Soon, the days will come when a tech company comes along to pay people for sharing their own internal brainpower. The platform will surely be online, user-friendly and of course have a catchy logo--perhaps a simple illustration of a brain rigged up to look like an old parking meter. This brain sharing business must attempt to be ethical, and exhibit a solid business model. Done smartly, it could be the biggest thing since Uber (the ride sharing service). This will be a huge (literally mind-blowing) game changer for the way people make money and a social disruption to how people perceive the value of thought.
Those creating this business opportunity of renting out the brainpower of other people must craft their workloads with human safety in mind as a first priority. If not, morals, ethics, and anything else will be out the window for the general population and the results will be chaos. People sell themselves for all sorts of things: jobs they can't stand, giving plasma for cash, and of course, the longstanding practice of people selling other people for various duties. That latter category certainly does not serve the greater good; it is evil. But slavery is sadly a historical, and even ongoing, fact of life.
Ethics in Brain Tech Innovation
The concept of humans being paid to share their own personal brain power on an extra level will happen--it's just a question of exactly when and how. This is not merely the stuff of science fiction. The brain sharing business will either be as simple as paying someone per thought-task completed (probably in bitcoin) with accountability tracking built in, or the business may become as intrusive as actually being able to physically plug your mind directly into a larger electronic network and let that network pull some of your computational brain powers out of you while you are doing something else like watching television, driving somewhere, or making dinner.
These practices will have wide appeal, because they have the illusion of choice and empowerment, as in, "I am deciding to do this of my own free will because I need the money, plus it's about time someone paid me for all my untapped mind power!" That sounds promising, but I believe such a business also has the danger to produce all sorts of negative side effects from distraction to depression, or from anxiety to obsession if human rights and integrity are not at the center of the brain sharing business model and operating procedures.
For such a brain sharing business to work well for the good of all parties involved, there would need to be a lot of (you guessed it) thought that goes into it. Medical cases studies should also be conducted first. Why? Because people who work or go to school full time or raise kids during the day need their down time; it's a time to recharge, reflect, meditate, let the mind sift through the wonders of the day, and pray.
If such times of precious rejuvenation are eroded away by the lure of easy money in one's own down time, watch out! I believe all sorts of emotional challenges, social disorders, sleep disorders, or at least driving hazards will be created as people try to get extra thought-money generated while they're traveling or doing other such tasks that require being mentally present. There are even Bible verses that caution against people trying to do too much at once. King Solomon, famous for being the wisest man of his era, said "Better one handful with tranquility than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind" (Ecclesiastes 4:6). There is much to be said about the peace and quiet of simplicity.
However, if a brain renting business process could be created that remained truly ethical and kept human safety at the forefront, a number of disadvantaged groups mighty greatly benefit from these economic opportunities. For the underemployed, and the unemployed, and those who have been discriminated against by being cut off from the workforce (like many people with disabilities), sharing your brain power could create fresh streams of income, especially if the participant could actually earn a living wage while sharing their brain power without any negative side effects such as inability to concentrate, heightened anxiety, or seeing dead people.
As futurism eclipses hard reality, I can even see droves of people barely above the poverty line walking around with signs (or even tattoos) on their forehead that say, "This space for rent." With every new day, the hope is that more people will take charge of their own economic future. Some, of course, will inevitably charge more than others.