A gift economy is an economic system in which the prevalent mode of exchange is for goods and services to be given without explicit agreement upon a quid pro quo (the Latin term for the concept of “a favor for a favor”). Typically, this occurs in a cultural context where there is an expectation either of reciprocation—in the form of goods or services of comparable value, or of political support, general loyalty, honor to the giver, etc.—or of the gift being passed on in some other manner. This can be considered a form of reciprocal altruism. In other cases, gifting is done without implicit expectation of reciprocation (“Gift Economy“, 2007).
Here’s the Question of the Week (QotW):
- After reading “The Economies of Online Cooperation” by Kollack (1999), identify an “economy” that you participate in (or with which you are at least familiar), and show that it is a gift economy. Examples include: Photographic Societies, Anime Groups, Car Tuning Enthusiasts, Sports Fan Clubs, Open Source Projects and so much more!
- Cite facts from the Kollack article (1999), including at least two additional sources from this week’s readings or from external peer-reviewed sources.
- Make a specific argument in 700 words (proper written English), supported with at least three APA-style citations.
- Start the title of your blog post as “QotW4: _____”
- Drop a comment here with a permalink to your blog post.
Extended to 10th Feb, Saturday, 5pm
(Warning: Late work will not be graded)
A gift economy is an economic system in which goods and services are given, rather than traded. For our present generation, the Internet has naturally allowed for the development of several gift economies.
- The Economies of Online Cooperation: Gifts and Public Goods in Cyberspace (Kollack, 1999)
- The Political Economy of Commons
- The Hi-tech Gift Economy by Richard Barbrook(First Monday)
Many kinds of Gift Economies, this is an example:
Free and Open Source Software (FOSS)