Top critical review
6 people found this helpful
A big fat zero
on 16 February 2015
This book is so badly written that several times I almost stopped reading it. I then skim-read most of it, and it doesn't deserve more. Clearly it isn't written by Rifkin but by a couple of reseach assistants, neither of whom arer good at writing simply in plain English. Nor has it been edited to reduce a lot of repetition and overlap in the chapters.
The internet of things is not nearly such a big deal as Rifkin makes out and a lot of the stats are almost irrelevant. The 'future of technology' is always different from what people like Rifkin predict.
The one big idea in the book, that the internet of things and associated technology will enable humans to increase the efficiency of their energy use from 13% towards 40%, is both madly optimistic and completely unjustified by any evidence or calculations.
The collaborative commons is indeed happening, but the most interesting stuff isn't to do with 'economics' at all, it's the redefinition of the artistic enterprise to define it, as it was until recently, as a gift.
The book is worth 50 or 60 pages: an essay. The rest is waffle, and badly written waffle too.