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The Future of Crowdsourcing Explained
The Japanese Population Needs Your Expertise!

Freelancer Research

Japan's population

FThe old and the older


If you have some time, take a look at the full article posted above. This graph however, already says a lot about Japan’s population. In the 1950’s, the population was supported properly by the younger generation, actually looking like a pyramid. Glancing at the 2055 forecast, the diagram no longer looks like a pyramid, but rather an irregular ice cream cone. The major problem with this is how future generations will not be able to support their elders. Pension rates will skyrocket in the future and not enough babies are being born to support the top heavy population. What does this mean exactly?

We need Freelancers like you who can help out

I know many of you may be thinking, “Crowdsourcing” is just another fad and will die out some day. You might think large corporations are going to be here forever, employing large amounts of people as their official employees. This concept may be right however; a lot of news articles and individual companies have proven that crowdsourcing is here to stay. Of course these large corporations will probably never really “die out”, making a big impact on our lives. What’s important is how crowdsourcing is changing the way we perceive and do work. Nowadays, a ton of companies are outsourcing their various projects and tasks to freelancers or private clients to make their use of time more efficient. Why work on something and spend hours and hours, when you can shorten that and ask someone who’s an expert on it??

Articles on the Future of Crowdsourcing

Evaluation on crowdsourcing research: Current status and future direction

Looking at various articles about the future of crowdsourcing, it seems very promising. In a research article posted by two Nanjing University professors, they discuss the current status and future direction of crowdsourcing. Within the article, they state that crowdsourcing can “facilitate the connectivity and collaboration of people, organizations, and societies.” This in mind, everyone can and has the potential to plug in important information to the pool. It focuses on the point that competence and expertise can be mobilized, creating efficiency within the workplace. Regarding the future, they believe that from a participants view,
“Participation in crowdsourcing projects can provide individuals with more chances to get noticed, sharpen their creative skills, and strengthen a sense of community.” While from an organization’s perspective, “Crowdsourcing can provide organizations richer content and better solutions in a creative and cost-effective way from a diverse crowd than what may be possible within an organizational unit or function. This model of opening up the boundaries of an organization to tap knowledge of external entities increasingly becomes a source of competitive advantage for organizations in various fields.” As for the future, it’s evident that cost minimization for organizations will be key, meaning that crowdsourcing is here to stay.
From a freelancer’s point of view, because these organizations will be using this business model, there will be more work for them. It's really just the start for freelancers!

Crowdsourcing as a Solution to Distant Search

Taking a look at another article,
( ) Allan Afuah, a professor from Michigan explains the importance of crowdsourcing and how it can offer a business solution: Transforming a distant search into a local search effectively and with low cost. This is probably the number one thing businesses look for nowadays. In the case of crowdsourcing, using the large number of registered users or simply the Internet, a distance search for a specific task or skill instantly becomes a local one. In this day and age, many different companies and organizations are realizing that crowdsourcing is the best way to go about their tasks. The article talks about Netflix for example.

Netflix, a website that allows you to watch movies and TV shows, recently wanted to improve their existing recommendations system algorithm by at least 10%. Who did they look to complete this task? Yes, the crowd. By asking anyone in the world to solve their problem for them, not only were they able to find the best candidate quickly, but they were able to market their company also. Within the article, Afuah mentions that

“In particular, we argue that under certain circumstances crowdsourcing transforms distant search into local search, thereby enabling firms to enjoy the many benefits of distant search without having to endure many of its costs. Therefore, crowdsourcing may be a better mechanism than either internal sourcing or designated contracting for solving problems for which solutions require distant search.”

Regarding the future, again it’s pretty simple. With so many companies realizing that crowdsourcing is solving many of their impossible tasks, it’s only a matter of time before many large corporations will start using this business model. From a freelancer’s point of view, if you complete tasks posted by large corporations, this may even possibly lead you to working for them full time. Either it be that you’re trying to show case your skills and want large companies to notice you or you want to earn extra money, one thing is certain.

Crowdsourcing is linked to the future for how businesses will succeed. By becoming a freelancer in your free time, you’re helping these companies succeed, while also building your portfolio/skills.

Here are a few examples of interesting and innovative companies that are using “crowdsourcing” to market their brands! As a freelancer, it’s important to know there a ton of companies out there that require your help. In this day and age, freelancers are the key to survival for these companies. WORKSHIFT being one of them!

This company focuses on work submitted by artists all around the world, often times using their ideas instead of coming up with their very own. It’s an interesting approach to say the least, but in terms of ecommerce, it’s doing extremely well. The business model uses the idea, “Why try to create something special within our company, when millions of artists are already wanting to do exactly that?” Besides, the artists can express themselves in any way they wish, creating more diversity and awesome designs (t-shirt competition).

The company started in 2000, with the owner(Jake Nickell) plugging in $1000 of his own money. Now in 2015, revenue has rocketed beyond belief, reaching 40 million dollars within just the year of 2015.

With this in mind, Nickell made “crowdsourcing” an essential part of his company mindset. He says, “There’s absolutely no way I could have had this much growth with just the help of my company employees. My decision to focus on crowdsourcing and ask the global artists has helped me reach this point.”

To sum it up, it’s evident that freelancers are important within this business realm. If you had the idea that crowdsourcing and freelancing is a dying art, this company definitely proves otherwise.

This website has made headlines recently by having investors such as actor Will Smith and co-founder of Twitter, Jack Dorsey. The sleek and simple design of the webpage sets it ahead of other ecommerce sites, making it very easy to navigate between pages. Users are able to select exactly where they wish to go, browsing the many different choices that are available in that section.
“The Fancy, which describes itself as "part store, blog, magazine and wish list", allows users to post photos of products they "fancy" and buy products that other people fancy directly from the site. The most fancied products get automatically promoted to the top of the website, and The Fancy takes a 10% cut of purchases.” – The Guardian

As seen above, the site uses crowdsourcing to figure out the tastes of their users, which saves them tons of time. It creates a hassle free environment for the employees at Fancy, because their user base is determining many of the products on the page. Users can use the site to post things that they want to sell also, using the large registered customer base to benefit themselves further.

Just like Threadless, Fancy focuses on their interactions with users(freelancers). Without the large user base, the site wouldn’t be able to function like it does. Once again, the future looks bright for crowdsourcing and freelancers in general!