Competition, Collaboration and Combination: Differences in Attitudes to Collective Organization Among Offline and Online Platform Workers

Kaire Holts, Ursula Huws, Neil Spencer, Matthew Coates

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Abstract

This chapter focuses on in-depth interviews with a range of different workers for online platforms in Europe to explore the assumption that delivery and driving platform workers’ attitude represent those of working in other platforms and sectors. Respondents were recruited by a variety of means. Some participants were identified randomly as a result of participation in a national survey carried out in the United Kingdom (UK), in which respondents were asked if they would be willing to be re-contacted for a further in-depth interview. Many workers in both categories presented an articulate analysis of the labour market in which they found themselves, where opportunities and threats abounded. An important dimension of the ambivalent attitudes to collective organisation among platform workers is a tension between competition and collaboration among fellow workers. A 30-year-old German product designer provides an example of an online worker who regards other platform workers primarily, and straightforwardly, as competition.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Gig Economy
Subtitle of host publicationWorkers and Media in the Age of Convergence
EditorsBrian Dolber, Michelle Rodino-Colocino, Chenjerai Kumanyika, Todd Wolfson
PublisherRoutledge
Chapter13
Pages223-238
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781003140054
ISBN (Print)9780367686222
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2021

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