It was supposed to be a leisurely brunch but Brittney Bedford was hard at work. By most people’s standards, Bedford does not have a job. By most people’s standards, she is also a workaholic. Bedford placed her iPhone between us on the diner’s Formica table. Every other minute it vibrated with a new notification from the many apps that fill her working life. “My office is my phone,” she told me, one eye on the screen of her scratched iPhone. Bedford makes her living solely through sharing economy platforms. The 27-year-old Oakland resident rents out a spare room on Airbnb. She sells second-hand clothes on Poshmark. She dogsits on DogVacay. She runs errands and does chores on TaskRabbit. Between mouthfuls of scrambled egg, Bedford flicked through new TaskRabbit postings and Airbnb enquiries. “This is my job so I try to be as professional as possible,” Bedford told me. She explained how 80-hour working weeks are common and how she and her husband have been trying to take a day off for over a month.
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