Gift Economy

There has been the occasional gift-based economy. As opposed to our Exchange Economy or a centrally-controlled Command Hierarchy.(Eric Raymond compares them.)

  • Hacker community (open source developers)
  • academia? ("the politics are so severe because the stakes are so low")
  • Kwakiutl chieftain's potlatch,
  • rich-people's philanthropy

Article comparing Open Source software to community gardens, blood banks, and other gift economies.

May'2011: or do gift economies suck? I don’t mean to demonize ‘gift economies’ by inverting their moral valuation, but I do want to emphasize that people who grew up in gift economies don’t mind getting out of them all that much. It can actually be tremendously rewarding to buy a honkin’ big piece of meat from someone who you will never meet again, take it back to your hotel room, and eat the entire thing by yourself, completely alone. (Friction Free)

Is it just a coincidence, or did you know that this has been a recent topic on Meatball as well? MeatballWiki:GiftEconomy --JohnAbbe ... (reply: just a coincidence, unless someone from Meatball Wiki was at Jerry Michalski's retreat... --BillSeitz - 2002)

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