Benkler: The Wealth of Networks

If you know me or have heard me speak you probably realize that I am a huge fan of Yochai Benkler (and Eric von Hippel as the two seem to fit together rather well). 

Benkler's new book, The Wealth of Networks, is out as a wiki and a downloadable PDF. Of course, if you can afford it you should support Prof. Benkler by buying a copy on Amazon or wherever.

Want to understand what drives Open Source? Read Benkler:

In the networked information economy, the physical capital required for production is broadly distributed throughout society. Personal computers and network connections are ubiquitous. This does not mean that they cannot be used for markets, or that individuals cease to seek market opportunities. It does mean, however, that whenever someone, somewhere, amongthe billion connected human beings, and ultimately among all those whowill be connected, wants to make something that requires human creativity, a computer, and a network connection, he or she can do so—alone, or incooperation with others. He or she already has the capital capacity necessary to do so; if not alone, then at least in cooperation with other individualsacting for complementary reasons. The result is that a good deal more thathuman beings value can now be done by individuals, who interact with each other socially, as human beings and as social beings, rather than as marketactors through the price system.