Gift Economy: From Eco-Gaming to Community Currency Research

The Gift by Lewis Hyde

This morning, while I was googling up “point metrics game mechanics” for rewarding environmental action (e.g. recycling plastic = 5pts, refusing disposable chopsticks = 8pts), I chanced upon a terrible environmental board game and an example of eco-currency.

Since I barely had time to blog about it earlier, I emailed them onto my environmentalist friend, November (aka Leaf Monkey). An interesting turn of events transpired via her Twitter

LeafMonkey: @brainopera sent me some links about eco-currencies and a boardgame about the environment which @budak has shown me before. im lazy to blog too! about 2 hours ago from web

LeafMonkey: Terra – the environmentalism board game that is not so eco-friendly http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/242338 about 2 hours ago from web

LeafMonkey: @brainopera also mentioned an eco-currency concept which reminds me of community currencies which I am fond of http://greentopia.org/EarthE/ about 2 hours ago from web

LeafMonkey: I even found an international journal of community currency research http://www.uea.ac.uk/env/ijccr/ very interesting! about 2 hours ago from web

Serendipitously, November’s discovery of the International Journal of Community Currency Research was a prize I didn’t expect to find as supporting material for tomorrow’s class discussion on the Gift Economy. In meta-speak, even this exchange we had is reflective of the non-market creative orientation of the Net; it just worked out on its own.

My graduate colleague Derek and I taught this for our COM125 Intro to Internet classes, as a form of social currency in an online community. If you’re interested, here are the reading materials I assigned back in Feb 2007.

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