Facebook group creates Craigslist for student body
The Facebook group “Give it, Lend it, Sell it @ UMW,” created by senior biology major Marco Montero in February of 2012, is a forum with 972 University of Mary Washington members currently.
Group members give and lend, but mostly they sell and buy from each other. The concept is much like Craigslist, except that the group is exclusive to UMW students. One student was able to sell her Boy Meets World DVDs and another attempted to sell her cat calendar.
Students post on the group’s wall to sell, request or ask to borrow an item. Some users give away unneeded items for free. Often, items for sale come with a picture. Interested students can then comment on the wall post or contact the seller directly.
The most common items for sale are textbooks, clothes, shoes and concert tickets. More obscure items, such as a trashcan, a calculator and artwork can be found for sale on the page.
Senior Kwabena Owusu posted that he had “swag for sale.” Anthony Ruiner Seippel said, “selling my soul for good grades. Any takers?”
The multiple ways to respond to a post, including a comment, a Facebook message or an email, means that there is no way to keep track of any statistics on which sales were made and which were not.
However, the page has had approximately 100 new posts since the first day of classes this semester, and new members have been continually requesting to join the group since its creation. There were 300 members in March of 2012, and now there are 972.
“Everyone is respectful and willing to work with each other concerning prices,” said sophomore Emily Gibbs, a Spanish and environmental science double major. Gibbs sold her geology lab manual on the site.
Montero said his idea for the group was spontaneous. Maintaining the site is not hard and includes tasks such as adding users, removing spam and banning people who violate the rules, which are not listed anywhere, but in his head.
“I’m connecting students together,” he said, after explaining that his involvement is voluntary. He receives no percentage of the sales.
Montero hopes to expand the group by making it a club. He intends to have a type of community yard sale as a way to bring group members together in one massive market to sell their goods. Come May, another student will need to take over the group to ensure its survival.
“Hopefully, I can give it to someone interested,” said Montero.
Leah Cox, special assistant for Diversity and Inclusion, suggested one way for the page to improve.
“I think that the site could only be enhanced by expanding to faculty and staff,” she said.
Whether selling swag or sandals, “Give it, Lend it, Sell it @ UMW” has drawn students in as a localized platform to buy and sell.