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Micropay contract - Ed's journal
sobrique
sobrique
Micropay contract
OK, so I had this vaguely odd notion enter my brain on the way home from work.
Micropayment contract work.
The idea being that there's some kind of brokerage site, that facilitates 'short duration mini-contracts'. I'm thinking primarily IT related, but there's not really any specific reason why that needs to be so.
So you'd post a request and a figure for the work.
Someone else would accept, and upon delivery get the pay.
But with emphasis on making it 'short and simple' such that you've room to do this kind of thing all ad-hoc in free time or use it as a sequence of mini-jobs that pays you a full time wage.
I'm not entirely sure how you'd get it to work just yet, as ... well, all too often task requests are a bit vague. And that's even before you get into considerations like 'what happens if they don't deliver' and other things like privacy concerns.

But what do you reckon? Would that be something vaguely interesting? Something where you could post an ad-hoc 'someone code me this little snippet to do xyz' or 'put together a spreadsheet for me to track some daily hours' type requests?
And in turn, pick them up, do a couple of hours work, and get paid?

I think what'd have to happen is big simplification of posting requests/paying people for their work, and some kind of mechanism to restrain pisstaking, but ...
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Comments
mister_jack From: mister_jack Date: February 2nd, 2009 04:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
www.rentacoder.com ?
sobrique From: sobrique Date: February 2nd, 2009 04:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hmm, indeed. Something quite like that. I was thinking more in terms of more generic IT support/implementation type things, but ... yeah.
jorune From: jorune Date: February 2nd, 2009 05:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
I believe that Bruce Sterling featured this idea in his 1992 novel Snow Crash. Well worth a read.

I think his version of the idea extrapolates on the idea of skills based ACD's (Automatic Call distributors) to a fully fledged skills market/exchange. You log into the market with your skills and availability and the market then matches buyers and sellers to find the right price/skills/duration. Sterling positioned it as a common social phenomenon that was universally known and trusted by buyers and sellers. The market provided universal contracts that all participants accepted as default.

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jorune From: jorune Date: February 2nd, 2009 07:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes, Stephenson was the author, I got the wrong name from a list. I can recently recall reading it in a book but perhaps not the one mentioned.
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sobrique From: sobrique Date: February 4th, 2009 10:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'mn looking at getting started with his stuff. Which of his books would you recommend to a first timer?
From: linamishima Date: February 2nd, 2009 04:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
I was about to say that many such coding services exist :P

However I think the idea has a lot of merit, especially with respect to IT support, administration and services. Such things are typically offered by contractors, so I suppose the idea is to make it more task-based than time based (most I know charge per hour), and set up a scheme to ensure a good enough flow of tasks and people able to complete them.
mcnazgul From: mcnazgul Date: February 2nd, 2009 06:11 pm (UTC) (Link)

A sort of IT-based Global Frequency?

Could be entertaining if only to see the Excel-based flamewars rising up... and the specification horrors which are handed in for processing by the managerial monkeys with no idea of what it does.

Wonder if there's a market for LOLspec?

There are numerous invoicing/time-tracking systems including Ronin which may provide a basis for such a beast, were you to bring it to fruition.

You could subcontract to HalfLife/WoW/EVE clans between upgrades!
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