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[jox] Request for comments

Hi all

Glad to be here! Thanks to StefanMn for setting up the list. 

Following is a list of issues that I wanted to raise to help kick off the
journal project. My aim is to be as open as possible and raise as many
potential issues from the start as possible so that we have an agreement if
problems arise. Of course not all issues can be resolved beforehand but it
won't hurt to clarify things a little. This is just my take, if there is
anything else please complete or amend the list.

Though I volunteered to be editor / maintainer I can't do it alone. The most
important is to gather together a collective of people who are committed to
this idea of a journal and want to help make it happen by volunteering to
participate in the peer reviewing process.


* Suggested title:
Critical Studies in Peer Production

* Suggested definitions / mission statement:

<To discuss peer production critically>

- peer production as a historical event (why has it emerged in this form

- peer production as an alternative to capitalism (gratis products in
conditions of abundance?)

- peer production as an ideology within capitalism (contribute to wikipedia,
help the common good, buy a fast computer, forget the poor?) Check the text
by Brian Holmes about Jodi Dean's "Communicative capitalism" on P2PF-blog
for a recent manifestation of this point which others had previously made -
see my book for example. ;-)

* Suggested guiding principles:

<theory of practice, practice of theory>
- collective elaboration, decision-making
- activist component, connection to concrete emancipatory struggles?

In terms of quality control, I think First Monday is a good example of a
journal with a good balance between reasonable "academic-level" quality and
accessibility of ideas. 

<overall direction>
StefanMn seems to have fairly strict ideas about what is acceptable content
and what is not. I think we need a balance between "there is no party line /
we should respect individuality" and a strong, coherent editorial direction.
My preference would be to be inclusive, i.e. have dialogue with other
"fellow travellers" whenever possible.

* Identity of journal:
Relationship to Oekonux? Who is doing this journal? People associated with
Oekonux? How do we phrase it?
Do we publish a list of peer reviewers / editorial committee members? This
would be useful in my view.

* Periodicity:
I'd like to aim for two a year. Ideally we would always have a full issue's
content "in the bag". See how we go, I guess.

* Suggested themes:
While not all issues need to have a theme, in my view having themes has
several advantages such as allowing an issue to be explored more fully, and
enabling contributors to establish a dialogue with one another. Following is
a non-exhaustive wish list.

Peer production and Marx
Peer production and art
Peer production of hardware
Peer production and social movements
Peer production and expertise
Peer production and social organisation 
The transition to peer production

* Suggested other content:
Reviews (books, journals)?
News analysis (i.e. what is the Pirate Party about, etc)?

* Other people:
Do we invite others to join in this list and in the journal process if we
think they would be interested? 

* Proposed Oekonux Book:
Some journal content could feed into book project?

* Journal Website:
Simple, text-based. Will have to simple be if done by me! 


* Peer-review [a] people:


Simply put, the journal cannot exist without people to assess submissions.
This is a serious commitment, but in my experience it can also be fun and
informative. Please indicate whether you can do this.

* Peer-review [b] criteria:
We need a list of criteria to help reviewers.
For example: is the article well-written? Is it original? Are there some
major ideas / authors that are not mentioned? Could it be improved? Could it
be cut?...

* Peer-review [c] publicity of peer review process:
Openly discussed on list? Or by private email to not stifle debate as people
may be reluctant to be honest and critical if this could result in offended

* Peer-review [d] maintainer / editor's role:

- I'm always happy to learn something or be proved wrong when it comes to
ideas / matters of substance.

- I'm much less willing to compromise when it comes to style and expression;
I have been writing and editing for a while now and I do tend to trust my
judgment on this. So if I judge a text to be poorly written I would not be
comfortable with it being published as that would undermine the quality of
the journal. I also don't want to find myself in a situation where I have to
completely rewrite something, endlessly negotiate with authors, etc. Though
of course if a text is of very high substantive quality I would want to help
improve it. 

- One power that I claim for the maintainer / editor is the ability to set
deadlines, and act if they are not met: if people fail to meet deadlines,
they miss the boat. People don't turn up late for work (usually): they
should not compromise a project by undue delays. I will flag messages with


That's all I can think of. Once again, if there is another issue that should
be discussed, please post.



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