The Hand of the Really Really Free Market

Überculture Organizes Swap Meet Where Students Give/Take Whatever They Want

Überculture wants you to give what you can and take what you need.

On Sept. 30, überculture—a student-run organization that resists commercialization—held a Really Really Free Market on the 7th floor of Concordia’s Hall Building, allowing students to trade their discarded possessions in celebration of sustainable consumerism.

While students were encouraged to bring their old products to the market rather than just taking free things, Nicola Kinley, a Concordia graduate of the communications program and the former VP Campaigns for überculture, said that the beauty of the free market is that it does not absolutely need to be a trade.

“The swap is just a suggestion, really, it’s more about the act of giving than anything else,” Kinley said. “It’s a stigma-free place for giving and taking, so people can come and have not brought anything and still take as much as they want, or people can donate two bags of stuff and then leave right away.
“The first time we did it people were bringing clothes,” she continued. “The second time we did it people were bringing more abstract things like pieces of fabric or dishcloths. Today someone brought a toaster oven, a huge corkboard and tons of shoes. We’ve had a huge turnout.”

Due to the success of the Sept. 30 event, überculture plans to have another free market tentatively slated for October, as well as one in November to celebrate Buy Nothing Day.

However, according to Kinley, the ultimate goal for überculture by the end of the year is “to obtain a location to have a free store that would be open week long for students to leave stuff and take stuff.”

This article originally appeared in Volume 31, Issue 08, published October 5, 2010.