Backfeed, the Blockchain, and Value Systems in the Sharing Economy

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* Article: Blockchain and Value Systems in the Sharing Economy: The Illustrative Case of Backfeed.

By Alex Pazaitis, Primavera De Filippi, Vasilis Kostakis, published in: Technological Forecasting & Social Change. Available at:


"This article explores the potential of blockchain technology in enabling a new system of value that will better support the dynamics of social sharing. Our study begins with a discussion of the evolution of value perceptions in the history of economic thought. Starting with a view on value as a coordination mechanism that defines meaningful action within a certain context, we associate the price system with the establishment of capitalism and the industrial economy. We then discuss its relevance to the information economy, exhibited as the techno-economic context of the sharing economy, and identify new modalities of value creation that better reflect the social relations of sharing.

Through the illustrative case of Backfeed, a new system of value is envisioned, comprising three layers:

(a) production of value; (b) record of value; and (c) actualisation of value.

In this framework, we discuss the solutions featured by Backfeed and describe a conceptual economic model of blockchain-based decentralised cooperation. We conclude with a tentative scenario for blockchain technology that can enable the creation of commons-oriented ecosystems in a sharing economy."