Implementing the Co-operative Digital Economy

When presenting Platform Cooperativism as a fairer user-/worker-owned model of running online platforms, I often hear answers like “that’s a great idea, but it’s too difficult to realize.” However, technology to implement the co-operative digital economy is emerging. Solutions become available to sustainably crowd-source, share value, and govern democratically. Hexalina.io is one such example.

(from hexalina.io website)

It is now generally admitted that income inequality is one of the biggest problems of our world and a peril to the fabric of our society.
A few years ago, the rise of the “sharing economy” gave great hopes to change this: soon everybody would be self-employed, and benefit from the new opportunities unlocked by the internet, technology and platforms.

Today, unfortunately, the reality is bleaker: millions of people have indeed become self-employed and provide the services that increase –sometimes dramatically- the value of these platforms thanks to the network effect they create and the customer adoption they generate.

However, neither the contributors, nor the customers of the platforms have the opportunity to own a share of the value they create.

A lot of people realize this is counterproductive and eventually unsustainable. However, there seems to be no easy solution that can address the problem and scale to match its rate of expansion.

What we propose is a technology that can be integrated into platforms, allowing them to adopt a more collaborative approach where interests of owners, customers and contributors are aligned, because a fraction of the created value is shared fairly between them.

Think of it as the “Fairtrade” label for a platform. We call it the “sustainable network effect”.

 

Industry adaption of Platform Cooperativism is the goal of the Platform Cooperativism Japan (PCJ) Consortium. Although awareness and motivation for the co-operative way is crucial, if there is no easy way to act upon, good intentions don’t get realized. That’s where technology solutions come into play.

The PCJ Consortium supports the cooperative digital economy through research, experimentation, education, advocacy, documentation of best practices, technical support, the coordination of funding, and events.

Connect with us:

Platform Cooperativism Japan (PCJ) Consortium
Website: www.platformjpcoop.wordpress.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/platformcoopjp
Loomio: www.platformcoopjp.loomio.org

About mathias sager

Thinking and writing for happiness, painting colorfully, and enabling personal growth for all. Fostering co-operative and humanitarian principles, economic and social equality, as well as environmental sustainability. Using broad international experience and progressive, egalitarian and global outlook to promote care for the next generation.
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3 Responses to Implementing the Co-operative Digital Economy

  1. I see this as an opportunity but to be honest, a lot of it is over my head. My wife and I were discussing the need for some kind of nexus of local entrepreneurs to draw business together. But it’s kinda like trying to heard cats.

    • mathias sager says:

      Good point, nicely pictured:-), I know what you mean! Thanks for this helpful feedback.
      We are not used to cooperating; everything is advertised and organized towards the traditional more solely competitive model. It is a lot of work (and takes time) to shift mindsets and create tools to make it easier, also for digital businesses. That’s the mission of Platform Cooperativism (https://www.facebook.com/platformcoopjp). I am sure we’ll hear more and more examples, like yours, that people become aware of the need for more real co-operation. Thank you!

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