San Francisco, CA
ShareandSave.net was created as a contribution to the macro effects of sharing on our world. As I was peering into the possibilites, researching p2p networks, car sharing, house sharing, skillsharing and more, I recognized that that not only do most people not see the future like I do, they also don't have access to it. In writing, It's a Shareable Life, I realized that not every resource or website could be included in the book so I started building a website that would let the movement speak for itself and grow as the trend grows into a whole new economy.
Sharers of San Francisco Group
I also started an offline network of people who like to share in San Francisco, aptly called the Sharers of San Francisco. We have collaborative happy hours once a month and do coworking days around the city. The idea is to get people together who like to share in the hopes that they can help eachother one on one and these burgeoning companies grow faster.
Why do I care about sharing?
For me, the new sharing economy is the next evolution of humanity, using technology. I've been building websites since I was 14, profiting from helping people save money. Now I want to help them save money in more holistic way. Instead of people loving stuff, we're moving back toward people loving people. I've said it before and I'll say it again... the reason people begin to share is to save or make money, the reason they return is because it feels good. I want more people to know what it feels like to feel good and get their needs met.
How did I get here?
In 2006, I began coworking at NextSpace in Santa Cruz. This was the first time I felt at home being an entrepreneur. I'd finally found my tribe of misfits, unsatisfied with the status quo. Through coworking at NextSpace, I discovered what the ingredients of community are. I took this newfound knowledge on the road and through a solo Euro adventure where I found Couchsurfing and had many connective experiences with virtual strangers. That was the first time I saw the power of a truly online/offline community sharing resources and giving so much more than a couch or a place to stay or a shared experience. I was inspired and told everyone about it upon returning to my new home in San Francisco.
Fueled by my love for coworking, I found myself attending future of work conferences and making friends with many coworking space founders from around the world. Instead of opening my own space, I realized that I'm more passionate about coliving and group collaboration through innovation camp formats. My dream is to get a group of highly intelligent, future seeing entrepreneurs inspired to transform their world together in various destinations around the world. That's when Josh Schwartzman and I created Startup Abroad.
The first Startup Abroad trip will be fairly simple and is happening in Ubud, Bali in August of this year. Ask me about this if you want more details. I'm doing the trip by invite and application only.
Through researching Startup Abroad, I met many intuitive, community driven entrepreneurs interested in this idea of innovation camps and found the instigators Palomar 5 when I was last in Berlin. The plan is to create something like Palomar 5 on a more sustainable quarterly basis in different parts of the world, underlining international exchange and collaboration.
After returning from the Couchsurfing nexus, I met Alexandra Liss who was leaving for the shooting of One Couch at a Time, a documentary about Couchsurfing, traveling through more than 30 countries for 6 months on strangers couches. Our serendipitous meeting in a bar just 5 days before she was set to leave compelled me to join her a month later in France and Morocco. The film is still in production and editing and the scope has widened to cover the tranformative economy of sharing as well.
Alexandra was staying with a mutual friend upon returning from shooting, a Couchsurfing ambassador and very giving spirit, Gabriel Stempinkski. Upon many dinner meetings and late night philosophical and economic discussions, the three of us agreed that the next logical step for all of us was to contribute to this great force by writing a guide that helps people see how they can plug sharing into their everyday lives to pursue their dreams, save money, connect to their community and feel more in tune with others as opposed to stuff.
Thus, the three of us are in the process of writing, "It's a Shareable Life" due to be published in early Summer of 2012.