If you missed the 2nd annual Settimana del Baratto last week, then you may still be in luck for a good barter.  It seems that people have finally decided not to participate in the recession.  I knew it wouldn’t take Americans and other countries long to innovate their way out of economic woes.

Yes, we’re taking control back with new social tools and commerce solutions such as symptvertising, free exchange, tryvertising, bartering, microfinance, and micropayment sites.

It’s all good, it’s all community and it’s all social tools at their finest.  Check out these amazing, new sites popping up all over the Intertubes:

Using Social Tools to Kill the Recession

Give One, Get One

We’re all a little short of cash.  But Giftflow provides the ultimate free gift exchange.  It makes me wonder what we did before we had money?  Well, folks aren’t waiting around for the answer.  They’re inventing it.  It’s about time that we start innovating and using our noggin.

  • Need a cardboard cutout of Scott Baio and quick?  Find it for free.
  • Got a purple couch that lost it’s “charm” since your college days?  Give it away.
  • Trying to get the last Elvis Presley Limited Edition Pez dispenser?

Why would anyone do this?  For the good of it.  Yep, for the good of it…and to get something for free.

It’s both the satisfaction of a trade and getting  a freebie. Who didn’t love to trade a Stan Musial baseball card for a Mickey Mantle?  Why wouldn’t each kid have gone to a baseball card shop and sold each card for profit and then bought the other card?  Because that’s the cold world of commerce.  This is the warmth of humanity.  Too cheesy?  Yes.

The other beauty of this is that you’re taking away the pain of buying and selling.  Cash is an artificial middle man.  Don’t think this will work?  Look at the ultimate online book exchange, PaperbackSwap.com.  Ginormous audience!  Give a book.  Get credit.  Get a book.

Give it Away

Freecycle.org is made up of 4,000+ groups around the world with 7,000,000+ members.  It’s all grassroots and a nonprofit of people giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns. And it’s got a hint of green too.

Also, try:

Give Cash with Your Clicks

Flattr.com is a bit more of a new tradition.  It’s all based on the “like” button.  Visit sites you like, flattr them and then the monthly donation you make is distributed to those organizations.  It’s a tad like begging on the street corner, so I don’t like it as much, but I do love the great idea for a new social currency.

So, what are “Micropayment” sites

Pay for what you use.  These are great sites that exemplify the free market at it’s best.  Imagine paying the NY Times or Wall Street Journal for just the articles you want to read, instead of a monthly fee.  What if you didn’t visit them at all for a couple months.  Then don’t pay a dime.

  • Kachingle – Social cents for digital stuff
  • Rewrd.com – Reward creators for their ideas/using their site
  • SprinklePenny.com – Support the free content that you love.  Donate.

Give while Gaming

I not a huge gamer, but zynga.org (the real benefit to the games) is beautiful.

Give to Your Customers for Their Good Deeds

I love this and I think there is a lot of potential here.  Seems a bit in it’s infancy right now.

  • Acbolder.com asks people to help an old lady across the street or to pick up trash in their neighborhood, etc…
  • iShop 4 Microfinance – donate to charities with every mouse click and purchase of thousands of products you were already going to buy.
  • (Other “Support a cause with a click” sites from Mashable)

Using Social Tools to Kill the Recession

Give to Charity

How about just a straight charity with a bit of ingenuity.  Charity: Water is an innovative charity and making the most of their online presence and incredible smarts.

Using Social Tools to Kill the Recession

Give thru Investing

Join others in doing some incredible good with just a little bit of money.
https://www.microplace.com/howitworks/learn_more

And might I add that we didn’t need any government oversight to make this work.  Just sayin.

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