[Air-l] Is all Communication Commercial?

Ericka Menchen Trevino emtrevino at gmail.com
Sun Jul 15 17:08:35 PDT 2007

I guess commercial is another one of those concepts that can blanket
the whole world if a determined weaver puts her/his mind to it. Just
like Information, communication and technology, not to mention
society, culture. politics/power, and I've even heard literacy used
this way, which sounded like a stretch to me.

In some ways pulling a concept out to its fullest reaches is very
rewarding and exciting - who hasn't been enthralled by thinking
"circumstance x really is about [insert master concept here]" But I
can't help but think that a lot of this comes down to something more
like branding than understanding.

Ericka Menchen Trevino

On 7/12/07, Charlie Balch <charlie at balch.org> wrote:
> After making some very interesting points, Dr. Kuskis asks "Can anyone name
> a communication technology that has not been used for commercial purposes."
> What a great question! What do "communication technology" and "commercial"
> mean? Does altruism exist? Perhaps communication is the oldest profession. I
> do not communicate unless I get some value from the communication. Value can
> be measured in a number of ways -- nothing is going into my bank account as
> result of my response to this question but I'm paying for the privilege to
> be able to respond and value the thoughts of other members of this list.
> Would Ham radio which explicitly does not allow commercial use qualify? I
> know that various organizations make some profit in materials useful in
> training for the ham license which has become a lot easier to get now that
> morse code is not required. Other companies earn money selling ham radio
> equipment.
> What about various open source software projects such as FileZilla and VLC?
> I suppose they have also been used for commercial purposes too but the
> authors have not profited from such use. I don't recall seeing
> advertisements on Wikipedia either but I have seen some requests for
> donations.
> Hmmm. Even the AOIR list server has been used to distribute information
> about books and conferences. Does that make this list commercial?
> Charles Balch MEd, MBA, Ph.D.
> Professor of CIS
> Arizona Western College
> -----Original Message-----
> From: air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org
> [mailto:air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org] On Behalf Of Alexander Kuskis
> Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 5:59 PM
> To: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
> Subject: Re: [Air-l] ICE-T again
> I don't think we need to bother with the dismal science in understanding the
> link between communication and commerce. They have had a close relationship
> at least since the invention of writing in Mesopotamia during the late 4th
> century BC. Denise Schmandt-Besserat has traced the origin of writing itself
> to the symbols and markings made on clay tokens used for accounting purposes
> in the 4th Century BC Middle East, roughly jn the area where Iraq is today.
> See http://www.utexas.edu/utpress/excerpts/exschhop.html . Furthermore,
> business has been quick to adopt every major communication technology, from
> Gutenberg's printing press up to our own era. The Internet is something of
> an exception in this regard, because commercial applications were explicitly
> forbidden during its ARPANET and later NSF days. But business has more than
> made up for it since. We need not invoke McLuhan's identification of money
> as a communication medium itself to understand commerce as communication.
> E-commerce, like e-learning, is simply a major application of ICT. Can
> anyone name a communication technology that has not been used for commercial
> purposes?.........Alex
> Alex Kuskis, PhD
> Adjunct Professor
> MA Progam in Communication & Leadership
> School of Professional Studies
> Gonzaga University
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