Facebook social network launched a branded classifieds section using technology from Oodle. This is an excellent strategic move, and saves them hundreds of thousands of dollars and lets them launch instantly. Writing your own code always takes longer and costs more. What is unclear is how much these students will engage in commerce. Everyone I knew in college was flat broke, and shopping was the last thing on anyone’s mind (unless you use a facebook coupon).
I can see a huge market for textbook exchanges, apartments and roommate matching. Facebook’s advantage is the high level of details each user has in their profile. You can get a fairly good idea if someone is trustworthy before handing them $200 for their used 10 speed bike.
Classified ads used to be the largest revenue source for newspapers, but with craislist.org and other specialized classified resources newspapers have lost this cash. The main advantage newspapers DO HAVE is locality. People trust the local paper and it is always readily available. However, printing is expensive and news is temporal.
Old media beware.