Journal article Open Access

Can peer production democratize technology and society? A critical review of the critiques

Kostakis, Vasilis; Vragoteris, Vangelis; Acharja, Indra Lal

Over the last decade, a discussion about the limits of peer production has opened. On the one hand, some scholars consider peer production as a new path of value creation that could lead to an alternative form of social organization. On the other, critics claim that peer production is not emancipatory, but in fact suffers from rigid hierarchies, participation inequality, power asymmetries, and gender imbalance. Moreover, they argue that peer production depends on the capitalist economy for its reproduction and thus that its post-capitalist potential is very limited. This article summarizes and reviews the criticism against the emancipatory potential of peer production and proposes ways in which peer production could still democratize technology and society.

Files (387.0 kB)
Views 24
Downloads 101
Data volume 39.1 MB
Unique views 20
Unique downloads 99


Cite as