Rachel Botsman on Collaborative Consumption
"Imagine being able to rent an igloo for a night or don a cream sports coat and hire someone's personal Ferrari for a day of decadence. There's a new movement on the rise called Collaborative Consumption and it's changing the way we consume.
It takes the old ideas of sharing, swapping, trading, renting, selling, bartering and asking for a cup of sugar over the back fence and shakes them up with social media and the internet so you can share with folk on the other side of the world.
It's your local library a gone viral and its not just about things - ideas, igloos, money, skills and time are all in the mix. Access is the new ownership.
Social innovator Rachel Botsman talks to Lish Fejer about what it is, how it works and why it's working."
"Rachel Botsman is the co-author of "What's Mine is Yours: The Rise of Collaborative Consumption" (Harper Collins, September 2010). Here, with a dazzlingly graphic display, she presents a compelling case for 21st Century sharing."
RSA presentation via http://www.thersa.org/events/vision/vision-videos/rachel-botsman
Wired 2011 presentation via http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2011-10/13/rachel-botsman-wired-11
"Botsman defines collaborative consumption as being about "reputation, community and shared access" as opposed to "credit, advertising and individual ownership". It is about connecting to each other and sharing and exchanging all kinds of assets, including cars, skills and money. "It has the power to reinvent not just what we consume but how we consume," she said.
One of the cornerstones of collaborative consumption is trust between strangers. "The notion of connecting trustworthy strangers is an untapped market. What are the different dimensions of trust that should be measured. How do we make sure that our digital identities reflect our real identities?" She asked.
She explained: "Social, mobile and location technologies are coming together to make efficiency and trust. Technology creates the social glue for trust to form between strangers. It means we can mimic the exchanges that we used to do face to face. Technology is taking us back to old market ways of trading, bartering, sharing and lending -- reinvented in ways that are relevant for the Facebook age."
She mentioned Airbnb as the posterchild for the trend. It has recently been rocked by a couple of high profile incidents of vandalism and theft. But, she explains: "They have made two million reservations to date and there has only been two serious incidents."
Botsman believes that the ability to measure or value a person's reputation -- their reputation capital -- across different marketplaces will become a crucial metric for the 21st century, which she believes will be "more important than our credit history". She adds: "Can we track and aggregate generosity, reliability, and consistency across marketplaces such as eBay, AirBnB and Zopa?"