Flagged & Removed

Posted by Ad Hustler | Posted in Off Topic | Posted on 23-09-2010

Craigslist is a great website.  It’s simplicity, it’s sheer volume of traffic and it’s localization makes it a beast of a classified website.  It’s also a community moderated website, which is the issue with Craigslist.  I’d say a solid 50% of the time when I post something, it get’s flagged and removed.  It doesn’t matter whether I am giving away a swingset that is taking up space in my yard, trying to sell my car, helping a family on Christmas or trying to get some help on a project it always seems like i’m getting flagged & removed.  It’s pretty ridiculous to have your ads taken down when you are GIVING SOMETHING AWAY (no strings attached).

I think Craigslist needs to fix this.  They should have flagged posts go into moderation where a Craigslist employee makes the final decision.  Hiring people to review ads costs money so I propose they charge a nominal fee per ad (even if it was $1).  The fee would make people have to give their real information in order to validate the credit card which in turn would probably curtail fraud and abuse on Craigslist and pay for the staff of professional moderators.

Rant Over.

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Crack CAPTCHA – Get Jail Time?

Posted by Ad Hustler | Posted in Off Topic | Posted on 08-07-2010

CAPTCHA also known as “The Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart” (what nerd came up with that name?) is now at the center of a controversy involving Ticketmaster and a bunch of ticket scalpers called Wiseguy Tickets.  You can read the article here.  Wiseguy Tickets allegedly used multiple servers and computers to bulk order tickets from Ticketmaster and cracked the CAPTCHA using an automated process to bypass the human element normally needed to order tickets.  The Wired article claims that “This violated the sites’ terms of service, and according to prosecutors constituted unauthorized computer access under the anti-hacking Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, or CFAA.”

I admittedly don’t know much about the CFAA but my own common sense dictates that if this is any kind of issue it would have to be a civil one.  Wiseguy Tickets allegedly did something that goes against Ticketmasters TOS but is it really fraud or abuse?  They didn’t hack into Ticketmasters system. I don’t believe that they effected Ticketmasters profits in any way.  What if they didn’t use an automated system but instead hired hundreds of employees to buy the tickets?  Would that change whether the process was legal or not?

Regardless of who is right and who is wrong in this case, one thing proves to be clear.  We are at a point where the actual laws and who has jurisdiction over complaints on the internet is extremely fuzzy.

Should CAPTCHA cracking be illegal?

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Adobe Photoshop CS5 Will Blow Your Mind

Posted by Ad Hustler | Posted in Off Topic | Posted on 26-03-2010

Your thoughts?

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Flagged & Removed For Christmas

Posted by Ad Hustler | Posted in Off Topic | Posted on 28-12-2009

For a while now i’ve given thought to ways of directly helping people that are in need.  I’m not a huge fan of charities in general.  I feel like a lot of money is wasted in trying to get more donations and that sincerely pisses me off.  A great example is the ASPCA.  I donated $50 to those asshats like 2 years ago and they’ve easily sent me $200 worth of crappy stickers and requests for more money.  It’s happened with other charities i’ve donated to as well.

For Thanksgiving I posted an ad on Craigslist to buy Thanksgiving Dinner for a family in need.  I got tons of emails.  I chose the first legit sounding family and bought them a Thanksgiving Dinner with all of the trimmings.  All went well.

For Christmas I decided to make another posting.  Since I didn’t really know what to offer (I don’t celebrate Christmas), I posted an ad stating that I would pick a family in need to help if they told me what they needed.  Minutes after the posting went up I got a bunch of emails with requests and summaries of the hard times they were going through.  Then my listing was flagged and removed.  This just shows how retarded the craigslist flagging nazis are (yes I know that the flagging is done by users).  I was making a legitimate offer to help a needy family and they removed my listing.  The sad thing is that this solidifies why I have a strong dislike for most people.

2 Things Could Have Happened

  • Non-Needy people could have flagged the listing for removal because they don’t want someone in need to be helped.  They could have done this because they either are just pure evil or just didn’t understand the concept.
  • Someone who emailed me asking for help could have flagged the listing so that no one else could get helped.

After I was flagged, I posted again and got flagged & removed again.

Either way, it makes me feel kind of sad for the human race.

All was not lost.  I did find a family to help in the first set of emails that came through.

Share your stories in the comments :)

Disclaimer:  This post is not meant to brag.  I’m sure other people give a lot more than I do, but you have to start somewhere.

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HP Computers Are Racist

Posted by Ad Hustler | Posted in Off Topic | Posted on 24-12-2009

Pure Gold

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