Thanks to a Facebook application called The Needle, sharing just became a whole lot easier. Working with the Knight Foundation, Jeff Reifman ofNewsCloud.com created The Needle as an open-source application to help encourage young people to become more involved and connected to their local communities. The app allows users to do this by sharing both items and ideas with their local networks. Users can borrow items instead of buying them, find new homes for unwanted items instead of trashing them, and post and discuss issues that affect them and their local communities. By connecting with other community members online, you can find out quickly who needs what, and who has stuff to share.
But what differentiates The Needle from other free recycling sites like Freecycle or even Craigslist, is that you have the opton of privacy, because you can elect to share only with people who are part of your Facebook community or a specific Facebook group. Though it's not always necessary to restrict sharing to a certain population, the option lends a level of trust that could facilitate sharing of certain objects that users prefer to keep inside of a known community.