Micro Labor

Ok, so the first time I heard of “micro-labor,” and didn’t even know it, was when I heard that my sister-in-law wrote how-to articles for website for a few bucks each.  I believe she would basically do a little research on whatever topic the website wanted an article on, submit article, and she would have money directly deposited into her account.  The second time I heard about this phenomenon was on an episode of On Point with Tom Ashbrook (Perhaps my favorite radio program, or at least a tie with This American Life).  Now, however, people will bid online for small or short-term jobs, using websites such as Taskrabbit and Zaarly.  The jobs may be online or in person, and often times the person with lowest bid wins the job.  This means that the person who is willing to accept the least amount of money for the job gets it.  While this may be an okay process for big contract jobs, it seems as though this out bidding process on the individual level could negatively impact the economy.  Oftentimes people are being paid far less than what they would not using these websites.  This, if left unchecked, has the potential to drastically reduce the average wage that people are paid.



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