A new crop of websites and smartphone applications are allowing people to farm out chores to a growing army of temporary personal assistants. These micro-employees are taking the division of labor to once-unthinkable extremes.
One recent advertisement on TaskRabbit sought someone to play a joke on a friend who’s a customer-service representative. “It’s his bday today, and we need someone that will make a prank call multiple times each hour for a 4 hour time period,” read the ad. “The goal is to keep him on the phone as long as possible.”
Thousands of unemployed or underemployed workers have parlayed one-off job requests into part- or full-time work. The gigs are especially popular with stay-at-home moms, retirees and students. Workers choose their jobs and negotiate their own rates.
Photo by kingeroos.