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[ox-en] Re: Material peer production

----- Original Message ----
From: Dmytri Kleiner <dk>
No, but specific or not, a economical system which does not provide

subsistence of free software developers, will have none eventually. 

specific or not, that's the crux of reciprocity vs. non-reciprocity

we have free software now, either because people get a wage to do it, this is simply free software in oekonux terms, just a license producing a commons; or you have doubly-free software, with programmers freely engaging in the project, which is peer production. These are not paid directly for their peer production, but indirectly, and yet we do have peer production. So the issue of existing or not is not the right phrasing, since we have it in conditions you say would not be possible. The better way to frame it: can it become more dominant or not, and this depends indeed on finding ways to sustain projects on the individual level, rather than today, just on the collective level. But it is important that the income is unconditional, if we want peer production to emerge; otherwise we have cooperative production functioning in a marketplace.

As far as I know, mostly from wage labour.

unless they are conditionally paid to do free software, which is wage
labour, not peer production,

Economically, "wage" is simply the income of labour.

that's not how I use it, I use it to mean the specific form of 'salary' given by capitalist enterprises conditional on the performance of dictated tasks. I guess we can have wages outside of capitalism (please explain then what you mean), and/or we can have other forms of income, such as a unconditional basic income.

In contrast, in peer production, producers work on a "commons" of
productive assets and retain control of their product,
thus it is not alienated.

if they work for a commons, the material must be freely available, and hence, it is difficult to obtain money from it; however, on top of the commons, you can create added value services which are not common and can be marketized; or you are paid for the labour of producing the commons, but not the end result of the commons itself

Thus, for something to be "peer production" the key fact is not

how they receive a wage (which somehow they must), but
whether or not they retain control of the circulation of their product.

No, that has nothing specific to do with peer production. Essential to peer production is the free engagement of the work, the participatory process of doing the work, and the universal availability of the output; the very fact that the 'product' is in the commons, means that it is in control of all who can use the commons, not just the producers, who in fact voluntary relinquish control. But they control their free engagement, the purpose of the work, participation in the productive process, etc... But not control of the circulation of the product, beyond the very general conditions specified in the open license. What it controls is essential the prohibition of private appropriation of the commons, not the usage.

Depends on the context, in endogenous gift relations among kin, 
transactions are not accounted, only relationships matter. 

that would be communal shareholding then; I'm living it right now in thailand; internally, the extended families have a very large part of non-reciprocal relations; the expectation is that when the giver is one day in trouble, he will equally be able to profit from the common pool, but most of it is given without expectation of specific reciprocity; I can give you many examples of that in my wife's family; it is very different from the dynamic of the gift economy, which is ritualized, based on an idea of symmetry and reciprocity.

The idea of one-to-one reciprocation on a per-transaction level is not
rather the overall relationship and the idea that everyone should

good definition of communal sharehoding, but the obligation to contribute is related to the physical nature of this type of commons; in immaterial production, there is no such expectation, and even passive use is welcomed, as it increases network effects

I didn't mean that Benkler uses the concept of the gift economy,

cites research showing that most developers of free software feel

from free software then they give, thus it is from their point view

The mere fact that you contribute a little, means that you get the whole commons at your disposal; furthermore, as you engage, you gain knowledge, relationships, reputation; and you may or may not get material benefits in the form of a job, but not specifically in that specific commons. Furthermore, the specific character of a commons mean that you can get a lof of benefits, since it is universally available, without specific contributions


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