Ha, good catch @petek. So there was this full idea we discussed a few months ago in a meeting where #seligman indeed WAS intertwined with Wöhler. I'll see if I can remember the basics:
arrive at website, buy a minimum value crap from amazon for the next visitor in order to:
get the crap that the last visitor selected
and so on.. (so I guess shorter in steps than I anticipated listing). We went through various arrangements with a middleman (us) being necessary for privacy of address purposes. Basically we'd take and store the items to be bought so that the order could be placed a few minutes later and shipped to the next visitor. We also thought prime shipping might be essential and taken care of with this.
We hit a road block that at first seemed minor and then ballooned out to be enough to slow us down: Sales Tax. Basically, we can't collect sales tax if it ends up not being applicable due to tax collection laws (depending on the next visitors state and Amazon's tax footprint), and of course we can't not collect sales tax if it ends up being applicable or we'd go broke.
It was frustrating as this idea was definitely passing the "eat our own dog food" test (where we'd all enjoy participating) so we agreed we'd table this and brainstorm on it more at a later date.
This is as good a place and time as any to discuss the potential of Wöhler "automated peer-to-peer crap distribution" as any. Post any ideas or questions you have.
I think the biggest thing about pre-Mediocre crap distribution was not only the excitement of getting a random assortment of crap, it was also comparing and contrasting what crap you got versus what crap other people got. So for this to work, you almost need people to be committed to forum-style participation.
As for the sales tax issue, you can get around that by charging a fee (say, $5.00 or 10%, whichever is greater) for crap care and handling. That fee would cover sales tax in the worst of areas (highest sales tax according to Wikipedia is Chicago at 9.25%) as well as any "administration" you need to charge for. And since you're not calling it a tax, you don't have to refund it if it's not applicable. (If you feel guilt about it, you can send a crappy warehouse item if the difference is more than, say, a buck.)
I think it'd be fun to know the general area where your victim lives, so you don't send, say, a snow brush to someone in Florida. I also think it'd be neat to segment the crap tiers - I might want to see what someone would send me for $10 versus $50, for example.
Yeah, I agree, the forum posts would be the best parts - you get to not only post what you get, but you get to wait and see who got your crap. Maybe we could even do some pseudo-agreement on purchase: "I agree to not be a selfish jerk. I'll share what I got in the Wöhler forums." and then remind people if they haven't posted.
I wondered for a bit if we should actually tell you who you got stuff for and/or who got you your stuff, but I think it's better left pseudo-anonymous and we can let people volunteer the info.
Now that would be one place where I would be on board with a reputation ranking. Crap recipient gets crap, posts and ranks it on a 1-10. The ranking goes toward the rep of the crap sender automatically - but no one knows directly who sent them what, unless volunteered. The rep may do the job of motivating people to send better crap. Without the degradation and finger pointing if the crap they sent wasn't well received by it's crappee.
Wouldn't you curation be a gift - therefore you technically pay for the items you curate but the items get sent to the next person in line? The curator pays the taxes. Is tax still based on ship address?
What if instead of purchasing said crap, the list is sent to you. Employees could vet the list for adhering to posted rules.
Next send bill worded as Wohler gift with tax and handling as required. Or maybe we could reverse #seligman and purchase gift cards and send them to you?
Employees then shuffle the addresses and order from the list. You could employee select for the first Wohler or link the chain first to last.
Sounds a bit labor intensive but....maybe?
On the forum thing - maybe a nifty participation badge for your collection and a loser type badge until you do post? The negative badge could generate more forum activity to persuade the completion of the project or be a badge of dishonor.
Hmm... It is getting too late to think straight. Does anything make sense?