Enspiral Tales
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Enspiral Tales

Public domain image by Irene Dávila

Writer’s Dilemma: Do I Need a Paywall? Or Can I Trust the Gift Economy?

I’ve been writing on the web since 2003.

At first I was just journalling in public. My narcissistic teenaged ramblings weren’t very useful to the world, but they helped me to find my voice.

The Sinister Tone Generator: one of my open source audio machines
A border patrol checkpoint… 50 miles north of the US-Mexico border.

Everything I’ve written since 2003 has been published online for free.

These days, I even go the extra step of putting it all in the public domain using the Creative Commons Zero license: anyone can do anything they like with my words, no rights reserved.

My brain says “publish for free.”
My heart says “publish for free!”
My wallet says “dude, what are you doing?”

I think writing is the best service I can offer the world right now.

I spent April and May touring through the US with my love- and work-partner Nati Lombardo. I felt I had to go visit the US because frankly I’m worried about World War III erupting over there. The intention of the trip was to meet with progressive citizens, to see if our decision-making software or our non-hierarchical management structures could help with their organising.

  • How can we be inclusive without spending all our time in meetings?
  • How do we deal with power imbalances?
  • How do we collaborate when we’ve all been indoctrinated to dominate and compete?
A snapshot of our work-in-progress on Trello

So how are we going to pay for it?

We’re scripting, filming, editing, illustrating… this is weeks and weeks of work. So naturally we need to charge for it, right?



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