Now don’t get me wrong.  I think Freecycle ( is a great organization doing good things.  Keeping stuff from going to the landfill is a noble goal, and it seems to work well too.  I have belonged to two Oregon freecycle groups, one in Beaverton and one in Bend, and generally I have had good luck with freecycling things that would otherwise go to the landfill.

Lately though I’ve been getting a bit frustrated with the attitudes of one person in my current Freecycle group.

First off a five day wait for her to pick them up.  Then today I get this in my email.

“i will be there saturday morningish….will take those and whatever still remains that wasnt picked up. it may be early so if you want to put it out in the yard so i dont disturb you.”

This person was promised a Uniden cordless phone and a roll of chicken wire. PERIOD.

All of a sudden she thinks she is entitled to pick up things she never even showed any interest in, simply because they haven’t been picked up yet.  And yes it was posted at the group that these things she thinks she can basically STEAL were taken/spoken for/pending pickup

Well just because they haven’t been picked up doesn’t mean they aren’t spoken for.  Many of the things are scheduled for pickup next week due to the interested parties being out of town.

So I write back “You were promised the Uniden phone and the chicken wire, and they will be on my front steps.

Anything else that hasn’t been  picked up, either you are NOT second in line for (those people have been contacted already) and/or some of the things are scheduled for pickup by other people next week.”

Her reply “sorry was just trying to be helpful as i know a lot of people dont show up and dont call so i was just offering….”

I don’t see an offer in her original email.  I see a flat out statement that she is going to pick up everything she can possibly get with no concern whatsoever for the people it was already promised to. I see a woman who will take anything that isn’t nailed down whether or not it was offered on Freecycle at all in the first place.

I have things in my carport that are for sale.  I have things in my carport that are promised to other people.  I have things in my carport that I haven’t had time to go through yet.  I have things in my carport that I am interested in KEEPING, not freecycling, not selling.

I moved everything on my front porch other than a waterlogged Rubbermaid tote into my carport.  Then I moved everything that was already in the carport further back into the carport and blocked access to the carport with my Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck.

If ANYTHING other than the Uniden cordless phone and the roll of chicken wire is missing from my yard/front porch/carport tomorrow, I will not only report this lady to my local Freecycle (I already forwarded the email from her to the group moderators) I will call the police.

Will this woman ever get anything else from me (via Freecycle) other than the Uniden phone and the roll of chicken wire? I DON’T THINK SO

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1 Comment »

  • Freecycling is a great idea; however, the Freecycle Network is no longer grassroots. The organization has been taken over by a Board of Directors of 3 people in the USA.

    The organization, at the top level, has developed many corporate imposed rules, some of which do not work for all areas. Some of the rules are very restrictive on what you can post and what you can ask for.

    Part of what you are experiencing is what has happened as a result of tught control and corporate rules. Relaxed groups have a much better track record between members!!

    For a more grassroots, Community Owned and Operated ecycling group, please check out The ReUseIt Network.

    At ReUseIt all groups are 100% community owned and operated; therefore, every group reflects and allows what works in that community.

    For a more relaxed approach, please join the ReUseIt Network at


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