Has the Gig Economy Jumped the Shark? | by Brian Wallace

People’s living, working, and spending habits have dramatically shifted over the past decade. After the Great Recession in 2008, people were in need of a quick-starting job to get back on their feet. The increase in unemployment spurred the rise of the gig economy, where people can be paid for temporary jobs such as providing specific services or items to their customers. While working gigs is not new, involving technology has made it easier than ever to offer freelancing opportunities. According to some estimates there are as many as 75 million participants in the U.S. gig economy, but are they all able to survive?

Gig workers are realizing that freelancing is a tough gig. Swelling numbers jumped on the gig bandwagon with many being forced to realize that surviving as a gig worker was not possible. Working in the gig economy comes with serious financial detriments such as impermanence, income unpredictability, and lack of benefits. Many workers don’t earn a living wage, and the pay for even the most active participants, say for workers of Uber or Lyft, have dropped significantly. Gig jobs may not be able to replace traditional work and with the progress in recovering the job market, people may be less willing to work as independent contractors. Learn more about the rise and potential fall of the gig economy from the infographic below.

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