Avoiding the South Side and the Suburbs: Thebault-Spieker et al., 2015

Thebault-Spieker and colleagues (2015) discuss the geographic factors influencing mobile crowdsource market “workers” and how these factors may affect the willingness of a participant to accept a work task on the mobile crowdsourcing market application “TaskRabbit”.

I found the article to be an interesting read, however I found that the authors could have made their geographic argument stronger. They could have have gone more in depth with regards to how task duration in relation to distance traveled affected people’s willingness to travel to the task. As well, I thought the authors could have discussed the MAUP with regards to their argument that census tracts with low reported household income (derived from aggregated point data) are disadvantaged in this market.

The authors admit that the study is limited by the fact that it was only conducted in one county. I wonder what their findings would be if they looked at areas that are smaller, such as rural communities. Would they find that socioeconomic status is no longer the driving factor of prices within the crowdsourcing market? Would they find that perhaps individuals with lower socioeconomic status are more self-reliant? From a sociological and economic point of view, I find the study to be very interesting. From a GIScience perspective, I find it has many logical holes and could be more rigorous, but it has promise nonetheless.



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