Major violation of the 'Decommodification' principle?

Share your views on the policies, philosophies, and spirit of Burning Man.
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Kinetik V
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Post by Kinetik V » Sat Sep 19, 2009 10:26 am

24 years of no commerce is a great track record. Let's not open the floodgates now, not even a millimeter more. The existing exceptions for Artica & Center Camp are all the exceptions the event needs.
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Post by actiongrl » Sat Sep 19, 2009 11:23 am

""If a product is brought to BM and used, unbranded, on the playa and that experience is used in off-playa promotions does the BMOrg have any recourse? """


If they use imagery, yes especially. We had a video removed from YouTube last year from a guy who brought his "gift" massage thingies, and let people try them on film and then was trying to use that video to promote the product (it was practically an infomercial). And if they don't use imagery, well, it depends on how the name is used, but there can be recourse.

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theCryptofishist
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Post by theCryptofishist » Sat Sep 19, 2009 11:36 am

mdmf007 wrote:Commercialism isnt evil - we all know that.
Okay, when ever you hear some one say, or you yourself say "We all know that," "It's common sense," or anything of that nature, it's time to stop what you're doing, sit down, and think about things.

And I, for one, would like to see less commercialism everywhere-not simply at the burn. I think that commercials and too powerful commercial interests dumb down the civic discourse to the point of producing babble rather than reasoned discussion.

Unless that was a joke. In which case, you got me. I'll slink off in shame and passive/aggressively post in your thread.
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Man, no wonder they always win....." Lonesomebri

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Isotopia
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Post by Isotopia » Sat Sep 19, 2009 12:10 pm

I suspect he meant it.

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mdmf007
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Post by mdmf007 » Sat Sep 19, 2009 8:58 pm

Burningman Does not own the playa -

If someone wants to sell their Blackrock Tested Tents, or Their Black Rock Desert Brand of Power Drink BMAN has no resourse.

I over spoke when I said "we all know commercialism isnt evil" Shold have been "I dont see commercialism as being evil"

later

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Ugly Dougly
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Post by Ugly Dougly » Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:31 am

A retailer can't say "Burning Man tested"? However, "playa-ready" would be okay....

Life is what you can get away with.

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mdmf007
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Post by mdmf007 » Sun Sep 20, 2009 1:32 pm

Ugly Dougly wrote:A retailer can't say "Burning Man tested"? However, "playa-ready" would be okay....

Life is what you can get away with.
Whole firms make their living out of splitting hairs. Sounds good.

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Simon of the Playa
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Post by Simon of the Playa » Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:30 pm

i bought a 20$ bag of coke in San Francisco with Larry's image on it...


16th and valencia.


what's the Org's opinion on this? And how can i find more of the same brand here on the east coast?


evidently the secret ingredient that keeps them coming back for more is 10-15% dust.


who uses mannitol anymore? not me....
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bradtem
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No commerce?

Post by bradtem » Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:37 pm

Just ice and cafe drinks?

I have some bad news for you. There are at least 13 different official things you can buy on the playa, and probably more I have not heard of. Yes, thirteen.

Don't feel bad. Most burning man staff that I challenge can't name all 13 of them.

Drinks at the Cafe and Ice at Arctica are two.

One is something you must pre-arrange but you pay cash for it on-playa. I'll give you this one because most people don't know about it and it's not well documented -- aviation fuel can be bought with pre-reservation at the airport. (Yes, I know it's not inside the fence but it is within the BM permit area.)

I'm talking something official, not camp fees or other private arrangements, not drugs -- I'm talking about commercial activity with the official blessing of the BMOrg.

So, can you name the other 10?

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theCryptofishist
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Post by theCryptofishist » Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:39 pm

Pump outs for your rv tanks. Pumpout for private jots. Huge grey water tanks, and their pumpouts. I odn't know if this counts as one or three.
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Man, no wonder they always win....." Lonesomebri

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Post by Simon of the Playa » Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:51 pm

So, can you name the other 10?

prostitution, gambling, diesel fuel, equipment rental, dominoes pizza secret delivery service, Stetson Hats, Coffee and Donuts for Humboldt, Washoe and Pershing County Sheriffs, HBO and CINEMAX, Tony Robbins Seminars, and last but not least, Cold hard Cash for Bribes when sexual favors dont Work.
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bradtem
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Post by bradtem » Sun Sep 20, 2009 3:09 pm

theCryptofishist wrote:Pump outs for your rv tanks. Pumpout for private jots. Huge grey water tanks, and their pumpouts. I odn't know if this counts as one or three.
You have a mix. Sewage pump out is one (for private JOTS or RVs.) Gray water haul-out is another. And you've listed one of them without listing it, namely private potties for your camp. I include this one, though it is often paid for off-playa because it is an official burning man contractor delivering service on-playa, and I think you can pay them there though I have not done it so I am not sure.

So that's 5 listed now, and if you want to argue that private potties is not one of them I can understand that argument.

There are other private services sold and delivered on-playa that are not official contractor stuff. For example, there are several providers that will rent you an RV that they deliver to the playa, stocked with food etc. and they drive out of there. But you pay them in advance. At $5K it's no great bargain.

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Post by theCryptofishist » Sun Sep 20, 2009 7:53 pm

bradtem wrote:
theCryptofishist wrote:Pump outs for your rv tanks. Pumpout for private jots. Huge grey water tanks, and their pumpouts. I odn't know if this counts as one or three.
You have a mix. Sewage pump out is one (for private JOTS or RVs.) Gray water haul-out is another. And you've listed one of them without listing it, namely private potties for your camp. I include this one, though it is often paid for off-playa because it is an official burning man contractor delivering service on-playa, and I think you can pay them there though I have not done it so I am not sure.

So that's 5 listed now, and if you want to argue that private potties is not one of them I can understand that argument.
Oh, I'm wasn't going to argue it wasn't. I simply didn't know how you were counting it.
The Lady with a Lamprey

"The powerful are exploiting people, art and ideas, and this leads to us plebes debating how to best ration ice.
Man, no wonder they always win....." Lonesomebri

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Bob
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Post by Bob » Sun Sep 20, 2009 8:03 pm

Hint: who controls the British crown?
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mdmf007
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Post by mdmf007 » Sun Sep 20, 2009 8:36 pm

1 coffee
2 ice
3 potable water
4 grey water pump out
5 blackwater pump out
6 tank rentals for potable
7 tank rentals for grey
8 private shitters
9 av gas
10 bus rides to Reno
11 bus rides to the store and back
12 in and out privelage for 20 bones

Not sure if 4/5, and 6/7 go together in same category. ALL of these items can be had on playa. Even without a reservation you can still stop the truck and make arrangements to be added as a customer

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bradtem
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Post by bradtem » Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:10 pm

mdmf007 wrote:1 coffee
2 ice
3 potable water
4 grey water pump out
5 blackwater pump out
6 tank rentals for potable
7 tank rentals for grey
8 private shitters
9 av gas
10 bus rides to Reno
11 bus rides to the store and back
12 in and out privelage for 20 bones

Not sure if 4/5, and 6/7 go together in same category. ALL of these items can be had on playa. Even without a reservation you can still stop the truck and make arrangements to be added as a customer
Ok, so you have some I was not aware of. Tell me about the tank rental service? If that's the same company I would consider this one item (just as all the drinks are one item and the types of ice one item.) Or is the only purpose of these tank rentals if you are paying for water haul-away and delivery?

Bus to Gerlach is on my list, but bus to Reno is not. If you refer to the bio-bus, they claim that you must reserve in advance for that and they just check your ID when you board. I would assume however that the run to Reno early in the week is mostly empty and thus they might well sell tickets on it, so I would be curious to hear about that. Since it is a different entity from the Gerlach Bus service, it might be fair to count it as different. They might also be violating rules if they sell tickets on the playa to Reno, but they could also just charge you once off-playa.


And Exit/Re-enter ticket ($20) is indeed on my list, as is fresh water fill up.

I break the list into a few categories:

a) The really obvious (ice, drinks) which most people experience.
b) The other obvious one people have not named
c) The less obvious but noted in literature and survival guide, including fresh water fill, sewage pump out, gray water pump out, gerlach bus ticket
d) The ones only people who look into them find out about, like av gas, exit ticket, private potty, thing A and thing B
e) The only you only realize once you need it, usually at the end of the event

And I'm not counting emergency evac since I suspect you pay for that once you get to Reno. Or the flights to and from BRC from Reno which I presume are paid for in Reno or beforehand.[/list][/list]

However, the main point is my amusement at somebody who was worried that having things beyond ice and drinks would cross a line!

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theCryptofishist
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Post by theCryptofishist » Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:16 pm

e) might be a locksmith to get in your car or a jumpstart or tow after it's been sitting all week. I might not count those as they are post-event, although if you're leaving before the burn it's still the same service.
The Lady with a Lamprey

"The powerful are exploiting people, art and ideas, and this leads to us plebes debating how to best ration ice.
Man, no wonder they always win....." Lonesomebri

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Bob
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Post by Bob » Sun Sep 20, 2009 9:22 pm

You forgot all the pizzas people have FedEx'd in.
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Post by fciron » Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:16 pm

All of these are debatably 'necessary' services for the event to take place. There have been numerous examples of sanctioned commerce throughout the thread. The ten principles have to be combined with some common sense. Last I gave a friend some money to pick up camp fuel for me last year. We exchanged currency on the playa, ooooh! Shit happens. My intention here is not to simply scream about commercialism but to ask a question.

It seems to me that having corporate interests use BM as a promotional prop is different from that and has the possibility of changing the tenor of the event. It's also a fuzzy line; if you read the whole thread you'll see that I mentioned that a lot of artists put their BM experience on their resumes. Now we hear that the drink company has been working with the cafe for years and been just fine until one knucklehead misunderstood their position. I like my Burning Man to be in the world without being so much of the world. Just curious how to keep it that way.
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Post by Elderberry » Sun Sep 20, 2009 10:27 pm

Did anyone mention drugs? Isn't this usually a cash deal on the playa--unless gifted, of course.

(We don't buy drugs on the playa.)

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bradtem
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Drugs and locksmith

Post by bradtem » Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:16 am

Yes, the locksmith is the one I was thinking about for (e). And no, not drugs, I am talking about officially approved commerce here, or in many cases commerce with the org.

Which is why it is odd the most obvious and most commercial one has not been listed yet, so I will list it for you. Tickets themselves, which can be bought on-playa.

You have two more to go, one of which is easy and another which is hard though is listed on the BM web site.

Now, as to whether these are necessary for the event? That's a hard argument. Is aviation fuel on the playa necessary? Only for planes that want to do lots of sightseeing tours and don't want to pop over to Winnemucca for refueling. Is a re-entry fee necessary for the event? Not strictly -- it could be a hand stamp and the revenue for it accounted for by a slight ticket price increase. The cafe is certainly not necessary for the event. Some would argue ice is. RV dumps are important for those who spend weeks on the playa, but you can do fine in an RV for the week of the event without a dump or refill if you conserve water. Bus to Gerlach is nice and saves people driving out but it's not necessary. Nor are private potties.

I don't oppose any of these things, by the way, I just don't think they are particularly special. They are expedient. I have no problem with being expedient. I would actually allow some more things that are expedient, things that make the difference between a ruined week and a great time should be available for purchase, but not things like drinks that everybody knows to bring, and which are readily gifted in any event.

The non-commercial ethic was really supposed to be, in my view, about stopping vending of things that either are not for the playa (like souvenirs) or the core things people are expected to bring themselves (food, water etc.)

I would support the vending of specialty things at high prices to support people who have stuff break, saving the need to bring two of everything, certain hardware needs and some central means to buy or rent tools and parts -- again not to avoid bringing the tools or parts, but to deal with the "oh shit, I forgot X" and "Oh crap, Y broke" moments.

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Post by mojo » Mon Sep 21, 2009 10:36 am

I received a response via e-mail from the CEO at Advanced Nutrients regarding their aerial advertisement at the event. In order to avoid cross-posting a long post, see the thread under "Experiences at Bruning Man".

It will be very interesting to see what our group consensus is to these letters. So far, I'm on the fence.
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Post by gyre » Mon Sep 21, 2009 11:02 am

mojo wrote:I received a response via e-mail from the CEO at Advanced Nutrients regarding their aerial advertisement at the event. In order to avoid cross-posting a long post, see the thread under "Experiences at Bruning Man".

It will be very interesting to see what our group consensus is to these letters. So far, I'm on the fence.
Maybe a link?

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Post by marcgorcey » Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:45 pm


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Re: Drugs and locksmith

Post by CapSmashy » Mon Sep 21, 2009 8:51 pm

bradtem wrote:Yes, the locksmith is the one I was thinking about for (e). And no, not drugs, I am talking about officially approved commerce here, or in many cases commerce with the org.

Which is why it is odd the most obvious and most commercial one has not been listed yet, so I will list it for you. Tickets themselves, which can be bought on-playa.

You have two more to go, one of which is easy and another which is hard though is listed on the BM web site.[/b]
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Post by fciron » Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:39 pm

Bradtem, I'll accept 'expedient' as a better description than 'debatably necessary'. I think we're both on the same page there.

Off to read the letter now.
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Completing the list

Post by bradtem » Tue Sep 22, 2009 7:10 pm

Since nobody guessed them, the last two are:

a) Fuel (Diesel and Biodiesel) for generators. Two suppliers but delivered by Sierra fuels
b) Airport use fee ($40) first time arriving at airport

And of course there are the non-official things ranging from the illegal (like some drugs) to the extremely common and fully tolerated like camp fees. And barter of course, which is just as much commerce as when you do it with money, but for some reason people imagine it's different, presumably because it's harder to institutionalize.

The complete list (for now) is then:

1) Drinks at the Cafe
2) Ice at Camparctica
3) Tickets at the Gates
4) Bus tickets to Gerlach
5) RV Dump or Gray Water Haul-out
6) Fresh Water refill
7) Diesel & Biodisel Fuel
8) Aviation fuel
10) Airport Fee
11) Exit/reenter pass
12) Private potty
13) Locksmith service
14) Tank rentals (water, gray water, sewage, diesel)

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EB
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Post by EB » Tue Sep 22, 2009 7:48 pm

This is why I carry at least $3,000 of walking around money in the utili-kilt pocket closest to my balls.
Irony. You're soaking in it.

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Simon of the Playa
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Post by Simon of the Playa » Wed Sep 23, 2009 12:35 am

ok.....dig this....and i knew years ago it was only a matter of time before i could get 4 bars on the playa via ATT, and call people in and from the porta potties.


i digress.


next year, ATM machines at center camp.....i mean, i ALWAYS lose shit, i REALLY ALWAYS lose shit when i'm chemically enhanced.


makes sense.....you get something akin to a meal card, or a burners card, like in vegas, but without telly savalas.

then you go to center camp and use the cashiers ass, which has a scanner implanted in both cheeks, and swipe it thru, and the ORG will deduct the 4$ directly from your "Non-Money" Money non- account account.

simple, easy to use, with personal 'playa-pin" security system so no dirty POOR hippies can milk your cappucino non-account account dry.

a gift from you of one dollar per "giftaction" would be SO GREAT and SO TOTALLY BURNY! so it's required.

dont make your money MOOP....Get gifts with the frequent burner program, and treat yourself to a delightful healthy chai tea, AND support a clean playa by not littering the city with all of thatt trashy cashy.


Metropolis, or Metroplex?



now there's a question to ponder.....have we become the a shopping mall for freaks?

is center camp the food court?

omg......it's too late...

fuck it....maybe next year center camp will have those deep fried waffle things covered in powdered sugar...i absolutely would pay 4 bucks for that.


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Post by actiongrl » Wed Sep 23, 2009 6:59 am

I guess the diff between an electrolyte drink and a funnel cake is that one of them can keep your ass out of the medical tent.

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