Fri 6 Apr 2018 8:04AM

Commons Management Agreement

DS Danyl Strype Public Seen by 120

A CLA (Contributor License Agreement) is a legal agreement used by some open source projects so that all the copyright over the contents of the project is held by a single stewardship organization, either the project itself or a third party like the Software Freedom Conservancy. CLAs are controversial because although they can make it easier to defend the project's license conditions in court, they can also be used to relicense the project to a license that some contributors may not be happy with.

The Commons Management Agreement is a special form of CLA that can be used by free code software projects like CryptPad who are using a copyleft license (eg GNU AGPL). It specifies that the license of the full version of the project's software will always remain free and copyleft, but that proprietary licenses may be issued for a fee, allowing comanies to use the software in a commercial setting without honouring the copyleft obligation. This is seen as a way of creating sustainable funding for projects developing software for the commons, and as such, has similar underlying goals to the Peer Production License.


Michel Bauwens Fri 6 Apr 2018 8:14AM

dear Stripey,

this is very interesting as it shows that Copyfair principles are being expressed in various without a unique reference license like the PPL,

if you had any energy for more refs and compilations it would be very interesting to add to https://wiki.p2pfoundation.net/CopyFair_License#Status


Danyl Strype Sat 28 Apr 2018 4:31PM

For the record, I don't recommend the use of the PPL for software. License proliferation is best avoided, especially a license that makes a somewhat subjective distinction between commons organisations and non-commons organisations. Which is Red Hat Linux, for example?

I think it would make more sense for the P2PF/ CT to push for software projects to use copyleft licenses like GPL, AGPL, LGPL (and particularly version 3 of those licenses that deal with software patents). These tend to either discourage extractive corporations anyway, or allow them to pay for a bespoke license that allows them to opt-out of copyleft (thus achieving the same result as the PPL), as with CryptPad, and MySQL (GPL) also use this revenue model ("proprietary relicensing"). If corporations do use software under GPL (eg Red Hat, Canonical), the code improvements by their paid engineers must be shared with the original project, so reciprocity is satisfied in a non-market exchange. I'm fine with that.


Liam Murphy Fri 6 Apr 2018 8:32AM

This is very interesting.

I am developing something similar for Cultural Commons,.. if anyone knows of anything similar?

Is there a link to examples?

Many thanks



Danyl Strype Fri 6 Apr 2018 11:08AM

Just out of curiosity @liammurphy are you receiving messages from this group via email? If so, do the emails contain the links that I put into the original message? The CLAHub.com site where I found the text of the Commons Management Agreement might be a good place to search.
BTW Is this the Cultural Commons you refer to? https://www.c3s.cc/en/


Liam Murphy Fri 6 Apr 2018 1:10PM

@strypey - I was - am now on site - thanks. C3S are restricting their collections to digital assets I think - but yes, again, very similar intentions. L


Michel Bauwens Fri 6 Apr 2018 9:23AM

i have collated examples at https://wiki.p2pfoundation.net/CopyFair_License

Lionel Maurel is the top expert in this space


Liam Murphy Fri 6 Apr 2018 1:16PM

I am using this link to exchange ideas re: license research https://www.loomio.org/invitations/475e91ab6cdd40734c7f - 3 licenses attached. Haven't heard from Lionel yet but hoping to discuss this with him soon - thanks.


Michel Bauwens Fri 6 Apr 2018 1:28PM

Lionel is not on our Loomio and his english is not to good, so I would connect with him individually through the email address I provided in cc earlier on


Michel Bauwens Sun 29 Apr 2018 2:27PM

the PPL is actually restricted to worker owned organizations which is not a subjective criteria at all, but too restrictive in my opinion as well,

if the criteria were commons, that would not be subjective either, since commons can be defined quite precisely, but personally, in the versions of copyfair we support, it is generally 'generative' entities we support, with a concrete reciprocity requirement beyond just providing code, see Majorie Kelly for the equally clear five criteria for generative enterprise,

in general though, lack of clarity is not the problem, since the very aim is to create ethical agreements through dialogue in non-neutral markets

but copyfair is aimed a material production projects, not software,

otherwise, as we know from 'real life', copyleft generally leads to domination by profit-maximising entreprise, which is exactly what some other people, like us, would like to avoid; this is what reciprocity licensing aims to do: guarantee full sharing of knowledge, code and design, while making commercial exploitation dependent on clear reciprocity agreements

it is designed for material production contexts by generative 'entredonneurial' coalitions which are co-dependent on the same commons which they need to construct and defend against extraction,



Danyl Strype Mon 30 Apr 2018 11:12PM

copyleft generally leads to domination by profit-maximising entreprise

It seems to me that people like Dymitri are seeing big corporations involved in certain high profile copyleft licensed projects (eg Linux, MySQL) and non-copyleft licensed projects (eg Apache), and jumping to two conclusions. a) Because corporate participation usually equals domination this is true in these projects too, and b) that this is therefore true in all free code projects, including copyleft projects.

I'm not convinced either of these are true. Is there any reseach that supports such conclusions? AFAICT Linux dev is still dominated by Linus, not IBM or Novell. Loomio is copyleft, has existed for 6 years, and is profitable. Where is the corporate domination in Loomio? OpenOffice was bought by Oracle, but when they tried to dominate the project, the copyleft license (LGPL) allowed the majority of developers (and later distributors and end users) to vote with their feet, and form the Document Foundation and LibreOffice, leaving Oracle with a digital plantation (the trademarks and copyrights associated with OO) but no workers.

it is generally 'generative' entities we support, with a concrete reciprocity requirement beyond just providing code,

Marjorie's work is brilliant, but I think if you look at stewardship entities behind successful copyleft software projects, like the GNU Project, Linux Foundation, Document Foundation, and Loomio Cooperative, you will see all 5 generative principle in practice. Copyleft projects are a complex, organic economy, managed by a collaborative mycelium, not a corporate central nevous system. Corporate actors contributing money or code are just big trees whose roots touch that mycelial network.

but copyfair is aimed a material production projects, not software,

That makes sense. Different dynamics are at work when distributing genuinely scarce resources, or products that cannot be instantly and costlessly copied.


Nick S Tue 1 May 2018 9:10AM

I notice Kleiner says here that the CopyFarLeft license isn't intended for software, but rather for "cultural works":


Presumably therefore he'd include similar ones like PPL and CopyFair.


Danyl Strype Tue 1 May 2018 7:46PM

I notice Kleiner says here that the CopyFarLeft license isn't intended for software, but rather for "cultural works":

OK, and these can be a different kettle of fish, although in the case of large collaborative projects like Wikipedia, the dynamics are actually very similar. If a company started publishing print copies of Wikipedia, the CC-BY-SA and GNU FDL would legally oblige them to share any copy-editing improvements they made in the process. Plus,
they would have a strong motive to help the Wikipedia commons keep going and improve, so they can keep publishing it. I think widespread use of the Creator Endorsed Mark (https://questioncopyright.org/creator_endorsed_mark) with share-a-like CC licenses would accomplish as much as PPL or CFLL for cultural works, if not more, without creating all the unintended consequences of overly restrictive licensing.

I agree with @michelbauwens1 that products that can't be costlessly copied, and require capital to replicate, are a different story. I would be interested in Stallman's views on applying a PPL or CFLL to free hardware designs:


Simon Grant Sun 29 Apr 2018 3:04PM

Here's the link to the Marjorie Kelly article on the P2PF wiki.


Liam Murphy Sun 29 Apr 2018 3:04PM

The word and concept of ‘entredoneurialism’ really needs to be widely shared :-)


Simon Carter Sun 29 Apr 2018 6:01PM

How to run an entredonneurial (one n or two?) business within a capitalist structure. That's the one I'm trying to figure out.


Simon Grant Sun 29 Apr 2018 7:55PM

Wood spells it both ways. In http://www.ub.edu/5ead/PDF/8/Wood.pdf it has one 'n', but most places it has two. See Entredonneur in the P2PF wiki which lists some of the sources.


mike_hales Tue 1 May 2018 10:17AM

Regarding entredonneurial with any number of *n*s - I’ll get linguistic for a moment . . .

Words of this kind, with a pronounced latinate/French/polysyllabic nature, have a deep resonance in English English - perhaps diluted in US English. People who have been taught to write ‘plain English’ recognise that this kind of vocabulary entered the language via the practices of the Norman ruling class at the 11th century Conquest: the court, the law, the church: which of course included the very widespread enclosure of Commons to create ‘free’ assets for the ruling elite. Today this still gives such words a resonance of ‘them and us’, upper-classness, elites, legalistic process and being under rule.

In contrast, words of Germanic/Nordic origin (ie the Ango-Saxon peasant underclass) have a plainer, more practical, more direct ring about them, referring often to actual making and labouring; typically, they have fewer syllables, the vowels have a different feel in the mouth, the rhythm is more compact , the consonants do a different kind of work. Thus entrepreneurial isn’t a good word for commoners to employ, and playing games with it like entredonneurial doesn’t make things any better, it simply adds another layer of ‘clever clever’ legalese or preacherly resonance.

The words extractive and generative work much better - although as it happens these have Latin roots too. The roots - extract, generate - are obvious and simple (which makes the words seem more transparent) and verbs referring to actual productive labour (which gives the words more force) and a little emotive (which is an advantage). Is there anything 'entredonneurial' can do, that can’t be done well by 'extractive/generative'?

Related terms are enterprise and trade. Enterprise is from Old French too, but close to the world of actual working and making: ‘a project or undertaking, typically one that is difficult or requires effort’. Trade is from from Middle Low German. Early senses included ‘course, way of life’, which gave rise in the C16 to ‘habitual practice of an occupation’, ‘skilled handicraft’. Thus this word too carries a deep resonance with the hands-on, skilful doing of work. Both words were polluted from C18 as ‘free trade’ and ‘free enterprise’ and neo-liberalism has worked hard to boost these intrinsically anti-commoning usages. But the older resonances are still real and available in ordinary (English and US) English. There is sufficient common (!!) ground here to enable shared language - and shared practical commitment - between anticapitalist direct-labouring commoners and good-hearted people wedded to enterprise in a more conventional, perhaps corporate but historically deep sense (like Marjorie Kelly of The Democracy Collaborative).

This isn’t just wordplay (Germanic) and hair-splitting (Germanic). Poetic resonance in language lies deep in the mouth, ear, heart. Using the language of the extractive, enclosing enemy - even if it was laid down by their ancestor elites ten centuries ago - isn’t as helpful, I suggest, as self-consciously using a language of direct, hands-on handling of the material of society: extractive acts/corporations/processes, generative ditto.

None of this makes the legal business of licensing any easier. There are many cases to cover, it is and will remain a pluriverse, capital does get into every vein. But careful naming helps make good historic alliances?


Liam Murphy Sun 29 Apr 2018 7:22PM

That’s what CultureBanking sets out to do Simon! When, as has now happened here, a common threat is felt (redevelopment in this case) an opportunity presents itself to use peer production to create a common ‘asset base’ from which to grow common resources. I hope the project will be, at least, illustrative of some of the practical challenges and at best, a workable model ( expect something in between probably). Guessing one ‘n’ :-)


Simon Carter Sun 29 Apr 2018 7:58PM

I am obviously very interested in this whole commons thing, otherwise I would not be here, but I still get bored by the over analysis that sometimes takes place. My concern is how to run a business that caters to the traditional demands of the client, price, quality, service etc. & is able to 'compete' within the market economy, but which is nonetheless entredonneurial in nature. Does the client need to know, or even care?. Probably not. The goal is to subtly move from one paradigm to another, but without having to bang a drum about it. I suspect it may be counter productive to be evangelical or sanctimonious about it.


Danyl Strype Mon 30 Apr 2018 11:16PM


The goal is to subtly move from one paradigm to another, but without having to bang a drum about it

I'm not so sure about this. I choose to buy organic over industrial food, where I can, because of decades of people banging the organic drum. That includes organic shops a well as environmentalists and hippies. Some people might say it puts them off, but I suspect they just don't want to pay the trust cost of the ethical version, and they're in search of a rationalization for that.


Liam Murphy Tue 1 May 2018 7:27AM

There's a lack of analysis for Cultural Commons: Persuading people to 'consume' common art rather than private art is not something which Copyfair enters into any discussions of yet. Copyfair isn't really addressing material commons - yet. The Cultural Heritage 'angle' is particularly applicable to 'art' as common goods... Buying a tea set with the faces of some TV chefs who's brand is enclosed (sometimes by public license demanding entities etc) cannot yet be offset against a choice to buy a tea set with the faces of local independent chefs, or chefs who's faces are part of a common heritage and 'stock' of value - for public good. (Notably, with micro-payments, blockchain etc, the public/common/private distinctions are not binary either - it's quite possible to make partial definitions of goods and services). The current problem (in relation to a Commons Management Agreements) for arts and culture, is that where 'publicly funded arts' exist, they are so selective in what they choose to treat as 'common' that they become effectively, state sponsored enclosures.... I'm not sure I've really succeeded in explaining why 'CultureBanking' is necessary (if I'm right that it is) but shall keep trying... this article provides some good analysis I think (not had time to study in detail): http://www.klamer.nl/research-project/art-as-a-common-good/ - Am writing an interpretative article for my old art schools alumni mag to try to get into a useful discussion and tease out a bit more... Still not sure what the 'common networks'/P2P etc actually make of 'material AND knowledge based cultural commons' - particularly where they are, as they often are, inseparable...? Thoughts as ever most welcome


Michel Bauwens Tue 1 May 2018 7:39PM

thanks for your viewpoint,

yes, open source communities may force their value system and governance on major corporations, but they are still operating extractively in the market and dominating most of the open source software markets that matter (Loomio being an exception)

The copyfair is addressed for material production and for people for whom it matters that the ecosystem is not dominated by such corporations but by generative entities,

The Linux Foundation may be generative, but IBM and Apple and Microsoft are not, independent of their use of open source softwares,



Danyl Strype Tue 1 May 2018 8:04PM

major corporations, but they are still operating extractively in the market and dominating most of the open source software markets that matter

How are we defining "software markets" here? Numbers of users? Share of revenue? Corporations and their user and profit figures are very visible, while decentralized replacements are much harder to aggregate data on. Again, are there studies on this you could link me to? Anecdotally, many people I know make a sufficient or event generous fulltime living supporting commercial users of free code software, many of them in serial freelancing (eg things like Gun.io), one-person companies, or small shops.

I suspect you'll find that the markets the tech corporations dominate are actually the the "cloud" hosting markets, and the device markets; Microsoft with Windows on desktops / laptops, Apple and Google on handhelds, Microsoft and Sony on game consoles, Amazon on e-readers. Hardware, data centres, and network access, can't be replicated as needed like digital goods can, so it's much harder to apply open source flattening to these products.

The Linux Foundation may be generative, but IBM and Apple and Microsoft are not, independent of their use of open source softwares,

I agree, but that's not a problem cause by copyleft licensing a I see it, but by the lack of replacement organizing models at the financial layer of the economic stack. News models like platform cooperatives and micro-patronage already shaking things up, as are Initial Coin Offerings, which have apparently already replaced venture capitalists as the main financial fuel for tech startups.


Simon Grant Tue 1 May 2018 8:31PM

Thanks Mike @mikeh8 for the linguistic thoughts. I think I am understanding what you are saying, positively. I agree that it can be helpful to be careful in several directions in the words we choose. English is perhaps less prone than most to blatant nationalistic tendencies, but there are European countries where various forms of linguistic purity have been tried, so perhaps it's not all one way. If it were purely a class thing, then perhaps we could strive to side with the commoner and not the elite. Maybe that's what you're saying. I suspect that sometimes it is more than a class thing, or deeper, or more subtle.

I would personally take the line of being very tolerant of whatever words people choose, and if I think it is needed, offer equivalents if there are people who are likely not to understand the form given. Or, indeed, as you have done, to explain the connotations of different vocabulary choice to those who are less likely to recognise them.

One of the things I learned from being a school teacher, and then practice (as and when I remember, which is not always by any means!) as a member of European projects, is to choose vocabulary that is more likely to be understood. Some of the trickiest things to look out for in my experience with non-native speakers are English idioms that do not translate literally. With children it's obviously the more abstruse or academic words.

These days, we can also do as I have done, and include a link to an explanation of an unfamiliar word. I don't reckon that "entredonneur" is going to make it into the dictionaries, however. In the end, I agree with you that using "generative" and "extractive" is helpful, though those terms don't have easy noun forms. I've put a note on the P2PF Wiki entry.


mike_hales Tue 1 May 2018 8:58PM

I agree @asimong about the basic need to choose vocabulary that is more likely to be understood - across language communities. Does anyone know how this extractive/generative distinction is made in Barcelona Spanish, Bologna Italian or Brazilian Portuguese?

Regarding noun forms - for example, an equivalent of 'entrepreneur' . . . it could be a little clumsy sometimes but I suspect we could get by using the adjective as I did earlier, attached to specific kinds of actors or settings: extractive acts, extractive corporations, extractive processes, extractive aims, etc. Perhaps this results in precision rather than awkwardness? Concreteness rather than abstraction?

Not everybody will want to talk about such matters, as is happening here! :nerd: But concrete use of language is of general benefit?


Liam Murphy Tue 1 May 2018 10:10PM

"Is there anything 'entredonneurial' can do, that can’t be done well by 'extractive/generative'?" - I think so, yes: What appeals to me about the term 'entredoneur' is that it stands as a distinction to a word which is already in international and widespread usage... That's its value, I'd argue... but I'd agree it would be useful to hear how other languages are making these distinctions. 'Generative' and 'extractive' are, I also agree, clearer in some ways but the word we have for referencing acts of 'wealth creation' and 'venturism', is 'entrepreneur'. IMO, a word which points out the apparent 'taking' and 'giving' dichotomy (it isn't I know) is valuable even if for that reason alone. Perhaps what we need is one unifying word for 'business development' or some-such? Since there's no other easy noun form for ''taking from in between' - the concept has widest application by referencing the word in widest usage: The idea that the same impetus, social action or intervention might involve 'giving', is, I think, quite important. It also references reciprocity, which is missing in the terms 'generative' and 'extractive' - and is also key to commons-oriented types of social and economic contracts. So, the antonym is important here - for balance and as a gateway to being able to think differently about 'enterprise' ... it's didactic. In 'trade' terms, it also reminds us that neither giving nor receiving can exist in isolation - as the sole term 'entrepreneur' mistakenly suggests... Entrepreneurs exist only to become Entredoneurs and vice versa. I think 'extraction' and 'generation' are more set up to be 'good guy/bad guy', like Corbyn's reference to 'wealth extractors' and 'wealth creators'; one good, one bad: You wouldn't want both - but you do want 'givers' and 'receivers'.... you can't have 'either/or'.

So, 'Entredoneur': 1. References common parlance so has common power. 2. References reciprocity, whereas generation doesn't require extraction. 3. ..is a semantically different term to 'extractor': Entrepre/do/neurialsm are both generative terms: You can 'give' or 'take' to create value which needn't be privately enclosed. 'Extraction' though, is the opposite of value creation and involves 'taking' not 'receiving'....


mike_hales Tue 1 May 2018 11:05PM

I've not read Marjorie Kelly, so don't know precisely what she intends extractive/generative to cover. I note that in P2PF usage there's a significant environmental content in this terminology. I presumed something like this, informed by my broadly Marxian frame on value . . .

'Generative' may refer to all creation of value by any kind of process, which is to say use value: the actual historical humanly useable (value-able) content of any product of labour. Whereas 'extractive' may refer to a process of:
- extraction of surplus value, which amounts to 'stealing' of value from the commons of human valuing (social valuing), to be accumulated and redeployed as 'selfish, blind' capital; and
- unending extraction of material and energy from the planet, a historic programme that now must be ceased.

Admittedly, 'generative' says nothing directly about just what it is that actual humans actually do value. There's a tacit moral position implied in using 'use value' in this way. Historically, many use values have been destructive of the environment, it's not only capitalist-extractive production that has done harm but also, for example, ordinary ignorance or greed. Thus I don't think that extractive/generative = Orwellian Extractive - Bad, Generative - Good, in a kind of Corbyn/Momentum-speak, as @liammurphy suggests. It's more like: extractive = environmentally and humanely unjustifiable, generative = environmentally and humanly considerate and without-harm?

I guess I'd say that what Liam thinks of as 'good-entrepreneurial', I'd think of as a kind of 'generative' practice (generating use value by creatively 'taking' something from culture and reworking it and returning it to the commons in accordance with the values of the commons). While 'extractive' means taking something out of the commons, completely out of the circulation of commons-valuing and -using and -regulating, and appropriating it for individual gain and power which actively abuses the commons value.

Would someone like to comment on Marjorie Kelly's terms, who's read her work?

BTW we're well off topic here? Does anyone mind?


Simon Carter Sat 5 May 2018 8:35AM

So different words, different circumstance, all of which in the end denote purpose. That is what we need to convey . . . . . what is our purpose?. Generative is the purpose, achieved by being an entredonneur, running a not for profit business. I don't think any of this is immediately accessible to most folk, even if they care. I want people to know that my motives are not what they might assume.

How about 'I'm a post capitalist businessman?. That asks more questions than it answers & should at least get peoples attention. Ultimately post capitalism is the vision that we wish to convey. . . . . isn't it?. If so simply using the term regularly can only help.

I'm may get it put on my next business card.


mike_hales Sat 5 May 2018 8:43AM

Simon writes: 'I want people to know that my motives are not what they might assume.’ Sounds like a good starting point to me!

And a business card reading ‘I’m a post capitalist businessman’ should start a few conversations! Maybe you could have Marjorie Kelly’s five-way table of differences on the back of the card? (Half-serious)


Simon Carter Sat 5 May 2018 8:53AM

This quote by Anna Lappe is on my current business card

“Every time you spend money, you're casting a vote for the kind of world you want.”


Michel Bauwens Sat 5 May 2018 9:52AM

not being anglophone, I cannot intervene in the linguistic debate, but from using the 'entre-donneurial' meme in my lectures, I can only say that it works much better than generative/extractive, which is more abstract for most people. ED strikes at the heart of the neoliberal and capitalist assumptions and makes immediate sense for the audiences I connect with,



Simon Carter Sat 5 May 2018 10:53AM

For me this cuts to the heart of the capitalist/post capitalist cross over. It may well make sense to your audiences Michel, but how does one become an entredonneur in a world designed to cater for & dominated by entrepreneurs?. The answer to that points the way to a post capitalist future where entrepreneurs are an endangered species on their way to extinction.


Liam Murphy Sat 5 May 2018 1:30PM

But we need entrepreneurs! Maybe it's enough to realise that the language has taken us down a road of using only the 'taking' sense of the word, when in fact there was always its corollary - the giving'. As I said earlier, it might be enough to understand you need both and even that they are part of the same thing... in non extractive relations...! Doing away with enterprise and innovation doesn't help anyone. Aren't we just trying to change how those two things are 'exploited'?


Danyl Strype Mon 28 May 2018 6:59PM

@simoncarter has asked an important question, and I hope he won’t mind if I answer it by teasing out the various assumptions I see within it. Let’s see if we can link this all back to the jumping off point, the CMA (Commons Management Agreement).

There are three parts to Simon’s question:

1) how does one become an entredonneur ...

The obvious answer is by adopting a different set of business goals and practices. The key is to choose models that accept inputs from the world as you find it, but produce outputs suited to the more beautiful, sustainable world you want it to be. Using a copyleft license and a copyright assignment contract like the CMA is one practical example.

2) ... in a world designed ...

The entrepreneurial system described in ‘The Wealth of Nations’ is about as accurate a description of the system we live in now as ‘The Communist Manifesto’ is of the USSR, or as either work is of modern China. Graeber has some interesting writing (can’t remember which book or essay right now) about how actually-existing-capitalism was not designed, so much as evolved, borrowing elements from its critics (like Marx and Bakunin) as much as from its advocates (like Smith and Ricardo), but responding mostly to the material, social, and ideological realities in which it exists (capitalism with special American characteristics ...).

3) ... to cater for & dominated by entrepreneurs

If the current world-system is not designed at all, let alone to serve extractive forms of business, then perhaps the only reason they seem to dominate is a combination of perception bias and cultural habit. Even the critics of neo-liberal/ corporatist “capitalism” habitually rail against the power of the Great and Powerful Oz, despite clearly seeing the frail, bumbling man behind the green curtain. In doing so, as Edgar Cahn points out in ‘No More Throwaway People’, we render mostly invisible the much larger non-market zones of the global economy, on which the market economies are parasitic and utterly dependent.

Take for the example The Stacks, those titans of surveillance capitalism. None of these businesses would be possible if each of these businesses had to create and maintain its own OS software, it’s own webserver software, it’s own database software, it’s own web frameworks, hell even it’s own programming languages, as proprietary in-house projects. If they had to hire and pay every single contributor, including all the helpdesk staff that would be required without the army of volunteers who help each other use and develop free software, they never would have got off the ground (see the writings and presentations about this by Yochai Benkler and Clay Shirky). Their extractive business model is totally dependent on free code software, in the same way that the Windows/Office-based Microsoft empire Bill Gates built was totally parasitic on the open architecture model of the early PC.

These dotcom entrepreneurs, Andreeson, Omidyar, Page and Brin, Zuckerberg and Parker, Thiel and Musk, Bezos, and all the other startup gremlins that leap from their wet skin via their VC incubators, need free code software to do what they do. But free code software does not need them. The GNU Project tools and the Linux kernel were in development and in use for about a decade before the corporate world began to take interest. The VC-funded startup model described by Doug Rushkoff in ‘Throwing Rocks ...’ has survived as long as it has only because it’s taken so long for the activists who work on cooperatives and mutual finance to take an interest in the ethics and (deeply inter-related) sustainability of digital tech. The more we refocus attention on successful examples of non-corporate models in the digital realm, and reframe the role of corporations as parasitic and transitional rather than essential (which it is), the easier it will get to be “entredoneurial” in software and other tech business.


Simon Carter Sun 10 Jun 2018 11:50AM

Been meaning to respond to this for a while. I can't see the term entredoneur entering the mainstream any time soon. How about 'new age entrepreneur'?. Unless there is some way to introduce a resource based economy over night & basically replace business as the means to the end, i.e. meeting needs, then what we must do is redefine the role of business, meaning to expand needs to incorporate the quadruple bottom line of planet, people, power of place, & profit, preferably in that order. Profit needs to be perceived as the means to the end, not the end in & of itself. Anything/anyone making bucket loads of profit should be viewed with huge suspicion, not lauded. This is happening. In the UK for example, Richard Branson's well crafted mask has well & truly slipped. Inevitably huge profit means exploitation somewhere along the line, but does that necessarily mean business is bad?. Is it this schizophrenia that makes going into business without profit as the sole barometer of success so challenging?. My personal conclusion is worker coops need to dominate, but whilst becoming increasingly less preoccupied with what that means to the workers & more with what it means to their customers in terms of traditional metrics, customer service, product quality, value for money etc. Ironically coops need to step up & compete.


Liam Murphy Sat 5 May 2018 9:54AM

“Entredoneurial Post- Capitalist, Non-Extractive Business Man”




Simon Carter Sat 5 May 2018 10:25AM

I'm going to need a bigger business card.


mike_hales Sun 6 May 2018 8:32AM

Simon, I guess you've seen this short interview with Michel, on Commons Transition? He's directly speaking to your concerns on entrepreneurship I think? The stuff on patterns (solutions to dilemmas) 'finding each other' is nice. Helpful account Michel, thank you.


Michel Bauwens Sat 5 May 2018 5:04PM

to be amended: busyless person


Michel Bauwens Sat 5 May 2018 5:07PM

you need both, but a key thing is , what is the most important,

certainly in the liberal version , it is the taking, with the giving done 'afterwards'

I think this is what is at stake now, because the planet is in danger of both an ecological meltdown and a social explosion, i..e. combining predistributive social practice and regenerative ecological practice, while making sure there is a 'surplus' which serves the development of the stronger institutions we might need,



mike_hales Sat 5 May 2018 6:20PM

Yes, 'stronger institutions' will certainly need to be created. D'you have a short description or characterisation of what these institutions may be, Michel? Other than (returning to this thread's theme!) property institutions that secure a backflow of revenue from non-commons to commons economies?