Concept

Social peer-to-peer processes

Summary
Social peer-to-peer processes are interactions with a peer-to-peer dynamic. These peers can be humans or computers. Peer-to-peer (P2P) is a term that originated from the popular concept of the P2P distributed computer application architecture which partitions tasks or workloads between peers. This application structure was popularized by systems like Napster, the first of its kind in the late 1990s. The concept has inspired new structures and philosophies in many areas of human interaction. P2P human dynamic affords a critical look at current authoritarian and centralized social structures. Peer-to-peer is also a political and social program for those who believe that in many cases, peer-to-peer modes are a preferable option. P2P is a specific form of relational dynamic, based on the assumed equipotency of its participants, organized through the free cooperation of equals in view of the performance of a common task, for the creation of a common good, with forms of decision making and autonomy that are widely distributed throughout the network. There are several fundamental aspects of social P2P processes: peer production - the collaborative production of use-value is open to participation and use to the widest possible number (as defined by Yochai Benkler, in his essay Coase's Penguin); peer governance - production or project is governed by the community of producers themselves, not by market allocation or corporate hierarchy; peer property - the use-value of property is freely accessible on a universal basis; peer services and products are distributed through new modes of property, which are not exclusive, though recognize individual authorship (i.e. the GNU General Public License or the Creative Commons licenses). Peer production does not produce commodities for exchange value and does not use the price mechanism or corporate hierarchy to determine the allocation of resources.
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