2013 so far has been a good year for freecycling. For those who don't know, "freecycling" is the process of finding a new home for stuff you don't want any more, or simply want to get rid of to make room, perhaps to simplify a move, or to make room for newer stuff. Some people have no troubles simply toss things out with the garbage, but others go the extra distance so that they don't add to the already burgeoning waste stream. "Freecycling" can be as simple and local as putting the stuff out in your front yard with a sign that reads "Take me, free!", or can be as modernized and wide-reaching like Internet groups. Well, Yahoo!Groups is a bit archaic, not as modernized as, say Facebook page, but it works. I still use the Yahoo!Groups for Brooklyn and NYC in general, although I understand there are groups not based on Yahoo! and can use Facebook account to login, but I didn't investigate further. The Brooklyn and NYC groups are enough for me, even though one of the items I received came from Queens.
It's been a while since I last used Freecycling, there seems to be some changes. Posts must include the keywords OFFER, WANTED, RECEIVED, and TAKEN, plus you must specify your location or preferences as to where you'd like to pick-up the items. I posted a few times, for the same offer, and they were never approved, before realizing these new rules. I suppose the volunteers admins were overwhelmed. You know the saying about 10% of the people do all the work in all volunteer situations, right?
Something else I found more useful is that you don't necessarily have to give to the first person to respond. It's your stuff given away with no strings attached, you should choose the easiest, least hassle-free for you to give away. Along the same line, a suggestion the admin's documents has is that to give lower preference to people who are too lazy to type full sentences. Supposedly people who ask questions like "U still have?" with nothing else, no "Thank you", no phone number for quicker communications, are unreliable takers who may not follow-up or show-up. Call it whatever you want, generation gaps or not, I too feel the same way.
How good was my freecycling activities so far this year? Check out the spreadsheet below. I know, spreadsheets are boring, but they are great for organizing data. Always one to spread the joy of the sonobe, I give donors a sonobe as a token of appreciation. Even for recipients, since we usually have to go through a few emails and phone calls to finalize the work, I also gave out sonobe, not to all, just depending on how I feel at the moment, and if there are any spare ones lying around. Note that I've given out more than taking in. The magazine was not even for myself, too, so I've managed to create a little extra space at home.
Qaptain Qwerty Freecycles!