I was trying to figure out why this image from my Flickr Photostream has been receiving so many hits compared to any of my other photos. It's not the best photo and it's buried deep in a folder of miscellaneous images.
Over the last year I've had a few items that I wanted to get rid of, but that were in good shape and could be used by someone else. These items didn't fit into any existing recycling or reuse program I was aware of so I had no obvious way to find a new home for them. There are some online options for connecting people with items that need a new owner, but I don't think its worth my while to post an entry and then communicate and meet up with a stranger for something small like a DVD. Not wanting t0 throw these items in the landfill I just left them sitting in a corner.
Then one day I had an inspiration - I live in a 60 unit apartment building so maybe someone else could use these items? Hmmm....how to communicate that they need a new home and get the item to the new owner without expending a lot of energy? Eureka! I had an idea....
My first test was a DVD movie I didn't want any longer. I put it in the corner of the elevator and pressed a random floor. The doors shut and the DVD was on its way. I used the same elevator an hour later and the DVD was gone. Sweet!
I have since used this new recycling program several times with success - from my perspective. It's an easy way to get things out the door that don't have enough value to spend too much energy finding them a new home.
I have considered that people may just throw the items out, but I think they wouldn't pick up the item if they had absolutely no interest in it. As well I don't put junk out using this system. I only put out items that are in good shape, that have an obvious use and that are complete with all parts needed for use... Even if only 50% of the items going into the elevator recycling program get used again that's still a reasonable outcome in my books.