[p2p-research] 10 Boundary Statements about P2P and Social Justice

Paul D. Fernhout pdfernhout at kurtz-fernhout.com
Sat Nov 7 21:21:31 CET 2009


This would be more powerful/informative if you had a little story or example 
(paragraph length) to go with each point. Then the long and abstract words 
would be grounded in example from which we could induce the principle (I 
tent to agree with Andrew that the mind works mostly from induction).

Also, there seems an assumption here that P2P is by necessity mutually 
exclusive of a strong government or other strong hierarchies (or, even the 
market). As I point out here, per Manuel de Landa, meshworks and hierarchies 
can logically co-exist.

As I mentioned before, I might question #3 on two grounds:
* free riders may not be a problem (except to their own self-esteem or 
social standing, see Hogan's Voyage from Yesteryear, for example)
* voluntary may be ideal, but, for example, would not getting rid of 
existing copyright law (or reducing it to three years) be an "involuntary 
sharing" that might make us all better off?

By the way, this really opened my eyes to how nice sounding words may hide 
"Principles and Sources--The Hidden UU Creedal Test"

And I say that as someone whose always liked UUs and spent much time around 
them. :-)

So, consider your point #7 (respects the individual) and contrast with 
complaints here about this phrasing (not the same, but just to get some ideas):
   "The inherent worth and dignity of every person"

Also, personally I would put in the word "security" somewhere, especially in 
the context of preferring mutual intrinsic security over unilateral 
extrinsic security. :-) For example, I'd rather see us all globally having 
local renewable energy production than have vast armies and lots of nuclear 
missiles all deployed to protect long oil supply lines from terrorists or 
conquerors. Not sure if it fits in though. :-) But the commons in general is 
about mutual security and intrinsic security, so I think that should fit 

--Paul Fernhout

Ryan Lanham wrote:
> This is an attempt to define P2P space in terms of a few boundary
> statements.  Disagreement is encouraged.
> ASSERTION: A strong P2P advocate would affirm all of the following with
> minimal qualification:
> 1. A strong P2P advocate is someone who believes that care, maintenance and
> advancement of property commons is a social ideal. A commons is a shared
> pool of resources that is protected and used for pursuits that are decided
> by the individual so long as they do not adversely impact the other members
> of the commons or the common good.
> 2. A strong P2P advocate wants to minimize central, hub or corporate
> interests in the commons and to maximize voluntary individual contributions
> and uses.
> 3. A strong P2P advocate is against any form of compulsion to participate in
> any commons.  No one is obligated to share.  Sharing is always voluntary.
> In balance, there is a responsibility to attempt to avoid free riding and
> use of the commons for selfish purposes without commitment to its further
> advancement.
> 4. The acceptable status of any social or political system to a strong P2P
> advocate is defined by the capacity of such a system to allow for strong P2P
> advocacy to exist and thrive.
> 5. A strong P2P advocate recognizes the right to physical and intellectual
> property and physical and intellectual property rights. Such rights do not
> extend to the capacity to obviously harm others or the environment for
> personal gain.  Disagreements on these points are to be handled through
> systems with due process, transparency and peer judgment where possible.
> 6. A strong P2P advocate believes the collective rights of groups of
> individuals to be protected from destructive use of private property rights
> is paramount.  However, such judgments must be compellingly weighed through
> reasonable systems with due processes met for those who disagree or contend
> with such judgments.
> 7.  The compelling ethos of P2P advances the common good, but respects the
> individual and the individual's liberty.
> 8. The common good is generally understood to entail greater options,
> greater access to possibilities and the prospect of living in communities,
> environments and ecosystems that allow for health, well-being and the
> enjoyment of material wealth.
> 9. Equal access to opportunities, to fundamental resources (such as those
> that decide life or death), to knowledge and the pursuit of truth, and a
> generally strong advocacy for a broad interpretation of human rights are all
> ideals espoused by a strong P2P advocate.
> 10. A strong P2P advocate accepts and seeks a future where income generating
> work is increasingly unnecessary and where social responsibilities are
> nevertheless strong for mutual support, fairness, protection of the commons
> and the common good.
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