We’re going to play this game where we talk about an interesting news story from today, but instead of naming the company that made it a news story to get publicity based on unscientific lies about Craigslist, its competitor, we’re just going to call that company Craigslist Competitor, even though it has a name of its own. See, Craigslist Competitor is losing so badly to Craigslist that some ad wizard or marketing genius decided the best way to gain visibility would be to attack Craigslist, accusing the popular classified service of being a “cesspool of crime,” including “killings, robberies, assaults, fraud and prostitution,” but using just “Google and Yahoo” as primary research tools.
Fast Company has the truth, which is that “on average, around 0.00005% of posts are associated with crimes on Craigslist,” though Craigslist Competitor fills its report “with innuendo and exaggerated implications”:
All in all, the report, which is hilariously titled “Crime and Craigslist: A Sad Tale of Murders and More,” discovered 330 crimes related to Craigslist in the past year–a figure researchers called “staggering.”
A spokesperson for Craigslist appropriately took a different perspective. “[It’s] probably worth considering we had over 573 million postings on Craigslist last year in North America,” the spokesperson said.
“The unfortunate fact is that Craigslist has become almost synonymous with crime,” reads the dramatic report, which we will not link to. Instead, read the rest of Fast Company‘s takedown.
In a blog post of his own, Craigslist CEO Jim Buckmaster calls Craigslist Competitor a “wannabe” and classifies the report as a “false (and defamatory) paid-for editorial.”
Craigslist, he writes, has 550 times the web traffic of Craigslist Competitor. That’s a killing.