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ThatBritGuy:
No  but what's proposed is a system where people 'can't afford' a baby sitter, even though there may be other people sitting at home doing nothing, who would be willing if asked.

I'm not sure where you get that from?

Any member can get a baby sitter from the group any time simply by finding someone willing to baby sit and then issuing a Baby Hour credit to them afterwards. If the Baby Sit service user has a credit balance it's reduced by x Baby Hours or, if not, their balance goes x Baby Hours further into debit. This is fine, provided they are within their 'guarantee limit' - ie they haven't piled up an excessive debit balance by not doing at least some baby sitting.

ThatBritGuy:

What does the system add that (say) a simple needs/can/will online message board doesn't?

It's not security, because people can still default or abuse the system.

The system does indeed add security because the system 'Pool' of Baby Hours shares the costs of defaults - eg when a member leaves with a big debit balance - across the members collectively. I set out elsewhere on the thread how that works. People being people, defaults will happen, but I think that the system proposed above is superior to the conventional one in sharing the risk without unnecessary rentier profits.

If people abuse the system then after a while they'll find no counter-parties willing to baby sit for them, or have them to baby sit as the case may be. Someone I know who runs commercial barter systems told me how one of his members complained he couldn't find any counterparties willing to deal with him. My colleague pointed out to him that this may have had something to do with the way he fulfilled transactions, because no-one else had the same problem.  

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson

by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Tue Nov 17th, 2009 at 12:35:02 PM EST
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