It would be nearly
impossible for someone to come up with a solid definition of the sharing
economy that is able to reflect the common usage.

There is considerable
assortment among activities as well as perplex boundaries drawn by
participants. For example, considering TaskRabbit, a “chore” site with a mantra
“connects you with skilled Taskers to do your chores so you can be more
productive, every day” (TaskRabbit, 2008) is often included,
but Mechanical Turk (Amazon’s online labor market) is not (Amazon, 2005). Airbnb is
practically synonymous with the sharing economy as mentioned previously, but
traditional bed and breakfasts are out of scope in the service. Lyft, a
transportation network company based in San Francisco (Lyft, 2012)
claims to be in, but Uber, another ride service company, does not. Shouldn’t
public libraries and parks count? When these questions were posed to a few
sharing innovators, they were pragmatic, rather than analytical (Schor, 2014). Turns out that
self-definition by the platforms and press explains who is in and who is out.

According to (Schor, 2014) sharing economy
activities could be classified into four board categorizes which are as follow:

1.     Recirculation of goods

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2.     Increased utilisation of durable assets

3.     Exchange of services

4.     Sharing of productive assists

Considering the above
points, for recirculation of goods,
the origin first came to place in 1995 with founding of eBay and Craigslist,
two markets that are now mostly famous as a part of mainstream consumer
experience. These sites were set in motion by nearly two decades of heavy
procurement of cheap imports that led to a growth of unwanted items (Schor, 2014)

From the concept of
e-commerce, the technological advancement made sophisticated software to reduce
the conventional high transaction costs of secondary markets, and at eBay, the
leading e-commerce webpage, reputational information is difficult to quantify
but still was considered for sellers and was crowdsourced from buyers (Mickey,
2010, pp. 162-169)
thereby lowering the risks of transacting
with strangers.

Secondly, the using of durable good and other assets.

The second type of platform facilitates using durable goods and other assets
more intensively. In all nations, there are people that hold property or
product that is not used to capacity (e.g., spare rooms, car). Here, the prime
mover was Zipcar, a company that was able to place vehicles in convenient urban
locations and offered hourly rentals services to its customers (Schor, 2014). After the 2009
recession, renting assets became more economically appealing, and similar
businesses increased rapidly in number. In transportation business, these
include car rental websites like ride sharing (Zimride), ride services (Uber,
UberX, Lyft), (Relay Rides) and bicycle sharing (Boston’s Hubway or Chicago’s
Divvy Bikes) (Brown & Basich, 2011). In the temporary
accommodation sector, the pioneer was Couchsurfing, which helped travellers to
stay with people who offered rooms or couches without any kind of payment back
in 1999. Couchsurfing led to Airbnb, which has reported more than 10 million
stays. (Lawler, 2013)

The third practice is
the service exchange. Its genesis
lie in time banking, which began in the 1980s to provide a chance for the
unemployed people (Cahn & Rowe, 1992). Timebanking is a
kind of money where people exchange services and skills for time instead of
money. How it works is that each hour of work is equal to one credit (The Long Beach Time Exchange, 2013). For example Niko
offers sketching classes to Daniel for 3 hours and Daniel gives 3 time credit
to Niko from his account by login in exchange account online or by calling
support of timebanking then Niko spends his 3 time credits with two different
people, Niko spends 2 hours fixing someone’s car and spends 1 hour remaining
with helping someone else, Now both of these individuals have some time credit
each, they can spend with someone they like by the online browsing, call the
support of timebanking or coming to the next monthly event of timebanking (The Long Beach Time Exchange, 2013). As compared to
other platforms, time banks have not grown so much as it has a demanding nature
of maintaining an equal trading (Dubois, et al., 2014). Other similar
service exchange like TaskRabbit that was discussed above have the same concept
but still finds it a difficult implementation.

Last point focuses on sharing
assets to enable production rather than consumption. This may include shared
tools, co-working space or even communal offices. Other sites like educational
platform is also a part of sharing assets (Bollier & Bauwens, 2013), for example
platform like or

According to (Schor, 2014) “the long-term
impacts of these platforms are shaped by both their market orientation
(for-profit vs. non-profit) and market structure (peer-to-peer vs.

business-to-peer)”. For that proposed dimensions to shape the platforms’
business models, potential for disrupting conventional businesses and logics of
exchange. (Schor, 2014)


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