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 Post subject: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 3:13 am 
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Making Threats to Punks Again
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I thought there was a space for this, as I think quite a few PPKers are on couchsurfing. There is already a thread for people offering/seeking couchsurfing space (viewtopic.php?f=14&t=5186&hilit=couchsurfing), but I couldn't find one for people to discuss it more generally, seek advice, vent about problems or share happy experiences, so I thought I would start one.

So, do you couchsurf or are you thinking about it? What's going on with your couchsurfing life?

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 Post subject: Re: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 6:35 am 
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Recently some couchsurfers left my home to continue with their travels, and I couldn't believe it when I went into the kitchen and saw that they had left a pile of dirty dishes in the sink for me to clean up after them. Who does that?! Sometimes I really wonder about people. If you're getting to stay in someone's home for free, at the very least clean up after yourself.

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 Post subject: Re: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 6:44 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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my town (Curitiba, Brazil) has a pretty big couchsurfing scene. I have friends who use it as their work network for teaching, even, they do weekly meetups and language exchanges. I don't participate because now my house is teeny tiny and I don't live centrally anymore, but should you come back to Brazil you are welcome to sleep on my couch anytime (if you don't mind awesome vegan food and annoying but cute pets). [sorry if this was more of a derailment than a contribution]

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 Post subject: Re: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 7:34 am 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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Imogen wrote:
Recently some couchsurfers left my home to continue with their travels, and I couldn't believe it when I went into the kitchen and saw that they had left a pile of dirty dishes in the sink for me to clean up after them. Who does that?! Sometimes I really wonder about people. If you're getting to stay in someone's home for free, at the very least clean up after yourself.

Doesn't the couchsurfing site have a reviews system? They must be pretty sure they don't want to be doing it much longer, as well as lacking in etiquette.

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 Post subject: Re: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 8:13 am 
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Making Threats to Punks Again
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dropscone wrote:
Doesn't the couchsurfing site have a reviews system? They must be pretty sure they don't want to be doing it much longer, as well as lacking in etiquette.


It does indeed. However, I want to contact them first to say that I don't think this is okay before leaving a review so that they can have a chance to respond, but right now I'm so cross about it that I don't trust myself to write anything!

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 Post subject: Re: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:08 am 
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wow, i'm really sorry they left your kitchen such a mess. i admire that you're willing to let them explain themselves first!

how long have you been active with CS? lots of old-school members think it's changed for the worse, and many place the blame on the fact that it's now a corporation instead of a grassroots volunteer-supported organization. i've heard several people complain that it used to be more of a cultural & social experience, whereas after the incorporation their guests tend to view it as a site to find a free place to crash. one of my friends from school was heavily into it for years (was a local ambassador and everything), but it seems like she's more or less defected to AirBnB.

i should probably note that i've never been all that involved with the community (i've only surfed and hosted once) and i haven't been on the site in ages, and this is all basically hearsay, but i wanted to know what you think.

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 Post subject: Re: Couchsurfing discussion thread
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2013 10:03 am 
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Making Threats to Punks Again
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I've been doing it for about 18 months, and mostly it's been really good with generally overwhelmingly positive experiences. I've even gone to a few CS events as well, which have been fairly interesting and I met some nice people at.

I don't think I've been on CS long enough to know if it's changed a lot, but my feeling is that as the site has become more popular and well-known, lots of people are now joining the site just because they want a free place to stay. It's kind of inevitable with this kind of site, and I don't know how you'd prevent that happening.

This was actually a slightly different than normal experience as I actually responded to their open couch request rather them making the first contact with me to ask for a couch, which was because they mentioned that one of them was vegan in the open request and I was really keen to meet more vegans after coming home from Brazil. I think as well I should have clocked that the vast majority of their references are from hosts rather than surfers, which can be a sign that someone is really using the site to 'take' rather than 'give', if that makes sense.

Normally I'm a lot more careful about who stays with me and I don't invite people from open requests, but I was a bit blinded by the fact that one was vegan! Ah well, live and learn.

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