In this amazing 21st Century world of putting people into space and curing disease, I think we can safely say that technology has contributed a lot to our lives and the development of the entire human race. One area, however, where I would perhaps argue that technology has sent us back to neanderthal days is with social media. I know, I know, every man and his dog has a blog complaining about Facebook, and yet we all use it to promote aforementioned blog – Blogception perhaps? No, my focus is far deeper than just Facebook as a whole, and it is a far newer obsession than Farmville or Candy Crush, yes, my issue right now is Facebook selling sites. Chances are, you, or someone in your family is a member of one of these groups, perhaps called ‘Southport buying page’ or ‘Peterborough – no rules Selling!’. In essence, they are a great idea! Ordinary people post up some unwanted items, as small as DVDs and as big as sofas, and interested parties offer money for them. Pretty simple and a nice way to either make a few extra quid without going to a car boot sale, or to pick up a good bargain for the house. Most of the time, these sites work as expected, with all parties being happy and fulfilled. Quite often, however, there is drama that has never before been seen outside of Eastenders! Some squabbles are pretty simple: People trying to haggle too low, or the item being sold to the ‘wrong’ person, as per the rules of the group. Other times, the posts are so full of venom and hatred, often at the prospect of someone not collecting an item at the specified time, or name calling ensuing, that one has to wonder where such anger even dwells! The long suffering ‘Admin’ who voluntarily vet these posts are often likely to go mad with power, or just mad in general. Sometimes, amid the cheap toasters and games of Scrabble, there will be a ‘hilarious’ joke post, perhaps offering a good price for a wife, or a half-eaten cheeseburger. Half of the comments on these posts tend to be (slightly over done) jokes of ‘Can you deliver?’ ‘Is she in good working order?’ and ‘I’ll swap you a conked out Ford Corvet for it!’, which, although tiresome are tolerable. Other comments however are from people who clearly have taken the post as a very personal and offensive insult. These people will snarl at the original poster to ‘grow up’ often suggesting they shove their burger in an unmentionable orifice…It makes for an interesting read. Any posts that turn negative, turn incredibly negative. There is name calling, virtual punches thrown – it is essentially the online version of Jerry Springer. I myself have managed to sell a big box of miscellaneous stuff on one of these sites. It went well. I was happy, the buyer was happy, it was a fairytale. We did put one item on the same site and was told it was worth no more than £20. A week later it had sold on eBay for over £100. Then of course, there is the peril of someone selling on an ‘unwanted gift’. That you bought them. This has happened to me, thanks to Facebook showing me a post where an unnamed family member had posted something I had JUST given them on to a selling group, that I wasn’t even a part of… Awkward!
I guess they’re not all bad. They’re a good way to sell your unwanteds or grab something you need, however, if all else fails, they make for a great dramatic bedtime read!