“The uber-ization of everything”

“Robert Samuel, founder of Same Ole Line Dudes, makes up to $1,000 a week to stand in line. He waits in line for Broadway shows, sample sales, tech releases and even brunch waitlists. Samuel recently spent 48 hours outside the Apple store in the Meatpacking District waiting for the iPhone 6s. He was the first in line, slept in a fold-up cot for two nights, had pizza delivered to his spot and snagged $1000 for the gig. Samuel’s business joins dozens of “Ubers” like Lugg: Uber for Movers, Doughbies On-Demand: Uber for chocolate chip cookies, Minibar: Uber for alcohol and Breather: Uber for peace and quiet — all of which essentially allow customers to buy their way to the front.” (Source: The Uber-ization of everything: These guys make $1,000 a week standing in line – Salon.com)

The comments in the media are interesting. I haven’t read all of them, but two kinds of comments seem to be frequent: 1. Hey, these guys make a lot of money. (That’s good / too much). 2. Very clever business idea.

Critical comments might be hidden somewhere in my google search results, but seem not to be very frequent.  I think of comments like this: Do we want other people standing in line for us? How does this “uber-ization” change our society by changing the moral basis? Michael Sandel is asking questions like these in his book “What Money Can’t Buy:The Moral Limits of Market” (a summary you can  find here: http://tannerlectures.utah.edu/_documents/a-to-z/s/sandel00.pdf).

(See also my post about standing in line for others in Berlin: https://employmentrelations.wordpress.com/2015/07/10/kann-ich-einen-termin-fur-die-zulassung-meines-autos-kaufen-na-klar-optimale-allokation-uber-preise).