Coding The Markets, via a comment on one of my recent posts, pointed me at Larry Harris’s book and associated website called Trading And Exchanges. As expected I’ve ordered the book and look forward to reading it.
Harris makes a nice distinction between trustworthiness and creditworthiness.
Something still niggles me though, above and beyond what I stated in my reply to the comment.
It’s about trust and sharing. P2P models of creation and co-creation work on P2P models of trust, and sharing is simpler as a result. When trust becomes something administered by a central body, most of the time it morphs into an unworkable administrative nightmare of hierarchical and structured and graduated permissions. A nightmare that becomes closer to Treacherous rather than Trusted, to borrow a phrase from the infosec world.
I just can’t see a P2P world buying into that kind of structure. Trust has to be something that is part of a relationship and simple and yes-no. I hope we never need to implement hierarchical need-to-know and eyes-only and clearance-level based approaches, because they have unintended consequences. Or at least unwished-for consequences, speaking personally.
They limit collaboration.
We have to find other ways of building trust models. And the permissions we give implicitly and explicitly as a result. I must look into powers of attorney. It is possible that they had well-bounded scopes, but I cannot believe that lawyers would have come up with a graduated model for the instrument; not when the instrument was an integral part of an attorney-client relationship.
I must look closer at Zopa and at GrameenBank as well, to try and understand what happens in the P2P world from a pure trust perspective. While I know them and understand their basic premises and models, I have not looked too deeply at their gubbins.