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I remember a similar web-based system was operating in around 2001. I tried to hitch a lift to Edinburgh through it, but everyone I contacted left me in no doubt I would either be raped, have my throat slit, or both.

It seems no idea is so stale it can't be recycled and declared revolutionary a few years later.

Eric Dewhirst

Seamus - I am glad you like the idea and I appreciate the positive posting.

@Rick to respond to your comment regarding safety - I guess that pretty much speaks to what we are doing, tell us who you are, post a picture, show some ID when we meet and lets figure out a way we can make this work.

Regarding fear of traveling with strangers I often wonder where the source of this fear comes from - for instance - When you drive down the road do you assume that every oncoming driver is suicidal and going to swerve in front of you and have a head on collision? Or perhaps if you sell something on Craigslist or GumTree and someone comes over to buy your old stereo do you think they are casing your house so that they can come back later an rob you while you sleep? Well if you do stay awake at night worrying about that then I can pretty much guarantee that PickupPal is not the place for you.

PickupPal is a place where like minded people believe in each other and don't live in fear of their neighbours and that is who they are riding with - people down the street, people from your university, people who love Radiohead just as much as you do. We live in the same community with the same nightly news reports selling us fear - why? because fear and worry sells - hope and belief in others does not.

I did not mean to go about safety - however one needs to evaluate the risks of every decision one makes. We feel that as petrol prices rise we need to find a way to offset the cost of transportation and help the planet at the same time.

Cheers - Eric
(Co-Founder of PickupPal)


Hey Eric - I know a few people who've been robbed after selling things via eBay or passing things through Freecycle, so some caution should be encouraged, but I would not say I lay in bed sleepless at night with worry.

My comments about the quality of customers of a service in 2001 should not be taken as a criticism of your service here in 2008, which I haven't looked at in any detail at all.

I trust you have published the usual cautions about meeting strangers (as common on dating websites, etc). I cannot say I would expect you to do more.

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