Craigslist advances with the times, adds mapping function

After a rough-and-tumble legal battle with another company offering maps of its listings, Craigslist has added a mapping function of its own.

In June, Craigslist filed suit against PadMapper, a small startup that offered to map Craigslist property listings. The use of the listings, Craigslist argued, violated copyright law and stole its intellectual property.

Now, Craigslist has quietly introduced its own mapping function in response to user demand following PadMapper's disappearance. Many Craigslist users claimed that PadMapper had increased the larger site's usability by providing maps.

Craigslist joins the ranks of Wikipedia, Apple and Foursquare in using OpenStreetMaps, a collaborative, freely-licensed collection of maps and images. Craigslist chose to use OpenStreetMaps rather than Google's embedded maps due to Google's increased fees.

Rental property management officials should rejoice not only for the increased usability of Craigslist listings for potential tenants, but also for the site's leaps and bounds forward with the changing times.  A mapping function could be the first step in the direction of many new Craigslist posting tools that may make it even easier for potential renters to access and find listed properties.