Recently, meal delivery platforms have mushroomed in large cities.
Their strategy ? A rapid and exponential growth to conquer the market,
and eventually to establish a monopoly by taking over its competitors’ businesses.
They all share one thing in common: using self-employed people to ensure deliveries.
This is called uberization: connecting consumers and “service providers” through a web platform, the “providers” not being considered as employed by the firm holding the platform.
This situation benefits the firm in two different ways : the so-called “providers” represent an extremely flexible and cheap workforce, and they bear all financial risk in place of the firm.
This individual entrepreneur model is now being spread to the whole society. This yields to isolated individuals that are less and less protected from a wide array of risks (such as work accidents and unemployment) our social welfare system was build to prevent them from.
But it is not a fatality
"Where do you see yourself in five years?"— Existential Comics (@existentialcoms) 13 décembre 2016
"Running the company."
"No…socialism. I'll run it with the rest of the workers."
✊ Most of the added value and network effects are created by “providers” and platform users
✊ Platforms are nothing but computer code running on servers
Through the digital economy, we may have a chance to socialize the production capacities on a large scale, setting up platforms under the legal status of the cooperative.
In order to foster the rise of cooperative platforms in the delivery sector, we’ve decided to create an open-source software, based on reciprocity: you have to set your organisation as a cooperative to use it for commercial purposes.
The idea is that the platform is a common good, which means it belongs to no one, because anyone can use it. Those who use it have a mutual interest in maintaining it.
The explosion of bicycle delivery is a boon for the development of clean urban logistics.
The cooperative appears to us as a good way to make this local and non-delocalisable activity sustainable.