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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Comments

  1. That’s a pretty good idea man. I also agree there are too many idiots out there who do stupid things like that because they can hide behind the monitor….oh well good thing you did find a family to help.

  2. That sucks – I agree that it’s frustrating to see donations go to further marketing, rather than actually helping people.

    You can see which charities are ranked for a bunch of things at http://www.charitynavigator.org – it’s good to see which spend a lot on marketing, executive salaries, etc.

  3. Shawn – Thanks for the link. I’ll look into that.

  4. How is it that you’re able to sound like 100x less of a douchebag than Jonathan Volk when talking about your charitable contributions?

  5. If you want 100% of your money to go to a good cause. Call the local department of social services and speak to a social worker. They know who is hurting. You can give clothes to a kid in foster care for example. These kids usually leave home with a trash bag with some of their stuff in it at 3am. Or give them a scholarship, or a car, or a job, if you are banking hard and want to sleep well.

  6. You can always find out where to help foster children, I would know I used to be one. They leave from home to home with nothing but a garbage bag full of their “belongings.” It would brighten their spirit to even own a duffel bag or suitcase.

    Also, I commend you for helping the way you did — it makes us feel better inside to know we can be business people and humane at the same time.

  7. helping local and helping personally is good. maybe craigslist thought it was a scam of some sort? i dunno.

  8. You could always give some money to a microfinance company.

    I agree with you about the whole charities wasting more money than thy have on stupid flyers and stickers. That money could buy more dinners clothes etc.

    But if you haven’t heard of microfinance it’s a concept where you have people in 3rd world countries who want a loan of no more than a few hundred max. Most want less. Like someone who needs $20 to buy a cart to push their wares to market. And the clenched is most people will try and pay it back so they can get a loan in the future kind of like building credit.

    The only thing is it is hard to find a credible site but there are a few available that are legit.

  9. it is very silly that craigslist banned your post but i really appreciate that you made a genuine effort to help someone in need :-)

  10. You are a noble man and a manifestation that God works in many creative ways.

  11. Microfinance is a great concept, but the only contact I’ve had didn’t accept donations from outside the US, so I couldn’t participate ()although I live in New Zealand now, I am American).

    With a year to work on it, perhaps you could arrange to accept donations from overseas (risky business, I suspect) and then make the donation in your own name.

    It would have to be agreed that no participant accepted repayment, all repayments being loaned again. Otherwise, it would be a bookkeeping nightmare.

  12. It is silly that your post was banned but kudos to you for being persistent and still helping a family out.

  13. When I first heard that this happened, I asked my friend who is a priest, if he knew of a family in need, initially thinking I would let you know about them. But by that time you had found someone already. Then I thought, wait a minute, I should help this new family out. And so I did. I can’t tell you how much more special it made Christmas for me this year. It sounds like a cliche but when you give – you really do get so much more than you could imagine in return.

    Of course we want most, if not all, of our money to go to those in need when we donate. Getting a bunch of “swag” after a donation is frustrating. And although I like the idea of making a dif with those in your own community first, if that doesn’t work for you then consider a non profit like http://www.RoomToRead.org. Most non profits spend 30% of their money on overhead costs whereas Room to Read spends only 16% of their money on operational costs so more money goes to the kids.

    My friend founded http://www.SmilesAcrossTheMiles.us and they do donate 100% but they are able to because it’s run completely by volunteers.

    And if you think one person with very little can’t make a difference then read Half the Sky by journalists Nicholas Kristoff & Sheryl WuDunn and have your mind blown. http://www.HalfTheSkyMovement.org.

    Gandhi said “You must be the change you wish to see in the world,” thank you Ad Hustler for being that change and for inspiring even more.

  14. Thanks for all of the great comments. The foster children idea is pretty decent for the future.

  15. Hustler, isnt it amazing how difficult it is to give things to people? Every year I try to give away 2 website designs to a church or ministry and I work hard to find someone to actually accept it, so I gave up and just started sending money to the Appalachian project here in the USA.
    I admire your gift to them,I hope you weren’t discouraged by it

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