wikipedia small




Commons refers to the cultural and natural resources accessible to all members of a society, including natural materials such as air, water, and a habitable earth. These resources are held in common, not owned privately. The resources held in common can include everything from natural resources andcommon land to software. The commons contains public property and private property, over which people have certain traditional rights. When commonly held property is transformed into private property this process alternatively is termed “enclosure” or more commonly, “privatization.” A person who has a right in, or over, common land jointly with another or others is called a commoner.


i realized i was part of the noise

1 yr to try commons

perhaps rather.. common\ing


for the common good

when we were trying to come up with a name for a lab (2010 ish) – commons was a first choice for me. it was shot down on many fronts. mostly by people who lovingly warned we would be associated with the tragedy of the commons ness. (much like similar warnings against using the word detox for a process of learning to learn – people pointed out the bad connections to addiction… which was/is precisely the need/point.. you know).

if anything… the time (5 yrs or so) that i’ve been most often impatiently swimming in.. has helped me to ongoingly zoom out/listen.. hopefully enough.. to gracefully/boldly acknowledge fear vs truth ness. realizing that most often our misgivings/warnings are more about fear or at least not (the actual defining to a word) mattering enough for the distraction they cause.

writing this now – as i’m reading Jeremy Rifkin‘s near zero… and he’s talking much about his work/obsession with the commons.

loving/reveling in most of it. reminding of my first love of the word/idea.. as the definition above… some space(s) of sharing..

however – struggling with parts like this:

The Commons, old and new, define the way human beings manage Earth’s bounty. To say something is a Commons is to mean that it is held in common and collectively managed. The term Commons describes a form of governance. Hess reminds us that something can’t become a Commons until the technological means are available to manage it. Forager/hunters enjoyed the bounty of nature, but did not manage it. The Commons begins with agriculture and pastoralism. The oceans didn’t become a Commons until the invention of vessels to travel on them

The modern era brought with it a spate of new technologies that allowed for the management of new parts of Earth’s biosphere that were previously not subject to supervision.

? – not following this.. struggling with managing and agriculturing ness…  previously not subject to supervision… but now able to manage..?

I call this mode “Commons-based peer-production,” to distinguish it from the property- and contract-based modes of firms and markets. Its central characteristic is that groups of individuals successfully collaborate on large-scale projects following a diverse cluster of motivational drives and social signals, rather than either market prices or managerial commands.  – -Yochai Benkler

yeah- thinking that managing for doing… much like obligation for giving.. is partial ness.. that will only make this shiny and so not a sustainable betterness.. for everyone. ie: equitynow.

Peter Barnes, in his book Capitalism 3.0: A Guide to Reclaiming the Commons, envisions a future that mirrors our day-to-day work on the ground in countries around the world.

in the city. as the day. ness

While both the capitalist market and the Collaborative Commons will coexist—sometimes synergistically, and at other times competitively or even adversarily—which of the two management models ultimately prevails as the dominant form and which as the niche player will depend largely on the infrastructure society erects.

importance of mechanism/infrastructure being a ni (platform in each head – but 100% interconnected)- so that management goes to the art ist level.. the one who can’t not do/give away..

“Benkler does not fully examine what constitutes core common infrastructure or the challenges to ensuring sustainable public access to common infrastructure.”2 Frischmann goes on to explain that core common infrastructure refers to those foundational infrastructural resources that should be available to all on a nondiscriminatory basis. . . . The first difficulty is in identifying which resources are truly foundational and explaining why this critical subset of infrastructure resources should be managed on a nondiscriminatory basis . . . once that obstacle is surmounted . . . by what institutional means should commons management be achieved?

perhaps – one means (and maybe Jeremy is heading toward this) – is to make the access piece simple enough as to be accessible/useable to everyone. access may be less about wifi ness (although that’s huge) and more about ability to be taken in by all. ie: is it simple enough 1. talk to self 3 min – curiosity 2. meet w/others 30 min – that anyone could do it today.. w/o training/reading/prepping..? because if not.. it’s not really accessible..and most likely won’t be sustainable.

about the resources that are truly foundational – perhaps that too is something we’re overlooking because of simplicity. what if it’s just authenticity and attachment.

about an institutional means – perhaps – because it’s where most people are now – and enough money is being spent now – that could jump start/spot it… public education. literally redefine.. as a means to haste/sustain equity..


Yochai, Stavros, Michael, Michel, David, Elinor, Andreas, Silke, …..


via Dougald:

aug 2013:

dougald on the city

“Of everything I hear during these two days [at a Stockholm conference on “Commoning in the City”], the answer that most impresses me comes from Stavros Stavrides: ‘

commons’ has become useful, he argues, because of a change in attitude to the state, a disillusionment with the ‘public’ and a need for another term to takes its place. The public sphere, public values, the public sector: all of these things might once have promised some counterweight to the destructive force of the market, but this no longer seems to be the case.

We are not witnessing a turn towards anarchism, exactly, but something more pragmatic: a shift in the general mood, reflecting the reality of people’s experience after five years of this unending crisis, itself coming after decades of neoliberalism. It is the attitude that underlies the Squares Movement, from Tahrir to Syntagma, the Puerta del Sol and Zuccotti Park. If those camping out in cities across three continents were reluctant to distill their discontent into a set of demands on government, this was not simply a utopian refusal to engage with the compromises of political reality; it was also a conviction that to put hope in government is now the most utopian position of all. This is also the attitude that has driven the rise of Beppe Grillo’s Five Star Movement, and it has all the uncomfortable ambiguities such an example suggests.

– – – –

via stir:

dougald in stir

.. our understanding of the commons should not be as “a pool of resources to be managed, but an alternative to seeing the world as made of resources” 


none of us are free


economics and commons conf oct 2013:

problems/obstacles w/commons?

6:02 – problem w/commons – small percentage actually contribute  (so – is the strategy to free people up to participate – rather than as an assign) – Chris

7 min – people unaware of the chain of events that protect.. and of power..  so i don’t have problems..  lack of awareness – Swarmi

9:50 – how to get space for conversations – Anna

10 min – can organically self-fund when 1 week delivery of intrinsic.. (ie: new model of cars every 7 days) what does slow us down.. tests (for safety – takes time and expensive) – if we could find people have done simulation models.. instead (since that infrastructure doesn’t exist) we have to simulate ourselves..  – Joe

13 min – regulatory compliance – we collect all regulations and have to create a test for each one – that takes time.. then we start designing fastest, cheapest, simplest that will pass all those tests. again – if regulatory frameworks were already made – would save us tons of time  – Joe

in automotive space –  most are tests consumer would want – in general a net value add  – Joe

15 min –  challenge as software developers – deploying it on hardware that is open enough – Jaromil

23 min – great point by Joe on the negative – ie: of ability to 3d print guns

24 min – Swarmi – how to get people to not make the weapon – give them something better to do – create a society where people aren’t wanting to do harm

26 min – recycle and open and active benefit – Joe

27 min – conversation brings in responsibility piece – Anna

what is for you the commons:

Chris – bringing together to work on solutions we need

Swarm – anything that comes out of collective action/conversations.. togetherness

Anna – togetherness.. and to discuss who is involved in this togetherness – and to open up to this diversity.. agonistic way to create commons

Joe – explicitly making it available for others to remix you – without any boundaries

Jaromil – abundance of trust and sharing

interviewed by Michel


nov 2014

shared by Michelp2p foundation – on fb:


knowledge as a common


last 1-2 min of Steve Wozniak interview – his reverse amwayish networking smacks of commons ness. ie: where do you stop at – who was a part… how do you tell who influenced/helped who.. no?


When our non-work lives become more significant than our work lives, we become less tolerant of our office pathologies – the power games, the sharp practices, the empty values. The challenge this already presents to standard cultures of work is enormous. And perhaps we should start to accept, politically, that we need a newly conceived public realm (or commons) to support our aspirations to play well and expansively.           – Pat Kane, the play ethic


A Commons Transition Plan | Commons Transition

Original Tweet:


city as commons – bologna


the omni commons


pope for commons


Michel Bauwens (@mbauwens)
Fairness and the Commons, an Interview with Enric Duran | Commons Transition

commons transition

– – – –

Michel interviewing Christian Iaione on city as commons:

Professor Christian Iaione of LUISS University in Rome is a pioneer of such institutional innovation in Italian cities. I believe his work with the city of Bologna on Bologna’s Regulation for the Care and Regeneration of Urban Commons is a breakthrough. This regulation allows citizen coalitions to propose improvements to their neighborhoods, and the city to contract with citizens for key assistance. In other words, the municipality functions as an enabler giving citizens individual and collective autonomy.

More than 30 projects have already been approved in this context and dozens of Italian cities are adopting this regulation. The CO-Mantova project in Mantua, Italy is one such example.

neighbor\hood (govt) – ness

In 2013 LabGov was devoted to the subject “The City as a Commons,” while in 2014 it was focused on “Culture as a Commons.”.. 2015 – land as commons

I have been researching the topic of the commons for quite a long time, and at some point I realized that the city could actually be interpreted as a collaborative commons. …I am now working with Sheila Foster from Fordham Law School on a more comprehensive study which is going to lay out a theoretical framework building on the background studies I developed in Italian .. and the empirical work I am carrying out in several Italian cities.

We are talking about a cultural shift. The new governance model proposed is a new way for us to relate to almost everything, from economy to society as a whole and to other people, in other words: our vision of the world changes.

global systemic change


better not more:

(video) – buen vivir..

call it what you want – but we need something different..


via MichelSilke Helfrich and David – commons strategy group:

The Commons Strategies Group (CSG) is a partnership to help advance the commons in diverse settings — both in theory and practice. Working on four continents, we catalyze and assist commons-based projects, activism, research and public education with a great variety of partners.


Ann B Ryan – on enough and commons


link downloads pdf..

alternative model of delivering public services in Nagaland, India (communitisation)

Original Tweet:



“imagine an empowered citizenry capable of producing facts to counter official data”…

feb 2016 – Science as Public Good and Commons as a Science by 

discussion by Adolfo Estalella, Antonio Lafuente,

To build our argument, we’ve divided this text into three parts. In the first we’ll explore the historical origins of 1\science’s capacity as a public good. In the second we will highlight the problems derived from treating Commons science and open science as analogous, which is to say that the 2\ exigencies of the open access or open data movements, while necessary, are not sufficient. The third section argues that the condition of being a common good comes not from its being provided for all, but rather 3\ stems from being created among all. This opens the capacity of being a common good by virtue of belonging to a third sector, alongside the public and the private.


Science doesn’t become a commons by being more functional, open or militant; instead it results from the application of contrasted, collective and recursive epistemic practices.


1\science commons as a public good

Paul A. David (2008) explains how, since the dawn of modern science, a perception emerged of scientists as unmanageable people, owing to the sophisticated nature of their knowledge. The truth is that the court, given that nobody could act as a counterweight, elected to open knowledge so that they themselves could preside over the quality of scientific work. This would be the origin of the awards, academia, and the periodic journals. The autonomy of science imbued its organization with the qualities of a meritocratic, open and cosmopolitan enterprise. Distinguishing between sages and charlatans required the concurrence of new spaces, different actors and different mediations that, as a whole, lead us to treat what is known as the Scientific Revolution not as an epistemic revolution but as an open science revolution. Michael Polanyi also wanted to join the club of those who opposed the treatment of knowledge as information to eventually, after disenfranchising it from its places of production, turn it into a profitable resource. The commodification of science is impossible when the only knowledge that can be patented is non-tacit.


For decades, perhaps centuries, we’ve told the history of science as if it were akin to the planetary expansion of an oil stain, or the transmission of an epidemic. But there is nothing natural about the transmission of knowledge. What STS has taught us is that verifying any natural law or testing the relevance of a scientific concept necessitates a plethora of machines, technicians and reagents, as well as the time and resources to produce, select, contrast, discuss, standardize and communicate the results. As such, the desire to have science as a commons is a utopian undertaking which obliges us to examine whether we can truly assume the potentially untenable cost of transmission.


The resource in need of protection isn’t knowledge itself, but the plurality of forms of socialization it facilitates. We don’t need the state to protect knowledge itself, but the networks it circulates within. It isn’t about protecting ideas that are published or deserve a Nobel Prize, but the infrastructures supporting them, which are often as inscrutable as they are contrary to the Commons.

? – contrary to commons..? incurrent state.. or potential state?

2\ science commons as open science

Elinor Ostrom (1990) argued for this with memorable aplomb: there is nothing more contrary to the Commons that an open access system absent any form of governance. Confusing both concepts is in fact what led Garrett Hardin to proclaim the tragedy of the Commons and to demand, as a survival strategy, the public or private patrimonial appropriation of those resources that really matter. The Commons, Ostrom remarked, are not a thing, but a management process that collapses when the community that sustains and is sustained by them doesn’t incorporate efficient rules to protect itself from, among other threats, free riders.

whoa. i don’t know.


While the politics of open science do correct some of the most heinous shortcomings of the current system, it is no less true that open, online and free distribution requires a set of conditions that, ultimately, benefit big corporations foremost – or, in other words, those able to capitalize on the information. Furthermore, it’s not clear that accessibility corrects the role of science in our world in any decisive way. Making the information freely available is not tantamount to being able to use or do something with it, as it will remain invariably tied to the technologies and values through which it was produced.


Wikipedia  are two very different projects that authoritatively demonstrate the emergent power available to interconnected multitudes. We are speaking of colossal mechanisms connecting millions of humans; we’re also referring to new ways of producing and validating knowledge. Examples that allow us to imagine an empowered citizenry capable of producing facts to counter official data do exist. …..We must sign the peace treaty: we need a lasting agreement that doesn’t insist upon dividing the world between those who know and those who don’t, an armistice to liberate the world from the arrogance of experts.


Hacking the world, beyond the invention of new possibilities for inhabiting and transforming it, could return to the Commons all that has been abusively relegated to state and market patrimony. The first hackers, from the 60s onwards, invented the squaring of the circle: to be an author doesn’t demand that you be a proprietor. Achieving the condition of author happens the moment the author gives away the thing that was authored. Thus, accreditation functions as an admirable way of opening knowledge.

3\ commons as a science

From 2011 on, the Occupy movement has been the most visible manifestation of something that has been going on for decades all over the world. The city has been occupied, it must be occupied; we must wrest it away from the entertainment, security and housing corporations (Harvey 2012). This is the origin of the open source urbanism that looks to and is inspired by free software hackers.


This new urbanism is not new construction, but rather new relationships to one another experienced through material intervention in our own city.


People are learning to experience and experiment with their city in new ways, with or without architects, with or without designers, with or without anthropologists. The experiment has been granted new life beyond the confines of the lab, setting in motion a process where the places, parties and infrastructures needed to turn the city into both an object and a place for experimentation are being re-imagined. There’s no scarcity of the credentialed in many of these projects, but theirs is not an expert role, recognizing themselves as part of a collective experiment to problematize established forms of authority. They all feel the importance of these communities of learning. Everyone experiments, everyone investigates, everyone interprets, everyone contrasts, everyone consents, everyone learns and everyone creates new knowledge: a commons science, to create a city of the Commons.


Rapid prototyping means that designs, objects and proposals are circulated before they are even finished. This is a vulnerable and precarious state of affairs that, nonetheless, compels others to partake in an effort that aspires to be collective. In this way, the widening of the design object is paralleled by the growth of the community surrounding it. But this ongoing beta state also allows for forking at any stage, the possibility of opting for another alternative, and separating from the dominant criteria. Free software, then, is always open to all its potential, always functions as a beta design, a prototype manifested in a non-niche community, a project that is always more than many and less than one.

Projects that learn from their errors are recursive, something that children do systematically and which, at times, also lies within the reach of adults. But in this context, our interest in recursive notions lies in their application to systems rather to persons or simple projects. In such circumstances we detect a recursive nature when not only is the functionality of the mechanism is preserved, but also its moral integrity — in other words, when the protocols and the code are responsible for the preservation of the values that sustain the project, that is to say the community. What makes free software community vibrant isn’t the intention of producing for everyone, but of involving everyone in its construction. Here is the reason why the distribution of its efforts is granular; anyone can contribute with his or her knowledge and available time and effort.


There are none more interested in finding a good answer than those who are risking their own lives searching for it.


The community that sustains it is recognized — diagnosed, even — in light of the fact that the knowledge it produces is validated by virtue of being functional. The community both serves and is created by this cognitive activity. Let’s summarize its nature: experimental, open, relational, distributed, horizontal, collaborative, inalienable and recursive.


From abandoned lots, from social practices long ignored for belonging to the poor, ignorant or marginal, we are reinventing the city. In the same way, we are creating a common body from all that’s left, that which was discarded as irrelevant by formal scientists.


The Commons science that has determined to achieve a reinvention of the body and the city is a knowledge enacted from the experiential, where, consequently, none can be excluded. Commons science is not an alternative to academic science. Both have a mutual need of each other, although we’ll occasionally see them contending public space, and ever more frequently, the publics.



The Emergence of Commons and Guilds as a Silent Revolution

In this article I will argue that the silent revolution to a large extent created the institutional infrastructure for socio-political change, and so for other forms of collective action which became characteristic in western Europe and came to be considered as a vital ingredient in preparing for its exceptional economic head start.”

so… does everyone’s reference to commons assume money of some sort? some type of measuring of transactions?



Resources on cooperation theory compiled in collaboration with @iftf



on the egalitarianism and peacefulness of hunter-gatherers

the commons (doc)


city ness

walking the commons – city sketchup via walking the commons

– – –



tragedy of commons




money ness



David Bollier and the City as a Commons | P2P Foundation…

New Democracy 10: David Bollier and the City as a Commons (2 hrs)

cities as commons as answer to threats

david  (6 min to 36 min)

the commons is a mystery that i continue to probe.. city as a commons is precisely one of those frontiers..

tragedy of the commons – is a smear and a distraction… a lot of embedded premises of tragedy of commons.. actually more.. tragedy of the market..

tragedy ness

ostrom showed self-org’d individuals can successfully .. common

commons is not just a resource.. a social system more than a resource..

deep/simple/open enough

great unacknowledged scandal of our time… privatization of wealth.. taking possession of things that are owned by all of us

13 min – hedgefunds taking over lands…

20% of human genome patented.. reluctant to study cures.. math can’t be used in software because of patent..

16 min – one of greatest problem of our time: market progress and tech is really just dispossession.. of taking away of shared wealth

17 min – commons is about a different universe of values  ie: 1\ relationality

having access to things that are essential to our daily lives.. commons trying to restore that..

19 min – devise new ways to beat the bounds of our shared wealth..

there is no commons w/o commoning.. a verb.. a social activity..

20 min – giving ie’s.. ie: peru potatoes.. et al

21 min – there are more than 2 billion people who’s lives depend on commons everyday.. but most intro econ textbooks don’t mention.. not of interest.. no market exchange.. not cash involved.. not taking place in the market..

22 min – lot of alt currencies trying to capture community value..


23 min – 20 % of econ dependent on fair use commons

100% if we want a healthy planet.. no?

24 min – vast amount of sharing that turns copyright on its head

global design local manufacture

25 min – commons expanding – fablab..

4\ city as commons – great deal of interest in europe..

27 min – ie’s: public commons; platform coop; shareable cities; urban gardens; open data; urban land trusts; fablabs/makerspaces; timebanks

so perhaps.. why we haven’t yet – gotten to global equity/commons – we keep trying partial.. ness.. when commons.. more than anything.. begs all of us.. or none of us..

28 min – reframes how we engage w city.. commons gives framework or critiquing problems.. while providing framework for alt’s..  ie: mechs for self-governance..

hosting-life-bits via self-talk as data.. as the day.. (aka: not partial)

33 min – arts and civic culture change when city becomes a commons.. not just consumers.. initiators..

34 min – places practicing city as commons: bologna, seol korea, barcelona

38 min – lab gov  – – is space for this experimentation – bologna – @chrisiaio

39 min – rethink gov of city..polycentric power structure –  of

40 min – – brings issues to policy.. to help facil commons rather than block it… need commons to ie: deal w/refugee crisis.. – David Hammerstein –

ie’s: access…. to internet/medicines/books..

43 min – the commons needs a political agenda.. to move much more quickly.. – @DaHammerstein

perhaps means to leap.. as agenda

44 min – Marleen Stikker (Waag Society) – on fab labs

46 min – david: if no intellectual property.. how to get financing w no collateral.. serious problem for growing open tech

a means to make money as os irrelevant.. disengage

47 min – marleen ( ): coop better for humans than competition.. so have to facil that.. and that means.. slow money

48 min – we have to talk about the money.. but first.. want to make sure everyone in room gets idea of city as commons – facilitator

50 min – scaling up of resources to city as a whole.. go from single resources.. changing governance.. ie: don’t have to talk about gardens/labs/et-al.. talking about finance of commons in city.. infrastructure.. produce energy.. open knowledge..manage wireless networks.. go from sharing to collab/ing producing resource.. everybody is coop ing w/o even knowing coop ing.. complex commons based system.. – @chrisiaio

53 min – david: respecting creative agency of everyone to participate.. and that generates value in itself..

53 min – city as commons – a paradigm shift – hard for people to understand because don’t realize we live in another paradigm at moment – marleen

57 min – on urgency

for (blank)’s sake

1:01 – commons doesn’t mean automatically inclusive and democratic.. because there are some commons that are neither..

so not really commons.. partial commons.. that’s our problem.. no?

1:02 – on perhaps not being inclusive enough .. w/ie refugee camps..christian

1:03 – why you need to create matrix.. because commons can sometimes favor gentrification – christian

1:04 – how to create new metrics – things you need to measure – christian..

can we try it.. w/o measuring.. let’s try: a and a – coord rather than measure.. ie:host life bits

1:08 – we have to come up with other models.. – @marleenstikker

1:10 – q: commoners are ordinary people.. what is relationship between this talk and all these initiatives..? a: commons practices are there – … the practice is the real thing.. but it’s a systematic change – so hard for lots to be there for long term.. ie: have space for a year.. – marlene

1:12 – how can we create collective action w all these initiatives – host/facilitator

host life bits

1:14 – courage to break w political power – real conflict..  – @DaHammerstein

1:17 – we have a different calculator – @DaHammerstein

perhaps commoning begs no calc..

1:19 – q: entry point for commons illiterate

perhaps none of us are commons illiterate

so.. follow whimsy.. what’s already in each heart..

haven’t seen this yet.. because haven’t yet tried that free\dom

1:22 – same guy in audience – if had a good way of explaining.. many would want to join

best explanation – graeber model law

1:26 – we need to leave some room for uncertainty – @chrisiaio

again – perhaps why we haven’t yet.. need to leave all room

1:28 – people are fighting – really brutal – @chrisiaio

we don’t have laws.. to protect the commons – hammerstein

takes political hacking – @chrisiaio

1:29 – have to reclaim term public  – @marleenstikker

public ness

1:31 – q: ostrom failed to address cynicism..  so how to deal with cynicism.. do we have a case that conflicts between diff types of commons …

1:33 – a: even…______.. have moved beyond ostrom – @chrisiaio.. let’s all move beyond that… start form ostrom.. and move beyond..

1:34 – there’s a lot of people that do romanticize the commons – she is not one of them – david bollier

a: actually – the cynicism is what’s ruling the world.. money taking on such a force.. taking value out of the city.. – hammerstein..

1:37 – q: we’re being completely humanistic here and missing natural systems.. ie: look at spiritual aspects of city as literal commons.. ie: butterflies.. and humans as actors in that..

biology of wonder – andreas weber –  —


1:42 – we have to have fair trade in cities on many levels.. and ways to keep money in community – hammerstein

why not on all levels..  and disengage from money

1:43 – maybe public money should be funding commons .. -christian

1:44 – why not same support we give to market.. to commons – david b

1:46 – david bollier leaves panel and Stan Majoor (HvA) joins..

q: could amsterdam become a city of commoners  a: i think it already is – but i’m deeply skeptical of things that present as universal solution in city.. – we chould investigate.. see where works and doesn’t – Stan

1:48 – what does it take to change a collective of 17 000 civil servants in policies that have existed for 50-60 yrs –  a lot of progress to support commoners.. but we don’t know how – vesa

1:50 – happy about comment for need of investigation.. on spiritual ness.. i don’t want commons to become a religion – otherwise we don’t see the flaws.. we need experimentation.. practice.. need systemic change.. answers by city inhabitants.. need diff culture in city govt.. –  @chrisiaio

mech to facil 7 bill experimenters.. everyday.. as the day.. ie: rev of everyday life..

1:53 – today… citizens as people that need.. not that bring solutions.. @chrisiaio

1:58 – need new solution that can be more distributed.. @chrisiaio

host life bits..

1:59 – audience: on airbnb – would i do this or would i help a friend

deep er – enough for all of us to be free

2:00 – cities .. open systems – this is a dilemma – want to be an open city and how to regulate – stan

2:01 – don’t try to invent.. look at existing .. and see lack of learning.. step in and make knowledge more objectible.. – stan

so.. if just study existing.. how to make a nother way

2:03 – closing comments

2:04 – creating new third spaces – out of elitist.. go into neighborhood – more inclusive.. – marlene

2:12 – look at more structural issues – stan


fb share by Michel

New Videos Explore the Political Potential of the Commons – David Bollier

think like a commoner


the great contribution of the commons is that the solution comes from commoners

3 min – ianik marcel: the problem is the following: it’s that we have a reading scheme of the world that we have inherited from 18th cent thought.. so we consider that what is economic must leave a trace and this trace is monetary transaction and anything that is not a monetary transaction is not an economic activity.. the commons.. the collab commons..  p2p.. the sharing econ.. are questioning this very defn of econ activity

4 min – jason nardi:

5 min – silke: we don’t even have an idea what is possible when we approach politics from a commons perspective

chantal delmas: there are a lot of people who think we cannot live w/o private property.. not because they defend it at any cost but because this idea is totally internalized.. in fact we are mentally alienated around these questions.. a defensive position.. but for me the advantage of the commons is that it is an offensive position.. we create a project

6 min  the idea i hold onto – the common is not a good.. from the moment we leave this notion of common goods behind we enter another universe.. the vision of the world we want to live in… my question is strategically: what are the very concrete experiences that bring the germs to organize in this way

2 convos.. as the day.. leads/frees us to the dance

7 min – nancy neamtam: the first coops were constructed to fight against capitalist exploitation.. trade unions for short term protection and coops to control more in long run.. and then over course of 20th.. there was a distancing/alienation from each other

8 min – pablo solon: the commons key element for construction of alt systems.. but only one piece of puzzle.. necessary to fill in what the commons bring with other proposals.. like those of degrowth.. anti globalization.. good living.. eco feminism .. eco socialism…

9 min – : zaptistas and chaipas described as a learning community.. probably the most advance ie of a new society constructed on the commons w/o being their part of the commons movement

10 min – charles lenchner:

13 min – pablo: we need to construct a counter that is completely autonomous.. there have been plenty of moments where the left has had progressive sectors in govt and still we don’t have a single ie of successful social transformation

14 min – jordi via llop: from controlling to facilitating

15 min – christian iaione: start seeing community as state actor – (notes from this on his page)

17 min – gåelle krikorian: what worries me.. do this.. but not able to conceive of how to scale up

19 min – frédéric sultan:

21 min – christian: on commons being copy pasted.. when needs to be adaptive/diverse (again – notes on his page)


2017 – ghent


michel fb share

strongly recommended:

via Gregory Wilpert

in post capitalist commons –

The cognitive ability to make sense of the world makes another major leap, this time to see the contextual and social frameworks of ones’ (previously presumed universal) understanding. That is, individuals here become more aware of their systemic embeddedness in social relations and how this limits their ability to fully understand the world. It represents a major leap in understanding because recognizing these limitations and frameworks is important for overcoming these. Some call the cognitive ability at this stage “systemic” because people see their embeddedness in systems of relationships and how these relationships affect their way of perceiving the world.

Membership boundaries thus become a non-issue. 

thurman interconnectedness law

The first step to reverse the inequality that our political and economic system perpetuates is to get money out of politics.

rather.. disengage from money – any measuring of transactions..

A transformation of the media landscape into a global post-capitalist commons would also address the problem of the psycho-political manipulation of the population.

Once the financial and mediatic basis is removed from maintaining the status quo, policy changes in the direction of reversing economic inequality become much more feasible, especially if these are policies that are directed at everyone and not just towards the poor. Guaranteed basic income would be perhaps the most important such measure.”

ubi as temp placebo.. otherwise.. spinning our wheels..

First we will develop post-capitalist social commons on a national level for labor and income. Eventually these could be expanded to a global level, so as to reduce global inequality.

commons for labor and income.. rather.. disengage from both..

Whether we achieve these different types of post-capitalist commons depends not only on having the technological infrastructure in place, which enables peer-to-peer communication for coordinating and managing these on a large scale.

mech simple enough.. a nother way

hlb that io dance..

It also depends on whether the participants in these commons have the pre-requisite consciousness to recognize systemic relationships, to empathize, and to develop flexible but principled rules for managing post-capitalist commons on a global scale.

detox if needed.. hastened by 2 convos .. as the day

Certain trends in today’s society give us reason to hope, but only if we manage to overcome the negative trends that threaten to undermine such a project.

via ie: gershenfeld sel.. 2 convos .. as the day..[aka: not part\ial.. for (blank)’s sake…] et al..


Thinking in Systems, Dana Meadows ..great insight on systems.. esp loved meadows undisturbed law.. but didn’t seem to follow into other areas.. ie: tragedy of commons wasn’t an undisturbed system (which i think an authentic commons/commoning would be).. i see money/measure as disturbances.. and Dana didn’t seem to..


city as commons (policy reader)


Michel Bauwens (@mbauwens) tweeted at 5:55 AM – 16 Aug 2018 :
RT @Melissa_Ydra: Great read on the #commons, new politics and L-America context by @chavezdaniel

We (TNI) have recently published a report on the commons in partnership with the P2P Foundation, in which we refer to this concept as the combination of four basic elements: (1) material or immaterial resources managed collectively and democratically; (2) social processes that foster and deepen cooperative relationships; (3) a new logic of production and a new set of productive processes; and (4) a paradigm shift, which conceives the commons as an advance beyond the classical market/state or public/private binary oppositions.

From his (michel’s) (and mine) perspective, the state is perceived not as the enemy, but as an entity that could provide local communities and self-organised workers with the institutional, political or economic power that would be required for these processes to reach their maximum potential in the framework of the political and economic transition that we need. It also means, among several other possibilities to be considered, the provision of financial or in-kind support for cooperatives or other initiatives inspired by the notion of the commons.

imagining commons to be sans money and gershenfeld sel to allow for sans state/govt ness ie: commons/commoning as undisturbed ecosystem

My perspective of analysis on the state and the commons is very influenced by Jessop, and also by David Harvey, when he argues that a big problem on the left is that many – pointing to John Holloway and other proponents of the thesis of “changing the world without taking power” – think that the capture of state power wouldn’t be of much importance in emancipatory processes. We must recognise the incredible power accumulated in the institutions of the state and, therefore, we shouldn’t underestimate the importance of state institutions;..t.. in particular when there’re opportunities to enable the expansion of the commons.

perhaps.. we should let go of indulging the state/institutions power.. and we shouldn’t underestimate the energy of 7bn alive people

assuming (from chart) – tech infra that makes widespread (as in entire globe) use of these relations possible..

In other word: is it possible to operate within the state apparatus without being caught in the demobilising logic of institutional power? Unlike some of the friends I mentioned before, I don’t have a single or categorical answer to such question. I still believe that the state has a very important role to play, but I’m also convinced that it is now imperative for the left to get rid of its obsolete state-centric vision and open up to fresh perspectives like those of the commons.

let go

Bolivia and Ecuador, during the governments led by Evo Morales and Rafael Correa, incorporated the notions of living well and good living in their respective constitutions and policy guidelines, but the policies implemented have not always been coherent with the spirit or with the letter of the new legal and institutional framework.

because policies.. et al.. are a disturbance to an undisturbed ecosystem

In Venezuela, there was also much talk around self-management and people’s power, and considerable resources were allocated to the creation of cooperatives and associative ventures of a new type, but in practice very little progress was achieved;

and i don’t think it will work.. until we let go of money.. any measuring of transactions.. any tit for tat ness

We can’t ignore the terrible rates of poverty, exclusion, and poor access to basic goods and services that still affect millions of Latin Americans.

and all over.. ie: refugees, yemen.. this is why we can’t go part\ial.. for (blank)’s sake…]..  a nother way

In that sense, I believe that the impulse to the commons must be framed within a broader strategy of growth, different from that offered by predatory and savage capitalism..t

perhaps broader strategy of growth: ginorm/small .. as in a means for 7bn to leap

A large part of the communal and participatory initiatives that had emerged in the most fecund years of the Venezuelan transition have gone into rapid regression when faced with the loss of the resources provided by the state (of which they had become dependent)..forces us to rethink the limits of ‘revolutionary’ political projects that are excessively focused on the state.


The political influence of Barcelona today is comparable to the hope that Porto Alegre, Montevideo and other Latin American capitals had been generated in the 1980s and 1990s, when the left began to *experiment with participatory budgeting and other innovative policies for the radicalisation of democracy at the municipal level. **Barcelona is today a laboratory for the design and testing of multiple initiatives inspired by the principle of the commons.

i wish **barcelona could test true common ing principles.. but common ing won’t happen if we don’t let go of ie: **budgeting/policies


(((Howard Rheingold))) (@hrheingold) tweeted at 1:25 PM – 19 Dec 2018 :
More than 60 summaries – 1 sentence, 1 graf, 1 page, link to source – of key works in cooperation theory for example, Ostrom’s Governing the Commons compiled by @iftf & me (


Promissory Notes:  From Crisis to Commons — Midnight Notes Collective
Original Tweet:

16 page pdf download

part 4

p 11 – a commons w/o consciously constituted community is unthinkable.. this means we have to craft a set of objectives that articulate vision.. ie we can’t live in a country where: 37 m are hungry; cost of surgery kicks you out of home; going to school rots mind and leave in debt; return to work in 70s because cheated out of pension
12 – we should formulate demands/objectives/programs of struggle around main elements of our lives – housing, work, income.. all in view of guaranteeing our livelihoods, building solidarity/coop, and creating alts to live in capitalism..t
? rather a and a to live in eudaimonia
ie: guaranteed housing; ubi; violence; ..future commons boils to 1\ land 2\ knowledge .. fin system replaced w credit unions to decide where to put community resources
part 5
16 – disarm state & capital as much/soon as possible


this is a really great and unique series of short commons talks by representatives of marginalized communities, and what the commons means for them, made in brazil by the Institut Procomun, STRONGLY RECOMMENDED:

Original Tweet:

16 of them

video #1 – bianca santana

on black people commoning because they’re excluded

video #2 – marcio black

public policy as redundant.. public is where we make policy.. politics are what is practiced in public space.. so we use culture to attract people to public space and from then on construct politics

seems if we have to use effort to attract people to come to public space.. maybe we’re doing it wrong.. sounds backwards.. and perhaps why we are drowning in too much policy et al

it is much more difficult to gather people to build a country

yeah see.. i don’t think so.. if we change our focus

and much easier to gather people to your neighborhood

thinking campfires.. and hosting ness.. perhaps if we think we have to invite people.. we’re doing it wrong

thinking esp of invited to exist ness.. and invited vs invent ness and dave’s campfire analogy

video #3 – kum’tum akroá-gamella

on indigenous.. and how nature gives life meaning.. part of reproduction

video #4 – several people

we work to exchange seed.. it is a way for us to perpetuate commons life

exchange is scary word

video #5 – joão brant

when we speak of the commons.. it means a production geared toward sharing

production.. killer of curiosity

commons aren’t defined just by rules and norms but also by process that keep the commons alive

only rules and norms: maté basic needs .. beyond that we compromise the dance (undisturbed ecosystem)

the life, strength and power of the experience depend on how the commons organize as a process..

indeed.. huge.. and we keep missing it..  org beyond  infra and we’ve org’d too much

ie: creative commons.. w/licensing.. you establish common use .. and that is what’s beautiful about the commons.. a concern for the memory of previous processes of org ing.. but also for process of this going forward.. towards the creation of a broad public domain

that’s not commoning.. not broad/deep enough.. we have no idea of how beautiful the dance could be

let go

video # 6 – cinthia mendonça

the commons are possibly what we are all entitled to.. that which we don’t even need to wish for

dang.. entitlement compromises commoning.. don’t even need to wish for is legit.. it’s natural.. but we gotta let go first

commons are always something very basic.. like right to education


so there is supervision.. to avoid wasting water

supervision compromises commoning

video #7 – jean tible

commons are foundation for everything

video #8 – tica moreno

video #9 – mariana belmont

video #10 – juliana gonçalves

good one

video #11 – thiago carrapatoso

video #12 – alana moraes

last several talking about struggle, suffering, resistance and living in the margins as ie’s.. i don’t think truly commoning commoners would spend their days in struggling, resisting, et al.. so not an ie of commoning

video #13 – ricardo brazileiro

video #14 – henrique parra

we can think of the uni as a commons.. elements that belong to everyone


video #15 – georgia nicolau

video #16 – rodrigo savazoni