Tuesday, January 28, 2003

The Third Place

Somedays you come across a bunch of links that seem to be all pointing at the same thing, the same big thing in flaming neon writing, 30 metres high.

A quote from a quote: "Benkler suggest that we are seeing the broad and deep emergence of a new, third mode of production in the digitally networked environment. He calls this mode “commons-based peer production,” to distinguish it from the property- and contract-based modes of firms and markets. Its central characteristic is that groups of individuals successfully collaborate on largescale projects following a diverse cluster of motivational drives and social signals, rather than either market prices or managerial commands." A followup article lists the problems with intellectual honesty and control in the field of Natural Language Processing.

The paper is "Coase’s Penguin, or, Linux and The Nature of the Firm". His other papers present very much the same view of Lessig and others (and predates many) such as open spectrum and building commons for intellectual property. I'd actually check the references to Lessig's book if they both weren't on loan (irony intended).

In Cory Doctorow's interview he claims that money is a form of Whuffie (brownie points, how much esteem you have garnered). Of course, having 50,000 downloads is quite a lot of Whuffie too.

Another person who lives off of Whuffie is Esther Dyson: "From the business point of view--not to overstate it--intellectual property is dead; long live intellectual process. Long live service; long live performance. The intellectual assets should be distributed for free, and then you should use them as advertising to charge for speaking, consulting, for software support--for T-shirts. The Lion King is great advertising for T-shirts, baseball caps, lunch boxes. To me Java [software] is advertising for Sun Microsystems."
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