April 27

It’s a beautiful day in the Nextdoor neighborhood

This morning my new housekeeper is busy working behind me. I had to get a new one because after an encouraging discussion with my former housekeeper (who had been with me for more than 6 years), she quit to go back to school. I think I’ll become a motivational speaker.

Anyway, the reason I’m talking about my new housekeeper is because I found her on Nextdoor, a social media site for neighborhoods. I’ve been resistant to joining because…

  1. I certainly don’t need another social media site to check
  2. If you sign up from the site, they make you sign up to get a postcard to verify. Meh.

But it turns out your neighbors can invite you via postcards, so the other day I received one in the mail and finally signed up.

Quick points about Nextdoor:

  • It’s very, very local to just your neighborhood or a slightly larger area.
  • Once you’re a member, the site encourages you to invite more neighbors. It says almost a quarter of the households around here are members.
  • You can choose to receive notifications or turn off all emails, etc.

What my dad thinks about Nextdoor:

Before you get to my likes and dislikes, PLEASE take six minutes to listen to my father’s take. It’s the #GrumpyOldManReview. And it’s hilarious! The version on Facebook has edited captions.

What I like about Nextdoor:

  • It’s handy if you want to find a local service provider (that’s where I went for the housekeeper).
  • Local news gives you updates about new development in your area, volunteer opportunities, blood drives, etc.
  • Neighbors keep an eye on things and share updates about creepy guys in parking lots and break-ins and vandalism and things. I read about a guy videoing on a couple of streets and e-waste recyclers who don’t pick up the old electronics they asked you to put on the curb.
  • Many neighbors post free and bargain-priced items, and it’s nice that you know that you don’t have to go far if you want to claim them.
  • When people lose or find pets, they share the info. Three days ago, Sophie the Chihuahua escaped! 119 responses later, we find out that a member of our Nextdoor community tracked her down and returned her to the owner.

What I dislike about Nextdoor:

  • When you go to invite neighbors, you can see their names and addresses just by scrolling through the street map. YUCK! The site will send them that verification postcard. I did send one to my closest neighbors, but weird.
  • Your name and address are on it… like your real name and exact address. I changed my address to just the street. But #creepy (The info is public record and findable if someone is looking for it, but still).
  • The conversations can get ridiculous. Some neighbors are currently having a spat about dog poop:
    • Original post: “Neighbors, could we all agree to take our own dogs poop back to our own trash rather than using whoever’s is closest. It’s rude to stick your poop in my trash can, or any other neighbor’s!! Please be respectful neighbors and dog owners. thank you”
    • One response of 11: “Kind of a silly thing to complain about. Smh. Thank god they are using a trash can… not sure why that bothers you unless you go out and spend time in your trash can… just sayin”
    • Response to that response: “So if your poop comes out of the bag in my trash can and i have to smell it, are you going to come over and clean my trash can? because…*yes it does come out of bag, and *yes it does smell.”
  • It’s not too full of sponsored posts, but there are some. And some community members just post their business cards and announce their services. I’d rather get recommendations. But it’s nice to see the local folks.

How about you guys? Are you on Nextdoor? What do you think?


collaboration, communication, environment, security, social media

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  • Nextdoor app was a life saver during Hurricane Harvey here in Houston and continues to be so. Our neighborhood really banded together and are STILL helping one another rebuild. Mike the tow truck driver posted daily pictures of the water levels at various intersections so we would know whether or not we could return to our homes. He and others created a patrol group using boats, jet skis, and kayaks to patrol our neighborhood to keep looters out. A neighborhood doctor went to Academy Sports, bought a kayak and made house calls to those who stayed (usually two story homes). They would take requests to take pictures of your house or street and would PM them to you. When the water receded, work groups formed, grants were obtained to help reimburse costs, cleaning supplies were handed out along with food and drinks, building supplies are still being shared – anything extra is given to anyone who needs it – an extra sheet of sheetrock, upper cabinets, doors, hardware, plywood, etc.

    I was recovering from back surgery when Harvey hit. Had lots of helpers come in and rip out all of the laminate flooring and sheetrock BUT everything wound up in a big pile in the middle of each room which I could not lift or move the furniture back. I put out a request for help on Nextdoor and a gentleman volunteered to come over and move things around for me so I could start the sorting and cleaning. Many of us are not back in our homes – I just returned this past weekend to camp out in a bedroom with one bathroom functional, fridge and microwave in the kitchen.

    Yes, we get many of the complaint type notifications as well, but you can turn off notifications to individual threads (just click “Hide Post”). Today and yesterday we got warnings that the snakes are coming out of hiding along the bayou – venomous water moccasins, etc. We, too, let each other know about crime in the area and have been sharing video from security systems so we can all be on the lookout. I feel the positive aspects of the app far outweigh the negative .

    Oh, great, just got an update about the bugs that invade during the summer and how to deal with them – among them the venomous black widow and brown recluse, Yikes!

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