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Peer Production and Social Change

Abstract : This chapter examines claims that peer production can address the social harms of neoliberal capitalism as well as the democratic failures of the centralized state. It distinguishes distributed and self‐governed politics which take place outside the conventional arena of parties and elections from those which directly engage with this conventional arena. The chapter reviews how different categories of peer producers engage in prefigurative political action. In contrast to the constitution of autonomous enclaves outside of conventional politics, a second type of peer‐produced politics engages with conventional politics in the form of parties, campaigning, and presenting lists of candidates for election. The chapter explains why many radical thinkers have considered peer production as the germ of a postcapitalist future. It then critically engages with this vision, arguing that peer production projects are often intertwined with neoliberal digital capitalism, and that commoners regularly fail to address the questions raised by unpaid voluntary labor.
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Submitted on : Friday, February 19, 2021 - 11:38:02 AM
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Mathieu O'Neil, Sebastien Broca. Peer Production and Social Change. Mathieu O'Neil; Christian Pentzold; Sophie Toupin. The Handbook of Peer Production, Wiley, pp.285-298, 2020, 978-1-119-53710-6. ⟨10.1002/9781119537151.ch21⟩. ⟨hal-03146656⟩

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