David Bollier has a great article on onthecommons.org that talks about the differences between the ‘commons’ and ‘market’ sectors and their inter-relationship.
‘The commons sanctions idiosyncratic experimentation and creativity that is often too risky and costly for most markets to undertake. This is one of the key ways in which communities of social trust out-perform the market and corporate bureaucracies. The commons doesn’t have the expensive overhead or imperative to be marketable. The commons can afford to be flexible and customizable, especially to local needs. It has great appeal because it tends to be more culturally authentic than broadcast networks and Hollywood studios that cater to large, lowest-common-denominator audiences.’