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Oak Lawn

  1872 Members   Please see the Member FAQ for help

Group Guidelines, Rules and Etiquette (Updated October 21, 2013)

Dear Member,

Thanks for being a part of The (ever-expanding) Network. We're changing the world one gift at a time! This message is sent to all subscribers upon joining, and periodically thereafter to the entire list. Please read it from time to time to refresh your memory.

This group matches people who have things they need to get rid of with people who can use them. Our goal is to keep usable items out of the landfill. By using what we already have on this earth, we reduce consumerism, manufacture fewer goods, and lessen the impact on the earth. Another benefit of using is that it encourages us to get rid of junk that we no longer need and promote community involvement in the process. Free your inner pack rat!


For more information on in general and a list of other approved groups, visit (Highly recommended!)

The following list rules, guidelines and etiquette suggestions have been adapted from the original etiquette. A certain structure helps the group run smoothly and effectively for everyone's benefit. Remember, the success of this group depends on all of us, and that means each of us need to do our best to keep on task and, well, be nice and patient. Good Luck, Have Fun & Thank You for keeping Good Stuff out of the Landfills!


1. KEEP IT FREE, LEGAL & APPROPRIATE FOR ALL AGES. This means, for example, no pornography, no alcohol, no tobacco, no drugs (of any kind, including all medicines, vitamins, creams, OTC, etc.), no firearms or other weapons. Two strikes and you're out of the group. This is our main rule to live by, and it is a pretty easy one at that.

2. SUBJECT LINE OF POSTS. Examples: OFFER: Sofa (87th and Harlem) TAKEN: Sofa [Used in conjunction with an Offer.] WANTED: Sofa (95th and Cicero) RECEIVED: Sofa [Used in conjunction with a Wanted] ADMIN: [Used by group moderators and contains information for the group/ local policy issues, etc.]

3. WANTED POSTS ARE TO BE USED SPARINGLY AND DO NOT OFFER MONEY. One line describing why you want/need an item is fine. A paragraph about what happened that led you to wanting/needing the item is not. Keep personal information to a bare minimum please, and try to balance your WANTED posts with OFFERS. Above all else, don't ask for an extravagant item like a diamond ring, which we would all like to have, or the two-strike rule will kick in. See rule #1, above.

4. RESPONSES GO ONLY TO OFFERER. It keeps down the sheer number of emails.

5. NO POLITICS, NO SPAM, NO MONEY, NO PERSONAL ATTACKS/RUDENESS, NO PROSELYTIZING/RELIGION. It is all about R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Two strikes and you're out, i.e. you will be unsubscribed by the Moderator after two inappropriate postings.

6. NO SWAPS/TRADING PLEASE. Go to your local swap/trading organization for this. It can be quite fun. With, though, there are no strings attached.

7. NO PERSONAL ADS. Posting oneself or another person from the human species is not allowed. There are many fine Internet dating sites better suited to this purpose.

8. NO ADVERTISING OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING GARAGE OR YARD SALES. The garage or yard sale itself cannot be advertised, i.e., the date, time, location of the sale, but you may post the individual, free, remainders after your sale, and offer them to individual members that you arrange pick-up with privately.


PETS. Please do not offer your pet on, or post a WANTED looking for a new pet. There are several local shelters in our area that take unwanted pets, insuring that they are seen by a veterinarian and spayed/neutered before being adopted; prospective owners are screened before being allowed to adopt.

COUPONS AND GIFT CARDS. It is okay to post an OFFER of a physical coupon or a physical gift card. WANTED posts are permitted for coupons; however, WANTED posts for gift cards are NOT permitted.

POSTING FREQUENCY. Please limit WANTED posts for the same item to once every 10 days. Excessive or repeat WANTED posts risk being rejected by the Moderator.

PERSONAL INFORMATION. Please do not post your phone number or address directly to the group! This is not necessary as members are able to get in touch with you using the Reply to This Post link underneath your post, and is for your safety. Such information will be edited out of your post and/or your post returned to you for editing.

PICK UP. Arrange as you like. Generally, you'll wait until you get a handful of responses or maybe overnight, and then you can pick whomever you like! That's half the fun. Consider giving your starving local charity preference if one should respond. If you have been promised an item, please do make every effort to follow through with the agreed upon pick-up date and time. If something should come up and you are unable to pick the item up on the day and time agreed upon, please let the offering member know ASAP. Also, if you find that you no longer desire the promised item please contact the offering member ASAP, so that they can offer the item to another member promptly. Remember, a little bit of courtesy goes a long way! Your fellow members will appreciate it!

COME AND GET IT POSTS. Please do not submit a "come and get it" or "it's on the porch, whoever gets here first can have it" post. (Remember, no personal information included in your post.) Arrange pickup with one person only. Otherwise, you'll become unpopular pretty quickly with your fellow group members. Also, only give your phone number to one person at a time or ask for the recipient's phone number. Otherwise, you'll get swamped with phone calls. BE NICE. A brief note on etiquette: We are all volunteers and we've got a great little community here, so when you arrange to pick up an item from another member it is basic good manners to accommodate them as much as possible in terms of scheduling, and then be punctual. They are, after all, giving you something you need and asking nothing in return except that you will show up when you say you will. Also, unless the giver tells you otherwise, assume that they would like you to come by as soon as you can to take the item away.

SAFETY. Be aware! It is up to each individual member of when arranging for pickup of the item being given away to be appropriately aware of the potential risk of having "a stranger" come to your home to pick something up. as an organization assumes no responsibility for this risk. You may want to arrange to meet in a public place or leave the item on the porch. Thank you for being here, and for being a part of the movement. The generosity and kindness we have seen since becoming involved with is quite amazing. . .we are proud to be a part of it! Keep up the good work!

Kindest Regards,

Your Oak Lawn Moderators

Changing the world, one gift at a time!

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