A few decades ago, the term 'gig economy' would have been an oxymoron. However, with the global surge in technology and innovation, the term 'gig economy' is fast becoming a regular part of the general lingo. For example, just recently there was news that one company, the 'Gig Kitchen', was offering business owners the opportunity to create their own online grocery store and then earn money by delivering the goods. Just a decade ago, that same news would have been an entirely different story.
As a society, we tend to talk about the 'gigs' and the 'locks'. Yet those two terms (along with the jargon that goes with them) have changed significantly since the turn of the millennium. A decade ago a home-based internet marketer working on a fixed commission model would have been at the very heart of this new digital age. Today, many of the leading creators of internet businesses are employees of the Gig Economy company, working from home and earning a flexible income through selling their digital services and products. The gig economy has matured considerably since its birth; it is fair to say that this evolution is partially responsible for the global growth of the internet.
The evolution of the internet also gave rise to several highly successful business models that have become the pillars of modern outsourcing and digital business. For example, eBay was started as a means for people to sell items they no longer needed. In time, the company realized that it could profit greatly by becoming a global marketplace and buying and selling items in other countries at a huge mark-up. Companies like Office Depot, Home Depot, Amazon, and others soon followed suit and became instant success stories.
The business model is now global. However, many of these successful companies only began on a local level. They used their geographical location to attract customers. Customers in one part of the world could buy products from a company based in the other part of the world. However, because of the growing need for internet access, geographical boundaries aren't an issue any longer. This has created a situation where the business models used by eBay, Amazon, and similar companies are no longer unique.
Because of the ease and convenience of using the internet, more people are engaging in digital products. They conduct business online. They create digital products for sale and sell physical products over the internet. As a result, many talented artists and other talented people who previously would have been unable to reach their potential are now able to fully reap the benefits of their talent by selling digital products online.
There's still a few shady elements to the internet and those include shady business practices like identity theft and money transfer and billing systems that are not transparent. As more businesses and consumers engage in digital products, the need for a consumer review system will arise. Consumers will be able to easily identify those who are charging unfair prices or have committed fraud. This is a necessary step if the business of selling digital products as a service is to ever become truly competitive.
If businesses can't be trusted to charge fair prices then they won't survive. A consumer review system will also help buyers make a better informed decision about which seller offers the best deal on digital products. These systems are necessary because otherwise will never gain a foothold.
#Gig work offers flexibility and boomed during the pandemic; however, some have complained about low wages with few benefits.
#Digital labour platforms have increased five-fold in 10 years.
#New businesses are combatting the associated problems by using the gig model to pay fairer wages and increase sustainability.
The gig economy - where people pick up work in a flexible manner – boomed during COVID-19 lockdowns, as people around the world suddenly needed goods and food delivered to their homes and millions of newly jobless were looking for work.
By 2020, there were more than 777 digital labour platforms - from food delivery to web design - around the world, up from about 140 a decade earlier, according to the International Labour Organization (ILO).
But many people drawn to gig work for its flexibility have reported being exploited by companies paying low wages, and offering weak insurance policies and no sick leave while encouraging long hours.