The Moneyless Manifesto For Free (Of Course)

Two and a bit years ago I was delighted to be invited to the very first Uncivilisation festival so that I could talk about Undermining the Tools of Disconnection and piss off George Monbiot (actually that wasn’t the intention but it happened). During the event which was in turns inspiring, frustrating and highly entertaining, I bumped into a small crowd of people surrounding an animated man called Mark Boyle. I was transfixed. His stories of living, as far as possible, without money and, by implication, outside of industrial civilization, fired so many ideas in my head that Underminers was bound to happen from that moment on.

It’s slightly incongruous that Mark’s first book, The Moneyless Man isn’t referenced here, but sometimes things just don’t fit in the text precisely. That said, it was a bit of an omission not to mention the wonderful Just For The Love Of It skill, stuff and landsharing website – so I shall put things right here.

And there’s a link on the right too.

It was lovely to receive a note from Mark after announcing the completion of Underminers and a personal invitation to invade his home and eat all his food (ok, not quite that). He also mentioned that his new book, The Moneyless Manifesto, was being published online for free with the blessing of his publishers. Cue, gratuitous quotation from Underminers:

What about things that we consider to be more ethereal, such as ideas? This is already a wildly exciting proposition, that the online version of this book is part of, as is everything I write: simply, it’s given away to the benefit of all who can benefit from it. When I took Time’s Up! to my publisher, apart from being delighted to have it accepted for publication I also insisted that the intellectual property remained mine to share as I wished. The publisher had the rights over the sold-as-printed version, but otherwise the words were mine to distribute as I saw fit, to the extent that this was written into the contract. To quote:

“The Author hereby grants the Publishers the exclusive licence of printing and publishing the said Work during the period of copyright in volume and serial form in all languages throughout the world and also the exclusive licence to assign or licence such rights to others subject to the conditions following, on the understanding that the Author may post the text online under Copyleft terms.”

As far as I know this clause is unique in publishing circles. It shouldn’t be. Ideas are for sharing, as any good scientist (as opposed to one that is in hock to corporate interests) will tell you. Copyleft is a great, and to most people, amusing word, which in itself can spark off all sorts of discussions. It does what it says on the tin: you can’t keep something to yourself, you have to allow others to copy it. The terms I attach to my work are in the form of a Creative Commons licence, which allows anyone to copy, edit and re-distribute the work, so long as it is appropriately credited, not passed off as someone else’s work and, most important, no one makes any money out of it.

Which happens to the same license that The Moneyless Manifesto uses. Go and read it now.

Thanks Mark.

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