Here at Classified Intelligence, we have an acronym we use about once a week: “YACLW.” It stands for “yet another Craigslist wannabe.” Almost every week, we see another YACLW — a site that thinks it’s going to knock off Craigslist by offering free classifieds in one form or another. And always the developers have a reason they think they’re better than Craigslist.
Never say never, of course — Kijiji has become a formidable YACLW, with a twist, in many markets, and has beaten Craigslist hands-down in Canada. But for the most part, we used to run a brief in CIR about each YACLW we spotted (or most of them anyway), because they’re just ideas that won’t go very far.
Here’s the latest YACLW (pronounced “yak-law” in our book): ChosenList.com. Launched in January by an entrepreneur in the Phoenix, Ariz., area, the hook on this one is that it’ll provide free classifieds “without the distractions of unsavory listings.” And it’s focused heavily on video classifieds, trying to build a network of local “video agents.”
The East Valley Tribune, which reported on the site notes that it’s only deleted two listings for content issues so far. Of course, it doesn’t look like more than a handful of ads have been posted directly. ChosenList is aggregating ads from Oodle, which include EBay Motors and EBay boat listings. So at least it’s not empty.
The viral nature of Craigslist, and its tremendous growth in part due to its personals and erotic content, make it difficult to stop. We ain’t betting on ChosenList.com as the show-stopper.