Rushkoff is Back

It's with joy, trepidation, love and paranoia that I return to BoingBoing for two weeks of happy mutantdom.

Blogging at BoingBoing is truly one of the most rewarding and overwhelming experiences I've ever had as a writer. It's an extended feeling, where each thought shared in a seemingly quiet, casual, and social space is actually broadcast to a universe of many different kinds of people. Some kind, some interested, some intrigued - others acerbic, quick to judge, and already possessing pretty established perspectives on the way things are. And four million of them, each coming to BoingBoing for his or her own reasons - some for knowledge, some for entertainment, some for connection, and some for a good fight.

I return to BoingBoing a changed man - indeed, changed from the experience of being here. I used the platform both as a way of propagandizing my own opinions about our culture and economy, as well as to get honest feedback on what I should spend my time and energy on. As a result of the conversations here, I started a radio show on WFMU, began working on an alternative currency project, wrote a very different book than I would have otherwise, sponsored a short film about the book for those who don't read, began a column for the new online-only version of Arthur, started a new Frontline documentary about digital culture, and - in an effort to practice some 'new' media rather than just write about it, I even signed up to write some back story and graphic novels for a new video game. I decided to teach at the New School, where you don't have to be matriculated as a full-time student to take a class. And I'm gardening vegetables on what used to be a suburban lawn.

While I may have done a couple of those things, anyway, I certainly wouldn't be doing them the way I am - and the feedback and comments I got through my experiences at BoingBoing catalyzed and informed each of these decisions. I still hear the voices in my head.

I'm back for the same sorts of reasons I came before: to promote bottom-up, cyberpunk, mutant culture, and to extend these approaches into the economy. I think we are in one of those rare moments of opportunity where the bank-based speculative economy is imperiled and ineffective enough to make alternative currencies and collaborations seem more reasonable. The more we experience putting food on the table and smiles on our faces by exchanging something other than bank-issued cash, the more we will begin to believe in our own ability to create value for ourselves and one another, without intermediary institutions.

I am here to promote the hacking of the economy, one step at a time. Not crashing the economy that exists, or even negating its usefulness for certain kinds of exchanges and efforts - just building something else from the bottom up that addresses the myriad needs ignored or repressed by the one-sided system we have today.

An economy that actually worked would be a wonderful thing - and I believe we can make it right here.

mutant but not mute,

Douglas Rushkoff


Douglas Rushkoff - author of the book Life Inc: How the world became a corporation and how to take it back - is a guest blogger.


  1. Douglas, I’ve been a fan of yours since the mid-90s and I’m overjoyed to see you back on BoingBoing. Just keep those posts down to a digestable length this time please :)

  2. Ooh… What video game are you writing the backstory/comics for? Very curious about that one.

  3. Welcome back, Rushkoff! Glad to hear your previous experience with BB had such a positive influence. I hope this new session will be just as good. I admit I’m rather skeptical of the “alternative currency” concepts I’ve heard in the past, so I look forward to reading more about your ideas on the subject. Skeptical but not closed-minded about it.

  4. Yay! I’ve been keeping a mind on you for some years now, and I already feel mildly inspired by your return to BoingBoing.

  5. Your last visit was very inspirational. Looking forward to generating and implementing new directions and ideas with you here in this bubbling cauldron of mutants.

    I like your willingness to share how your experience here affected you. I think it is affecting a lot of us! Talk soon!

  6. Welcome back! I’m looking forward to your new book, and all the interesting things I’m sure you’ll share with us here on BB.

  7. ‘promote cyberpunk?!’

    Sir, if your punks don’t have cranks and pullies and gears sprouting out of them, Boing Boing wants nothing to do with them! At least stick a ukelele in their hands before the mob arrives.

    Welcome back. :)

  8. I always forget to come over to your neck of the Interwoods, so thank you for coming over this way awhile.

  9. A “down w/ corporations” book from Random House… the world’s largest publishing corporation (of English material). Working on the revolution from the inside? or intentional irony?

    Seriously thought… Nice to see you again, Doug. Loved “Media Virus” to death, and “The GenX Reader” was the book that made me think, “Wow. Yeah. I have a generational identity beyond ‘not boomer.'”

  10. i don’t know who you are, but whoever you might be, i liked your ideas, hope u wont mind lendin out much more.

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