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Craigslist: Casual Encounters of the Most Unwanted Kind

Craigslist In April, I wrote here about a disturbing trend that seemed to be emerging in the Craigslist world: fake posts inviting people to have sex with unsuspecting women.Yesterday, Above the Law editor Kashmir Hill wrote about a similar type of fake Craigslist post that was directed squarely at her.

Hill says that on Sunday afternoon, she received a call on her mobile phone about the ad she had supposedly placed on Craigslist. She hadn't placed any ad, however, and told the man he had the wrong number. Shortly thereafter, dozens of calls and text messages began pouring in to Hill's phone at a feverish pace, and she learned from one of the early callers that the "ad" that was generating such interest was one seeking  "Casual Encounters" (i.e., "one-off sexual adventures with strangers") that included her photo and mobile phone number. "Someone was angry at me, Hill says, "and had found a nice, anonymous way to wreak revenge ... "

Hill says that after receiving 30 calls, she ended up speaking to one of the men seeking a casual encounter. He told her that this type of false ad actually happens a lot on Craigslist. She suggests that in addition to the mechanisms Craiglist has in place for users to report abusive posts, it should also have one that "calls a phone number before a post goes up to confirm that the person at that number is the one who placed a given Craigslist ad."

Posted by Bruce Carton on June 2, 2010 at 12:07 PM | Permalink | Comments (4)


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