CACM_TACCESS_one-third_page_vertical:Layout 1 6/9/09 1:04 PM Page 1Transactions on
Service;” Ne w York Times (Jun. 25, 2014), A20.
f Coté, J. “SF Cracks Down on ‘Monkey Parking’
Mobile App” June 23, 2014; http://bit.ly/ToFDNA.
tor,” the sharing service would not
compensate the victim’s family.g The
contract stipulates that the service is
a matching platform and “the com-
pany does not provide transportation
services, and … has no liability for ser-
vices ... provided by third parties.”h
us about the
willingness of new
to accept risk. ACM
Who then will bear the costs of such
disasters? Jaron Lanier says these new
business models enjoy profits while
offloading risk to others. When society picks up the tab, these new business models raise concerns. Maybe
they are no cause for celebration.
Whose Ox Gets Shared? Sharing
creates a subtle tug-of-war between
the primary producer and secondary
sharer. Secondary sharing can become tertiary taking. Consider the extreme case of a Netflix subscriber who
pays $20 per month, rents three DVDs
from Netflix, and then rents each for
$1 per night to other individuals. The
subscriber makes $90 ( 1× 3× 30) each
month while paying substantially
less for an asset he or she never owns.
Similar to the way put and call options share the value of other people’s
stocks, sharing allows us to go long or
short on physical assets. It might be
economically efficient, but it can harm
the demand for Netflix and the people
who produced the movies. Broadcasters sued the startup Aereo for leasing
a device that let individuals capture
broadcast TV signals to stream shows
to devices they (or others) own. The
suit reached the U.S. Supreme Court
and, on the basis of copyright infringement, the U.S. Supreme Court
ruled against Aero.e The City of San
Francisco likewise shut down a subversive sharing service. Counselors
issued a cease and desist order to producers of a mobile app that rewarded
drivers for sharing news of their willingness to vacate public parking. It
then auctioned off their spaces.f
Insider sharing just became the latest
form of insider trading.
Lightening the Dark Side
Absorb Risks that Benefit the Ecosystem. Shedding risk and never admitting culpability is standard lawyers’
advice. In following this advice, Uber
did not indemnify its driver yet has
reversed itself dramatically expanding coverage. Putting share-rides into
taxi-ride perspective, New York City
experienced 44 taxi-related fatalities
in 2009 alone.i
This quarterly publication is a
quarterly journal that publishes
refereed articles addressing issues
of computing as it impacts the
lives of people with disabilities.
The journal will be of particular
interest to SIGACCESS members
and delegates to its affiliated
conference (i.e., ASSETS), as well
as other international accessibility
History informs us about the willingness of new businesses to accept
risk. Banks originally opposed the
Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA),
complaining about the increased liability and responsibility for unauthorized transactions. Banks argued that
FCRA would promote fraud, encourage people to be careless with credit
cards, and reduce bank willingness to
extend credit. Precisely the opposite
occurred. The FCRA passed in 1970,
with amendment 15 US § 1643 later
limiting consumer liability to $50 for
fraudulent credit card use. However,
banks ultimately learned that protecting customers is good business:
increased credit card use more than
offsets growth in fraud-related costs.
Most banks now do not even hold
consumers responsible for the $50. If
sharing moves in the same direction,
sharers and society will be protected.
The Dark Side of the Moonlighting.
Last New Year’s Eve, an off-duty driver for the ride-sharing service Uber
killed a pedestrian while hunting for
fares. Since the driver was a “contrac-
Invest in Your Customers. As a
startup, Airbnb could not gain traction
with renters as long as people put up
low-quality listings and photos of their
g Diamicis, C. “Uber driver hits, kills 6 yr old
e Steel, E. “Stung by Supreme Court, Aero Suspends
girl. Is ‘Not our problem’ still an appropriate
response?” (Jan. 2, 2014); http://bit.ly/190hsft.
h See http://bit.ly/1pxnIgK.
i New York City Pedestrian Safety Study: Tech-
nical Supplement (Aug. 2010). http://on.nyc.