Let us paint a scenario of posting ads that will best describe what this phenomenon is like. Say Abby wanted to post an ad for her house for sale in Craigslist. She posts her ad and the system says that the transaction has been completed and the ad has been posted. However, upon having her husband check her ad, he can’t find the ad. It seems Abby is the only one that can see her ad, no one else. What actually happened was that her ad has just been ghosted.
‘Ghosting’ is a phenomenon that happens when a user posts in Craigslist (CL), but the ad does not go public. It appears that CL has blocked the posting.
What gave rise to this blocking phenomenon is the proliferation of violators posting prohibited items or services, or violating terms and conditions. To answer this problem, CL has come up with tracking software that detects posts that seem to be shady or are in violation of their preset terms and conditions. Although not perfect and subject to possible to loop holes, the system implemented has good intentions of raising the integrity of CL as a valid ad posting community. However, the one-size-fits all nature of the blocking also affects well-meaning and honest CL users. It is possible for people, such as Abby, to experience ghosting, without warning and no prior explanation as to why their posts are being blocked.
To avoid this, here are some useful tips.
1. Check the information that you use.
The ghosting tracker can sense repetitive contact information, such as emails and mobile numbers. If you use the same number and email for several CL accounts, the tracker might flag you for spamming the feed. This can result to your post being ghosted
2. Check if you are using the same IP Address.
The tracker will flag your post if it registers the same IP addresses, that carries several CL accounts. To avoid this, you can try several things. You can change our IP address or use a proxy serve. You can even log on using different computers.
3. Do not create multiple accounts.
Assuming that you are a legitimate user and would really like to post something that does not violate the terms and conditions of CL, then being conscientious about what you post should not be a problem. This should not lead you to create multiple accounts, for why would you have to?
4. Clean your ads.
Sometimes it might just be an honest mistake. Due to the numerous ads you’ve posted, it is possible that you create a new one that replicates an older ad. To avoid this, you can do regular maintenance of your ads and delete old ones.
Overall, the ultimate commandment to prevent being “ghosted” would be: Do not violate the rules. This might be very simple, but it also makes the most sense. You stand more chance of the being blocked if you do not do anything suspicious, let alone, malicious.