How to Start a Sharing Economy (In Which People Actually Share Things) in Your Neighborhood

The so-called sharing economy rarely features actual instances of people sharing items with each other, or at least not without a price. Starting a neighborhood sharing network is a great way to unite a community beneath the banner of pooled resources. 

In a post from earlier this week, Lars Peterson over at US News offered an interesting perspective on the so-called "sharing economy." Peterson feels that the name of the movement (if you can call it a movement) is a misnomer because, quizzically enough, the sharing economy rarely features actual instances of people sharing items with each other, or at least not without a price. Companies like Uber and Airbnb are more like bare-bones rental services than anything else. Peterson notes that he doesn't think there's anything necessarily wrong with that. He just thinks that the emphasis belongs less on the word "sharing" and more on "economy."

But what seems to trouble Peterson is that society might think bumming a ride from a Lyft driver is an adequate example of what it means to share. That's why he advocates for establishing neighborhood sharing networks in order to unite your community beneath the banner of pooled resources. His post features several examples of "sharing economy" tools that push the former word past the latter. These include websites such as NeighborGoods, which keeps track of shared inventory, and Little Free Library, a company that sells easy-to-construct book sharing boxes.

Peterson writes that it's difficult to shed away distrust when agreeing to share with your neighbors, but the benefits of these partnerships will exceed any amount of early hesitance. Take a look at his article (linked again below) and let us know what you think.

Read more at US News

Photo credit: jessicakirsh / Shutterstock

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