Economist: Sharing Economy
Collaborative consumption: Technology makes it easier for people to rent items to each other. But as it grows, the “sharing economy” is hitting roadblocks
WHY pay through the nose for something when you can rent it more cheaply from a stranger online? That is the principle behind a range of online services that enable people to share cars, accommodation, bicycles, household appliances and other items, connecting owners of underused assets with others willing to pay to use them. Dozens of firms such as Airbnb, which lets people rent out their spare rooms, or RelayRides, which allows other people to rent your car, act as matchmakers, allocating resources where they are needed and taking a small cut in return.
Phi Beta Iota: The Economist is the first mainstream media source to open up to the emergent possibilities. There are three major changes being facilitated by the Internet and the related applications, generally those that are NOT proprietary, NOT owned by a major corporation, and NOT predatory:
01 Collaborative Sharing of products, services, and places
02 True history of products, services, and places (e.g. “my fish today”)
03 True cost of products, services, and behaviros.
It is the last one that is awaiting a major breakthrough that combines the open source crisis making and global diaspora translation and posting, with the still missing heavy lifting of research such as was done for a single cotton T-shirt.