This is the other side of the sharing economy


Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that’s taken over our lives.

This is the other side of the sharing economy

You want to share with this man?

HomeAway/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

How much do you care for your fellow human?

I mean, really care.

How much do you want to share of yourself and your belongings with those whom you may not know, but are still sure you love?

I fancy the answer is: “Less than you claim.”

Vacation rental company HomeAway seems to agree. It’s just released a new ad that looks at this sharing economy and says: “Your faculties have deserted you.”

It uses various pulsating and persuasive scenarios to peek at the reality of sharing, rather than the “we’re all in this together” fantasy.

There’s the man who rents a room from you on Airbnb and proceeds to cut his toenails in the living room. Well, at least he doesn’t bite them, I suppose.

There’s even the Airbnb renter who wanders into your bedroom because, you know, it’s all shared space, isn’t it?

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Of course, Airbnb isn’t specifically mentioned. It’s clear, though, who the target is. Actually, there’s another target too — hotels. They can involve quite some shared space as well. And who needs that, in our increasingly individualistic society?

HomeAway says its properties offer “more space, more privacy, no compromises.”

The issue, of course, is that HomeAway is trying to tempt you with something qualitative. It’s trying to lure you by appealing to your sense of privacy and indulgence.

This might work — a little.

It’s hard, though, to address the one fundamental of the sharing economy, the one that keeps customers coming back and showing their willingness to be better, more caring humans: It’s cheaper.