Friday, April 04, 2008

Local Blogger Harassed By Craigslist Founder

Two stories in one day on the web site of the major Sacramento newspaper:

Like an online Goliath girding for battle, moved Thursday to quash a Sacramento man who launched the first national blog about the classified ad Web site that has successfully cultivated a populist community and image.

Craigslist CEO Jim Buckmaster fired off an e-mail to blogger Tim White that told the 38-year-old to change the name of his site, a move that would make it tough to find.

"We need you to stop using the infringing domain CRAIGSLISTBLOG.ORG immediately, and arrange for transfer of it to us asap – using/selling/transferring infringing domains is illegal, and penalties up to $100,000 per domain can be applied," Buckmaster wrote to White.

Apparently this made news in more than just Sacramento, because this evening came with a second article:

Craigslist CEO Jim Buckmaster, feeling media pressure, on Friday acknowledged he had been "acting like a jerk" a day earlier to push a Sacramento man to cease and desist in his Craigslist blog.

Buckmaster, while saying he was "getting some well-deserved flak" for his heavy-handed e-mail to Tim White, also charged that White had placed "deceptive" ads on his unofficial blog before taking them down and contacting the media Thursday.

"We have no interest in shutting down blogs about Craigslist, critical or otherwise, and have never tried to do so," he wrote on the official Craigslist blog that was born Thursday. "But in the strange world of trademarks and copyright, it's poor practice to allow a confusingly similar domain or business name to go unchallenged."

Good for everyone concerned.

1 comment:

Ellen K said...

On one hand, this does seem to be overkill, but I know I typed in one extra letter the first time I tried to find craigslist and ended up at a porn site. That's pretty off-putting to business. Perhaps some of the folks who took the time, money and effort to build up these businesses are a little tired of others glomming onto their business in annoying or disgusting ways.