flok society

flok society


Free / Libre Open Knowledge Society, designing a world for the commons. Designing a productive exchange matrix into the society of free, shared knowledge and open

Michel in Equador for 6 months (starting sept 2013) to work on flok society project for equador

the reason 3d printing is open, because the patent died..

working on changing the productive matrix

invited by equador

we having sharing….. lots of things… but we don’t have a sharing country yet – 

equador doesn’t have much sharing now.. but they are very open to inclusion and equity..

from p2pfoundation site:

“The FLOK Society welcomes Michel Bauwens to Ecuador. Bauwens, a founder of the P2P Foundation, flew into Quito on Sept. 17 to begin collaborating towards a fundamental reimagination of Ecuador.

Bauwens will lead a research team that is proposing to unleash a participatory, global process with an immediate implementation in Ecuador. The process will remake the roots of Ecuador’s economy, setting off a transition into a society of free and open knowledge.

In the first semester of 2014, Bauwens will assist in setting up a global network of transition researchers. The P2P Foundation is a global network of researchers that is documenting the shift towards open, participatory and commons-oriented practices in every domain of human activity, but especially also the shift from collaboration on open knowledge and code, towards cooperation in open design, open hardware, open science, open government, and the shift towards open agricultural and open machining practices that have great potential for increasing the productivity and sustainability of farming and industrial processes.

Ecuador is the first country in the world which is committing itself to the creation of a open commons knowlege based society. In order to achieve the transition to a ‘buen saber’, or ‘good knowledge’ society, which is an extension of the official strategy towards a ‘buen vivir’-based society, the Advanced 


post by Helene:

on flok society


great intro to flok project written june 2014:

flok post

The FLOK Society bills its mission as “designing a world for the commons.

The aim of FLOK is to add “Good Knowledge” as an enabler and facilitator of the good life.

That sounds inspirational, but how will it work in practice? In particular, how will those participating in the “Good Life” earn a living through this “Good Knowledge”? Bauwens explains:

Think of the core model of our economy as the Linux economy writ large, but one in which the enterprises are actually in the hands of the value creators themselves. Imagine this micro-economic model on the macro scale of a whole society. Civil society becomes a series of commonses with citizens as contributors; the shareholding market becomes an ethical stakeholder marketplace; and the state becomes a partner state, which “enables and empowers social production” through the communication of public services and public-commons partnerships.

…what we are proposing is a discussion about a new type of licensing, which we call Commons-Based Reciprocity Licensing. This idea was first pioneered with the Peer Production License as conceived by Dmytri Kleiner. 

great read – link to and read whole post..


first flok society hangout: 

michel – 1. create maker spaces supported by unis for youth and farmers et al 2. create micro factories..


flok bullet points

The Process Phase

The aim of the FLOK Society research team is to have an integrative vision of the social, cultural, political and economic change that is necessary to create a positive feedback loop of policy measures that cover the different aspects of the transition.

The process of compiling and interpreting the research, has therefore been divided in five research streams.

Stream 1: Enhancing Human Capacities for Commons-based Collaboration

The first stream concerns human capacity building, i.e. individual and collective cultural change. Co-creating and participating in the construction of an open-commons based knowledge society and in the social and solidarity economy indeed requires certain capacities, which may not always be available, but which can be learned, and this will require policy support.

Stream 2: Commons-oriented Productive Capacities

One of the priorities of the current government of Ecuador is to halt the dependency of the economy on the export of finite material resources and to transition to an economy that is fed by infinite immaterial resources such as knowledge, science, and culture. The productivity of traditional sectors such as agriculture, industry and services can be infused with productive knowledge sharing.

Stream 3: Social Infrastructure and Institutional Innovation

Moving to an open-commons based knowledge society requires new institutional forms, to protect the open knowledge pools from private appropriation and protect the inclusivity of the research. What are the new forms of licensing, governance and property that can protect the commons and stimulate its uses by social, enterpreneurial and public actors?

Stream 4: Open Technical Infrastructures

Co-creating commons requires collaborative platforms and the freedom to communicate and cooperate, but the current technological infrastructures are often dominated by strong geopolitical players and their mass surveillance. What kind of internet and web, and associated internet user rights does Ecuador need to enable and empower the collaboration of its citizens.

Stream 5: Commons’ Infrastructure for Collective Life

Open-commons knowledge needs physical commons. For example, the energy autonomy of citizens requires a smart grid that allows citizens to share or exchange their surpluses; Open design commons in agricultural machining require a network of micro-factories; affordable housing for commoners depends on protecting housing from financial speculation. There are many infrastructural commons solutions that can augment the productivity of immaterial knowledge commons and create fruitful synergies. The aim of this stream is to propose policies for commons in the physical world.


interview on flok: http://blog.p2pfoundation.net/podcast-on-the-open-knowledge-society/2014/06/06

michel – my focus is policy

13 min – ie: bitcoin – yes p2p, but p2p for market. organize for computer – i can have 10000 and farmer can have none.. not equitable; taskrabbit – demand side can organize talk to each other, but workers can’t talk to each other. there’s a sociopolitical design that forms the technological structure…

15 min – how to we impact sustain the things we favor – optimistic to rebirth the internet of the 90s

so huge and spot on – what if ed is way different.. and so changes everything quite a bit. ie: rather than focus on text books… credentialing… frees up so much time – which is the main thing we have.. no?

18 min – the partner state

23 min – closure after closure.. we want public service that enables and empowers people.. we need policy for that.. new forms of democracy – liquid forms – like the ones used by the pirate party.. state as citizenry.. not talking about the state we have today.. 1) transform civil society to the commons 2) transform market through ethical economy 3) transform state to partner state

25 min – binary operation between equality and freedom.. you can’t have one w/o repressing the other..

54 min – maker/hacker spaces changing the world of work – but need to make sure economy supports worker and commons

57 min – relationship between market and commons.. put design in the commons – 1st advantage – there is no design for scarcity.. no design for exclusion.. then can start designing for sustainability

in history – in dealing w/real crises:  1) mutualize knowledge to solve the crisis – open source 2) mutualize infrastructure – shared work spaces/maker/hacker spaces…

how to finance the new economy – neg interest rate – 1) local – good but not big enough 2) bitcoin – more capitalist than other… so need a social design – ie: neg interest rate; basic income; ….

1:10 – rather than thinking resources are unlimited and human cooperation is limited.. flip it.. this combo will create a stable, thriving society

1:11 – crisis we now are in is an end product of the last 200 yrs… ie: industrial factory system. 200 yrs ago when this started – there was pushback. now those very same dynamics have extended and covered the globe.. and now again – trying to rehumanize economics.. so i would project – coniditions are producing resistance…  so we are trying to construct the infrastructure.. the lifeboats .. for when this structure (of the last 200 yrs) does start to crumble – john


june 2014:

The doctrine of FLOK – Summit # BuenConocer



FLOK in Ecuador is Not What Was Promised
Time to Conduct an Autopsy on a One-Time Utopian Dream





posted by michel in the next edge fb

Please note that the official version of the FLOK papers on the Ecuadorian transition to a social knowledge economy has been censored, not only is the strategic transition document missing, but my very name is missing from the authors list.


An uncensored selected collection of the main papers appeared here last year: http://commonstransition.org/#book

and here is a evalution of the process and lessons learned:http://blog.p2pfoundation.net/a-new-evaluation-of-the-…/…/07

on flok project book:
(several yrs later.. adding notes as i re read):


4 streams: first: human capabilities – 1\ ed.. *more than 20 000 free/open learning modules  2\ science

*ie of not open ness


*with strong citizen participation in sci data gathering et al  .. 3\ culture.. **free culture under creative commons licsensing..

*matters little if non legit data.. could say core problem/error of flok society.. all data is data from whales

**another ie of not free/open ness


second: commons oriented productive capacities – 1\ agri food  2\ biodiversity


3\ manufacturing  4\ energy


third: institutions, communities and society – 1\ econ 2\ knowledge .. *faces challenges and risks the reproduction of subalternization.. deserves careful attention  if we are not to reproduce previous forms of domination of knowledge commons

*yeah that.. doing just that.. same song ness.. spinning our wheels in tragedy of the non common


3\ urban (vs smart cities) .. how organized society and public institutions can balance and preclude the commodification and centralization of metro human collab is still an open issue.. but local governance makes possible the success and expansion of forms of *direct democracy and collective managements that are harder to implement at a the global scale..

*this (democratic admin) is how we’re keeping from legit free/open ness.. how we’re commondifying

fourth: open tech infra – 1\ connectivity as a *right..

oi.. so as enclosure

p. 10 –

It is therefore a critical task for the FLOK doctrine to provide a decent alternative to the increasing threads of the smart city as a new (and potentially totalitarian) enclosure of social life, and to some capitalist forms of collaborative economy that span to almost all dimension of metropolitan life (from transport to town-hall governance, from the internet of things to social communication). Parallel to the increasing penetration of corporate power and commodification into metropolitan life, the FLOK alternatives are providing forms of effective community building and collective management of urban resources (from co-working spaces to political participation, from the design and use of public space, like parks and squares, to the co-housing and car sharing). How organized society and public institutions can balance and preclude the commodification and centralization of metropolitan human collaboration is still an open issue, but local governance makes possible the success and expansion of forms of direct democracy and collective management that are harder to implement at the global scale.


access to internet .. ie’s of how to guarantee connectivity w/o centralized control..

but doing so in enclosing/excluding ways.. berners-lee everyone law et al

2\ hardware  3\ software.. highest potential to almost completely *substitute proprietary and capitalist modes of production/management..  floss et al

perhaps *sub bing.. just means perpetuating

p. 11 –

But it is at the layer of software where Free/Libre Open Source infrastructures provide nowadays the highest potential to al- most completely substitute proprietary and capitalist modes of production and management. Both as an economic sector in itself and, most importantly, as an infrastructural provider, FLOSS is the flagship of the FLOK society model. It has shown the potential for free and open knowledge production and distribution together with community governance. Part of its potential lies on the recursive nature of software production: the creation of tools to make tools to make tools. When this recursive power is free and open, it is almost inevitable that prosumer communities emerge around projects and make use of this tools to communicate and organize themselves.



All this is possible without the mediation of intellectual property as a form of commodification of knowledge and is possible without centralized control of *knowledge resources or distribution and it is often made possible precisely thanks to **radically democratic communities, like Debian18.

*again.. matters little if wrong/whale data

**we need to let go of any form of democratic admin

the picture that emerges from the streams and topics we just covered is the landscape of a powerful social econ of open and common’s knowledge, *based on the principles of reciprocity, mutuality and common good, which are also the foundation of a **civil society.. however.. the full flourishing of the flok landscape demands the ***removal of severely guarded fences and obstacles that are both natural, ****rather naturalized, and artificial..

*reciprocity is a red flag.. not a part of legit common\ing

**more red flags.. ie: jensen civilization law et al

***all the above red flags as fences/obstacle.. let go

****yeah that.. naturalized.. aka: sea world ized.. let go


paths ahead also prefigure important struggles in domain of social/political org.. new models of governance and collective management are already straining for hegemony against the neolib and corp powers..  it is *only thru the deepening into more democratic societies that the flourishing of the flok society can take place..  this requires.. deployment of open/free/collectively managed infras.. together w *legal and social cultural frameworks geared toward *promotion/protection of the rights of access to knowledge.. demand for corp/govt transparency and accountability.. demands for **deeper/genuine citizen participation.. also ongoing struggles critical to success of flok society

oi.. *so loaded.. **imagine if we


new *regimes of knowledge production and distribution can be the key, not just for a necessary econ transition, but also for a *radically democratic one.. from the ecuadorian context, the flok doctrine has sought to learn/contribute to the virtuous circle of .. *knowledge – governance – wealth..  that lies at the heart of our next democratic revolutions


there’s a nother way.. imagine if we around legit legit needs


city ness

money ness

2017 – ghent