Do not own!

Finally: a holiday, which means a long weekend. That is why, my flatemate and I went home for the next few days. We made an offer on as we always do when travelling the 300 km from Berlin down to Saxony. The telephone annealed and the two, otherwise empty seats, were quickly filled by two unknowns. It has been a tour as usual. Nice conversations, good music and acceptable traffic.

However, this time I was wondering why we actually do so, I mean sharing our cars with unknowns, isn´t that strange?

Why do we share?

I talked about this with the two passengers that we took with us. They were both around twenty and in Berlin for their study and work, respectively. The main point is: we are young,  need the money and it is always nice to get to know new people. Ok, that is a nice reason, but I was motivated to dig a bit deeper in this sharing-topic.

Altruism, Moneymachine or Socialization?
It is unbelievable what has been developed in this scene, which is called collaborative consumption, in the last few years. I discovered an interesting blog about the  appearance of collaborative consumption. The blog defines this new movement as follows:
“Collaborative Consumption describes the rapid explosion in traditional sharing, bartering, lending, trading, renting, gifting, and swapping reinvented through network technologies on a scale and in ways never possible before.”
Besides, we have to be aware that our society shifts from a movement of “me” to a “we” society. To explain this a bit more detailed I want to introduce you to a nice article. This article argues that ” we have believed that individual wealth was something to be accumulated and protected, and our personal value was measured by how much more we had than those around us. In our relentless pursuit for more, we have fundamentally ended up with less. But a powerful change is happening; one that recognizes the value of experiences and human relationships over anonymous transactions and the  endless acquisition of more stuff.” It is so true, isn´t it? Admittedly, the majority of us is still keen on owning more than the other, but we are in the middle of this entire process and future will bring where we will end up.

Rebirth of the 60s – living naked in communes?

No. No. No you don´t have to be afraid of huge flower prints, political conversations and free love. The only thing that is common with the hippie time is that our consumption will be a more aware one and that we rethink our habits. It is totally fascinating how  many new opportunities are springing out of this “mine is yours”-idea. Besides the huge ones like ebay or craigslist there is a growing branch with a lot of potential especially for start-ups. (if you are interested in the start-up scene have a closer look on: kizaza´s and nicpic´s blog posts!)
I listed some of the most interesting businesses exclusively for you!
Now it is up to you to grab the change and find something to share and always remember: “There is no delight in owning anything unshared.”