More about the ‘Collaborative’ economy…
Ignasi Lirio

Hi Ignasi — I thought Robin brought up the Uber thing when she discussed some challenges “They break the old employer-employee work patterns, and with it, the logic behind the last hundred years of tax, work, and social-safety-net laws. This is the tension underlying lawsuits against Uber (and if we are honest, Walmart and Fedex have played the same games),” in her article.

My guess is she agrees with you. She did say “To support a productive, equitable and sustainable economy we need benefits tied to people and not jobs. We need rules that protect individuals from the power of monopoly platforms. We need the resulting incredible productivity gains to be shared by all with a basic citizen’s income.”

Although I like the idea of a basic citizen’s income — I wonder how we could come around to that, with people ‘selling’ public parking spaces. You are correct; that is predatory behavior that serves no public good. I think the term “collaborative” will be bandied about, picked up by predators as well as good-intentioned people, and we will see in time how well collaboration will fair against large corporations run by a few ruthless people (not all corporations; the ones paying multimillion dollar bonuses to top management and not providing a living wage/health care/basic needs to their employees).

Having highlighted Robin’s notes where I think the two of you may actually see eye to eye, I very much agree with you that many so-called “collaborators” are really not collaborating, but looking for ways to take advantage of those with less. I hope true collaborators, with changes in laws, will prevail.