Discussion Forums - Going Green Going Green

Topic: Surprised by Freecycle

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Date Posted: 9/29/2009 2:11 AM ET
Member Since: 3/12/2009
Posts: 869
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i've been using freecycle for several months now and luckily, everyone i have agreed to give items to have all shown up.  everyone's been nice too so that's a big plus. i sadly feel like more people are flakes on craigslist than freecycle. in a way, i feel like freecycle people are a bit more understanding that everyone's time is valuable and it's really rude to not show up.

so far, so good!

Date Posted: 10/23/2009 2:48 PM ET
Member Since: 7/11/2007
Posts: 5,378
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PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE do not post your address & say 'the first person here gets it.' First off you're putting your addy out there for all of cyberspace to see & in this day/age it's just too risky. Also, who knows what else they might decide to take? Secondly, you're gonna have a LOT of ticked off people if someone decides to drive across town for your item & finds they've wasted time/gas/effort... you could have 5 people coming after 1 item. That's just not right to make it a race & waste peoples time & money in doing so.  Make arrangements with 1 person at a time.  If you don't have the time to go through the emails & make arrangements then don't bother posting on FreeCycle... just set it at the curb with a 'FREE' sign on it.

Another hint, I almost always wait approx. 24 hours before choosing a recipient & I state that in my post because it's unbelievable the people who think they should get it just because they responded immediately! Not everyone can sit at their computer 24/7 so I want to give more people a chance than just the cyber vultures. I also state that I respond to politeness, not speed. I will not even acknowledge the responses that just say 'I'll take it' or 'When & where do I pick it up' with no name or anything, because I find it extremely rude. If you can't bother to take 2 minutes to write a civil response with a 'please' & a 'thank you' I'm not about to gift you my item.

I love FreeCycle & have been using it for years but as with anything it always helps to apply the Golde Rule & do unto others as you would have them do unto you... so if you expect courtesy, fair play, etc. then that's what you should give out.

Date Posted: 1/17/2010 8:43 AM ET
Member Since: 11/27/2008
Posts: 3
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My problem with FreeCycle is people not coming to pick up items. It's pretty irritating when I've rearranged my schedule.

Date Posted: 1/18/2010 12:36 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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I've been lucky and haven't had but 1 or 2 no shows.  depending on how fast I want to get rid of the item, I will generally wait to give it away, but sometimes I just want it gone now and if the person can come pick it up now, is it theirs.

I don't have anything sitting on my front porch other than their items...well 2 frogs but wouldn't be disappointed if someone took those too!  LOL

Date Posted: 1/19/2010 4:42 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2005
Posts: 2,404
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I dearly love my magic porch.  I haven't had any problems.  I try to only have one thing out there at time, though. 

I prefer it to scheduling a time for someone to pick it up.  If I say "it's on the porch" they have no idea if I'm home or not.  If I email them a list of times it's a decent bet I'm not there most of the rest.

Date Posted: 1/31/2010 11:23 AM ET
Member Since: 1/31/2010
Posts: 154
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I love Freecycle.  I offer a bit and take a bit.  I feel it is a give and take.  It bugs me the people though that do the first come first to get.  I am one that can not be at my computer 100% of the time. 

Date Posted: 2/8/2010 7:35 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2010
Posts: 8,626
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I LOVE FreeCycle!  We also have a great CheapCycle group in my area.  I had just helped my mom with a huge yard sale after my stepdad died, when I read that someone was looking for some cheap boat seats to buy.  My mom just happened to have 4.  I contacted the requester, and when he picked them up he said they were for his son who had told him no one on CheapCycle would have anything like that!  lol.  Keep saving the landfills everyone!

Date Posted: 5/29/2010 7:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/27/2005
Posts: 629
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Coming to this post late but I wanted to chime in that I love FreeCycle too! I seldom get what I ask for but my offers are always taken. I wait at least 24 hours before deciding who to give an item to for fairness. Not everyone can respond immediately. One time I offered two balloon valances and someone responded that she didn't know what they were but she wanted them. Uh, I don't think so!

I also am more inclined to give the item to someone who also offers instead of those who are constantly wanting and never giving. Pet peeve of mine.

I recently listed a water garden with pump for my brother. The house they just bought had one and they didn't want to mess with it. He dug it up and everything. I was swamped with requests. Yay for Freecycle!

Date Posted: 8/6/2010 5:15 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 12
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I love freecycle and became discouraged at the large number of no-shows. You have renewed my faith and I think I will try again.

Date Posted: 8/27/2010 9:26 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2010
Posts: 911
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We listed an electric Baldwin organ that my wife had paid $3500 for about 10 years ago but no longer played it and wanted to give it away to someone who could use it. It was in mint shape, had all the paperwork, recently tuned, $300 worth of sheet music, etc.. 5 people wanted it but only 1 person set-up a time to come and get it, and she kept flaking. "Can't get my helpers to come today". She flaked like 3 or 4 times. Finally, I listed it for sale for $500 on CL, and someone came the next day, with moving help, and bought it.

Sometimes "free" makes people not take the item seriously and assume it's junk, not worth their time, etc.. The lady who kept flaking saw it on the CL ad and wrote me about it, saying she still wanted it for her granddaughter, but wouldn't pay anything for it, since it originally was free! I had fun replying to her.

Date Posted: 9/5/2010 7:52 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2008
Posts: 73
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I am one of the owners for my town's Freecycle group. We limit the amount of wanteds (1 per item per month), no personal information other than an e-mail address and no "sob stories"' in the wanted posts. It got to a point where people were trying to outdo each other with their "poor me" bits and we'd had it. Freecycle is not meant to guilt people into letting go of items, but to provide an outlet for them to offer items up once the usefulness for the present owner has passed. Unfortunately, no-shows happen. We tell people to make a list of them or keep it in the back of their minds, because its up to each person to choose the recipient of their goods. I do what most of you have done, draw names, unless I'm desperate to be rid of it, then I choose the person who can get to me the soonest!!! :)

I love the fact that people can pass along things to others who need them, and helps everyone out at the same time. I'd much rather give something away to someone who will come and get it at your convenience, even hauling it away out of your home than trying to find someone to buy it or haul it to the curb!! LOL

untitled - ,
Date Posted: 10/6/2010 5:02 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2010
Posts: 6
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Cheryl said:

We had a garden area to get rid of. It had no sprinkling system and I got tired of standing around with a hose. Last week we gave away some garden dirt. Ten people wanted my dirt! Five people wanted the cememt blocks surrounding the dirtthe month before that. When we sold our home 1 1/2 yrs ago I didn't have good enough health to have a yard sale so I gave away tons of good stuff, even furniture.

I've used Freecycle for a few years, mostly to get rid of things that aren't worth the hassle of listing on ebay. It is a little crazy what people want and what they don't. I have a huge amount of designer fabric that I tried to Freecycle, no one was interested. But I posted my drawing pencils from college (not just regular pencils) and had a HUGE response. I used to try to give to the first person who emailed, but now I wait a little longer and see what kind of reasons people give. I also ask for people to give an estimated time they could pick up the item in their response; so if they reply but don't follow directions, they don't get the item.

Date Posted: 2/13/2011 12:41 AM ET
Member Since: 4/17/2008
Posts: 1,561
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Freecycle is wonderful!  I've been doing it for a few years and love the concept of giving something away to someone who needs it.  Putting "Please no flakes" in the ad seems to weed out some no-shows.  Also, I like giving something to a person who writes more than just "I'll take it".  I find that the people who take a second to write something nice, actually end up following thru.

Date Posted: 1/24/2012 12:29 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2012
Posts: 266
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I've used free cycle to give away stuff and your right about no shows.  I checked in with the one where I moved to and the entire site was things wanted and not inexpensive things either.  Now everyone seems to send their stuff to the consignment stores or the auction.  I suppose that's what happens in an economically challenged area. 

Date Posted: 3/1/2012 8:52 AM ET
Member Since: 1/6/2006
Posts: 101
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I offered an older treadmill two day ago on Freecycle. I was instantly bombarded with email too. I emailed one person back and they came and got it within an hour. I posed a "taken". Yesterday, I had two people email and get all snarky with me because I didn't respond to them or give it to them!

I was so ready to tell them both were to shove it. I mean really? It is Free and a Gift and you are mad because I didn't choose you?? I decided after that to give up on Freecycle and just use Craigslist from now on.