The sharing economy

The other day I read an article on The Post-Ownership Society with the subtitle “How the ‘sharing economy’ allows Millennials to cope with downward mobility, and also makes them poorer.”.

The whole article notes that the young people don’t earn enough money to own a house or a car but instead spend their few bucks on the “sharing economy”. But in the last paragraph, there finally is a realization:

In reality, though, these are the same types of services that have always been around—private drivers and taxis, hotels, rental car companies—but their services are sliced up into tiny bits and provided by underpaid contingent workers, which is what we are ourselves. No one notices the money changing hands, and it may seem like we’re just sharing a service with friends. But in fact we’re enriching the owners of whatever app or platform we’re using, becoming just a data point on the path to their payday while we age without assets. It’s their world, and we’re just renting it.

It is not sharing, it is just economy, when you use a service like Uber or Lyft. There is a big difference in hiring someone to drive you to your desired destination (Uber and Lyft) or to share a car when both want to go to the same destination (like Carpooling) and sharing the costs.

Also, when nobody wants to pay a reasonable amount to the person producing it or providing the service, this person won’t have enough money to do this neither. In the end, most people end up underpaid.

It’s not the fault of the owners of the app, it’s our fault.

But there is a choice: Pay a fair amount of money for the things you consume. Just think about how much you’d want to get paid if you were doing this job.

If you pay less, you are exploiting someone.