Web Wonder Bras

Yesterday I droned on about how the internet has changed our economy.  How the phenomenon of crowdsourcing is harnessing a thousand individuals to do simple tasks, getting them done far more quickly and cheaply than ever before.

You’re not impressed?  The internet is changing our world, and that’s old news?  Yes it is, but consider this.  It’s also bringing about change to one of the oldest, and most physically intimate jobs there is; prostitution.

What? How can the internet change prostitution, often touted as our oldest profession?  It’s not by the way, it’s not even in the top three.  The top three are gathering, hunting, and parenting.  But that’s for another day.

I came across a business story [1] about a Canadian [2] who has an internet business connecting people who want to have affairs.  It has a catchy, but non-descript name.  It has an ethos of total privacy.  And it encourages infidelity.

So how can this put a dent in sex for sale?  Here’s where the crowdsourcing comes in.  It turns every person who is interested in having sex into a customer, and a supplier.  It connects them on their own terms.  It lets them set their own prices, even though it claims to set none.  And it does this without the benefit of a human manager, what we lovingly refer to as a pimp.

Yes, the internet is now bringing us crowdsourced prostitution.  The internet is not only endangering the bookstore owner, but also the pimp.  Your neighbor may not only be a microserf working for the mechanical turk on amazon [3], but could also be entertaining customers that used to visit the red light district downtown.

What next?  Who’s next?

Only the internet knows.


[1]  http://www.bloomberg.com/video/can-you-blame-ashley-madison-for-affairs-Rm_NgxWpR52wq55CEJxJTg.html

[2]  http://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/9-questions-ashley-madison-founder-noel-biderman.html

[3]  https://www.mturk.com/mturk/welcome


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