Friday, January 5, 2007

Things surrounding Prosper

There is a whole cottage-industry that sprang up around Prosper. First there are the statistics sites that present Prosper data in new and innovative ways, then there are additional forums where people can gather to chat about Prosper and lending and finally, there are blogs about Prosper.

I'd like to give an overview of those sites that I know about and I'd appreciate a heads-up on additional sites if you know of any.


  • Statistics sites

    • First is my favorite - Eric's Credit Community

    • Eric recently moved his site to a bigger/better host since he's getting so many hits. On Eric's you can rank your portfolio against those of other lenders, you can see the late loans in each group, you can compare lenders' portfolios and much, much more.

      I've made some donations to Eric's site in the past and I'd urge all frequent visitors to do the same.

    • Then there's Wiseclerk.com

    • This site is on a par with Eric's, it is a pity that in my bookmarks it is alphabetically lower than Eric's, otherwise I might visit it more often. It is well worth the time spent there and of particular interest is the maps that Wiseclerk can generate - give it a try!

      It is definitely another site that is donation-worthy if you spend a lot of time there.

    • To round off the list, there's Savage Number

    • I rarely spend time there and I cannot say much about the quality of the data it contains. Visit and see if you find anything interesting. Let me know.

    • Oops! I almost forgot P2P Loan Analytics

    • Of this site I know even less. However, they don't purport to work with Prosper data, but with "industry" data. I've looked them over and I have a bookmark, more I cannot say. I cannot speak to the quality of their data or their authenticity. It's up to you, gentle reader to investigate if you so feel.

  • Next up are the forums

    • First and foremost are the Prosper Forums

    • At times resembling the Coliseum when the Christians were fed to the lions, it sometimes gets very, very rough, especially when interrogating new, miscreant borrowers or when a potential fraud is detected.

      However, most Prosperites hang out here and you're always assured to get advice or an opinion, even if not particularly wise or sage. Don't misunderstand me, there are many very clever people on there but it takes a while to separate the wheat from the chaff. The signal-to-noise ratio gets very low sometimes and many people consider these forums a form of entertainment, especially if a bellicose or belligerent newbie makes his way onto the scene.

    • Next up is the Prosper Lenders' Forum

    • Created by Cellardoor when Cellardoor still had intense interest in Prosper, this purports to be an off-Prosper venue for lenders. The signal-to-noise ratio is much, much higher and the discussions mostly center around loans, late loans, lending and other matters pertaining to lending. Oh yes, you have to be a bona-fide lender on Prosper.com to gain admission to the site.

    • The Prosper Wiki

    • The Prosper Wiki is a poor-man's conference tool, but it is very useful in that it has the Prosper Monkey that scans the Prosper Forums and correlate the forum discussions with the loan listings of borrowers. A very few borrowers make manual posts in there, notably L5, one of the biggest Prosper lenders. Sometimes borrowers also post loan or listing-related info on here.

      I believe the Wiki is also sponsored by Cellardoor, but I may be wrong in that.

    • A newcomer is Prospers.org

    • Created by Ferrix, the creator of Prosper Monkey, this is a very new forum, intended to consolidate Prosper Lenders and the Prosper Wiki into one coherent unit.

      It would seem that initially the site was intended to replace the aforementioned sites, but there seems to have been a communications breakdown and until Cellardoor emerges from where he is cloistered, that project is on hold. However, Ferrix does control the Prosper Monkey and that alone means that the future of Prospers.org's wiki is almost assured. Ferrix does seem to want to play nice, so we'll have to wait and see how things turn out.

      One thing we can do differently on Prospers.org is to set the entry barrier for lenders a bit higher. Many borrowers on Prosper turns right around and invest $50-$100 on the site, which then gives them access to Prosper Lenders. They then promote their listings on there, which is contrary to my understanding of the site's intent. Some GLs adopt the same practice.

    • I'm not sure the Ourtopia Forum deserves a mention.


    • Another Cellardoor-sponsored site, it is generally intended for members of Cellardoor's group, Ourtopia. (Full disclosure. For as much as it is worth, I'm suppose to be a "lieutenant" [or bottle washer, I forget which] of Ourtopia). With Cellardoor's disappearance, the group and hence the forum is practically moribund. There are only 4 real members, so hardly worth anyone's visit.


  • Now for the Bloggers

    • The first bookmark I created for Prosper-related content was for Cellardor's blog, Prosper.licio.us.

      Cellardoor probably deserve a chapter in the book if someone was to write a history of Prosper. He seemed to have unbound energy and aspirations for Prosper, as well as a ready purse to support his causes. His blog (as is his writings on the Prosper forums) are prolific and profound, yet stopped dead some months back. Still a worthwhile read for any newcomer to the Prosper, though.

    • Seeing as to how I started with defunct blogs, the next one up is Who's bidding on Prosper.com?
    • .
      This site early on had links to bidder activity on a daily basis, but is now as dead as a doorknob and certainly not worth a visit.

    • A borrower on Prosper has Blogging Away Debt.


    • It is certainly a worthy read. Very useful for people interested in reducing debt, this is a log of this family's attempts to work their way out from under a mountain of debt.

    • Just today I came across Rateladder.com, a site by a Prosper lender.


    • The blog is very interesting, but the owner violates Prosper's data rights by posting extended credit information and make me slightly squeamish about the information he posts on his late loans. I guess he's yet to hear about the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.



That about wraps up this post. I've still got to extract and report on yesterday and today's listings under review.

Oh, and if you are interested in P2P money lending, don't forget to check out Zopa the UK P2P lending organization that has been promising since August to come to the US. So, go take a gander, but don't hold your breath. I guess the EU red-tape is no match for the red tape in the US.

2 comments:

Tricia said...

Thank you for the mention :)

My Prosper.com Journey said...

Thanks for the mention. I have removed the extended credit and if anything still makes you squeamish send me a note via prosper (PUnit). Thanks for your insight on the forums. Yesterday, was a banner day for me... this story made it to the 3rd page of reddit. Using Prosper.com for Your Emergency Fund - 312% improvement over CD Ladder