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Towards fair and transparent online business models

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Slides of my talk to the Commons Fest 2015 (http://commonsfest.info) that took place in Athens during May 15-17th. The festival focused on resources that can be viewed as the "commons - public resources that we should all benefit from. I tried to reflect on how we do business using digital commons, especially when using value that other people generate. My talk was inspired by the book of Jarion Lanier "Who owns the future" (http://www.jaronlanier.com/futurewebresources.html)

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Towards fair and transparent online business models

  1. 1. Towards fair and transparent online business models Nikos Manouselis, CEO Agro-Know nikosm@agroknow.gr
  2. 2. inspired by…
  3. 3. Nikos • MSc, MΕng, PhD • >150 publications • 1 like-a-post-doc • 1 (almost) research position • >5 rejected University job applications • Agro-Know in 2008
  4. 4. An extraordinary company that captures, organizes and adds value to the rich information available in agricultural and biodiversity sciences, in order to make it universally accessible, useful and meaningful. http://www.agroknow.gr
  5. 5. advocates of open • CIARD.net: a global movement dedicated to open agricultural knowledge • Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN)
  6. 6. FAO’s AGRIS (http://agris.fao.org)
  7. 7. the online world is so cool
  8. 8. so many fantastic services & apps
  9. 9. many disruptive business models
  10. 10. yes, it is cool. it also generates new businesses. like Agro-Know
  11. 11. but who generates this value? and who owns it?
  12. 12. let’s do the math: who generates it • value: $212 billions –per employee: ~ $21 millions –per user: ~ $150 • so who do you think generates this value?
  13. 13. …and who makes money out of this value?
  14. 14. is this transparent?
  15. 15. is this fair?
  16. 16. does this mean that we should not have online businesses? should we close Agro-Know?
  17. 17. how can we do fair business from the value that our users generate? I do not have a reply, yet. I have plenty of questions. And an example to share.
  18. 18. FAO AGRIS ecosystem (simplified)
  19. 19. who generates the value?
  20. 20. and who can use the AGRIS data?
  21. 21. hm. is this transparent to the AGRIS members? and is it fair?
  22. 22. thought #1 1. all AGRIS providers to know that Agro-Know is processing their data at no cost for them – explicitly asks their permission to use their data in our online product – all AGRIS providers get some additional free Agro-Know service in return
  23. 23. thought #2 • a micro-payment model in place for each AGRIS provider – we cannot pay cash, yet; but e.g. credits-per- views can be collected by each provider – new services & features to be offered by Agro- Know according to the collected credits
  24. 24. wrapping up • online world: helps us disrupt some monopolies that were based on who owns the information • lots of new value, generated by all of us, instantly created online • new types of threat: who owns the online information channels?
  25. 25. take away message • doing business online is not bad • but the way we make money from other people’s information should be transparent and fair –…whatever is legal, is not always ethical
  26. 26. my question to you How can we help make this happen?
  27. 27. thank you!