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Flawed dream of free cycle schemes and why timpara.com will fail!

Hi folks,

I have come across this site while I was searching for "stay exchange" and "freecycle" terms in Google. While looking into the results returned for the latter, I had seen a Guardian article with this interesting title of "Flawed dream of free cycle schemes" which I had bookmarked for a later read. I would like to share it with you.

Article mentions the Amsterdam's famous "white bicycle" experiment which coincided with the another Amsterdam phenomenon: Provos. Basically it says that free cycle schemes are doomed because they are free and therefore people do not attach a value to them and they are abused.

I am not meaning to be pessimistic for timpara.com :-) But this is a fact:

Happy reading:



    • timpara -Yay
      timpara -Yay

      Dear Geert Jan,

      I am the volunteer taking care of timpara -yay account today. You seem to be very very pessimistic about future of the timpara. First of all, thank you for your warning and your honesty. I (and I am sure other volunteers in timpara) appreciate your feedback very much.

      I will try to reply your arguments about freecycle and timpara as best as I can.

      First of all, I had to dig the subjects of Provos and free Amsterdam bikes before I could write this. Indeed it is sad that Amsterdam free bikes scheme has not worked out and the bikes were stolen or destroyed. I see that this kind of behavior is not limited to that specific scheme.

      The difference with timpara and freecycle schemes is that, in timpara, you don't really get things "without nothing". What we are doing here is some sort of "barter economy". That is; you take things from people without spending money. but you are expected also to give away (within your means) something in return. And for this, we use our own virtual currency: timpara. That is why we call this Circular Solidarity Economy, or simply Solidarity Economy.

      Of course some of our members may decide to give away things "for nothing" by specifying the price as "0 timpara". Well, if that is the case, we cannot really interfere. It is the decision of the "giver". Also in that case, we are happy that we help the recycling of old things at peoples houses which would otherwise end up in landfills polluting the environment.

      Actually we are very excited about timpara! I hope my answer helps in that direction also for you!

      Have a good day,

      timpara -Yay

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