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If not for money for what? Digging into the OS/FS contributors’ motivations

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  • Graziella Marzi

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Abstract

This paper analyses the data collected by two of the most significant surveys on the Open Source Software (OSS) contributors’ motivations with the aim of assessing if in the OSS products circulation we can recognise the characteristics of the modern way of giving, suggested by Godbout (2000). The analysis of the information collected seems to confirm that the intrinsic motivations (social/community and political) prevail over the extrinsic ones (monetary and signalling) when developers decide to join and stay in the OS community and that the feeling of reciprocity is shared by the majority of the community members. Therefore the OSS product circulation seems to fit into the characteristics of the gift circulation.

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File URL: http://dipeco.economia.unimib.it/repec/pdf/mibwpaper166.pdf
File Function: First version, 2009
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 166.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2009
Date of revision: Jul 2009
Handle: RePEc:mib:wpaper:166

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Keywords: open source software; reciprocity; gift economy;

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  1. Lerner, Josh & Tirole, Jean, 2002. "Some Simple Economics of Open," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(2), pages 197-234, June.
  2. Bronwyn H. Hall, 2007. "Patents and patent policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(4), pages 568-587, Winter.
  3. Graziella Marzi, 2007. "Some Policy Issues on Open Source and Proprietary Software," Working Papers 133, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Dec 2007.
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