Make Art, Not Money

Bruce explains his multi-generational vision, which Prabhakar sees as more for an Artist than an Entrepreneur
Bruce reiterates his vision of a world not controlled by profit-driven entities such as Facebook.  Prabhakar counters that profit isn't the problem; Facebook succeeded in displacing the open web because it solved problems that the altruistic W3C didn't, because it lacked the incentives and empathy to solve the problems of "real-world identity" crucial to Facebook's success. 

In fact, Prabhakar went further and claimed that the key problem with most non-market solutions is that they tend require political acts of consensus-building (monolithic "Cathedrals") rather than enabling bottom-up experimentation (decentralized Bazaars).  This isn't to glorify markets, but to point out different types of problems require different types of solutions.

In particular, any non-coercive solution (whether market or political) requires at least some use case that delivers 5-10x the benefit of existing alternatives in order for somebody to adopt it.  Prabhakar argued that Bruce hadn't identified any "early adopter" market that would benefit from his vision before it was already large-scale and cost-effective.

Bruce then pointed out that he wasn't interested in early markets or incremental progress. His dream was to bring people into a new kind of world, even if it took multiple generations.

At that point Prabhakar pointed out that we are no longer talking about entrepreneurship and technology, but about narratives and art.  Which doesn't require funding, or customers.  All it requires is the discipline to cultivate the craft of telling compelling stories.

Bruce conceded the point.  But if that is true, then where do we go from here?


© 2020 Ernest Prabhakar & Ernest Bruce