About sheep, spam mail and involvement
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20-05-2011, 04:37 AM
About sheep, spam mail and involvement
In late medieval England, there was a concept called "the commons".
Lush green meadows who where considered "common property".
Shepherds could let their sheep free on the common without any tax or fee. The landlord just asked his share of the herd as tax payment.

Without any limit on property every shepard tried to increase is flock as fast as he could. much to the pleasure of the landlord who saw his income rise.

but...
After some generations of breeding, some dry summers and with the market price of the wool dwindling. the flocks became to large for the market. resulting in over-foraging of the commons. The idea was abandoned.

In modern day society there is something called e-mail...
Without any limit on resources, everyone can send e-mails around the world trying to sell something. The cost for 10000 mails is, at the base, as good as nothing and even if only 40 people respond, the gain is unlimited.

But IS the cost nothing? Customers and providers are installing software, loose time and bandwidth etc... etc... but these costs can not be accounted for at the base. the spammer clicks <send> and his responsibility ends.

Freedom comes at the price of responsibility and there is no such thing as a free lunch. As much as I like free stuff, I always try to calculate in a short term or long term price. (Did you know your contacts are a currency in some enviroments?) Even if I get a thing like, a household item, for free, I always calculate in that I have to store it somewhere or at least going to have to recycle it later. Free things are nice, but they do not require your involvement. I think, if we want to achieve something in the world, we need to make sociaty understand it's not going to happen if not everyone is involved.

Maybe by just asking a small fee for something that used to be free. (And I'm really not talking about e-mail here)

Thoughts?

Observer

Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
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20-05-2011, 04:50 AM
 
RE: About sheep, spam mail and involvement
I recently visited the UK to be interviewed for a PhD spot and although it was not the first time I was travelling there, one thing amazed me (again). Everything in the UK has a price and when saying this I mean literally everything.

You wanna pee in the public toilets, it costs 20p (about 35c in US). You wanna supplement the side of fries with a side of peas, it costs 30p. You wanna watch TV for an hour in your hotel, it costs 1pound. Anything you want to do to increase your gratification has a cost.

Even the Futurama's suicide booths cost 25space cents, right? Tongue It makes sense that everything giving gratification should have a price, although relatively tiny.

The only thing that is free and people in the UK are always very happy to 'donate' is information and it should stay that way forever. Information might not be a requirement to provide sustinence for your body but we have long ago evolved up from that need. Our bodies provide the cravings for food, water, air and sex but when those are satisfied, we seek out information.

And information is something that we can never have enough.

If at some point in the future we reach the point in which our conscience is digitalized and our physical body considered obsolete and discarded, we would become the happiest and most content 'species' of the cosmos. Blush
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