Thursday, August 24, 2006

Undervaluing openness.

People have a tendency to think that something owned and controlled is better than something open and free.

Call it the openness aversion. We are likely to undervalue the importance, viability and productive power of open systems, open networks and non-proprietary production.
Where would the internet be today if it was owned by some corporation? The article wisely concludes that we need both closed and open systems to get the maximum benefits for society. Let's just make sure the open ones stay that way.

1 comment:

Aussie-Askew said...

Hard to believe this after the late 80s, where Reagan led us and the rest of the world's governments down the path of "less control" by opening most government owned industry/monopolies to competition, or just selling them outright.

How much did prices fall, service improve, or innovation increase?

Some industries did take off cause there was lots of money within them, and they could play the market (Telcos, now going backwards towards monopoly), but this was usually for the shareholders and CEO's, not the users. While most others in tighter spaces started to slide away, charging the consumers more, all the while asking the government for monetary support - thus defeating the savings (e.g. America's rail network, government health cover, Enron and privatized electricity).

Hmmm... I was off to the rant races just then. never understood the privatise everything argument. Same amount of money, but all yrou efficiency gains (cause you aren;t big government) usually gets eaten up in the desire for shareholder profits. User doesnt always figure in there.