In a wide ranging interview with the SF Public Press held at Craig Newmarks's favorite cafe in Cole Valley, Reverie, Newmark was earnestly unremorseful about criminals who troll Craigslist.
"People might use our site, much like they might use the phone, or a car, or the roads, and I can’t find a reason for any of us to feel guilty about it," Newmark said of folks looking to score some weed, arrange a discreet meeting with a ladyboy or mug someone looking to buy a used car.
"The deal is that our site is a really good way for the victims to address the situation. We are good at helping the cops find the bad guys. I have helped myself a bunch of times," Newmark said, though he declined to share details of a particular case because police have asked him to keep mum.
A federal judge recently dismissed a lawsuit from an Illinois sherriff who wanted the site to shut down its "Erotic Services" category, even as dozens of other places on Craigslist and beyond offer the same service.
If he doesn't feel guilty about Craigslist trolls killing the ocassional sex worker, how does he feel about the newspapers complaining that Craigslist is murdering them?
"That's an urban legend. The newspapers have a lot of problems these days," he said. "For example, paper is very expensive to print and very expensive to deliver."
Photo by Paul Downey.