Contours of a New Economy
It is obvious that our current economic system no longer provides for the needs of 7 billion people in an equal manner. The current system measures primarily in monetary terms. Managers are primarily rewarded for financial performance. As a consequence human rights and environmental integrity have been sacrificed. The many issues that come to the surface, such as lack of integrity, lack of transparency, financial scandals, social inequity and ecocide indicate that the current economic system has ceased to serve a balanced evolution of life on our planet.
As a natural consequence we currently witness the rapid emergence of an entirely new economy. It is based on man’s desire to live in harmony with nature, to experience the inter-connectedness of all life, to give to others and to express our unique individual talents for the good of all.
A wise man said: “When you are using your talents you are helping others.”
Recently a number of books have been published which indicate the contours of a new economy. A groundbreaking book by author Charles Eisenstein describes the emergence of the a Sacred Economy. This new economy is sacred because it is an economy based on man’s natural tendency to share and give. Charles Eisenstein says:
“We are all here to contribute our gifts toward something greater than ourselves, and will never be content unless we are.”
The German author Bernd Hueckstadt recently published a free e-book, titled The Natural Economy. In this book the world is described as an ecosystem where all species are unique. All species take care of their own needs and service the general wellbeing and evolution of the whole at the same time. Bernd says:
“In nature there is no debt and no interest is charged. That is why plants and animals do not hoard more than they need. Therefore there are no rich and poor’ plants and animals.”
Both authors describe a new economy that is based on giving and receiving. Giving what we can and receiving in return. It is man’s and nature’s way of serving evolution.
Is the natural gift economy utopia or are there real signs that this economy is emerging? To answer this question we first take a look at what the gift economy really represents.
The Gift Economy
The gift economy is an arrangement for the transfer of goods or services without an agreed method for value exchange. There are a number of essential elements which characterise the gift economy:
1. There is an act of selflessness and altruism on behalf of the producer of the goods or services. This transcends the monetization of self interest, which usually places a predetermined value on the product or service.
2. A gift economy transaction allows for freedom in the transactional structure. In the prevailing market economy the seller places a value on that which is sold. In the gift economy the receiver has the responsibility to place a value on that which is received. The producer in the gift economy is motivated by a systemic faith that giving freely benefits everyone, strengthens the social fabric and awakens a feeling of inter-connectedness and harmony with nature.
3. A gift economy transaction does not stand on its own. Rather, it starts a self propelling chain of giving and re-giving. This chain reaction quality of the gift economy is often described with the term pay-it-forward. The receiver of a gift is moved by the pleasure and gratitude of receiving and this in turn induces the receiver to re-give. For instance, if one giver starts with giving to 5 people, it is evident that this chain can grow exponentially and very quickly. This realization builds the systemic faith that the giver is actually also the receiver.
The gift economy represents an optimistic perspective, nurturing attitudes of compassion and generosity, thereby creating an outlook of relative abundance, based on faith that others will reciprocate. The gift economy is socially significant since it eradicates the notions of scarcity and hoarding.
The gift economy places a responsibility on the giver in the sense that the gift includes aspects of social justice, environmental responsibility and a sense of harmony with nature. This way the gift not only acts as a catalyst for giving and re-giving, but it is also a natural way of sharing of values. This way the gift economy reminds us of the interconnectivity of all life. It demonstrates that each of us has the power to positively influence collective behaviour within our local community and throughout the world.
It seems that the gift economy is a long way off when we live in the day-to-day experience of the prevailing economic paradigm. But is that really so? If we put recent events in the proper perspective, could the outlook be entirely different? Could it be that the Cyber Economy, Open Source Development and the emergence of Crowd- Funding are the very catalysts which rapidly accelerate the birth of the Gift Economy?
The Cyber Economy
The rapid growth of the internet over the last 20 years has enabled the evolution of man’s sense of interconnectedness, accelerated man’s urge to create and facilitated man’s natural tendency to share. The internet has also enabled the emergence of a whole new and growing class of intermediaries in all sectors of the global economy. This has caused the downfall of many companies and the unprecedented rise of new companies with business models that optimally use the viral dynamics of cyberspace. The cyber economy has already transformed the music industry, the telecom sector, ICT industries, the publishing industry, the global retail industry and more will follow.
According to statista.com the size of B2C e-commerce sales worldwide was $1.2 Trillion in 2013. Nowadays amazon.com is the worlds leading online retailer with turnover of $68 billion in 2013.
In the next ten years most or all industries will be transformed, resulting in more free services such as Skype, Face-time, WIFI access, e-books, Youtube (Music) videos and so on. Most new services just require a piece of hardware and specific software. Revenues from (for instance) cyber advertising enable service providers to offer their services for free or at very low cost.
The next (r)evolutions will most likely take place in the financial industry, the energy industry, the transport sector, the chemical industry and pharmaceutical industry. This could eventually lead to virtually free financial services, free energy supplies and free health promoting products and services.
Information, ideas, innovations and technologies are shared openly on the internet. Open source R&D is accelerating fast. This development will also mean that the industries, which thrive on creating and protecting intellectual property (IP) will most likely face difficult times in the near future.
The notion of IP reminds us of the natural fact that ideas arise within humans all the time. They come to us when we are inspired by events in our lives. The ideas are given to us and are to be shared freely for the benefit of mankind. The open source development makes it possible that many individuals and collectives can participate in contributing towards the creation of new ideas, innovations and technologies.
This in turn will accelerate development at a much reduced cost. When ideas are shared freely there is no need nor possibility to patent or protect IP. This reduces the cost of development further and makes the need for lawsuits involving patent infringement obsolete. Public funding of projects is made possible this way. When the public provides funds for what resonates with them, their will be a natural shift of influence away from the large organisations to the people at large.
The emergence of the internet has greatly enhanced our ability to connect with like-minded souls. It has also created the potential for discerning authenticity and for providing insights regarding the integrity and transparency of people’s actions and transactions.
Crowd-funding has emerged as a relatively new phenomenon, enabling individuals and organisations to donate to or take equity participation in projects which they find inspiring and/or contribute to the well-being of our humanity and our planet. This will eventually reduce the role that venture capital plays in funding start-ups and accelerating growth in new ventures.
Modern crowd-funding first emerged in 1997 when the British rock band Marilllon used online fan donations to fund a $60.000 reunion tour. In 2000 ArtistShare became the first official crowd-funding platform. Many initiatives have recently arisen which provide services to the rapidly growing crowd-funding industry. The organization crowdfunding.org recently published an Industry Research Report, in which it predicts that the crowd-funding market will reach a turnover of $16.6 billion in 2014.
According to Mark Feinberg, CEO and co-founder of Uruut, the market for donation based crowd-funding grows at a compounded annual rate of 444%. In contrast equity based Crowd-funding grows at an annual rate of 168%. It is expected that this rate will increase when new laws come into force all around the world, which allow crowdfunded equity investments to be marketed to unaccredited investors.
This will open a huge market for small private investors and donors to participate in or donate to projects and ideas which resonate with them.
By the end of 2012 there were 450 crowd-funding platforms. The leading donation based crowd-funding organisations are Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The UK based organisation The State of the Crowdfunding Nation reports that in the month of March 2014 alone on average 442 Crowd-funding campaigns were launched on a daily basis.
Crowd-funding points humanity in a new direction. Crowd-funding will make it much easier for people to seek funding for the expressions of their own unique talents when they develop the courage and confidence to present their projects to the crowd. The ability to access public funding for projects offers many advantages.
1. Project initiators can show that there is an audience and a market for their project, products and/or services. In the case of an unsuccessful campaign it provides valuable market feedback. Furthermore crowd-funding creates a forum where the audience can engage in the development and production by following progress of projects via features provided by the crowd-funding platforms.
2. Crowd-funding will allow good ideas which do not fit the patterns required by conventional financiers to breakthrough and attract cash through the wisdom of the crowd. This way a more efficient and natural form of venture capital is accessed, demanding a lower (or no) level of return. This could be called Natural Capital.
3. Projects and ideas brought to the crowd by funding platforms often receive widespread attention and are communicated very fast through existing social networks. It is reported by crowd funding researchers that 90% of all women which are enthusiastic about projects and ideas, send it on average to more then 100 contacts through their active participation in the various social networks. These are some of the hidden, yet very exciting viral dynamics of crowd-funded projects.
We can summarise that crowd-funding is here to stay and will transform the world of finance, venture capital, global stock exchanges and so on. The combination of open source development and crowd-funding will accelerate the development of technology and innovative products and services, while eliminating the need or potential for IP protection. This will make technology available to all people at much reduced costs and much faster.
Free Energy Technology
One area of technology development that will greatly benefit from these open source and crowd-funding developments is the field of Free Energy Technologies. Free Energy technology is created through the application of the use of natural forces that are available everywhere all the time. These are the forces of magnetism, gravity, centrifugal forces, quantum field energy, cold fusion, static electricity and more.
Until recently this field of technology development was performed in small workshops and garages around the world, by lonely inventors lacking sufficient capital. Sometimes they were supported by angel or venture capital investors who imposed demands for return on investment, IP protection and other priority rights. These demands are paradoxical to the intrinsic nature of free energy technology.
Open source development was done to some extend in the free energy domain, but these research efforts mostly lacked proper funding and a professional laboratory environment.
However, in March 2014 a team of inventors from Pennsylvania launched a crowdfunding campaign to fund the further development of a certain free energy technology.
The technology is named the QEG (Quantum Energy Generator) and is based on harnessing energy in the form of electricity from the quantum field by applying the principle of resonance. After the launch there was worldwide interest to participate in the funding, the building and further development of the QEG. Crowd-funded trips were made by the QEG team to Taiwan, Morocco and the UK.
All aspects of open source development in combination with crowd-funding were fully experienced by the team and provided extremely valuable insights for further development and funding. Globally many initiatives were started and many people witnessed the building and development process all over the world. Much work must still be done. But the word is out to the crowd any many more initiatives will follow.
Free energy technology development is not an easy task. It is obvious that the realisation of free energy technologies threatens incumbents in the current global energy industry. This industry has a global size of more then 5 trillion US$, representing 7% of global GDP. Much of this turnover relates to the exploration, transportation and ultimate use of fossil fuels.
As fossil fuel related emissions most likely contribute to global warming and other air pollution in large cities it is evident that fossil fuels must be replaced in the near future by other more benign sources of energy generation.
As free energy technologies will most likely be applied at the household level it is obvious that this will significantly reduce the cost of energy to households worldwide. Moreover these free energy technologies will require no electricity grid and can service every household in the world.
The introduction of free energy into our global society will contribute much to the wellbeing of all citizens in our world. Affordable electricity for will significantly reduce the cost of virtually everything people need, including water, food and shelter, the basic requirements at the bottom of the pyramid.
Continuing to use fossil fuels in the foreseeable future is simply not an option. So we better get on with it.
If the development of free energy technology is open sourced and crowd-funded the public at large will wake up to this opportunity and the world will have changed.
The transition of the global energy infrastructure is an historic event, which many people have been waiting and longing for. All of humanity will benefit from this event.
When the cyber economy, open source technology development and crowd-funding go hand in hand the New Economy will be a fact. The New Economy will be visible to all people and everyone can participate and benefit from it.
An an inspiring example of a simple and playful free energy technology can be viewed through this link:
Another good example of an energy technology which is crowd funded is the Solar
Roadways Project. More than 2.0 million US$ were donated to this project:
It appears that the crowd senses the sincerity, authenticity and potential of these new energy projects. It proves that good projects are loved by the public and awaken new perspectives and above all hope and confidence in an abundant future brought about by the transition to the Gift Economy.
The freeing of free energy technologies to the world at large is just one example of the many other transitions that are happening right now. The simultaneous transitions of many other industries will further strengthen humanitys confidence in a positive future.
The Vital4Life Foundation is making a meaningful contribution to this transition. The Foundation participates in the open source development of an increasing number of free energy technologies.
It is our intention to launch a crowd funding campaign which will be designed to further accelerate the visibility, understanding and potential of free energy technologies. We are convinced that this fundamental shift in the way of introducing, funding and sharing new technologies in collaboration with the public at large will have profound effects on the transitions that want to happen in other sectors of our global economy.
We express deep gratitude to all people and all organisations that brought us the internet, global communications, the cyber economy, open source development and crowd-funding. These developments are the corner stones and foundations on which the emerging Gift Economy is being built.
Co-Founder Vital4Life Foundation