Small investors, emboldened by an online Reddit group called WallStreetBets, have so far inflicted nearly $20 billion in losses on their arch short-selling foes as the stock price of GameStop has rocketed from about $17 a share on January 4 to $325 a share on Friday. Will WallStreetBets show itself to be a liberating force? Will it spawn a worldwide movement that demands a rethinking and restructuring of our financial system?
Commoning may be rooted in a variety of social outlooks and behaviors, as we saw in Chapter Four. But can it govern? Can it do so better than existing governments? Can it coordinate more effectively and better than the market? These are large questions.
Writing recently in Medium, Salvatore Iaconesi — a designer, engineer and founder of Art is Open Source and Human Ecosystems — offers an extremely important critique of the blockchain and other data-driven network technologies. While recognizing that these systems have enormous potential for “radical innovation and transformation,” he astutely warns against their dangerous psychological and cultural effects.
Complexity science shows us not only what to do, but also how to do it: build shared infrastructure, improve information flow, enable rapid innovation, encourage participation, support diversity and citizen empowerment.
Art is a subtle way to groom the populace with new ideas, fast.
With public interest in the sharing economy on the rise, a polarisation of views on its potential benefits and drawbacks is fast becoming apparent.