We posted our list of annual trends starting yesterday afternoon, with this blog article hitting this morning — and on our first day we scored a hit.
In today’s New York Times, former labor and workplace reporter Steven Greenhouse wrote an op-ed entitled, “The ‘What Is It’ Economy” (in the print edition) and “The Whatchamacallit Economy” (in the online version) that sets to more accurately define the gig economy and sharing economy — which can be two sides of the same coin.
Airbnb is part of the sharing economy but those who rent out their homes actually have a new gig of cleaning up and preparing their homes for Airbnbers. Uber is also considered part of the sharing economy but Uber drivers are definitely part of the gig economy.
In our trends, we said we need to better define gig and sharing to understand the impact they’re having on our overall economy.
Some are calling it the “Exploitation Economy,” and that might be a fair assessment.
But as the media and Americans in general look to Trump to bring back good jobs, the nature of what work is like in the 21st century will have to be part of that discussion. There are a lot of people who prefer to live in the gig economy, and benefit from doing so. There are also a lot of people who are in the gig economy and don’t want to be.
We need a better understanding of this to help those who want full-time jobs and protect those who prefer gigs.
You can check out our prediction here.