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Re: [ox-en] Free market and the Internet

On Sun, 2 Feb 2003 oekonux wrote:

Thought I might add my 5 (Whuffie) cent about scarcity.

Our ability to produce apples is limited. 
While scarcity may become less and less of a problem it won't cease
to exist. And the trend could reverse as well (oil/water etc.)

And there are other areas of scarcity besides food and information:
medical attendance, front row places at a soccer match, villas in south france,
stuff like that.

Those might not be as important but they are and will be the source of rivalry
and therefore things that need to be handled by society and its economic system.

Other things that will very likely stay scarce:
	attention, reputation, respect etc.

Another example of the difference between scarceness and being rivalrous.
I'm not sure if the meaning of the word 'rivalry' is clear to German 
speakers - does anyone know the German word? In addition to it's general
meaning (as you used it above) it is an economic term, used especially in
'Welfare Economics', defined negatively: if something is 'non-rivalrous'
the consumption/use of it by one person has no effect on the 
consumption/use by other people. In many cases that means I can give 
you something non-rivalrous, and still have it myself. Examples are ideas, 
software, broadcast TV programs, etc.

Sorry if that was obvious, just thought there might be a potential 
language problem..

I don't know if it has been mentioned on this list but this seems like a good
time to refer to "Down and out in the Magic Kingdom", a book by Cory Doctorow
licensed under a Creative Commons license. It's about a society that
is based on an attention currency. Interesting read.
And imho rather relevant in regard to the way the Free Software community 

Cool, will read it....


The book:
German telepolis article:


P.S.: Although not quite as relevant, another free as in beer book: ... how scarcity might end.
I'd recommend to take the "easily offended" disclaimer serious.


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