If penguins could fly
Where the name "flying penguins" came from.
The future of work is networked. Whether through leveraging your personal network as a founder, or cultivating a vibrant online community — successful entrepreneurs of the future will be those that figure out how to rally others around what they are doing.
In 1937, British economist Ronald Coase published “The Nature of the Firm” which outlined why companies exist and what limits their growth. Sixty five years later in 2002, Yale economist Yochai Benkler wrote “Coase’s Penguin” which noted that the web enables a new decentralized kind of firm, one that can be more efficient than traditional firms. He cited open source projects like Wikipedia and Linux, and used the penguin in part because it was Linux’s mascot, but also because the waddling, flightless bird was representative of the mess and chaos he saw in digital networks, even the ones that could compete with traditional firms.
Now, decades later, those penguins are learning to fly. We’ve seen the explosion of the creator economy, community led companies, and entrepreneurs that build by creating magnets for talent and attention. It’s not just Wikipedia and Linux anymore. The companies of the future will be built by digital networks — from personal networks to communities and everything in between. That’s what I write about.