Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Allyn Bualnadi vs Pierre Tankoua. PBA IMAGESMANILA, Philippines—Valencia City Bukidnon-San Sebastian punched its ticket to the playoffs after a 96-92 comeback win in double overtime over Metropac-San Beda in the 2019 PBA D-League Tuesday at JCSGO Gym in Cubao.JM Calma made the game-sealing basket off a pass from Ken Villapando with 14.5 seconds left to give the Stags their sixth win in seven games.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated MOST READ SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess View comments DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Boxing chiefs hit out at IOC over Tokyo threat “Everybody stepped up even the players who played limited minutes. Credit goes to the whole team. They were all composed in the last part of the game,” said San Sebastian coach Egay Macaraya in Filipino.Allyn Bulanadi led the way with 32 points, eight rebounds, five assists and five steals while RK Ilagan fired 31 points that went with six rebounds, five assists and four steals for the Stags, who trailed, 34-14, early. Calma finished with 12 points.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsIlagan nailed the game-tying basket with 41 ticks to go in regulation to force the first overtime.Donald Tankoua posted a double-double with 20 points and 14 rebounds for the Movers, who squandered a golden opportunity to secure a twice-to-beat edge and instead fell to third in the Foundation Group with a 6-2 record.
Airbnb—the room rental company that does not own any rooms—has just sued the city of New York. Why? This is because the city has introduced a bill to penalise anyone who rents out their apartment for less than 30 days. This would effectively kill Airbnb’s business, which makes every household owner a potential hotelier. Airbnb provides an online listing system—anyone who owns a house, or many properties can rent out space. The business cuts into the profits of conventional hotels who have to buy land, build rooms and take care of the establishment. In Airbnb’s case, the costs are low and distributed. More importantly, thousands, even millions, of rooms suddenly become available, which eat into the market of house rentals or hotels. Airbnb is, not surprisingly, hitting old business, which also is hitting back. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfIt is also difficult to regulate. Just think. How do city governments control millions of property owners who have become instant hoteliers? Airbnb argues that its reputational system, where owners and guests rate each other, regulates the informal market. Governments disagree. Airbnb is fighting similar battles in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin and even in its hometown of San Francisco, and the list is growing. Uber—the taxi service that does not own any cars—has similar battles on hand. Uber, and others like it, have turned every car owner into a potential service provider. All that Uber does is to aggregate these millions of car owners who have overnight become taxi drivers. This is why it can reduce costs and work the market—drastically undercut the market price and drive regular taxi service into the red. All this without owning a single car. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveUber and its variants are facing tremendous hostility from the old business. I saw this at close hand when the Supreme Court of India directed that all taxis, including those run by aggregators like Uber or Ola, should convert to CNG. This was done to reduce Delhi’s runaway air pollution. But the result of this seemingly simple order was out and out war. All taxi owners—from the black and yellow, radio taxi, to the tourist taxi and all India tourist taxi—converged at the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (I am a member of it), which is required to oversee the implementation of the Supreme Court’s direction. They had only one demand: stop Uber and Ola. Our objective was different—to regulate the fuel used by taxis and not to stop their operations. But regulation is a challenge. In the very first meeting, the police informed us that they are helpless. They could not identify the taxi—every car had become a taxi. Uber and Ola told us that they were not taxi operators—only aggregators. In fact, their companies are registered as information technology providers. They were also not responsible for anything—customers hired cars using their platform and rated the service provided by drivers. The Delhi government had issued guidelines, which would curtail the operations of such aggregators, but Uber challenged this in the court. Finally, after weeks of protracted discussions, and often violent disagreements, it was agreed that all taxis, including those listed with the aggregators, would run on CNG. But all other issues, including the contentious issue of surge pricing, remained unresolved. Governments in India and abroad are battling with taxi operators and technology companies to formulate these rules. But why am I writing this now? The fact is Airbnb and Uber are part of the inevitable change in our future. The reason is that the modern world has formalised its economy to the point that it has become unviable. The brick-and-mortar world requires massive infrastructure, and this then requires regulations to ensure that all this operates within rules. The cost of regulations is also high and adds to the cost of running the economy. In my view, Uber and Airbnb are undercutting this world—by making the best use of the individual’s assets. In both cases, they are optimising existing resources—the cars and houses people own—to make more money and share the profits. But most importantly, these businesses are working the informal space. They are doing this to reduce costs and to expand opportunity. This is where we need to think further of what our world is about. In countries like India, informal business is the existing order of the day. Everything—from collecting sewage from homes, recycling garbage to providing transport in our cities—is managed by millions of myriad informal businesses. But we do not consider it part of our future. Worse, it defies regulation as we know it today. So, it must go. But given that the formal economy comes with costs, we cannot replace this informal and thriving business. But to kill it we neglect it; make it illegal, and altogether despise it. But still, it stays. We just can’t make it work. So, is it time we thought of a different business future? Let’s discuss this again.(The writer is Editor of Down To Earth magazine. Views expressed are strictly personal.)