Physical and other contemporary limits to peer production (was: Re: [ox-en] Re: "At Cost")
- From: Stefan Merten <smerten oekonux.de>
- Date: Sun, 24 Aug 2008 22:15:19 +0200
Hi Michel and all!
2 months (75 days) ago Michel Bauwens wrote:
here's how I see the current dilemma:
- we already have a system of peer production, which in the immaterial
sphere, can outcompete the market or capitalism (while being incorporated
nevertheless in the global system)
- but, where physical production is concerned, having cooperatives work with
peer production (as I understand it, the voluntary mechannisms only work
when there is no cost recovery required, at present), might be preferable,
but not sufficient to find an alternative system.
As I wrote a few posts ago I think the reduction to physical
production is wrong. In fact I think it is the means of production
which play a major role here. This certainly needs further analysis
but it is clear that digital copy marked a big step forward in making
societal forms possible which were not able to be born before.
Effort from volunteers can be seen as one mean of production. Effort
we are not yet able to either automate away or to see as
Selbstentfaltung is probably where we need to rely on capitalism for
some time. Major steps forward in technology could help both of these
goals of course.
- in fact, peer production does not seem to lead to cooperative production
in the physical sphere (though some exist), but to forms of built-only
I do not fully understand what you mean by "built-only netarchical
enterprises". However, I wouldn't mind if peer production does not
lead to what leftists capitalist mind sets imagined as useful - aka
Do you think Free Software projects are cooperatives?
A general mechanism I see at work is that peer producing communities, based
on their relative strength of their own mechanisms and infrastructures, can
nevertheless exert preferntial pressure on collaborating business ecologies,
thereby creating at least a more ethical capitalism
But if we want more, how do we do it.
We needed ~20 years to spread the idea of Free Software to other
fields of peer production. In historical terms I'd say that was really
quick. May be we could just wait, try to understand things as they
happen and help others with our explanation to stay right on track.
Contact: projekt oekonux.de