A new theory: They ARE working for themselves!
Had an interesting email exchange with internet thinker, Clay Shirky. He suggested that Porsche might NOT have been lying when she told me she was working for herself. Clay says this is part of the trend in industry to outsource tasks to a crowd (“crowdsource“).
Here’s what Clay said:
“That’s where most of the ‘work from home’ links lead to…since no one who signs up to work from home cares about what they’ll be working on, there’s no real way to figure out which of the franchise telework operations are handling the warranty calls by searching.”
This is part of the thesis behind Clay’s influential book, Here Comes Everybody, which continues to help explain the big societal shifts we’re seeing. Clay:
It used to be that when we saw coordinated activity, we assumed a formal organization was behind it.
Now, because coordination can come from tools instead of managers, you can get organization without organizations.
If Clay’s right, how can the FTC possibly enforce the Consumer Protection Act or even the Do Not Call list when there’s no central organization to charge?
The plot continues to thicken.
PS Thanks to Absurd Delight for the compliments. That blog also has links to some funny YouTube videos of people responding to these callers in what AD calls a “less journalistic” manner than me.