circle to circle communication

How can gift circles communicate and work together to create the larger gift economy?

Looking at analogies can sometimes give us some ideas.
Perhaps circle to circle communication might learn something from how cells communicate and interact with each other.

Here is a video on cell to cell communication and one on cell signals

External signals lead to differences in how a cell behaves. Similarly different environmental, community, and macroeconomic situations can signal to our gift circles different ways they might behave, different facilitation methods they might use.

Different circles can also signal to each other their needs and gifts and mutually help each other.

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3 thoughts on “circle to circle communication

  1. I agree that communication between gift circles (and other attempts to practise pool or gift economy) is of central importance for the viability of any gift economy perspective. And as far as I can see there is a lack of theory. Watching the videos I did however not get much inspiration, and I guess it’s because cell biology works like a machine with a hidden programme, while humans should consciously decide on the programme before (and while) executing it. I can recommend a radical critique of our modern way of thinking within the logic of regulated systems: http://theanarchistlibrary.org/HTML/Tiqqun__The_Cybernetic_Hypothesis.html

    Having said this I should emphasize that gift circles are almost always in a hostile environment, and they don’t have much to tell each other as long as they are only sharing ideas and not some common practise. If they would try to cooperate, a) there would have to be a concrete motivation for them, b) they would somehow (culturally) have to overcome the logics of identity (which creates images of others without communication), c) the communication between them would have to be open (without hidden assumptions), d) there would have to be some third parties mediating in case of conflict.

    BTW, these thoughts apply to any kind of self-organized cooperation. I’ve recently started thinking about this subject and would like to share my thoughts.

  2. Hi ibu

    The cybernetic paradigm of understanding systems as self-regulating through feedback is a useful one. I think gift circle communities become self-regulating systems.

    I do think there is motivation for different gift circles to work together, for instance one gift circle may have the ability to create something another gift circle is not so good at.

    An analogy to Burning Man might shed some light here. At Burning Man there are different tribes/camps that are self-regulating communities with a feedback mechanisms in place. Different tribes also specialize in different things. One tribe may offer bike mechanic help as a gift to the whole festival. One could see an analogy here between different gift circles and different tribes.

  3. Hi, thanks for your disaccord.

    I agree with you in that the cybernetic paradigm explains a lot of what we see today, but my point is that cooperation between (groups of) people should be based on free decisions and the conscious act of doing something for others, rather than on the hidden ideology of regulating ourselves in the name of some higher equilibrium. Self-regulation means the capitulation of human mind.

    Regarding motivation, I have experienced it several times at self-organized gatherings (camps, meetings/conferences), but I have also seen it disappear when people disappear from each others eyes. I would say that it is the feeling of identity which is one temporary reason for this motivation; another (lasting) one being the consciousness of others’ presence and needs. What is needed for gift economy are in particular trustful cooperation relations between people who see each other only rarely and live at moderate distance from each other.

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