Innovation

You can get anything on Craigslist, even toddlers

I recently sold my treadmill on Craigslist, and I also purchased a very nice futon for a reasonable price. I've had such good luck on Craigslist, in fact, that it is now the first place I look for local used goods. Heck, you can even find toddlers on Craigslist -- or at least that's the topic of a News.com article.

I recently sold my treadmill on Craigslist, and I also purchased a very nice futon for a reasonable price. I've had such good luck on Craigslist, in fact, that it is now the first place I look for local used goods. Heck, you can even find toddlers on Craigslist — or at least that's the topic of the News.com article, "Police Blotter: Craigslist toddler giveaway ad sparks suit."

Here's a snippet from the article:

What happened, according to court documents and other sources:

Sometime around the spring of 2005, a homeless single mother in Oakland, Calif., posted an advertisement on Craigslist trying to give away her 3-year-old daughter.

The child was taken into protective custody in March of 2005. The mother seemed to be getting her act together, and the daughter returned home (to Oakland Elizabeth House, a transitional residence) for a trial period. In March of 2006, the woman gave birth to another child. However, it didn't take long before dear old mom was up to her old tricks. After trying to give her newborn infant to a neighbor, the courts intervened and custody of both children was awarded to their great aunt.

As it stands, the appeals court sent the case back to the trial judge, because the woman said her children are part Blackfeet Indian. If that's true, social services won't be able to intervene, thanks to the Indian Child Welfare Act. The most that social services could do is make a bid for the children the next time their mother places them on Craigslist.

I believe that Craigslist has a filtering policy in place. Do you think that the Web site has a responsibility to either block these types of ads or report them to authorities?

About Sonja Thompson

Sonja Thompson started at TechRepublic in October 1999. She is a former Senior Editor at TechRepublic.

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