Lessig describes the “Economies of Culture”

One of the most important conclusions that can be drawn from the work of Benkler, von Hippel, Weber, and many others is that the Internet has reminded us that we live not just in one economy, but at least two. One economy is the traditional “commercial economy,” an economy regulated by the quid pro quo: I’ll do this (work, write, sing, etc.) in exchange for money. Another economy is (the names are many) the (a) amateur economy, (b) sharing economy, (c) social production economy, (d) noncommercial economy, or (e) p2p economy. This second economy (however you name it, I’m just going to call it the “second economy”) is the economy of Wikipedia, most FLOSS development, the work of amateur astronomers, etc. It has a different, more complicated logic too it than the commercial economy. If you tried to translate all interactions in this second economy into the frame of the commercial economy, you’d kill it.

More on the “Economies of Culture” from Lawrence Lessig’s blog. Previously from WNM: Goldhaber’s “Attention Economy”


1 Comment

Filed under Technology, our Mirror

One response to “Lessig describes the “Economies of Culture”

  1. I often get the creeps when we get into black and white discussions like this. I think it reminds me of our ongoing attempts throughout history to define classes. Since I’m creeped, I shall read more!

    It certainly is a very convuluded thing to define, isn’t it?

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