Brazilian System for the Solidarity Culture

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* Paper: Fora do Eixo Card: The Brazilian System for the Solidarity Culture. By Bruno Poljokan, Lenissa Lenza et al.




"The following paper aims at introducing the Fora do Eixo Card, a solidarity economy system that gathers different complementary currencies from the Circuito Fora do Eixo, a network composed by collectives of cultural production – hereby known as Fora do Eixo Collectives(FEC) – present in 26 out of the 27 Brazilian states. With the drastic changes in the music industry over the past couple of decades, mainly after the introduction and popularization of the internet, we observe in Brazil the rise of collectives of cultural production, seeking the development of a solid and relevant local independent scene. The network began in 2005, through the connection between 4 collectives – from thestates of Mato Grosso, Acre, Minas Gerais and Paraná, which are out of the social economical axis of Rio de Janeiro-São Paulo. The FEC work as self managed ventures that manage to keep activities at it’s fullest as a productive segment as well as a cultural movement, by systematizing the exchanges between agents of the cultural production chain. Through the experiences of Espaço Cubo from Cuiabá (Mato Grosso), which organized anexchange system and a creative currency called Cubo Card, the rest of the FECs begin to implement this technology, organizing a nationwide trade system composed by different complementary currencies, becoming a solidarity economy system.With the network’s growth – in number of agents as well as volume of collaborative activities and productions – the need to create a national system to organize and optimize service and product as well as technology and knowledge exchange became evident and necessary to amplify the network’s reach. The Fora do Eixo Card system, set as a line of work that manages the relation between the different general areas, composed by the political, communication and bank, working the sustainability of the network. Through the Fora do Eixo Bank, rises the Fora do Eixo National Fund, managed by a counsel formed by the areas that compose the Fora do Eixo Card. In addition to organizing and accounting the whole work force, products and services provided by all the FECs, the Fora do Eixo Bank also works as a catalyst of the development of every FEC, in order to facilitate the financial sustainability of each FEC by establishing solidarity, trust and cooperation in these Creative Local Network. In a general way, financial processes involved in associative and collaborative actions based on the principals of Solidarity Economy, manage to stimulate thecreation and growth of the network, consolidating the network.This paper’s goal is to present this system’s birth, development and present stage of the Forado Eixo Card. In section Circuito Fora do Eixo, the history of the network is presented. In Fora do Eixo Card Methodology, we will discuss the relation between the complementary currencies and the agents of the network, through the Fora do Eixo National Fund.

Music Market – Brazilian Background

The world music market went through many changes throughout the 90’s, with portable computing and the Internet reach in modern society. In Brazil, looking back into that market,we realize that in the 70’s there was a clear fight between the military dictatorship and the artistic class, especially the musicians and writers, who composed protest texts and lyrics, as well as participating in the political action to reestablish the democracy. In the end of the 80’s with the weakening of the military power resulting in the shift to a democratic system,the artist class cannot visualize a clear fight, finding themselves in a marked composed by Mainstream and an Underground scene.The mainstream, composed by few players, following a “Winner takes it all” logic, having media power and supplying the masses with music. Simultaneously, many artists, producers,labels and record companies that weren’t a part of the privileged group, structure alternative scene – the Underground – composed by few spaces that lacked structure to support live presentations and artists that would play anywhere, to show their work in order to make it to the Mainstream. In the underground market, there were producers from peripheral states, out of the Rio deJaneiro-Sao Paulo socioeconomical center, that still weren’t on the national music scene and had to work hard in order to create one in their cities.The mainstream is sustained by 3 high costs that any artists would have to deal with in order to become a star: production, promotion and distribution. In the financial side, it’s income came mostly from two sources, the sale of products and live presentations. It was a capital driven market, focused on the final product of the musical process. During the 90’s, some events happened that caused structural change in this market,changing not only the drivers of the market, but also the focus of the industry.First of, the high costs and sources of income of the Mainstream increasingly drop in the last 15 years, as a result of the fact that with a personal computer with internet access the artistcan produce, promote and distribute their music, shifting the driver of this market to human and technological capital.The rise and fall of Napster is a symbolic event to look at. When the Mainstream players sued Napster, it lost an opportunity to start charging for downloads, and watched the free sharing culture the Internet has brought.In the underground market we watch cultural producers and independent artists get a very useful tool to develop their local scenes and to attain a national attention. The independent producers go from social economical isolation to being able to connect with other producers and begin exchanging artists, products and social technology.

The simultaneous strengthening of the underground and weakening of the mainstream results on the creation of a third market, between the other two. This market, the independent, is median artist, producer, label, and record company market following the Long tail logic. The independent market is neither the underground, where the artist has a second job, nor the mainstream, where he would ride limos and pack stadiums." (

More Information

  1. Fora do Eixo
  2. Fora do Eixo Card
  3. Espaco Cubo