Why Does an Account Get Placed on Hold With Craigslist?

By Kay Ireland

Craigslist allows millions of people to access, view and post classified ads nationally and globally. You use your email address and a password to post on Craigslist, but you don't need an account to view or respond to ads. Craigslist monitors its millions of users through the types of posts they create. Posting certain types of items that directly violate Craigslist's terms of use could result in your account being put on hold or removed indefinitely. If you've been put on hold, check to see whether you've had a violation before attempting to reinstate your account.

Spamming

If you use your Craigslist account to post spam in various Craigslist categories, your account will be placed on hold. Craigslist's terms of use specify spam as any type of post that contains unsolicited commercial advertisement, link referral code or junk mail. Basically, if Craigslist can tell that you're posting across several categories and geographical areas for nonspecific advertorial purposes, your account could be placed on hold while Craigslist investigates further.

Flagging

Craigslist is a massive website, with 50 million American users alone, so it's nearly impossible for the website admins to police every single post. That's why Craigslist uses flagging as a means to police the website. When a posting is spam, a scam, offensive or otherwise violates the terms of use, other users are asked to flag the post so Craigslist is aware of a problem. If you receive a number of flags and they are deemed appropriate, your account will be placed on hold through further investigation and blocked completely if you're a repeat offender.

Violation

All Craigslist users should have read through the terms of use before creating an account to post items. The terms of use list certain rules necessary to use the classifieds. If you're found to be in violation of any of the terms, your account is subject to being placed on hold or removed completely. Some terms you must abide by are no pornographic images, no advertising for illegal activity, no bullying or harassment and no discrimination for goods and services. Read through the terms of use as a refresher to ensure that you're using Craigslist properly.

What to Do

If your account has been placed on hold, it means Craigslist is investigating your account. If you're found to be using Craigslist properly, your account will be reinstated. If you know you haven't violated terms, send an email to Craigslist with your account number and name, with an explanation of your proper use. If your account is never reinstated, you've been removed due to violation. There's a chance that you could create a new account, unless your IP address has been blocked. If so, you'll need a new computer in a new network to access the site and create a new account.