, that anger/frustration/shock is far from the last word. But if you don’t feel any of that a/f/s, then I wonder if you are taking your own advice as seriously as others take it.

    You give one of my sentences a close reading and find a subtle but real insult there. I think that you are right about this, and I apologize for it. I did not mean to say that none of these other qualities of Newmark were valuable and important. I was trying to convey something that has been missing from all writing about him so far. The notion of ROUTINE, in its technical, psychological, and even comedic sense, is key to the success of craigslist. But the way I phrased it can be read as unkindly discounting his other qualities. I did not intend this. As for how the adjectives in my quick sketch are paired, the second item in each pair is there to qualify the first: he is public spirited but not a crusader, by temperament; his is politically liberal but not political in a social sense. I hope this helps it make more sense.

  11. Gary, that comment is very helpful. I now far better understand the point of your article. And I also understand why I missed the point when I read it: I didn’t take your picture of what social media boosters are supposed to believe as applying to me. I _do_ take my own advice seriously; It’s just not the advice that you think I give. And that you think otherwise is my fault.

    I don’t feel anger/frustration/shock (a/f/s) when I come across a site that doesn’t tag. I feel a/f/s when I come across a site that doesn’t work. Craigslist works for me, and obviously it works for a gazillion other people. For example, the listings at CL generally contain the keywords people use to search for them, so full text search does the trick. Further, I assume that people go to the listings with quite a precise idea of what they’re looking for, rather than to browse; they are therefore searching at a level of specificity below where tags are generally useful. My point: I’m not interested in social media navigation for its own sake, and I almost always favor a hybrid approach. Since my “Misc” book focuses on what’s new and critiques the political/philosophical effects of our assumptions of the old, I can see why a reader might think otherwise.

    The rest of your comment’s list of CL’s sins that ought to make me a/f/s (guarding its private party listings, rejecting business cooperation, deprecating tech advice) are not big deals to me, and I’m not sure why they should be. And they’re overwhelmed by the set of political and cultural values CL embodies. I am _far_ more committed to those values than I am to holding CL to some dogmatic set of social media principles.

    Let me be more specific. From your comment, CL’s key sin is that it’s not open enough. First, I don’t take openness as an absolute. I am not very open about my personal and family life, I like it when Apple surprises us with an unexpected product announcement, there’s lots that I want governments to keep secret, and I don’t see why I should be a/f/s about CL being a privately-held company that reflects the personality of its founder/owner. Second, for me the closedness of CL as a business and tech is overwhelmed by its openness to postings and involvement by anyone.

    To put this in an embarrassingly self-centered way, ultimately, I’m more committed to cluetrainy values than I am to “miscellaneous” implementations. And my interest in the miscellaneous has more to do with what it says about how we think about our world than with how we navigate sites. My advice to companies isn’t “Tag! Facet your classification!” It’s “Put your users first! Don’t be assholes! Trust your users, and only add the hedges they show they need! Don’t get stuck in the old assumptions about how we organize things. Messiness is good (at times)!” CL is a good example of the advice I’d give.

    So, I go back to the opening of your article, where you set up the contradiction that motivates the piece: CL violates the tenets of social media, yet social media types don’t hate CL. Your explanation of this (in your comments) is that social media types (such as me, apparently) are hypocrites. It of course doesn’t look that way to me. To me, it looks like you set up a social media strawperson who holds a particular set of beliefs, and who holds them dogmatically, without crediting the political and cultural values that might lead a social media type to think: “Damn the tags! CL rocks!”

  12. First some advice: never type the word typo with anything but the utmost caution and superstitious genuflection! David, I welcome you to silently correct….

    I am so glad you picked up on the implication of hypocrisy. This was not an accusation, but an attempt to point out one of the consequences of leaving obvious contradictions unaddressed. If you passionately recommend openness to others, but argue that one particularly successful company should be according uncritical praise despite not being open in very important ways, then you owe an explanation of why they are such an exception. Otherwise, the praise is hypocritical.

    Of course your summary of the message of Cluetrain – “Put your users first! Don’t be assholes!” – can be put into practice in many different ways. But if you just leave it at that you end up in the absurd place where Google has arrived: “don’t be evil.” Admirable as an inner desire; utterly fatuous as public recommendation or behavioral guideline. What could be more corrosive to actual dialog than a loose ideological slogan that allows you (I mean this as a generic “you”) to be as fanatical as you like in your rhetoric, but as tolerant as you like when praising a leader? Craigslist is a leader. The immense success and the benefit we all get from the existence of the company doesn’t give them immunity to criticism. Instead, we should push ourselves to articulate the case against, especially when it is so obvious and so rarely acknowledged. Clearly, I don’t think this is the last word. It was far from the last word in my story.

    As for the substance: you say you do not take openness as an absolute. I have always understood that. Despite the flavor of Cluetrain as a fanatical document, it is obviously not meant to be taken completely seriously. It was a provocation, an important one, and good for you. But we’re well along into the future now. What is it that craigslist has to tell us about the limits of openness? When it is better to say nothing than to say something? When it is better to ignore users than to attempt to respond to them? When it is better to let the ouroboros of the social media consulting circuit eat up its own advice without paying the slightest attention? That is one of the interesting challenges that craigslist poses.

  13. Gary,

    Of course CL isn’t perfect and I don’t agree with all of Craig’s decisions. And in the very few times I’ve written about CL, at least once was critical of Craig for relying on his PR folks too much. But, since I don’t see CL as a betrayal of principles and practices I support, I am not tempted to write a piece denouncing it.

    You’re of course right that Cluetrain is a polemic, a strength and certainly a weakness. (BTW, there’s a 10th anniversary edition out with some reflections on these issues.) But my belief in openness isn’t merely a provocation. I take it as a principle. Principles are by nature broad, and thus people who agree on the principle (e.g., you and me) can nevertheless disagree about its application. That doesn’t make me a hypocrite; it instead means you disagree with me. And it doesn’t make the principle fatuous. It only means that it is often unclear how exactly to apply it.

    E.g., The Sixth Commandment is believed by people for and against wars, for and against legalized abortion, for and against capital punishment, etc. But principles’ generality doesn’t make them meaningless. Supporting free speech (to change examples) means that you think that free speech is a prima facie good: It ought to be assumed to hold unless there is a reason not to. More exactly: If you support Free Speech, you believe that permitting free speech requires no justification, but denying free speech does. My saying I support openness should be taken in that light. (I’ve written a bit about this, wrt transparency: http://strumpette.com/archives/162-Cluetrain-author-dispels-absolute-transparency-myth.html) I deny being fatuous or hypocritical in the case of CL: I apply the openness principle as I would elsewhere, but I happen not to think CL is a major violator of it.

    So, when should the principle of openness be violated? I don’t have yet another set of principles that tell me that. Like everyone else (I think), I mainly feel my way along. The Apple App Store being a black box that decides what can go on an iPhone strikes me as a non-ok case of non-openness. Yahoo giving up names of dissidents to the Chinese struck me as a non-ok case of openness. And CL’s non-openness just doesn’t strike me as objectionable. Your article didn’t convince me otherwise.

    Rejecting your major criticisms of CL should not be confused with saying CL should be immune to criticism. But: (1) I read your piece as unconvincing criticism; (2) Doing a cover story on what’s wrong with CL conveys an overall assessment with which I profoundly disagree (“CL is such a mess that its awfulness merits a Wired cover”); (3) Your article assumes that the contradiction between social media principles and CL means CL is a mess, not that the social media principles are wrong or are not absolute or are hard to apply; (4) Your comments here critique me for refusing to be dogmatic about my beliefs — a failure to denounce! — when in fact I think I’m actually fairly pragmatic.

    Gary, I look forward to your response, or, if you understandably feel played out on this — and I appreciate your lengthy, open engagement here — I then will look forward to your next Wired article.

  14. David – I read your post on transparency. I agree with you that we don’t need to have principles that explain the exceptions to our principles, and so on through the looking class. So we start in the same place. I also agree that the cover, the headlines, and the first section of the story invite misreading the story as saying only: “openness good, craigslist bad!” Calculating the effective dose of irony is notoriously difficult; there is such great variation in individual response! I hope our discussion, and the long, descriptive posts I’ve been making at wired.com help correct for these inadequate signals.

    Perhaps for the sake of completeness I should also point out – knowing of course that you already know this – that by saying the case against craigslist deserved to be expressed with some irony, this does mean that I think such a case has no merit. The irony here involves one sidedness, not “wrongness.” Given that the principles of web design and the principles of social media are true and good, then craigslist is a mess. I hope that fair readers will find it impossible, as they proceed, to maintain this one sided view. The extreme sunniness of the rhetoric about social media, a sunniness about human nature as well as about the potential of technology to enhance how good we are, is the topic of the story’s last sentence. For the benefit of anybody following here who didn’t get all way to the end:

    And just as people who run technical companies are reaching an apex of confidence in their ability to invent new forms of community based on sharing everything, craigslist still treats social life as dangerously complex, deserving the most jaded caution. Corporate isolation, user anonymity, refusal of excessive profit, glacial adoption of new features: These all signal Newmark and Buckmaster’s wariness about what humans, including themselves, might do if given the chance. There may be a peace sign on every page, but the implicit political philosophy of craigslist has a deeply conservative, even a tragic cast. Every day the choristers of the social web chirp their advice about openness and trust; craigslist follows none of it, and every day it grows.

    In the terms of our own discussion, I’m not critiquing you for failing to denounce, I’m simply pointing out that there is a contradiction here that ought to interest you, and expressing surprise that in your original objection to the piece you didn’t seem to notice this contradiction at all, despite being in a perfect vantage point to see it. Although I think we’ve explained ourselves pretty well here, and I don’t want to put us into a holding pattern forever, I’ll raise one more point that I think deserves discussion at a future time. One of the side-effects of social media is pressure to reduce communication down to the level most efficient for signaling group membership. “Damn the tags! CL rocks!” is very effective as such a signal. It hits the same part of the social brain as does Dodger blue, or “yes, we can!” or “don’t be evil.” Characterizing the political and cultural values that might lead a social media type to praise craigslist despite its manifest pessimism about the tools of social media requires tools of a different sort. I resorted to lengthy passages of description inflected – perhaps insufficiently, as you suggest – by irony. But if you take on this challenge, you will have your own toolbox.

    (In today’s post at wired.com/epicenter (http://bit.ly/2QEH8), you will see the influence of your comments here. It is about trust and mistrust in social networks, and how craigslist’s minimalist approach interacts with the natural distrust we have of doing business with strangers.)

  15. CORRECTION: Perhaps for the sake of completeness I should also point out – knowing of course that you already know this – that by saying the case against craigslist deserved to be expressed with some irony, this does NOT mean that I think such a case has no merit.

  16. Gary, I am confident that you’re pointing to a contradiction in my thinking and behavior that’s real and even obvious — so obvious that I’m missing it — and it would be instructive for me to understand it. I clearly have a blind spot.

    I do think I’m making progress, though. I think I maybe have begun to understand the point you’ve made in several places, including in your most recent reply. You write: “Corporate isolation, user anonymity, refusal of excessive profit, glacial adoption of new features: These all signal Newmark and Buckmaster’s wariness about what humans, including themselves, might do if given the chance.”

    Your criticism of CL that it refuses “excess profit” really had me puzzled. That sounds like a good thing to me. But I think may have figured it out. Are you saying that Craig doesn’t want to make a lot of money because he’s afraid of what it might do to him, which means he doesn’t trust himself? And so he is deeply conservative and distrustful of humans? Am I getting it now, at long last? Is it time for me to slap my head and say, “D’oh!”?

    But, if I’m understanding this point of yours, Gary, it’d be hard to list all the ways I think that goes wrong. Craig is wealthy beyond your dreams and mine put together. So, clearly Craig isn’t _so_ afraid of what wealth would do to him. And even if your psychoanalysis is right, Craig’s wealthphobia (which clearly he does not actually suffer from) doesn’t flag a distrust of all humans. Maybe Craig just knows himself. And granting you’re right about Craig, why would a refusal to take extra profit be a criticism of Craigslist? Isn’t it good for its users that it refuses to wring every penny out of them? Why isn’t that a _virtue_ of CL? And if it’s a virtue of CL, are you saying that SM-ers ought to criticize Craig Newmark personally for not being trusting enough? Surely you don’t intend your article as a personal attack on Craig, except insofar as Craig’s personal failings are reflected in the site. So, granting that Craig’s wealthphobia means he has trust issues (which I don’t actually believe), why is that a criticism of CL that SM-boosters have to make on pain of being called hypocrites?

    Likewise, I don’t see how anonymity (of which I’m a supporter — cf. stuff I’ve written about digital ID) shows a distrust of what humans might do, especially since the usual line of thinking is that anonymity makes it _easier_ for people to behave badly; if you fundamentally distrust people, you require real names and addresses.

    What am I missing, Gary (unless I’ve tried your patience too far)?

    Now to repeat myself, but I hope to make myself clearer. You write in your comment: “Given that the principles of web design and the principles of social media are true and good, then craigslist is a mess. I hope that fair readers will find it impossible, as they proceed, to maintain this one sided view.” I’d tinker with that a bit (only because there’s obviously quite a bit of controversy about “the” principles of web design), but I take you as saying that people who boost social media (SM) ought to find CL to be contrary to those principles, and thus SM’ers ought to be criticizing CL. I agree, so long as “people who boost SM” = “people who maintain that all and every site ought to adopt every aspect of SM.” But who are those people? I don’t know any. Nor am I one. I’m relatively pragmatic about these things. Of course I do boost social media, but not as a panacea or as a requirement for Web Site Excellence. I believe there are times in “Everything Is Misc” when I note that even old fashioned taxonomies have their place. So, the contradiction between SM and CL isn’t all that interesting to me, because I never thought SM was an end in itself, and CL actually accomplishes some of the “cluetrainy” objectives that have me most excited about SM (e.g., the creation of community). Above all, I cherish those who selflessly and modestly contribute to the community. Craig Newmark is high on my list of Web heroes.

    Perhaps it’s simply that my polemical, over-enthusiastic writings have conveyed the sense that I am a dogmatic, one-sided believer in all things SM. That would be a failure of writing on my part, and certainly deserving of criticism. That dogmatism does not reflect my actual beliefs. Because I’m not actually a dogmatic SM-er, I don’t react to CL negatively. So, I look like a hypocrite to you because my writings have led you (and undoubtedly others) to think that I dogmatically support SM and refuse to acknowledge the virtue of anything that isn’t SM-ish. But I don’t look like a hypocrite to me because I actually am not dogmatic about these things. I am an enthusiast but not a dogmatist. I therefore deserve to be criticized for writing in a way that implies dogmatism. And that’s certainly a fair criticism.

    (BTW, I think it’s a tad unfair of you to criticize me for ending several thousand words by trying to sum up in a pithy 5-word phrase: “Damn the tags! CL rocks!” CL does rock, and that’s more important to me than a slavish devotion to the signs of SM rectitude. If that’s all I’d said, I’d accept your criticism. But I’m allowed 5 words of pith at the end of several thousand.)

  17. David – your reply is also helpful for me. I was certain when we started this conversation that misunderstandings caused by my aggressive first section could be corrected by more explanation. Now I am not so sure. What is standing in the way? Obviously, it is not lack of attention on your part! So I am struggling myself to understand the difficulty. Perhaps it is a confusion about what counts as an “account” of something. I write descriptive journalistic narratives that attempt to deepen understanding through shifting the point of view back and forth. This probably sounds more complicated than it is. The method is:

    1. Show how something looks from the outside, given certain assumptions.
    2. Now look at the same thing from the inside.
    3. Finally step back and look at the contradiction between inside and outside. Perhaps there is something here that touches many of us in some aspect of our lives and/or work.

    There are many mistakes – in both writing and reading – that are possible along the way. In this case, you don’t recognize the assumptions of the first section as common and important. Certainly you do not accept these assumptions as in any way your own. You should have the final word on this. If I’ve offered you a welcome chance to clarify some of the values of Cluetrain, etc., that I’ve mistakenly oversimplified, then I won’t feel that I’ve imposed too much. There is no reason for you to keep having to defend yourself against a reading of your work that you reject.

    You also say that you just don’t see the pessimism, mistrust, and extreme caution about human behavior that I say is implicit in craigslist. I am not sure we start with exactly the same set of facts. I’ll pick out just one example. Craig has stated many times that he gave away 25% of his company because he was afraid he would become a megalomaniac and go crazy from age and power. Of course I understand that this is a dramatic, excessive statement. It does not strike me as a realistic fear. But the statement – and the fact that he did in fact do the very thing he describes – stands as one piece of evidence among many that Craig has real concerns. Your key fact, here, is that Craig is extremely wealthy. But you do not know this to be true. The end of the first section of my story, where I quote at length from the Charlie Rose transcript (and I hope that here, at least, you did not miss the irony), shows how important it is to Craig not to be thought of wealthy. It is possible that he has given away most of his money. Because Craig has openly talked about personal wealth as a threat to sanity, provably given way a large chunk of his assets, and explicitly protests when he is described as very wealthy, I think I’m on firm ground here.

    We could go through questions like this point by point, but it would tax both our patience, without a doubt. But there’s a bigger thing I would like to try to convince you of: that my story, and our conversation here, doesn’t have to boil down to “CL bad” or “CL good.” My little outburst of irritation, which you quite correctly call me on, was addressed to this point.

  18. I happily admit you are right on the facts about Craig worrying about money’s effect on him, and that I am therefore wrong about them. Thanks for the correction. I still disagree with what you make of that fact.

    But I thoroughly agree that CL doesn’t have to boil down to binary bad or good. I can’t think of anything that does.

    Thank you for your extraordinary patience, Gary.

  19. a bit late, but as promised, here’s the first post in a series I’m planning on writing on how to go from just an

  20. I live in York, PA. At this moment there are two firearm ads posted on craigslist. These ads are not disguised and one even has an actual picture. So then why can’t I post my two totally safe firearm accessories? I tried for weeks to contact them but all they do is send the same generic auto email over and over and over. There has been several firearms posted in the last several weeks but some are diguised as hunting items. I even bought a rifle off craigslist a few weeks ago. What is wrong?

  21. [...] don't have to go hand in hand.Meanwhile, on his blog, the brilliant David Weinberger also wonders what's going on – and Wolf, the author, responds in the comments. [...]

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