Taking An Inside Look At Collaborative Consumerism

1236 words - 5 pages

Why waste money and material when people owning things they actually only need to use once or twice? The idea of ownership is shifting and becomes the idea of access or subscription instead of a one-time purchase. The innovation of technology made these ideas easy and fast by connecting consumers and created rating systems with the help of social networks and mobile technologies. Corporate America that contributed to over-consumption has raised global environmental and financial concerns. On the other hand, the rising trend of collaborative consumerism encourages eco-conscious ways to de-clutter over-consumption; it may have a negative impact on traditional corporate consumerism, but encourages ecofriendly entrepreneurships; it also improves human relationship by finding the power of community and connecting with each other; it is an optional lifestyle for individuals, and a major challenge for businesses and societies.
Corporate marketing controls and manipulates consumers’ appetites by using different advertising tactics. “Consumers are being scammed… Stores like Old navy and Ikea are duping millions, inspiring mass conformity while pretending to deliver high culture to the masses.” (Cave, p. 269) Customers that are attracted by big sale or discount signs in front of the store or TV media may end up buying too many unnecessary goods. Besides, online marketing is using technologies such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Data Mining systems to target consumers as “purchase funnels”, and the use of “shopping cookies” that pop up ads everywhere when people surf internet may be very annoying. Therefore, “as ads become more persistent and more customized, consumers are going to demand one place to opt out of everything.” (Learmonth, p. 284) The Federal Trade Commission and several consumer advocacy groups created a Do Not Track web application for internet users to control online advertisings that send all kinds of ads through text messages, emails, and social networks to lure avaricious consumers.
Collaborative consumerism may not be an improvement on traditional corporate consumerism because modern consumers have more power to control their appetite in a more rational way and be able to research detailed information of products through the internet. “Economy that is built on high consumption is a Ponzi scheme”, said by Rachel Botsman in her 2010 TED Talk on Collaborative Consumption. Even though we still can’t find enough statistics to prove that collaborative consumerism really impact the consumer behavior, but during the recent global recession, most traditional companies lose money, but companies such as Ebay, amazon, Dollar stores, Zipcar, Swaptree and McDonald which sells products that are more affordable were making good profits, so consumers keep changing their purchase habits in accordance with their external environment.
On the other hand, the business implementation of the concept may be an improvement for Online corporate...

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