The Haves and the Have-Nots – NYTimes.com

The Haves and the Have-Nots – NYTimes.com.

It’s easy to forget, at least for those coming from rich locations, just how much wealth is required to enable something like open source development, at least that using the Internet and ICT. It’s a little counter-intuitive: community, the commons, all these things that characterise open source work, ought not to require wealth. But they do. One needs the infrastructure for it, for starters, even if that infrastructure does not copy the 20th century West’s. One needs, more importantly, the temporal luxury of being able to say, I shall work on this, not that; I shall choose not be chosen. And that kind of wealth is huge and nearly invisible–unless one is a political or social minority, where the wealth of saying, I choose, is ever present.