The sharing economy is dead. Long live the online marketplace / ABC Perth

collaborative honeycombWith current global sales of $110 billion rising to $335 billion in 2025 there’s obviously a growing online marketplace, but referring to is the sharing economy does it no service, in fact it only confuses the debate.

The sharing economy / collaborative economy / peer-to-peer or whatever other title you give it, to many people has connotations of hippies, communists, people allowing others to use their things for free or for barter and belies the trends that underpins this new online movement, but very old human activity.

The core notion is that I have something that I’m not using right now, so I’m happy for you to borrow it, but this is where it gets murky because as pure as the desire for people to share their “toys” the reality is that the vast majority of offerings are real businesses wanting to make real money profits.

Behind the scenes the past decade has bought a perfect storm for this old movement to resurrect itself as many of us increasingly feel we don’t have the money to own something, but would still like to use it or do it; where we feel that we don’t all need to own one and cause more environmental harm when we could just take turns and a growing group of people who have detached themselves from the need to own something to prove their self-worth and importance and instead would rather just do it or borrow it now.

What’s behind all of this is simple digital connectivity, you can now let lots and lots of people know that you have something that they can use or borrow and they can now easily find and connect with you to organise it and on the other side of the equation, if you need something you can look further afield to find it or borrow it.

So, lets drop the term sharing economy and just stick with the real game. There’s stuff that some people own and the stuff that some people want and there;s now a really easy way to connect the two.

This was the thread for my chat with of ABC Perth as we unraveled and made sense of the new online marketplace aka the sharing economy and looked at some great examples and uses.

So have a listen now (15 minutes 46 seconds)…

Eye on the Future - Sep 18, 2015 | All, Business, Horizon Trends, Radio Interview, Social
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