Open content and value creation

First Monday has an article by Magnus Cedergren that is related to the stuff about sonic proliferation I have been writing about lately. The abstract of his paper Open content and value creation says:

“The borderline between production and consumption of media content is not so clear as it used to be. For example on the Internet, many people put a lot of effort into producing personal homepages in the absence of personal compensation. They publish everything from holiday pictures to complete Web directories. Illegal exchange of media material is another important trend that has a negative impact on the media industry.

In this paper, I consider open content as an important development track in the media landscape of tomorrow. I define open content as content possible for others to improve and redistribute and/or content that is produced without any consideration of immediate financial reward — often collectively within a virtual community. The open content phenomenon can to some extent be compared to the phenomenon of open source. Production within a virtual community is one possible source of open content. Another possible source is content in the public domain. This could be sound, pictures, movies or texts that have no copyright, in legal terms.”

He ends ups with a model of the driving forces in open content “value chains”, (concerning both producers and consumers), in which personal motivations and social benefits are linked.