[p2p-research] Building Alliances (P2P Theory status)

Paul D. Fernhout pdfernhout at kurtz-fernhout.com
Sat Nov 7 03:28:45 CET 2009

Ryan Lanham wrote:
> Hi Stan,
> P2P theory is a mess...in a postmodern sense.
> The heat to light ratio is very high right now.  I'm personally looking for
> someone to emerge as the clear post-scarcity theorist.  Right now, it is
> muddled.  But maybe...  Every few days I think I can make some sense of
> it...but it slips away.  It is very difficult to get to a moral philosophy
> that aligns with a respectable futurism.
> A lot of what is being said is rather tired socialism/communism that simply
> won't compel any but those it compels...which is a very small minority.
> I like Kevin Carson's stuff because it makes sense.  I don't find it morally
> compelling, but it makes sense.
> The rest is increasingly just mess.  I'm not sure there is any meaningful
> set of topics or discourse...but the times are very difficult and evolving
> very fast.  Sensemaking is hard.  Right now I would suggest P2P theory is
> collapsing.

Around CMU's robotics labs in the 1980s people said there were those with 
theories about intelligence, and there were those with working code, and the 
two were never found together. :-)

But, as Michel suggested:
peer to peer is the permissionless aggregation around the creation of common 
value, whereby people can freely contribute, and share in the proceeds of 
that common creation
   it is both different from the capitalist market, and from stalinist state
socialism (or state capitalism, as other would say).
   it has clearly a space today within the context of capitalist markets, 
more so than it did in totalitarian statist societies, which usurped the 
commons totally.

That seems straightforward to me.

So, I'm a little confused about what you think is the theoretical problem?

--Paul Fernhout

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