Are co-ops the way of the future?

Sharing isn't just for hipsters anymore, but is a broader change in consumer thinking, according to a new survey.

You can see it in the successes of Zipcars and bikeshares, tool co-ops and even Netflix: ownership is out and sharing is in.

That's the result of a survey conducted by Minneapolis ad agency Campbell Mithun, providing evidence that what is known as "collaborative consumption" or a "sharing economy" should be on the mind of anyone peddling goods or services.

And a sharing economy is not just popular among young, impoverished hipsters. The twenty-something Generation Y crowd and Generation Xers had a similar interest in sharing and bartering goods, around 62%, according to the survey.

In a short Youtube video explaning this "sharing economy," the group notes companies -- eBay, at-home accommodation site AirBNB, ZipCar, and even Craigslist -- as examples of the trend. Some of the companies serve as a portal to connect people who want to share or trade, while others offer a subscription model for unlimited use without ownership.

Is this preference a sign of hard economic times, or does it represent a broader change in consumer thinking?

Check out the video:

Image: Wikimedia Commons

This post was originally published on


You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
See All
See All