Sunday, 15 July 2012

A fair exchange of value. Let us decide

In the era of networking and social media, making use of our established relationships and the relationships we are yet to make, is the viral and sustainable way to go. Imagine if you belonged to a group of millions of people all of whom could trade with each other through some some of credits.

If I wanted you to build me a website, there are several ways that the transaction could take place

  1. I pay you with money
  2. I offer you a service in return
  3. I pay you with credits
You would probably prefer the first option. However, there may be drawbacks to this. Firstly, it's taxable and subject to currency exchange rates. Secondly, and this is important, you might not trust the financial system that exists in your country. You might not want to bank money as you may already understand the global financial crisis and the risks involved. If your bank collapses, your money might go with it.

So, let's say that I teach English. I don't, but let's assume I do. We might come to an agreement that I provide English lessons to a member of your family in exchange. This option is practical provided that we both have something the other wants.

Lastly, as we both both belong to the same community, we agree a price expressed in credits (points, if you like). You build me the website. I transfer the points to you.  No money has exchanged hands, just a number of points that we feel equitable. Is there a risk involved in such a deal? I guess so, in that you might worry I might not pay. However, a system could be built-in that provides some sort of feedback and ranking. This is not difficult and already applies to auction sites.

With millions of individuals belonging to such a community, we start to have power. We can even negotiate with businesses and corporations to accept payment in points rather than money. If they refuse, we have have the option of dealing with those who will accept.

We have the capacity to decide what kind of trade and interaction we all have with other.

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