Re: [-empyre-] Free Cooperation

Hi - I think re: below - this is wonderful.

I'd like to hear more about the 'tit-for-tat' strategy. For myself - I've
always found collaboration difficult, but if I'm given or give myself a
particular role or segment, there's no problem at all. Having to be
creative and negotiate otherwise is hard for me. For example, on the
Unstable Digest in its current manifestation, Florian makes the final
decisions, but I forward; it works well. He'll send me a maquette before
it's sent on.

I used to moderate email lists solo; I'd never do that now - instead, it's
always fully collaborative, and it works a great deal better. There's a
tendency to respond far too quickly to negative situations online; having
a group automatically produces lag.

In jazz, one's held by the structure - but even then there are cutting
contests. On one hand, there's trading fours - on the other, there's
harmonic extensions that become increasingly hard to follow.

It's like rules in sport or escapements in clockwork - both slow down and
harmonize the release of potential energy. Football players aren't
supposed to kill each other; pendulums shouldn't crash to the floor.

I'm not sure about 'free' relationships. Certainly not enslaved, but I
don't think humans are 'free' within the polity. Somewhere along the line
there's a social contract; I remember Essenin-Volpin's notion of dual
freedoms - freedom to do whatever I want to do - but coupled with freedom
to refuse to have done to me whatever I don't want done to me. It's
interesting that the latter, as an introjection, takes the form of a

I agree about values and goals - for me, roles are what makes it all work.

Crusoe by the way didn't go alone; he had the total ideology of British
mercantilism built-in.

Alan -

On Sat, 21 Feb 2004, Trebor Scholz wrote:

> Hi Alan,
> > politics-as-usual. This might be almost instinctual among humans, who
> > jockey for territory in almost any situation.
> In the open source movement there is the recent idea of a tit-for-tat
> strategy: exchanges of effort, one gives a bit-- receives a bit (of
> code). Comparably in Jazz and Dance Improvisation actors look for the
> moves of the others and then sensibly introduce their contributions,
> leads are taken in turns and in a non-rivalous manner. Is competition
> really inevitably at the root of each collaboration? I have not really
> experienced it like that in the Discordia development and editors team
> or in this collaboration with Geert organizing "networks, art, &
> collaboration." At best collaborations are a playful sparking of each
> other.
> How do collaborations differ from the cooking pot of the Internet to
> face-to-face situations? Online and off there is the risk of involuntary
> altruism caused by the possibility of free-riders in the collective
> process.
> Online and off we should demand relationships in which we are free
> instead of forced or enslaved, situations in which we are independent
> and can negotiate and re-negotiate the rules. And if our "haggling" does
> not work out, we withdraw our effort or eventually withdraw from the
> collaboration.  Collaborations need to have incentives, not just risks.
> Online and off, it needs a glue of collective action, a commonality of
> values, joint intention or goals that hold the group together. In both
> contexts all participants need to be responsible to the goal of the
> collaboration.
> And, I wonder how to best pass on to children that we don't have to be
> Robinson Crusoes.
> Best,
> Trebor
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
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