Auction site connects buyers and sellers

Nate Engelberth

In the wake of popular online auction sites such as eBay, a localized online bulletin board system connects ISU students to buyers and sellers across campus., the Internet version of flyer-filled bulletin boards across campus, is the brainchild of three ISU students. Josh Carlson, sophomore in computer science, worked on the programming for Cheggpost. Mike Seager, sophomore in microbiology, did the majority of the graphic design work and the text on the Web site. Mark Fiddelke, sophomore in pre-business, helps to beta test the software and is Carlson and Seager’s “anchor to the real world” when they start to think too far ahead, they said.

Carlson, Seager and Fiddelke are trying to get the word out on their service that they believe could be useful for ISU students.

Cheggpost was launched in early October and already has received an astonishing amount of interest, Carlson said. The site receives an average of 3,000 hits per day, and over 900 individuals have visited, he said.

Currently, there is over $25,000 worth of merchandise posted on the Web site, and several thousand dollars worth of items have been sold, Seager said. Although the idea originally was to let students buy and sell textbooks, the site has grown to include computer equipment, furniture and even housing.

“We are sick and tired of being ripped off by the bookstore,” Seager said. “We’re college students, not billionaires. If you’re going to screw someone out of money, at least do it to someone who can afford it.”

They said the traditional bulletin boards in classrooms, dorms and other campus buildings are not effective. “We’re also sick of trying to sell books using fliers and billboards,” Seager said.

“That doesn’t work worth anything. It’s expensive, inefficient, bad for the environment and a [lot] of work.”

Seager said the quickness and efficiency of Internet commerce appeal to college students.

“[Cheggpost is] a place where you can easily post anything you want to sell,” he said. “It takes you less than five minutes and no money. You can even post to our wishlist items that you are looking for.”

The students already have received positive feedback about their fledgling service, including several e-mails thanking them for a job well done and praising the ease of the system.

The student entrepreneurs are having fun with Cheggpost, they said, even though they are losing money.

“It’s always good to know that people are actually using your stuff, and know sort of who you are,” Fiddelke said.