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Classifieds and Killers

Interesting Wikipedia article on Lonely Heart Killers lists a number of high-profile murder cases that involved print classified ads or similar services.

It’s horrible to think of craigslist being used in connection with any violent crime whatsoever, let alone a murder. One crime is too many, and we must do everything in our power to eliminate it.

However, when critics rush to label craigslist classifieds as uniquely dangerous, it’s worth putting things in perspective. craigslist users have posted more than 1.15 billion classified ads to date, easily 1000x the total number ever to appear in all of the classifieds that figured in these “print ad murders” combined.

Those demanding that craigslist put in place the same procedures and protections that print classifieds have employed should be careful what they’re wishing for.

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