Open-source economics is an economic platform based on free and open collaboration for the production of software, services, or other products.
Some characteristics of open-source economics are... Work or investment is carried out without express expectation of return. Income generated by such enterprise is distributed through collaborative user feedback. Products or services are produced through collaboration between users and developers. There is no direct individual ownership of the enterprise itself.
As of recently there were no known commercial organizations outside of software that employ open-source economics as a structural base. Today there are organizations that provide services and product that use an open-source economic model.The structure of open source is based on user participation. "networked environment makes possible a new modality of organizing production: radically decentralized, collaborative, and non-proprietary; based on sharing resources and outputs among widely distributed, loosely connected individuals who cooperate with each other without relying on either market signals or managerial commands." One example of this architecture could look like this.
- Users/developers Commonly the customer or client in a traditional business which is also the developer. Creating a feedback loop for product development.
- Production, The technical, production or manufacturing portion of the enterprise.
- Marketing, Activities engaged in promotion and sale of products and services.
- Administrators Management of the enterprise executing the collaborative will and providing open accounting.
Organization and governance among these four groups is carried out through a server-based participatory social media algorithm involving all users.The inherit freedom that is at the foundation of open source is central to this economy, with both freedom of participation, and an open format. The unique aspect of this economic model is in that with participation comes a proportionate share of the income generated by the enterprise. The ultimate governor of all transactions being the participating community itself.
Open-source economics accepts greed or self-interest as the invisible hand that regulates the market. Price and wages are regulated through the administrative side of the participating community. The difference with the standard supply and demand model is that there is an initial requirement to give something for free first. The more that is given the more value generated, and the larger the proportion of the income you would be awarded by the collaborative body.
There are two particular differences of economics managed by open-source governance to the current business models:
- The initial capital to start a project is given away. It is in the form of the free script given by a programmer, or the efforts and time given by the marketing and administrative staff. The common employee employer relationship is converted to the investor and return on investment paradigm we commonly understand today. Only after the initial investment of time or money may participants hope to see a return from their labor.
- The consumer of products or services would have an equal share in the decision process. Equilibrium of cost, price or value would ultimately be established through a quorum of all participants consumers as well as producers and administrators.
The success or failure of an open-source enterprise relies ultimately in how equitable it behaves to its producers, employees and consumers. In other words an organization that is able to provide the greatest level of fairness or value to all concerned would attract more customers, the best developers, administrators, and marketing personnel.
siehe auch "Gemeine Markt"