The Dark Side

Craigslist Goes Dark Side, Attempts to Maneuver PadMapper and Others Out of Existence

But we can't help but wonder whether the company has just shot itself in the foot.
 Craigslist Goes Dark Side, Attempts to Maneuver PadMapper and Others Out of Existence

U mad? (Photo: Idea Mensch)

When last we checked in on the escalating tiffs between Craigslist and Padmapper, the ugly-as-a-mud-fence classifieds site had filed suit against the scrappy startup. Now comes another skirmish: the Verge reports that Craigslist has yanked its listings from Google and other search engines, which is the data equivalent of just ripping out all the wires that make PadMapper go. 

Earlier today, the data provider 3taps (which provides the API that PadMapper uses to get listings onto that snazzy Google Map) tweeted:

The company also has a pop-up statement on its homepage:

At approximately noon on Sunday August 5th, Craigslist instructed all general search engines to stop indexing CL postings — effectively blocking 3taps and other 3rd party use of that data from these public domain sources. We are sorry that CL has chosen this course of action and are exploring options to restore service but may be down for an extended period of time unless we or CL change practices. As soon as we know more, we will share it here and on our Twitter account.

That sounds pretty dire for 3taps, and, given the importance of Craigslist to rental markets like New York City, it doesn’t sound great for PadMapper, either. (Fortunately, the startup already has PadLister, a product for landlords and brokers to list their properties across multiple platforms and likely part of what so irks Craigslist.)

Of course, as the Verge points out, Craigslist may very well find it’s cut off its nose to spite its face, as the move is likely to impact the site’s incoming traffic.

We’ve reached out to both Craigslist and PadMapper for comment and will update if we hear anything back.

In the meantime, that peace sign looks increasingly ironic.

screen shot 2012 08 07 at 1 10 51 pm Craigslist Goes Dark Side, Attempts to Maneuver PadMapper and Others Out of Existence

Follow Kelly Faircloth on Twitter or via RSS. kfaircloth@observer.com