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Passive income does not mean no effort. It means initial investment that pays off over time. For example, book sales or a portfolio of stock photos would be passive income.

My point is that if it takes so much effort, it's better to spend it on doing something you're not trying to avoid doing. You make more money and it's more satisfying, when the goal is not to stop doing it.

But I think people get a kick out of chasing passive income, because it gives them a sense of having "hacked" the system.

Trading time for money is already how it works. It's the default. There's nothing more satisfying about it. We've been doing it since we got our first job sacking groceries or folding sweaters. You're paid a fixed rate because you're not the one risking anything.

This isn't "The System". It's just the labor market.

    > My point is that if it takes so much effort...
So what? It takes effort. Everything does. Building something that produces value on your own whim takes effort just like satisfying the terms of a work contract or finding good contracting relationships in the first place.

Know what else takes effort? Building only what others pay you to build despite your ability to build anything. Not everyone is content with that. I reckon most of us don't consider that the height of our life ambitions, but the alternatives aren't as straightforward as dropping our CV into a dropbox. Hence this Ask HN submission.

Your posts are just selling some brand of status quo that we're already familiar with.

Chill out, danneu. You misunderstood me.

I'd be the last person to say don't build a business! I'm saying the opposite. Selling time does suck and selling a product or service is much better.

All I'm saying is that if that's what you want to do, then do it properly. Don't waste time on "passive" stuff. Actively build a business.

From my perspective, passive income is about having enough cushion, esp in the US where we have no safety net, so that we can work on stuff that is value over just money. I have lots of stuff I want to work on that other people would like, but is risky from an income standpoint. Passive income is our own version of "basic income" so we can pursue other things. Not winning or hacking the system.

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