A Bold Mass Market of One?
What's breathtaking is the infinite range of products and services. You can contract legal services, wedding officiants, massage, home yoga classes, unlimited consultants, with more to come. Some predict overpriced legal fees at fancy downtown offices will shrink, perhaps to $100/hr. Certainly, the internet cornucopia surpasses any single outlet, the prices often better, and delivery efficient. If this helps reform bad capitalism, we at least postpone when the system "consumes itself," per leftwing predictions. Indeed, as the nature of money itself changes, so will business innovations: that presages greater grassroots opportunity and ripples not yet realized.
Since the '60's, modern capitalism for me is like water, capable of squeezing into every profit nook and cranny, forever reinventing itself, for better and worse. The sharing economy is just the latest variant, though hardly invulnerable to the biggest, baddest, threatened corporations warring against it -- just as vehemently as the Koch Bros. crowd defends its besieged, multiple power bases.
If bottom-up is truly a showdown between empowered, co-operative innovation vs. entrenched, autocratic exploitation, we shall see which adaptive systems survive and which top-heavy ones are "too big NOT to fail." Check out Janelle Orsi's provocative take on immense potentials still in the offing. Remember, Uber already dominates street action, and modern revolutionaries need transport to the protests just like in the old days.
Meshing.it is a website that catalogs more than 9,300 sharing companies in 131 countries, "a Mesh company uses modern technology and social networks to provide people with goods and services without the burden or expense of owning them outright."
Sharing economy attorney Janelle Orsi has an outstanding video/cartoon that critically delineates transformational options, positive and negative, detailing basics of shared earnings, control, capitalization, and how these platforms promise a new, more equitable commons.
Shareable.net details sharing initiatives that serve transformational sharing, like the rise of cabby-owned taxi cooperatives and the rise of multi-stakeholder cooperatives wherein major decisions are collectively made.
Uber and Airbnb are not just companies but transformational platforms:
" Bannerman (Uber for private security)
" LawTrades (Uber for lawyers)
" Canary (Uber for cannabis)
" Massage (Uber for massage)
" Minibar (Uber for alcohol)
" Washio (Uber for laundry)
" Worthee (Uber for dog walking)