We have long been used to observing the emergence of new work organisation patterns linked to the development of computer technology. Work distribution and organisation through digital platforms is the most obvious example of such process. We increasingly often see Foodora or Deliveroo riders, are interested in the services offered by Uber, or plan to give someone a ride through blablacar. Finally, we pay attention to the debate linked to the services offered in digital labour platforms such as Amazon Turk or Crowdflower. However, do these dimensions of the offer of goods and work activities represent truly innovative phenomena, also in the sense that they upset old patterns? Or do they stem from a long and controversial process of change in the nature of work? This paper will attempt to answer this question through an analysis of the historical patterns of contemporary work.