This article from Harvard Business Review is important: its thesis is that there is no sharing economy and that the ‘new’ economy is the access economy. The article argues that whenever an intermediary comes between two parties, such as a Worker and a Requester, it is an economy of being able to access the Worker’s skills for a predefined period of time. The motivation is utilitarian, not social.
The article uses Zipcar as an example and points out:
-there is not ‘reciprocal obligation’ from the exchange as there is with sharing
-users do not interact–we know other people are using the service but we don’t know who they are
-there is mistrust of others
-users rely on the company to make sure everyone is treated fairly
Hmm, what might some of those things also describe?
MTurk does have some differences–many users do interact to share information, and the mistrust isn’t always between Workers and Requesters (or Workers and Workers). Amazon has its fair share of mistrust too, from Workers and Requesters. But all in all, access economy is a good way to describe what’s going on