I’m one of those people who thought Airbnb would never work. I thought people would never rent out space in their homes to near strangers. But I was clearly wrong. Eleven million travelers have stayed in Airbnb destinations, according to data shared by the company. (snip).
And Airbnb is only a piece of the peer-to-peer economy. People are renting out their cars to people they don’t know, dropping off their pets with people they don’t know, renting power tools to people they don’t know... (more - "The Evolution of Trust").
I appreciate David Brooks' facts, figures and explanation. To me this shift towards communities of trust is one of the exciting disruptions of the Internet. It's related to the development of online connections and digital footprints. He describes lots of small scale exchanges, sharing, and collaborative approaches that were unthinkable before the Internet.
These small interactions are adding up to something much bigger and more disruptive. Put together they are a way of "not buying stuff" but still having access to what you need when you need it. It's about better use of resources. It's about a different way of thinking.
This approach rejects the brainwashing that says "Buy! Buy! Buy! You will never be appreciated for who you are, but only for what you own. Your first duty in life is to be a consumer, and to guard what you own, for your personal use only. ".
The evolution of trust allows people to say in effect "Let's share what we've got more effectively, because it's mutually beneficial." I welcome this potentially revolutionary shift in what I see as our present heavily manipulated, resource-pillaging, consumer societies run on buy-now-pay-later principles and debt slavery.