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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/18919

Title: The moral economy of digital gifts
Authors: Elder-Vass, Dave
Keywords: Digital economy
Giving
Open source software
Reciprocity
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: © Berghahn Journals in partnership with Zhejiang University and the International Association on Social Quality
Citation: ELDER-VASS, D., 2015. The moral economy of digital gifts. International Journal of Social Quality, 5(1), pp. 35-50.
Abstract: The significance of giving as a contemporary socio-economic practice has been obscured both by mainstream economics and by the influence of the anthropological tradition. Andrew Sayer’s concept of moral economy offers a more fruitful framework for an economic sociology of contemporary giving, and one that appears to be largely consistent with social quality approaches. This paper analyses giving from the perspective of moral economy, questioning the view that giving is a form of exchange, and opening up the prospect of seeing it as the outcome of a more complex constellation of causal factors. It uses examples from the digital economy, in particular the phenomenon of open source software, which nicely illustrates both the progressive potential of digital gifts and the ways in which they can be absorbed into the commercial economy.
Description: This paper was accepted for publication in the journal International Journal of Social Quality and the definitive published version is available at http://journals.berghahnbooks.com/ijsq/
Version: Accepted for publication
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/18919
Publisher Link: http://journals.berghahnbooks.com/ijsq/
ISSN: 1757-0344
Appears in Collections:Published Articles (Social Sciences)

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