Response to the accusations made by Michel Bauwens

Xabier E. Barandiaran / David Vila-Viñas

As co-editors of the book we feel in need to clarify a number of
accusations made by Michel Bauwens.

1. The editors have never used political insults to qualify Michel. He calls us “Stalinist”.Trivializing with this kind of adjectives contributes nothing to the commons.

2. Michel Bauwens is not in the author list because there is no chapter authored by him.

3. The book does not include any chapter written by Michel Bauwens [2] for a very simple reason: the editorial team decided not to include his document. There are two main reasons that justify this decision:

3.1. The quality was not good: The manuscript had many problems as an academic document: extremely long quotes from other authors (up to two pages) that also appear in other chapters, lack of references, repeated paragraphs, etc. We have no time to rewrite the document to meet the standards. Moreover, it is important to note that when Michel Bauwens published the content of his manuscript with a publishing company [3], the content had to be almost fully rewritten, to the extent that the person that helped rewrite the manuscript (Vasilis Kostakis) ended up as first author. And this brings us to the next point

3.2. Copyright issues: As mentioned before, to our surprise, when the editorial team of FLOK met in Quito in March 2015, we discovered that Michel Bauwens had published a book with Vasilis Kostakis with Palgrave MacMillan publishing company [3]. The content of this short book considerably overlaps with Michel’s manuscript for the FLOK project, (with a very good rewrite, cleaning, referencing, editing, and improvements by  Vasilis). The book is published with a restrictive copyright license and MacMillan has a history of severe copyright infringement prosecution. We are a small project in a small country, we cannot afford a copyright lawsuit against a copyright monster like

4. Michel Bauwens has not been “censored”. A quick pdf search shows that the name of Michel Bauwens appears in the book 27 times! He is also acknolwedged as “the research director of the project till June 2014”.

5. Michel decided to publish yet another book in english independently of the project [4], with a license different to the one the project used, without including the content of other authors (including our).
We never complained. We did never consider that Michel was an Stalinist, or that he had censored us. This is the commons, this is copyleft land: you are free to use, remix, copy, modify and distribute. No need to insult, no need to complain, no possibility for censorship. And we love that!

Enjoy the book:


Xabier E. Barandiaran / David Vila-Viñas