The Wealth of Networks : How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom
With the radical changes in information production that the Internet has introduced, we stand at an important moment of transition, says Yochai Benkler in this thought-provoking book. The phenomenon he describes as social production is reshaping markets, while at the same time offering new opportunities to enhance individual freedom, cultural diversity, political discourse, and justice. But these results are by no means inevitable: a systematic campaign to protect the entrenched industrial information economy of the last century threatens the promise of today's emerging networked information environment. In this comprehensive social theory of the Internet and the networked information economy, Benkler describes how patterns of information, knowledge, and cultural production are changing-and shows that the way information and knowledge are made available can either limit or enlarge the ways people can create and express themselves. He describes the range of legal and policy choices that confront us and maintains that there is much to be gained-or lost-by the decisions we make today.
- Paperback | 528 pages
- 154.94 x 233.68 x 25.4mm | 725.74g
- 23 Oct 2007
- Yale University Press
- New Haven, United States
- 10 b-w illus.
"'An ambitious attempt to understand how the internet is changing society... The book draws on a staggering array of disciplines: from graph theory to economics, law to political science. But Benkler's breadth is not at the expense of depth. He never falls for easy, superficial conclusions. His writing is clear and readable... This is an important book." Paul Miller, Financial Times Magazine 'New networks offer a glimpse of the new polity and the ancient regime is struggling to prevent its birth. The Wealth of Networks is a reveille for netizens... Few are unaware that this sector is undergoing transformation, and Benkler's identification of major forces at work is important and enlightening.' Paul Duguid, Times Literary Supplement 'That the internet is changing society is understood. Less appreciated is how society is changing the internet. In this respect, Benkler's work masterfully explains the political and economic forces at play, their promises and their threats. Ultimately, his contribution is to shift our view of the network from the individual to the ad-hoc group. For this, his book is of lasting significance.' New Statesman"
About Yochai Benkler
Yochai Benkler is the Joseph M. Field '55 Professor of Law at Yale Law School, Yale University.