craigslist entering the dark side with compulsory phone verification

I had not used for craigslist to post classifieds for a long time and had never run into this problem. But looks like now any posting to craigslist requires a phone number where they send a code which has to be entered into the phone authentication page.

They now want a phone number for posting a $10 ad about selling old chairs? Why on earth?

If this is supposed to filter spam, it certainly won't - spammers will find it worth their time to provide a phone number. And it has not cut down on spam at all - the electronics section is so full of spam - it is mostly spam - with text not matching the title and a big image on the page displaying a web site to go to for "deals". And vacation section pages are full of people posting from other cities and completely useless for actually finding a place in the local city.

So, craigslist has just made life difficult for ordinary citizens, who no longer have a phone or don't want craigslist to know their phone number. Another site gone to the dark side, what happened to all the free speech principles that founder Craig Newmark seemed to have started off with in the early days of craigslist. Now all gone by the wayside ostensibly for spam prevention but probably more of a corporate strategy to get more information about the posters. So sad.

craigslist is now completely useless for posting any ads. Need to find other online classified site that can use automated means to weed out spammers, and don't penalize real users of the site by asking for unnecessary information such as private phone numbers.