False community

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

False community is the illusion of community without taking shared risks and so being subject to the same constraints, and pressures to agree. Some claim that the risk has to be physical, to the body, not just reputations or ideals. Others claim that it's enough to risk wasting precious time. Either way, it's a risk to become involved in something that claims to be a community, that isn't. False community is a form of false consciousness.

False community is basically an economic concept. It could be considered a question of democratic socialism versus capitalism. Users are allowed to cast their votes without making any contribution in money. However, they are required to make an investment in time, much as in democratic socialism, people must make the investment of time to go to the polls.

In any case, under democratic socialism, the voters do not necessarily feel any qualms about suppressing their neighbor's speech; and this is seen happening all the time on Wikipedia, as people get "voted off the island." The voters have no reason to oppose this outcome, because they do not get hit in the pocketbook for it, even if the project suffers. The costs are spread among everyone who uses Wikipedia, rather than concentrated among the voters, as would be the case in a share corporation.