Economics Media

Digital business models: a retrospective and maybe a class (or keynote)

Digital information breaks the premise of classical economics: that of divvying up scarce resources between competing actors. 

I need your help! Should I develop a class or keynote speech on this topic? Read on for details …

I’ve been thinking about our zero-sum game model of economics this week because I’m finally (finally!) reading Yochai Benkler’s The Penguin and The Leviathan: How Cooperation Triumphs Over Self-Interest. (If I were reading the eBook, instead of paper, I’d be tweeting about it under the hashtag, #readingOutLoud.)

Later this month I’m going to be a guest speaker for Howard Rheingold’s class at Stanford. And although my topic is “crap detection” (Howard’s term – I love it! – for something I’ve been doing since the mid-90s), talking to Howard seems to have brought my mind back around to cooperation. And economics.

So I just put together a list of my WiredPen posts that relate to economics and business models, specifically as it relates to media (mostly newspapers). It’s a pretty long list, covering 10 years. It’s not a Clay Shirky kind-of-list, but his writing influenced my early thinking about discussion group dynamics.

The process led me to this insight: I love economics. (Which is a good thing, since my MS is in ag economics!)

And I want to teach it.

I want to pitch a class on digital economics to a department/college at UW (or anywhere, really) with the possibility of turning it into a MOOC. This is a topic that I think every freshman should be encouraged to consider. It doesn’t have to be a 5-credit hour class; it could be a 1-credit hour or 5-credit hour or even graduate-level class: the difference would be in the extent of readings and complexity of student assignments.

What do you think? Do-able? 

Alternatively – or in addition – maybe this is a pay-me-to-speak keynote that I can craft and pitch.

How could I make you interested?

Thanks in advance for any help!

Here’s the list of my essays on digital economics and media business models:

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By Kathy E. Gill

Digital evangelist, speaker, writer, educator. Transplanted Southerner; teach newbies to ride motorcycles! @kegill

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