June 8, 2018

The Case for Carsharing: The Numbers All Go to 11

Vancouver’s home-grown carsharing cooperative, Modo, issued a press release this past week with the results of a multi-city member survey that spoke to the overriding reasons for the move away from car ownership — cost.

Of the 3,500+ respondents, 42% said the cost savings is why they prefer to use the 2-way service, just edging out convenience (39%).

But what about carsharing’s other role, beyond getting us from A-to-B cheaply? As in actually removing cars off the road — that’s where it’s at, and we found that while it’s not high on the list of influencing factors for Modo members, it’s a reportable outcome.

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If the billionaires behind Uber and Car2Go can offer “ride shares” and “car shares,” as in an earlier post, how about “the gig economy.” How positive and liberating that sounds!
“I don’t have a job, I have a gig!”, says the 20- or 30-something working hard with no tenure and no benefits. Benefits? Apparently it’s mainly the employers who have them under this system.
“Inside the Gig Economy” offers some insights from the FT Alphaville site.

FT Alphaville has been tracking the gig economy’s transformation into a neo-feudalism movement for a while now. What we’ve discovered is that those who use, love and defend the apps don’t always have a good understanding of what really contributes to their convenience. Many will do and say almost anything to protect them, whilst failing to grasp the key point of the criticism: none of this is necessarily sustainable or representative of a productivity efficiency.

(Should I [personally] care about this? I’ve been freelance since 1979, but the world I got established in is a totally different one from today’s. I may have made only a few hundred dollars a month when I was starting out, but if rent was $100 I was laughing.)

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The most useful app I found recently – Transit App (thank you, Daily Scot) described here – is now even more useful.  Almost from the day Mobi launched, the app had the docking stations marked, with the number of bikes and available racks immediately evident.

Plus Car2Go locations and reserve options.   Plus bike routes in addition to transit lines, with the next bus shown in real time.
The layering is the thing: practically all the choices I need to navigate the city, seamlessly integrated on one interface.
That explains this:

Letter here.

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