The Nasdaq of Sharing Economy
There’s an economic revolution afoot. The old model of produce, market, consume, trash is proving itself both unsustainable and out of touch with technological advances that allow people to easily access and share existing resources. The new economy–often called the “Sharing Economy“–harnesses existing resources and through smart use of technology, connects suppliers with demanders. One of the main hubs of this economy is Mesh.
The site is based on the book “The Mesh: Why the future of Business is sharing,” by Lisa Gansky. She expands on how Mesh companies operate:
Mesh companies create, share and use social media, wireless networks, and data crunched from every available source to provide people with goods and services at the exact moment they need them, without the burden and expense of owning them outright.
Mesh’s site contains a directory of over 8K companies across 140 countries comprising 25 different categories–from energy to fundraising to kid’s toys. There is hardly any resource that one of Mesh’s companies can’t help you with.
At its heart, Mesh is about the idea of access over ownership. As is often said, what we want is a hole, not a drill. The companies that are part of Mesh’s directory can hook you up with that drill or those clothes or building supplies or anything else. Many of the companies are peer-to-peer like Airbnb, which allow you to buy or use goods and services from private parties; many others are corporations that incorporate this on-demand utilization of existing resources such as Groupon and Zipcar.
Mesh is a great resource for creating a life that has all the stuff you need without the burden of owning it all the time. The popularity of Graham Hill’s recent NY Times op-ed illuminated the extent to which people are becoming overwhelmed by the rate and extent at which we acquire stuff. Inspired by the notion of being stuff-free, many of us might fantasize about offloading all of our worldly possessions. This is great until we need to a take some pictures or go camping or drive out of town for the weekend.
People need stuff. Cavemen needed their hand-axes. Many things that we use all the time like a phone or computer warrant personal ownership. But we don’t need all stuff all the time. Having things around that we seldom or never use like karaoke machines and 10′ ladders tends to lead to clutter and confusion.
What the sharing economy does is create a manageable, cost effective and ecologically sound (less stuff shared by more people) way to have all the stuff you need only when you need it. See more sharing sites on this site and give it a try yourself.