Today, the WSJ featured Amazon's new delivery service, and it doesn't use drones.
Instead, it plans to compete for your workers time by turning them into a massive deliver service.
"The Seattle retailer is developing a mobile application that would, in some cases, pay ordinary people, rather than carriers such as United Parcel Service Inc., to drop off packages en route to other destinations, according to people familiar with the matter.
As envisioned, Amazon would enlist brick-and-mortar retailers in urban areas to store the packages, likely renting space from them or paying a per-package fee, the people said. Amazon’s timing for the service, known internally as “On My Way,” couldn’t be learned, and it is possible the company won’t move ahead, the people said."
But it's hardly just Amazon that wants to turn your w2 employees into independent, app-driven small business people. There's Deliv Inc, Uber, INstacard, Google, Ebay and TaskRabbit, and they are all licking there chops over the idea of bypassing all those nasty taxes and legal complications that make employment so messy.
If we are heading into an era of massive freelance jobs with perhaps a mixture of robot-coding W2 employees at likes of Google, then we will likely start seeing a strong public reaction to it. To wit, a commenter on the WSJ post thinks we're going in the wrong direction.
JEFFREY WICKHAMWe're moving in the wrong direction, the next step wasn't supposed to be underemployed couriers and drivers, this is what exists in Africa, the next step was supposed to be robotic restaurants and self-building houses. There was supposed to be a void of low-wage labor brought about by decades of education reform and this void was to be filled with the abundance of robots developed in the universities. The problem is, there are tons of robots just waiting for implementation, we just can't get people away from reliance upon the low-wage jobs. Once we decide there doesn't need to be a low-wage labor void for wide-scale robotics implementations, and we create the void, the utility of robots becomes less clear as expenses are saved in business but massive swatches of the population have no jobs.
For now, looking at all this from the staffing industry space, I have two thoughts on it. First, how the hell are they getting away with not calling these freelancers as employees? And second, how can I get in on it?