I had a similar sentiment I brought up over at WIFO (you may be into some of the stuff discussed over there, Tim).
This has been a year of compromise for me, an experiment to see how effective I can be at positive change if I stop being so absolute in my technology use. Part of that was taking on a job job. And at my company we create “IP”, and have to negotiate contracts with artists for royalties and all kinds of other rent-seeking nonsense. I thought it would bother me more, but I am just meh about most of it.
But it has made me realize I am secure with my level of openness (that word has too many n’s), which is mostly total. My biggest issue is deciding if I dedicate things to the commons, or utilize copyleft.
Adam Hyde describes a process that I’ve always felt but hadn’t articulated, in part because I was unsure others experienced it:
Living a life of open source and open access forces you to peel away layer by layer the proprietary way of thinking, doing, and being that we have all grown up with. It can be a very painful process, but it’s also extremely liberating and healthy. Largely, it actually means learning to live without fear and paranoia of people ‘stealing your ideas’. That’s quite a freedom in itself.
I actually started formulating my ideas around my own relationship with openness while researching why people do irrational things, and there are two ideas that have always stood out for me: loss aversion and negativity bias (they are kind of the same thing, but manifest in specific ways in regards to openness).
If you disregard the inherent messed up nature of business deals and litigation that most of us don’t deal directly with, you will find that there are hardly ever any bad actors. I mean, there isn’t some person scouring the internet for good ideas to steal and bring to market first and make fist-loads of money without acknowledgment or compensation. Instead we have patent trolls and such, but again, not the world most of us live in.
It is common sense that a producer of anything would benefit more from the exposure that happens when they share their works freely, but the arguments against that are always framed by the group that currently has all the power and money, and got it by controlling the previous generation’s distribution channels. And so the norm becomes to wield closed systems/laws/philosophies preemptively and proactively, and it generates a difficult environment to “peel” away the FUD.
There are some thoughts on it.