I can’t believe they’re going to shut down ‘Plate Sharing’

This has got to to be the last straw. I say that in jest, you dont have to bring your own straw when you go out to eat but you do have to bring everything else.. plate, cup, glasses, knife, fork and spoon…. and your own napkin. Except in a few restaurants that have been trialing that sharing concept which is potentially going to revolutionize the way we eat out.

It’s a remarkable idea.

What they are doing is instead of everyone having to own and bring their own crockery and cutlery when they want to dine out, there is enough at each of the restaurants that you simply go there, they serve you the food on what they have, then they wash it and it can be used by the next diner.


At first people couldn’t believe it, I mean who would want to eat food off someone else’s plate – but ‘plate sharing’ as it has come to be known is really taking off. This is the kind of thing you expect here in San Francisco, always challenging the status quo, and reinventing the way things are done to make the system better and more convenient.


It all started with car sharing a few years back. This was the most obvious place to start really. Cars are big, take up lots of room, we only use them around 2 out of every 24 hours. At first people were skeptical ‘would people really share cars?” … now it’s pretty much taken over ‘owning a car’ and comes in a variety of different forms.


You have big players like Zipcar who let you simply rent a car as you need it but then you have even leaner players like Getaround who realise that some people want to own a car and others want to use them. So it’s more efficient to set up a car sharing between owners and renters. After that you saw the entry of people who didnt even want to drive and just wanted the convenience of getting from A to B sometimes, so businesses like Lyft and Sidecar setup to enable people who owned a car share the value of that car by providing the service of driving someone else.


But back to Plate Sharing. I’ve heard rumour that people are starting to do plate sharing within friends, families and neighbors. Basically if works like this. If someone comes over to dinner you just let them use the plates etc that you have and then you wash them up afterwards. I guess they copied that from Getaround. I don’t know if that’s for me yet, but we”ll see!


So, it amazes me with the success of Car Sharing, which is pretty much mainstream now, how the local governments are set to ban Plate Sharing. It’s obvious that this system is so much more efficient and convenient for everyone. It’s better on the environment too as the restaurants can wash everything centrally in one go, rather than each person having to handwash their own stuff when they get home individually. Some people say that it’s the powerful Cleaning Product lobby that’s behind it all, as they realise if people could share all this stuff then it would cause sales of their products to drop by around 30%.


I guess that’s the way the world works though.



This was a satire piece designed to highlight the proposterous and arbitary nature of what we can/should share and what we don’t in response to a prop to disallow ridesharing services like uber, Lyft and Side Car from operating in San Francisco and other cities. Clearly these services improve the system and have nothing but positive benefits for everyone, except the incumbent operators who could have easily re-invented themselves. Support ride sharing by signing this petition or respectfully emailing public.advisor@cpuc.ca.gov to state your support of ridesharing initiatives.



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