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One Man’s Trash, Another Man’s Treasure

oxfordmsresale2Stuff. It’s a word our English teachers warned not to use in our writing, but they never said anything about filling our houses with it. The combination of birthday gifts, hand-me-downs, fixer-uppers and impulse buys pile up in storage closets and empty corners of the bedroom until finally you can’t take it anymore and need to get rid of them, fast—but how? Throwing things away because of small impurities may seem like a waste, and websites like Craigslist can be a hit-or-miss.

Oxford citizens, as well as those of surrounding towns such as Water Valley and Batesville, have established resale and auction Facebook pages to allow community members to buy and sell just about anything. The area’s most popular group is Oxford MS Resale, which has connected over 14,000 people.

“It offers people a way to get rid of unwanted things and make some money on the side,” said Diana Hinton, one of the group’s four administrators who got involved to help clean up the page. She is also involved in seven other groups, including Oxford/Water Valley/Batesville Resale, which she started herself.

“I saw other resale and auction pages and thought it would be great for the town I live in,” Hinton said. “And I got involved with the others by asking if they needed help.”

Some groups are for specific items, like Oxford MS Furniture Resale, which is just for furniture, and North Mississippi Children’s Resale, exclusively for children’s items such as toys and clothing. Others, the Oxford MS Resale page, for instance, are open to any type of item, and also allow members to post “In-Search-Ofs”, so sellers can come to them, and spread the word about lost pets and belongings, yard sales and job opportunities.

Alyssa Lee said she likes the ideas of community-based buying and selling promoted through the groups, and has been able to purchase a desk and chair set for her apartment as well as a purse. Sarah Nichols has also gotten good use of the online organizations. She has purchased clothing, sold old electronics and has also used the group to give away kittens after her cat gave birth.

“I like the idea of groups like this because what I may not be able to find in a local store for the price I want, I can look here,” Nichols said. “And although meeting random people may seem sketchy, we meet in a very public place to trade or buy and sell. The people I have met with have actually been really nice.”

Though there is no official count, Hinton said the groups have netted 1000s of sales. So next time you’re getting ready to de-clutter, turn to Facebook–you never know who may find your items treasures.

Naomi Kennedy is a senior print journalism major at the Meek School of Journalism and New Media. She can be reached at nrkenne1@go.olemiss.edu.

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