What is simbi?
Simbi is a website that serves as a marketplace for its community members. Verified users offer their own services and request the services of others. Transactions may take place using simbi currency which is only usable within the community or services may be exchanged. Simbi is short for symbiotic and the founders were looking to create a symbiotic economy based on human capital.
When you first sign up for an account (as of today – if you find that this has changed, please let me know so I can update this review), you are gifted 50 simbi and you get another 50 for offering your first service and another 25 for completing your first deal. They walk you through a process to get you to think about what it is that you may be able to offer based on skills, hobbies, interests, resources, etc. This means you can get 2 hours of reiki from me for just signing up and offering a service! (hint, hint)
The website claims that over 60,000 services are currently offered from members and it seems to have healthy growth. The majority of services I have seen offered tend to be information including books, alternative healing and graphic or website design. I have found haircut, photography and handyman services available near me also.
One thing I find really interesting about simbi is that there is no set value for the simbi currency. It is solely up to each member. I personally am placing the value at 1 simbi equal to 1 minute of my time, which makes its buying power greater than a dollar. This seems to be a pretty consistent pricing throughout the community, but some are cheaper and some are much more expensive in terms of simbi.
Personally, I love simbi. I have had wonderful interactions with people I would not have met otherwise and was given the opportunity to share things I truly enjoy doing. I love that it is a cashless economy based on symbiosis. We see this principle throughout nature with flowers and honeybees and clownfish and anemones.
It is a social economy that encourages each member to review the exchanges that have taken place as a natural part of the process. It should be common sense for you to only offer something that you are good at as you will develop a bad reputation if you do not offer quality. This makes simbi a great place to offer a hobby that you enjoy doing, even if it is just offering to help another member move.
What are the risks of simbi?
There is no money, so losing cash is not a risk. The community will only be as strong as the members that comprise it and from what I’ve seen I anticipate a bright future for the community. The one risk I do see is that you may acquire a lot of simbi and then the community either fails or is shutdown from outside coercion, but this can be hedged by utilizing the simbi that you have earned.
Who should use simbi?
My answer is everyone, but you should have an idea of a service you would like to offer as you will only get out of simbi what you put into it. This does not need to be approached as a business, although you can certainly offer business related services.
Offer something that you love to do. If you love to clean, offer cleaning services. If you love to make jewelry, offer some pieces that you have made. If you love to play guitar, offer to teach lessons or play a gig.
How Do I Use simbi?
It really is simple to use. You need to create an account, offer a service and look for services that you would like to use yourself. All transactions are negotiable and using the simbi currency is not a requirement – you can simply exchange services – the currency is to make it easier for everyone to use the services that they personally want to use.
I encourage you to join and see what it is for yourself. Check it out here. I would love to hear about your experience with simbi and please, if you have any questions, just ask them in the comments below. One you have signed up, you can find my offer for an hour of reiki here.