Went to a great talk over the weekend by Michel Bauwens from the Peer to Peer Foundation. It was great to re-engage with many of the debates and discussions from my old information economy days again and to discuss these important topics with learned and interesting futures people. Thanks Chris Stewart for organising it. Some key points for me were:
- Citing Edelman Trust survey information that shows that insitutional trust is being supplanted by trusting in our peers and the need to move away from top-down messages to fostering P2P dialogue between consumers and employees.
- That we are moving from individuality to relationality
- That P2P production is not about incentives but of eliminating obstacles, that it is distributed and not decentralised, that it is transparent where all can see everything, and where communal validation is fundamentally anti-bureaucratic.
- That P2P production is post-capitalist and not anti-capitalist
- That new Web 2.0 technologies are reducing the demand for venture capital
- That for-profit organisations will always lost out against a non-profit P2P due to the volunteer approach of P2P and the intrinsic positive nature.
I loved his line that there are two aspects to the problems facing the world. One is that we see the real world as infinite when it really is finite (and hence we get resource depletion, etc). The other is that we see the immaterial world as finite when it really is infinite (by creating artificial scarcity over digital products).
Michel is coming out to Australia again in April 2008.