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WHY NOT SHARE RATHER THAN OWN?

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WHY NOT SHARE RATHER THAN OWN? Russell Belk University of Utah USA – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: WHY NOT SHARE RATHER THAN OWN?


1
WHY NOT SHARE RATHER THAN OWN?
  • Russell Belk
  • University of Utah
  • USA

2
Consider Daily Commuting
  • Lone drivers in private autos SUV
  • Air pollution, global warming
  • Dwindling fossil fuels, global competition
  • Increased stress triples heart attack risk
  • Sharing alternatives (e.g., AutoShare, car pools,
    public transit, bike sharing)
  • So why dont we share?
  • Can we share more?

3
Alternative Forms of Distribution
  • Marketplace Exchange
  • Gift-Giving
  • Sharing

On the whole, you find wealth much more in use
than in ownership (Aristotle)
4
Commodity Exchange
  • Strangers barter or purchase with money
  • Balanced transactions incur no debt nor
    create/maintain social relations
  • Simultaneous exchange ideal
  • Establishes equivalence between objects
  • Simmels society of strangers (not friends or
    enemies)
  • Sahlins balanced or negative reciprocity
  • Egoistic
  • In Derridas Economists views, the only form
    of human transaction

5
Gift Exchange
  • In Mausss view, still based on reciprocity
    (obligations to give, receive, reciprocate)
  • In Gregorys view, the opposite of commodity
    exchange
  • Establishes relationships between people
  • Ideally staggered
  • Money taboos
  • May involve Sahlins generalized reciprocity
  • Social exchange and ritual prestation
  • Altruism and agapic love possible, but not ours
  • In Granovetters terms, even business
    transactions can be embedded in this way (also
    Carrier, Silver)

6
Sharing
  • A third alternative not fully considered
  • Prototypeincome pooling and resource sharing
    within the family predecessor the mother
  • A Marxian ideal from each according to his or
    her abilities and to each according to his or her
    needs
  • An Internet reality? File sharing, P2P, open
    source, BBs, Wikipedia, free democratized
    information
  • The open science/academic model since the
    Scientific Revolution vs. closed
    technology/business
  • But even the prototype of the family may pool
    share less
  • IPR may trump biodiversity, human life, blood
    organs

7
Key Questions
  • What dont we share
  • more?
  • Incentives to share
  • intangibles?
  • Incentives to share
  • tangibles?
  • Are these incentives changing?
  • How does this change our understandings of gift
    and commodity exchange?

8
Sharing An Alternative to Private Ownership
  • Includes
  • Voluntary lending, giving away
  • Pooling allocation of resources
  • Authorized use of public property
  • NOT contractual renting or leasing
  • NOT Unauthorized use by theft or trespass
  • We can share things, places, people, pets, ideas,
    values, time, affection, animosity
  • Excludes non-volitional coincidence
  • Sharing a common place of birth
  • Sharing a language
  • Sharing a set of experiences

9
Example Car sharing
  • Car Sharing, launched in 1987 in Switzerland and
    later in 1988 in Germany, came to North America
    via Quebec City in 1993. As of December 2005 - 17
    U.S. car sharing programs claimed 91,995 members
    sharing 1,737 vehicles, and 11 Canadian car
    sharing programs claimed 13,576 members sharing
    672 vehicles.
  • Toronto AutoShare 4 hours cost 33.81
  • membership 100GST deposit 250
  • 60 locations
  • Book online some plans include insurance gas

10
Sharing Defined
  • The act and process of distributing what is ours
    to others for their use (can also share in
    production)
  • The act and process of receiving something from
    others for our use
  • We may share what we feel is ours so that others
    come to feel it is at least partly theirs to use
    (ours)
  • Use may be for an indefinite or prescribed period
    for our exclusive use or for use by us as well
    as others
  • Givers and receivers can be individuals or groups
  • Distribution may or may not make the access to
    things more equal

11
Cultural Influences
  • Sharing, possession, ownership are all
    culturally learned behaviors
  • In the West, possession ownership learned
    first sharing, fairness, justice later
  • Australian aborigines learn sharing first
  • Vestigial affect from nomadic past
  • Led to difficulties with private cars land
  • Chinese Zhanguang Japanese hole-in-one
  • African hospitality
  • Culture also prescribes what is selfish vs.
    altruistic, generous vs. stingy, fair vs.
    unfair

12
Mixed Effects of Sharing
  • Recipient can feel grateful or hostile
  • May feel we get our fair share, more, or less
  • Can reduce envy foster feelings of community or
    create dependency feelings of inferiority
  • We may see sharing as a sincere effort to please
    or a sop
  • Can take place within excess or insufficiency
  • We may share broadly or narrowly

13
Impediments to Sharing
  • Feelings of object attachment
  • Cathecting objects as part of extended self
    (e.g., body organs)
  • Materialism
  • The importance attached to possessions
  • Components envy, possessiveness, non-generosity
  • Fear of loss/damage, tragedy of the Commons
  • Materialism accounts in 4 cultures
  • E.g., Christmas giving
  • From broad charitable giving
  • To narrow giving with the family

14
Sharing the Museum Without Walls
  • Fine art is Finite
  • But it can be broadly
    distributed
  • Art Museums
  • Inexpensive copies
  • What is the problem here?
  • Benjamins loss of aura
  • Denigrating reproduction, fraud, fake, forgery
  • Status hierarchies e.g, Visiting Luxor in Egypt
    vs. Las Vegas, vs. books, Internet postcards

15
Incentives to Share Intangibles
  • Some of our intangibles are not legally ours
    a view, classroom seat, our song
  • Other intangibles may be our property ideas,
    designs, various creations (open science)
  • Academic ideas ours vs. plagiarized
  • Presenting publishing sharing
  • It also the way to make them ours
  • We should give them rather than sell them
  • We are more apt to share with doctoral students
  • But sharing raw data less likely
  • Others may admire our garden, but may not borrow
    our tools, seeds, potting soil
  • Alternate model exists (e.g., Human Genome
    Project)

16
Sharing without Losing
  • A song, joke, story, body, digital files
  • Even books, journals, videos can be copied
  • The online gift economy
  • Linux, Napster, freeware
  • BBSs, chat rooms, web sites
  • Why join these virtual communities?
  • Keeping while giving (Weiner)
  • Cheap altruism (Coyne)
  • Utilitarianism
  • True hi-tech gift economy
  • Other motivations Paying back, cornucopia,
    movement
  • E.g., Reviewing

17
Intangible Sharing Communities
  • Marker goods
  • Sharing Secrets
  • Extended Self
  • Sports fans, music fans, brand cults
  • Proselytizing recruiting members
  • Feeling of minority status, persecution,
    uniqueness
  • iPod?

18
Case in PointThe Grateful Dead
  • Long known for tapers freely trading trading
    (not profiting from) concert tapes
  • Evolved into digital downloading
  • But in late November, 2005, GD did an about face
    told Live Music Archive to stop making it
    available
  • Fan uproar caused a partial reversal
  • But GD already suggested shift
  • From Internet as cornucopia
  • To Internet as pay-per-play jukebox

19
The Grateful Dead Brand
  • The Dead had created an anarchy of trust, going
    not by statute but by instinct and turning fans
    into co-conspirators, spreading their music and
    buying tickets, T-shirts and official CDs to
    show their loyalty. The new approachchanges that
    relationship.The change also downgrades fans
    into the customers they were all along. It
    removesbrand value from the Deads legacy by
    reducing them to one more band with products to
    sell (Jon Pareles, The Deads Gamble Free
    Music for Sale NYT, December 3, 2005).

20
Incentives to Share Tangibles
  • School boys/girls sharing clothing
  • Leveraged lifestylese.g., AutoShare
  • Virtual Sharing
  • Bag, Borrow, or Steal
  • Borrow rip CDs
  • Share music, films on-line
  • Greek hospitality Odysseus

21
Other Tangible Sharing Incentives
  • Family heirlooms extended self
  • Sharing within the family
  • Group sharing (e.g., time-share homes)
  • Institutional sharinge.g.,
  • Museums
  • National Parks
  • But, tragedy of the commons?
  • Limited good vs. Unlimited good (e.g., shells
    Bible the commons Halloween)
  • Communally extended self humanity

22
John Donne (1623)
  • No man is an island, entire of itself every man
    is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.
    If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is
    the less, as well as if a promontory were, as
    well as if a manner of thy friends or thine own
    were. Any mans death diminishes me because I am
    involved in mankind, and therefore never send to
    know for whom the bell tolls it tolls for thee.
    Meditation XVII

23
Individual Reasons to Share(Summary)
  • Self-interest (e.g., leveraged lifestyle)
  • Extended sense of self (e.g. brand cults)
  • Altruism (e.g., sharing within the family)
  • Social justice (e.g., paying back for successes
    in life)
  • Unlimited good (e.g., shell on the beach)
  • Common humanity (e.g., Donne)

24
Social Factors in Sharing(Summary)
  • POSITIVE
  • Internet sharing (e.g., Napster)
  • Limited goods (e.g., environmental resources)
  • The greater good (e.g., open science)
  • Rise of virtual communities online (e.g., MUG)
  • NEGATIVE
  • Intellectual property rights (e.g., TRIPS)
  • Decline of sharing within the family (e.g.,
    privatization)
  • Decline of family (e.g., divorce rates)
  • Decline of neighborhood community (e.g. Bowling
    Alone)

25
Conclusions
  • Social desirability of sharing
  • Why? Community, civil obedience, environment
  • Why not? ID through things vs. people, financial
    security vs. social security, economic capital
    vs. social capital
  • Compared to private ownership through marketplace
    exchange or gift-giving, sharing is more casual,
    less reciprocal, and potentially more altruistic
  • Santa replaces sharing with gift-giving
  • Luxury surprise also make sharing gift-giving

26
Conclusions
  • Negative social desirability of sharing spouse,
    womb, soldiers, children
  • Battle Online sharing vs. intellectual property
    laws vs. public access (e.g., eBooks)
  • Sharing through post-materialism, VS,
    downshifting, dematerializing, experience
    economy?
  • One boom U.S. market storage
  • Business leads with the virtual corporation
  • Is the virtual consumer next? Why rent when you
    can buy vs. Why own when you can rent by the
    hour? (AutoShare)
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