Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 License.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

When does collaboration become exploitation?

There is a great question posed by Henry Jenkins in his post From a "Must Culture" to a "Can Culture": Legos and Lead Users. He closes this post with the following question:

That said, the interview keeps circling back around what is the real sticking point in the conversation about lead user innovation: if consumers are helping to generate the intellectual property and helping to market the product, shouldn't they receive some economic return on their participation? Lund says No -- that this would fundamentally change their relationship to the company, turning everything back to work for hire and returning it to the "must culture" that shapes corporate life. Yet, skeptics might note that user-generated content taken to its logical extreme would result in cutbacks in the creative labor market as experienced professionals are displaced by grassroots volunteers. Lund is correct to depict lead users as having a strong desire to influence the decisions made by the companies that make the products they use and admire -- whether physical products like programmable bricks or cultural products like television shows. At the moment, they are grateful that people will simply listen to them and take their ideas seriously, especially given the history of not just neglect but open hostility to these grassroots communities. Yet, at what point, does this collaboration become exploitation? This is a core question all of us need to think through as we move towards a more collaborative and participatory culture.

When does collaboration become exploitation?

I think when it moves from a Win-Win situation to a Win-Lose situation. Once one party realizes they are going to be on the losing end, there is an incentive to discontinue.

What do you think?


Powered By Qumana

Comments on "When does collaboration become exploitation?"


post a comment