The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop
The "Sharing Economy" saved me from poverty, and quite possibly saved my life. The company where I had worked for 14 years filed bankruptcy and went out of business in 2013. I collected unemployment for a year while searching unsuccessfully for a new job. Benefits ran out and I was gathering information on how to apply for food stamps and other public assistance. [REDACTED] A friend told me about Airbnb and how I may be able to make some income by renting out a spare room on a temporary basis. I researched this and was able to sign up with them. My life was turned around! Not only am I able to pay my bills again, but I have made some lasting friendships from the guests I have rented my space to. This company and this type of service is a win/win experience for all concerned. I realize there have been some scammers and dishonest people who try to take advantage of others, but where does this not happen? I have the ability to interview everyone and even talk to them before agreeing to allow them into my home. All of my guests have been extremely respectful, and grateful to have the advantages of seeing the community from a local prospective, and not a congested downtown hotel or desolate airport area. It is also less costly for them, leaving them more money to spend on shopping and recreational activities while on vacation. The wealthy hotel corporations will still make their millions of dollars from business travelers. Vacationers should absolutely have this more personalized option to choose from. And individuals like me should not be denied the right to earn an honest income from our homes.