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Episode 662

Anti-rival good
Mon, 2019-Feb-25 00:28 UTC
Length - 3:00

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Welcome to random Wiki of the Day where we read the summary of a random Wikipedia page every day.

The random article for Monday, 25 February 2019 is Anti-rival good.

“Anti-rival good” is a neologism suggested by Steven Weber. According to his definition, it is the opposite of a rival good. When more people share an anti-rival good, the more utility each person receives. Examples include software and other information goods created through the process of commons-based peer production.

An anti-rival good meets the test of a public good because it is non-excludable (freely available to all) and non-rival (consumption by one person does not reduce the amount available for others). However, it has the additional quality of being created by private individuals for common benefit without being motivated by pure altruism, because the individual contributor also receives benefits from the contributions of others.

An example is provided by Lawrence Lessig: "It's not just that code is non-rival; it's that code in particular, and (at least some) knowledge in general, is, as Weber calls it, 'anti-rival'. I am not only not harmed when you share an anti-rival good: I benefit."The production of anti-rival goods typically benefits from network effects. Leung (2006) quotes from Weber (2004), "Under conditions of anti-rivalness, as the size of the Internet-connected group increases, and there is a heterogeneous distribution of motivations with people who have a high level of interest and some resources to invest, then the large group is more likely, all things being equal, to provide the good than is a small group."Although this term is a neologism, this category of goods may be neither new nor specific to the Internet era. According to Lessig, English also meets the criteria, as any natural language is an anti-rival good. The term also invokes reciprocity and the concept of a gift economy.

This recording reflects the Wikipedia text as of 00:28 UTC on Monday, 25 February 2019.

For the full current version of the article, see Anti-rival good on Wikipedia.

This podcast is produced by Abulsme Productions based on Wikipedia content and is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.

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