A new peer-produced economy and culture is rapidly emerging where the more you share, the more respect you get from your peers. Our goal is to get more people to organize their lives around the logic of this new world where contributing to the common good is the priority. Towards that end, Shareable looks at culture, cities, the economy, and daily life through the lens of sharing. We look for how people are sharing and we ask ourselves how the world can be made more shareable. The website is a place to learn about this new world where sharing is important and to access helpful sharing tools, tips, and how-to’s.
Though with a clear commercial orientation, the new Shareable magazine seems a milestone in the birth of a new culture:
“Shareable tells the story of sharing. We cover the people, places, and projects that are bringing a shareable world to life. And share tools and tips to help you make a shareable world real in your life.
In a shareable world, things like car sharing, community gardening, and cohousing bring us together, make life more fun, and free up time and money for the important things in life. When we share, not only is a better life possible, but so is a better world.
The remarkable successes of Wikipedia, Kiva, open source software, Burning Man, Freecycle, and Creative Commons prove this. They tell a hopeful story about human nature and our future, one we don’t hear enough in the mainstream media.
They show what’s possible when we share. They show that we don’t act merely for our own good, but go to great lengths to contribute to the common good. They show new ways to work together that will help us resolve the social and environmental crises we face, and perhaps thrive as never before. They show that a new world is emerging where everyone can share, where the more you share the more respect you get, and where life works because everyone is motivated to help each other.
We tell this story because a shareable world might be just what we need to enjoy life to the fullest and restore the planet in the process. And it’s being built by ordinary people right now. Shareable is your invitation to join the fun of building a new world.
We call our audience the sharing community. These are the people who engage in sharing activities all the time. They’re members of City Car Share, they go to Burning Man, they live in cohousing or dorms, they organize potlucks and food clubs with friends, and they share code, videos, and news over the Internet. They’re also people who share professionally: designers, architects, scientists, nonprofit workers, digital journalists, sharing service employees, and so on.
Our audience reads Shareable because they are seeking new ways to share—not out of virtue, but as a path to a better, fuller, more successful life and career. They’re also looking to discover the meaning in sharing, to discuss and understand the values that facilitate sharing. Sharing is not a style or a fad. It’s a philosophy and a way of living, one that helps all of us to thrive in the twenty-first century.”
Who is behind the initiative?
* Neal Gorenflo is the publisher of Shareable.net. A former lobbyist enabler, stock analyst, and Fortune 500 strategist, Neal is perhaps an unlikely voice for a shareable world. A revelation one Saturday in Brussels drove Neal to leave the corporate world and to help launch a series of Internet startups to enable people share their stuff. He started a monthly meeting called the Abundance League with friends to explore sharing solutions. And he set up his life like an open source project that friends could contribute to and encouraged his friends to do the same so he give help in return. Through his experiments, Neal met those who would co-found CommonSource with him and launch CommonSource’s first program, Shareable.net. You can reach Neal at neal [at] shareable dot net.
* Jeremy Adam Smith is the editor of Shareable.net. He’s the author of The Daddy Shift, published by Beacon Press in June 2009; co-editor of The Compassionate Instinct, forthcoming from W.W. Norton & Co. in January 2010; and co-editor of Are We Born Racist?, which Beacon will publish in Spring 2010. His essays, short stories, and articles on parenting, popular culture, urban life, and politics have appeared in Mothering, The Nation, San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Utne Reader, BusinessWeek.com, Wired, and many other periodicals and books. Jeremy has also been interviewed by numerous media outlets, including The New York Times, USA Today, GQ, Nightline, Salon.com, ABC News, NBC News, and many NPR shows. Before helping to launch Shareable.net, Jeremy was the senior editor of Greater Good magazine, where he still serves as contributing editor. During Jeremy’s tenure with the print edition, Greater Good was nominated multiple times for Maggie and Independent Press awards.”