UNDerground: underutilized

USEFUL: Many aren’t familiar with UND’s Craigslist.

What is UNDerground?

If you asked some UND students, they would probably wonder the same thing. However, for many students it is a convenient site that functions similarly to Craigslist by allowing them to contact other people close by to exchange goods and services.

The next question then, is what kind of goods and services does this site offer? Posts on UNDerground cover a variety of items from tickets to sporting events and concerts, asking for or offering rides, and searching for housing close to campus.

It also has used products like basic household appliances, electronics, cars,  textbooks and pet hedgehogs. OK, maybe that last one isn’t common on but it was actually sold on the site at one point.

“I had a pet hedgehog, and moved into a smaller apartment”,  UND gradutate student Maddie Rotch said. So, she offered the hedgehog and all of it’s basic supplies for a fairly reasonable price on the site.

It was a big success as well.

“I probably got five replies within 10 minutes of posting it,” Rotch said.

Now, Rotch is an experienced user of this site. She was told about it during freshmen orientation, and has used it ever since. Rotch has mostly bought household appliances and other things to furnish her apartment.

“One advantage it has is the fact that you have to have a Student Email to use it,” Rotch said.  “I know the people who are posting go to UND, so it feels safer than Craigslist.”

However, there are some downsides to the site as well.

“Some things get posted over and over again, and everytime I tried to use it to find a ride, it never really worked out,” Rotch said.

However, she has been happy with the site overall.

Despite some people’s lack of success in UNDerground’s rides section,  occasionally it does work out.

“Freshmen year I used it to find a ride to the cities. Now that I have a car I use it to find people to ride with me,” sophomore Sara Horton said.

Horton also enjoys the fact that UNDerground is exclusive to UND students.

“I wouldn’t want just anyone riding with me to the cities, I’d rather have a student,” Horton said. “I like the fact that it is a smaller audience; I feel more comfortable with somebody my own age.”

The final question about UNDerground is how is it advertised — how do people know about it?

Advertising for the site includes brochures on tables in the dining center, Student Government emails and, in some cases, professors talking about it in class. However, the most common method of discovery for this program is simply word of mouth.

Many people, when asked how they heard about UNDerground, said that it was through a friend who went to UND and used the program.

Most people who use UNDerground tend to be in agreement in why they use it.

“In the end, you kinda feel safer because it is UND students instead of random strangers on Craigslist,” junior Cameron Enderson said.

Many people tend to believe the site is well run, and it does a good job of keeping its users honest. There are a few downsides with some people not always coming through on rides, a few people posting too often and other minor issues.

However, overall, people who use UNDerground tend to enjoy the experience.

Michael Rauser is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. He can be reached at [email protected].