Co-authored by Neal Gorenflo and Cat Johnson This week there was a meeting of sharing minds in San Francisco as Peers and SOCAP presented the first SHARE Conference.
Beth Kanter's insight:
My key takeaway is that the sharing economy is a mighty wave that can’t be stopped. But, it’s vitally important that we make sure that wave gives a ride to everyone, not just those who can afford to hop a ride on it. And SHARE might have catalyzed more action toward this. The weird confluence of tech, money, and economic justice made for a rarified atmosphere. It is at such odd intersections that big changes are often made. SHARE may go down as the moment when Silicon Valley started to think seriously about how to solve wealth inequality.
Sharing companies with robust digital platforms have really interesting digital data that could be of use to researchers, policy makers and government officials. Want information on current transporation patterns (Lyft, Uber, Car share, bikeshare)? Want information on tourism patterns (Airbnb, Homeaway)? Want to look at structural racism, affordable housing or daycare, or gender and safety issues? (analyze use patterns from any of the aforementioned). Will these companies hold the data back and fight subpoenas from AGs offices? Will they negotiate with users to release data for public use? Are these data sets part of the "public benefit" potential of these companies and will they argue such when the inevitable battles between nonprofit and for-profit versions of home or car sharing services arise? Can cities and sharing companies strike pro-active data sharing deals that protect users privacy, inform public policy, and benefit communities - without going to court?
"This is a really good post. It gets at a fundamental tension within the sharing economy -- that economic gain is built upon access to the Commons. To be very fair, the Commons is rarely organized efficiently without someone being motivated by gain. All those rooms being offered via airbnb...all those cars being 'shared' by Lyft drivers....they all existed before airbnb and Lyft, just as the knowledge and neighborliness of Nextdoor existed before Nextdoor. But it didn't coalesce without entrepreneurs dreaming of IPOs. This post challenges us to think about whether nonprofits--or other not for profit oriented entities--can organize the Commons with a greater emphasis on the sharing and less on the IPO."
Peers and SOCAP hosted the #SOCAPSHARE Twitter chat on the power and promise of the sharing economy. Expert guests included: Neal Gorenflo, Beth Kanter, Kanyi Maqubela, Natalie Foster, Chelsea Rustrum, Kevin Jones, Juliet Schor, Odile Beniflah and Andrés Monroy.
The “sharing economy” pioneer launches an ambitious new partnership with Portland, Oregon.
Beth Kanter's insight:
The "sharing economy" pioneer launches an ambitious new partnership with Portland, Ore. -- and a new model for enriching the cities in which it operates. (Think philanthropy, free smoke detectors, and … a way to collect taxes.)
The ultimate philanthropic potential of digital currency may lie in the developing world, where high exchange rates, bank fees and inflation can dilute the buying power of international donors.
Beth Kanter's insight:
lot of those people who got in early to Bitcoin are of a sort of libertarian bent, and I know that sometimes libertarians have a reputation for being selfish and heartless. But actually, a lot of them do care a lot about charities and sort of alternatives to government means of solving problems."
Reflections from Lucy Bernholz who has been tracking the sharing economy for a long time and offers some great insights.
Everything old is new again - and that's good and bad. Rebranding co-ops as #Tcorporations (they're managed under section T of the tax code) will make them sexy to social entrepreneurs and that's OK. What's really interesting is not how iPhones are rejuvenating a 500 year old business model, but how the confluence of this phenomenon, along with crowdfunding, MIGHT lead to the growth of mutually beneficial workplaces and worked owned governance structures (e.g. coops) - (the MIGHT is intentional, I've only drunk a small bit of the crowdfunding and sharing kool aid)
Real attention to creating new ownership models and new finance structures - that might distribute wealth in new ways - is exciting. And there's lots of innovation in the sharing space.
Sharing and mutual aid are longstanding traditions, often used by the marginalized who can't get access to mainstream systems of finance, credit, or asset growth. So far, most digital sharing platform companies seem to be, as one participant noted, "helping skilled workers with assets in the developed world get more." The response - "It doesn't have to be that way." OK - I'll but that, it doesn't have to be that way - but it's not magically going to be anything else unless we work to make it something else. Who and how is that going to happen?
AmpleHarvest.org helps Americas gardeners diminish hunger in their community by enabling them to donate their excess garden produce to a neighborhood food pantry. Food pantries can register at AmpleHarvest.org to receive locally grown produce for free!
Beth Kanter's insight:
We enable you to eliminate hunger and malnutrition in your own community.
AmpleHarvest.org connects 40+ million Americans with excess food in their garden and local food pantries.
Garden by garden, home & community gardeners and other growers are fighting hunger and malnutrition in America.
An intrinsic theory of value (also called theory of objective value) is any theory of value in economics which holds that the value of an object, good or service, is intrinsic or contained in the item itself. Most such theories look to the process of producing an item, and the costs involved in that process, as a measure of the item’s intrinsic value.
Social change is hard work. It can also be scary as hell – a leap of faith into the unknown, a risky challenge to the status quo. Sometimes even the most dedicated (me included) are unsure of how to realize our dreams, or are overwhelmed by seemingly insurmountable obstacles.
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