Own This!

Own This!:How Platform Cooperatives Help Workers Build a Democratic Internet

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What if taxi drivers in New York City or rickshaw operators in Bangalore could start a worker-owned and-operated alternative to Uber with stable hourly wages?

Winner of the First Prize in the Joyce Rothschild Book Awards

Platform cooperatives reimagine a world where domestic workers can double their income by establishing their own platform—an internet where platforms such as Twitch, Twitter, and Roblox were owned by their streamers, users, and creators. What if small fishing communities in Mexico or farmers in Kerala had the power to determine what data they collected about their work and how they utilized that data?

Platform cooperatives are not a figment of the utopian imagination, but rather a reality that is transforming industries today. Collectives that leverage technology offer an urgent and practical solution to shift how businesses are owned and controlled, allowing workers to make decisions together. In this book, researcher and activist Trebor Scholz explores how these new forms of business, powered by peer principles, are paving the way for a more equitable economy that benefits everyone.

Own This! sets out a program that could change the ways we live, work, and organize.

Reviews

  • Trebor Scholz has tirelessly promoted worker empowerment around the world via platform cooperatives. Going beyond unionization, these co-ops give their employee-owners control over the businesses they run, ranging from banks to taxi companies to recycling firms. Scholz is by turns passionate and analytical, utopian and pragmatic. An excellent read on a critically important topic, Own This! should have global reach and impact.

    Frank Pasquale, author of The Black Box Society
  • Platform cooperatives are the most exciting and hopeful business model for our collective future. Own This! is the essential, brilliant, accessible guide to this rapidly growing movement. If you are interested in work, technology, climate or the future of humanity-read this book.

    Juliet Schor, author of After the Gig
  • Scholz is a passionate intellectual activist who devoted himself to looking for alternatives for decades to enhance worker solidarity on a global scale. This is a timely guidebook, a manifesto that provides us hope and light for future generations

    Pun Ngai, author of Made in China