The Wealth of Networks and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.

Used - Acceptable | See details
Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
 
   
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading The Wealth of Networks on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom [Hardcover]

Yochai Benkler
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)


Available from these sellers.


Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $11.99  
Hardcover --  
Paperback $16.23  
Shop the new tech.book(store)
New! Introducing the tech.book(store), a hub for Software Developers and Architects, Networking Administrators, TPMs, and other technology professionals to find highly-rated and highly-relevant career resources. Shop books on programming and big data, or read this week's blog posts by authors and thought-leaders in the tech industry. > Shop now

Book Description

May 16, 2006 0300110561 978-0300110562

With the radical changes in information production that the Internet has introduced, we stand at an important moment of transition, says Yochai Benkler in this thought-provoking book. The phenomenon he describes as social production is reshaping markets, while at the same time offering new opportunities to enhance individual freedom, cultural diversity, political discourse, and justice. But these results are by no means inevitable: a systematic campaign to protect the entrenched industrial information economy of the last century threatens the promise of today’s emerging networked information environment.

In this comprehensive social theory of the Internet and the networked information economy, Benkler describes how patterns of information, knowledge, and cultural production are changing—and shows that the way information and knowledge are made available can either limit or enlarge the ways people can create and express themselves. He describes the range of legal and policy choices that confront us and maintains that there is much to be gained—or lost—by the decisions we make today.



Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this thick academic book, Yale law professor Benkler offers a comprehensive catalog of flashpoints in the conflict between old and new information creators. In Benkler's view, the new "networked information economy" allows individuals and groups to be more productive than profit-seeking ventures. New types of collaboration, such as Wikipedia or SETI@Home, "offer defined improvements in autonomy, democratic discourse, cultural creation, and justice"-as long as government regulation aimed at protecting old-school information monoliths (such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act) doesn't succeed. Non-market innovation is a good thing in itself and doesn't even have to threaten entrenched interests, Benkler argues; rather, "social production" can use resources that the industrial information economy leaves behind. Where Benkler excels is in bringing together disparate strands of the new information economy, from the democratization of the newsmedia via blogs to the online effort publicizing weaknesses in Diebold voting machines. Though Benkler doesn't really present any new ideas here, and sometimes draws simplistic distinctions, his defense of the Internet's power to enrich people's lives is often stirring.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"At last a book that confronts the politics and economics of the Internet in a fundamental way, moving beyond the surface of policy debate to reveal the basic structure of the challenges we confront."—Bruce Ackerman, Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science, Yale University


(Bruce Ackerman)

“A magnificent achievement. Yochai Benkler shows us how the Internet enables new commons-based methods for producing goods, remaking culture, and participating in public life. The Wealth of Networks is an indispensable guide to the political economy of our digitally networked world.”—Jack M. Balkin, Professor of Law and Director of the Information Society Project, Yale University 


(Jack M. Balkin)

“In this book, Benkler establishes himself as the leading intellectual of the information age. Profoundly rich in its insight and truth, this work will be the central text for understanding how networks have changed how we understand the world. No work to date has more carefully or convincingly made the case for a fundamental change in how we understand the economy of society.”—Lawrence Lessig, Professor of Law, Stanford Law School


(Lawrence Lessig)

"A lucid, powerful, and optimistic account of a revolution in the making."—Siva Vaidhyanathan, author of The Anarchist in the Library



(Siva Vaidhyanathan)

"This deeply researched book documents the fundamental changes in the ways in which we produce and share ideas, information, and entertainment. Then, drawing widely on the literatures of philosophy, economics, and political theory, it shows why these changes should be welcomed, not resisted.  The trends examined, if allowed to continue, will radically alter our lives—and no other scholar describes them so clearly or champions them more effectively than Benkler."—William W. Fisher III, Hale and Dorr Professor of Intellectual Property Law, Harvard University, Director, Berkman Center for Internet and Society


(William W. Fisher III)

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press (May 16, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300110561
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300110562
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #881,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
107 of 112 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Deep content, but terrible style October 6, 2006
Format:Hardcover
First, I should note that The Wealth Of Networks is terribly edited. Given that Benkler thanked his editor for his Herculean work at the beginning of the book, I can only imagine the state it started in; as it is, it ended with glaring grammatical errors, including using "effect" when he meant "affect" and "wave" when he meant "waive". (I'll provide specific examples sometime tomorrow.) Editing, apparently, is a craft that is only noticed in its absence. I didn't realize this until I read The Wealth of Networks. By the time I was done with the book, I was copyediting every page.

None of this mentions the stylistic errors, which are rife. Benkler uses the first-person singular pronoun once, or possibly twice, in the whole book; its use is jarring. The rest is passively voiced and all the words are sesquipedalian. Nothing's wrong with inconsistency in style, when deployed artfully, but it feels more like an oversight here than a deliberate plan.

Those of you who've read the book will perhaps object to all this cavilling over style. Again, it's only noticeable because it's so bad; normally I would almost ignore the style and get to the meat of the argument. It was hard to do so here.

Benkler's argument is quite systematic and nearly has the force of pure logic. His claim -- propounded over a decade's worth of papers and synthesized in this book -- is that the new economics of the Internet fundamentally change deep parts of our culture. Cheap communication allows projects like Linux and the Wikipedia to emerge and more to the point work very well. Each of us can invest trivial amounts of our time and money, yet the end result is something much greater than any of us could have expected.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
87 of 95 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Edit of 14 Apr 08 to add links (feature not available at the time).

Lawrence Lessig could not say enough good things about this book when he spoke at Wikimania 2006 in Boston last week, so I ordered it while listening to him. It arrived today and I dropped everything to go through it.

This book could well be the manifesto for 21st Century of Informed Prosperous Democracy. It is a meticulous erudite discussion of why information should not be treated as property, and why the "last mile" should be built by the neighborhood as a commons, "I'll carry your bits if you carry mine."

The bottom line of this book, and I will cite some other books briefly, is that democracy and prosperity are both enhanced by shared rather than restricted information. The open commons model is the only one that allows us to harness the distributed intelligence of the Whole Earth, where each individual can made incremental improvements that cascade without restraint to the benefit of all others.

As I write this, both the publishing and software industries are in the midst of a "last ditch" defense of copyright and proprietary software. I believe they are destined to fail, and IBM stands out as an innovative company that sees the writing on the wall--see especially IBM's leadership in developing "Services Science."

The author has written the authoritative analytic account of the new social and political and financial realities of a networked world with information embedded goods. There have been earlier accounts--for example, the cover story of Business Week on "The Power of Us" with its many accounts of how Lego, for example, received 1,600 free engineering development hours from its engaged customers of all ages.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
45 of 50 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
I have been hearing about Yochai Benkler's book, "The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedoms," for some time and his exposition around what he (and many others) have called the "networked information economy." Benkler, a Yale law professor, also offers his 527 page (473 in text) book as a free PDF from his web site under a Creative Commons share alike license.

First, let me say, there are a couple of worthwhile insights in the book, which I'll get to in a moment. But mostly, I found the book overly long, often off-subject, and too political for my tastes. In fairness, some of this might be due to the fact it was written in 2005 (published in 2006) and the social and participatory aspects of the Web are now widely appreciated. Yet I fear the broader problem with this polemic is that it proves the adage that you see what you look for.

Benkler's argument is that cheap processors and the Internet have removed the physical constraints on effective information production. This is in keeping with the non-proprietary nature of information as a "nonrival" good, and is also leading to the democratization of information production and the emergence of large-scale peer-produced content. Benkler generally allies himself with the camp of technology optimists. His observations about trends and new developments from Ebay to Wikipedia to SETI@home and open source software are now commonly appreciated.

With the costs of information duplication and dissemination trending to zero, the limiting factor of production becomes human creativity and effort itself. But here, too, with hundreds of millions of Internet users, just a few hours of contributed content from each can easily swamp the ability of even the largest firms to compete.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A key text: The grandaddy of them all
Once I read this book I began to feel like the big sellers in this genre such as Jonathan Zittrain, Clay Shirky, Lawrence Lessig et al. all read like Benkler-lite. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Niall Larkin
5.0 out of 5 stars Wealth of Networks Remains Relevant Despite Rapid Change
First published 2 months before Twitter was publicly launched, Yochai Benkler's Wealth of Networks hit stores in May of 2006, but still provides a startlingly accurate picture of... Read more
Published on November 18, 2009 by eseongj
3.0 out of 5 stars An Encyclopedia: as informative and as exciting.
The Wealth of Networks is a good read for anyone interested in reading one painstakingly encompassing book about new trends in networked organization (wikipedia, open source,... Read more
Published on April 28, 2009 by Gregory Ferenstein
4.0 out of 5 stars Makes a powerful case
This academic treatise is long, but never dry or overly technical. Benkler fills it with fascinating examples of intellectual property law gone awry. Read more
Published on March 11, 2009 by Trevor Burnham
4.0 out of 5 stars A compelling argument
Benkler presents in a compelling way the multiplier effect of having individuals participating in a network. They are able to share resources - both tangible (e.g. Read more
Published on February 16, 2009 by A. Diaz-andrade
3.0 out of 5 stars The Wealth of Networks: Worth the read, despite shortcomings
"How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom" is an apt subheading for "The Wealth of Networks" by Yochai Benkler. Read more
Published on August 17, 2008 by Christy
4.0 out of 5 stars Illustrates potential of networks
A great book, even though it took Amazon nearly a month to send me the book.

An optimistic look at the ways online networks can better our society by strengthening... Read more
Published on January 24, 2008 by Kris
5.0 out of 5 stars Phenomenal Book on Information Science and Peer Production
I first became familiar with Benkler after reading his paper, "Coase's Penguin" in undergraduate study. I was delighted to hear of the publication of this book. Read more
Published on May 11, 2007 by Thomas E. Hayden
4.0 out of 5 stars Good argumentation
I agree when some people say the book is not well edited (even not being english my first language I found some errors within it) but I think the greatest think about it is the... Read more
Published on April 27, 2007 by Rodrigo F. Bagni
5.0 out of 5 stars Connectivization
Be forewarned that this brilliantly conceived book is not so brilliantly written, and the reading can be a real slog at times. Read more
Published on April 20, 2007 by doomsdayer520
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only




What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Forums

Topic From this Discussion
A Call to Arms? Be the first to reply
Have something you'd like to share about this product?
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions


Look for Similar Items by Category