People can now sell their time to investors even though many believe the value of this time cannot be accurately evaluated and will only promote human inequality. This concept of trading people’s time is an initiative by Human IPO.
Tristan Pollock is a member of Human IPO where people put their time on sale and other people invest in them by buying this time. His time is currently valued at about $180 which is a 20% increase from where he set off.
Pollock only recently went public on the Human IPO platform as a startup investor. Human IPO makes it possible for people to put up to 500 hours of their time on sale.
Their time is tradable on the open market in terms of shares defined by the value of one hour of their time.
They set the price of their time themselves then leave investors making their analyses on whether or not the value of their time would rise or crash.
The value of a person’s time is dependent on the current market situation at the time.
Human IPO was founded by Vlas Lezin and Kirill Goryunov. The idea was birthed as a result of a conversation that suggested that the people of a company are the company’s greatest asset. Goryunov had years of experience in the tech industry, spending most of his working time at Google. Lezin was VP at Wells Fargo and Goldman Sachs.
These two men went ahead to launch Human IPO on a relatively low key. The tagline clearly expressed that the purpose of the company was to help people invest in the potential of other people.
Human IPO was the recipient of mixed reactions with many people referring to it as polished modern-day slavery.
The criticisms got significantly more intense after a post on Product Hunt went public backing that belief.
The co-founders of Human IPO were shocked by this and apologized to everyone who saw a negative side to their idea.
However, they went on to explain how entrepreneurs usually do want to put their ideas up for sale on the open market.
They went further; reminding people of how investors would sometimes rather invest in the founder of a copy, and not the company itself.
At the time of making these statements, they had over 1,000 people willing to invest their resources in entrepreneurs and over 600 entrepreneurs looking to be invested in.
As of today, entrepreneurs set the price of their time, but the co-founders are currently working on a system and algorithm to determine the value of a person at any point in time.
This value becomes the “stock price” of the person in question and will be based on data from Glassdoor and LinkedIn profiles. Lezin highlights that a similar algorithm is used in determining the value of a company.
Along with his partner, Goryunov, he had set out to define a formula that could accurately calculate the value of humans.
This formula would be designed to estimate the value of people’s time. For good reason, the co-founders didn’t disclose core details of their algorithm but they say it will factor how much experience a person has in a particular industry along with the likely rate of progression of the person’s career, whether or not they appeared on the “30 under 30” list published by Forbes.
The “Black Lives Matter” movement had people setting their eyes on Human IP and questioning whether they have considered the possibility of their algorithm valuing a particular class of people higher than another, by default.
Human IPO is active in various countries and it cannot be ignored that there’s a possibility of preference towards the more developed countries.
Lezin responded to this explaining that he understands the wealth gap but that algorithm would strictly be focused on the non-natural features of an individual.
However, even though Lezin promises that the model will be agnostic, really isn’t agnostic. The algorithm is based on a person’s value in the business space.
But this value is dependent on factors that are influenced by bias. Minority groups and women are generally paid less than white men.
In addition, venture capitalists claim to invest only in founders that they believe to have the greatest potential but history shows us they believe in white men, basically.
At a time, Human IPO’s homepage featured about twelve men and two women. Of all the people on this page, only two weren’t living in the United States, and just one person wasn’t white.
This has since changed after the co-founders were alerted to it. They claim that it was a representation of their early users and wasn’t some sort of demeaning concept towards the minorities. Today, there is more diversity on Human IPO’s homepage.
Lezin explained that Brett Lockett; an ex-NFL player and business consultant, was one of the newer faces to appear on the homepage.
He’s a black man who was careful and questioned how the company was valuing people’s time before deciding to go public on Human IPO’s page.
He didn’t want to spread a message until he was sure that the company would be fair to all.
In response to Brett, Human IPO recalled Fantex Holdings, a company that paid in advance to professional athletes for a portion of their earnings in the future.
Arian Foster, who was a running back for Houston Texans, was the first athlete to go public. He sold 20% of his future earnings in exchange for $10 million in 2013.
Years later, Fantex had fewer appearances in the business space but their model still exists today.
Paying students with great potential is another example of this kind of investment. Companies cover their tuition fees and get a pre-defined percentage of the student’s future earnings.
Criticisms have risen against this model with many focusing on their unethical nature and negative economic impacts.
Many believe that income sharing is a polished form of servitude and others believe that the revenue that can be made from the stock market is far greater than what can be made through this model.
However, having minutes with a person who’s likely to blow up before they do has a stronger appeal than money to many people, including Lockett.
Although Pollock plans to invest in people, he says he hasn’t bought anyone’s time yet. He claims to be holding on for more people to join the platform – people who would likely need his help more than the people already on the platform who seem to be doing quite well.
He believes Human IPO is an incredible way to invest in a person and help them develop a platform.