LABELLE, FL. -- Nextdoor.com is just one more "community" site that consumers might want to investigate before giving out personal information to this San Fransisco, CA company.
Nextdoor was launched in the U.S. in 2011 and asks for real names and addresses to access a website available to only people in the neighborhood, usually in about a 2 and 1/2 mile radius. Members can post news, items for sale, while advertising appears on it's websites pages.
One "feature" claimed is the availability to post on message boards about "Crime & Safety" issues in the neighborhood. According to The Atlantic, "Seattle Mayor Ed Murray derided an atmosphere of 'paranoid hysteria' he’d witnessed on the message boards of some of Seattle’s more upscale neighborhoods."
The Mayor complained about Nextdoor saying "The neighborhoods where most of the social-media complaints are coming out of are not even the neighborhoods that have significant crime problems..."
The Better Business Bureau has logged hundreds of complaints, one about their tactics to enroll members, "this company sent out mass mail to people to use their site. We all hate junk mail saying that our neighbor referred us. I talked to the person on the letter and he didn't know what I was talking about. I am so tired of companies using peoples information to try to get people to use their sites."
A mailing was sent to residents this week in one Port LaBelle community and indeed, to make the invitation seem legitimate, signed the letter using the name of the President of the community home owner's association presumably without their knowledge, and then added a P.S. "There are already 67 posts on Nextdoor...including posts about Crime & Safely issues in the neighborhood.
To stress urgency, Nextdoor says to enter a code found in the letter saying "This code expires in 7 days!)
Our recommendation: check out complaints on the BBB site and decide if you want to give up your name and address to this company.