From temp positions to freelancing, people have been working short-term jobs forever. But it’s only within the last few years that we’ve begun to hear more and more about the “gig economy.” So, what is it? Generally defined as the sector of the service industry involving work done on a temporary basis, the gig economy has gained nearly one million workers in just 10 years. Recent advances in technology and a litany of benefits, like additional income, flexible hours, and self-management, are likely why it’s grown. Let’s explore this growth through three of the gig economy’s biggest players: Airbnb, Uber and Lyft.