It looks like a preprinted letter from the zip lottery that you receive regularly in the mail, but when I opened the envelope a message appeared from the neighborhood app “Nextdoor” stating that my neighborhood is also participating in “This free and private neighborhood application.” An application with which you can learn about Your neighbors, sharing information and using it to borrow things Some bells started ringing … an app that sends a message? Nextdoor, how about that?
If you type “Nextdoor” into Google, you quickly end up with letters from the consumer association, Tros-Radar, the police, all of them. Warning About “Nextdoor”. Because who registers, the company provides many private data, such as address, phone number, and sometimes even a profile picture. According to the TV program Cheated By downloading the app, you give Nextdoor permission to use this data.
Under the message I received this weekend is the name of Bert Jobbing who, according to the message, should live on my street. I just have to walk a short distance through the front doors and I’ve already found Burt and shown him the message. “I don’t know the whole company, and I certainly didn’t send that letter either. Maybe they took my name off the internet. I have been president of the Stadium Association for many years and I’m still working as a volunteer. Lots of people know me in this area and the people who sent this message seem to be taking advantage of it,” Jobing says.
Response from Nextdoor
We asked Nextdoor in response, and they painted a completely different picture:
“For privacy reasons, we cannot comment specifically on the actions of individual Nextdoor users,” a spokesperson said. But these invitation messages are only sent on behalf of a member if they take action themselves. During the invitation process, we clearly indicate to our members the information that will appear on the printed letter, including the name, street name, and useful information about Nextdoor. If a member chooses to send an invitation, we always ask for additional confirmation. We added this extra friction because we want to ensure that it was an intentional user action.
There is also an apparent reason for the company to require private information from people who want to join, according to Nextdoor: “ In order to join Nextdoor, neighbors are required to verify their home address and use their real name. This ensures that only the real and personal profiles of people who live there are visible in the neighborhood, says a spokesperson for Nextdoor.
According to Nextdoor, there is no doubt that they “pick names from the Internet” and that the users themselves are given permission to send messages on their behalf. However, it feels weird when you just receive a message from someone you don’t know recommending a product. And Nextdoor users still don’t have a good idea of what is being submitted on their behalf.
A response from Nextdoor has been added in an update to this article