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Platform Cooperativism vs. the Sharing Economy — ©[medium.com] & @TreborS

Platform Cooperativism vs. the Sharing Economy — Medium

The backlash against unethical labor practices in the “collaborative sharing economy” has been overplayed. Recently, The Washington Post, New York Times and others started to rail against online labor brokerages like Taskrabbit, Handy, and Uber because of an utter lack of concern for their workers. At the recent Digital Labor conference, my colleague McKenzie Wark proposed that the modes of production that we appear to be entering are not quite capitalism as classically described. “This is not capitalism,” he said, “this is something worse.” [1]

But just for one moment imagine that the algorithmic heart of any of these citadels of anti-unionism could be cloned and brought back to life under a different ownership model, with fair working conditions, as a humane alternative to the free market model.

Take, for example, Uber’s app, with all its geolocation and ride ordering capabilities. Why do its owners and shareholders have to be the main benefactors of such platform-based labor brokerage? Developers, in collaboration with local, worker-owner cooperatives could design such a self-contained program for mobile phones.

via Platform Cooperativism vs. the Sharing Economy — Medium.

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