Corporate Capitalism’s Use of Openness

books_Corporate Capitalism's Use of Openness 2020

Arwid Lund and Mariano Zukerfeld
Palgrave Macmillan, 2020

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Addresses issues of governance and citizenship, politics and policy outcomes
Sits at the intersection of three fields of knowledge concerning commons and collaborative production, new business models on the Internet, and politics of cognitive capitalism’s social relations
Establishes the particularities of “open” business models and the ways in which these models are implicated in contemporary capitalist accumulation.

This book tackles the concept of openness (as in open source software, open access and free culture), from a critical political economy perspective to consider its encroachment by capitalist corporations, but also how it advances radical alternatives to cognitive capitalism.

Drawing on four case studies, Corporate Capitalism’s Use of Openness will add to discussion on open source software, open access content platforms, open access publishing, and open university courses. These otherwise disparate cases share two fundamental features: informational capitalist corporations base their successful business models on unpaid productive activities, play, attention, knowledge and labour, and do so crucially by resorting to ideological uses of concepts such as “openness”, “communities” and “sharing”.

The authors present potential solutions and alternative regulations to counter these exploitative and alienating business models, and to foster digital knowledge commons, ranging from co-ops and commons-based peer production to state agencies’ platforms. Their research and findings will appeal to students, academics and activists around the world in fields such as sociology, economy, media and communication, library and information science, political sciences and technology studies.



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