Michel Bauwens

An Introduction to Basic P2P Ideas

Over the last ten years, the P2P Foundation has produced a sizeable body of material, both original and curated, but none of it is specifically designed as an introduction for people who are not so familiar with the P2P approach. Irma Wilson, a member of the P2P Foundation and the founder of FutureSharp, decided to shoot a number of short videos featuring Michel Bauwens during his recent trip to South Africa. With Irma’s assistance and the help of filmmaker Michel Taljaard, we produced the four videos presented below.

These videos showcase the P2P Foundation’s definition of peer-to-peer dynamics as well as P2P-oriented economic and political alternatives. The final video highlights a number of legal and policy suggestions with some emphasis on the CopyFair license.

Part 1: What is P2P?

The first video answers the question “What is peer to peer?”, presenting it as a relational, people-based system which encourages the production of Commons.

Part 2: P2P Politics

This second video second outlines the basic political ideas of the P2P Foundation, highlighting the necessity of coalescing the sustainable (Greens), digital culture (Pirate Parties) and social justice (Syriza, Podemos) political parties around the notion of the Commons.

Part 3: P2P Economics

This third video answers the question “What are peer to peer economics”, focusing on sustainable models of peer to peer production where the exchange value generated is reverted to the producers of use value. The notion of commons-producing Open Cooperatives is also explored.

Part 4: CopyFair Licenses

This fourth video highlights the legal and policy suggestions with some emphasis on the CopyFair license, which would foster the economic resilience of Commons-based enterprises and collectives and prevent the predatory practises of capital.

Lead image by Heather Katsoulis

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