Well, I think that given the very powerful presence of corporations and organizations in people’s lives, there is a movement that started probably close to 20 years ago about corporate social responsibility. And I think that has been likened most often to… I think the phrases are “green washing” or “brainwashing”, just like environmental responsibility, which is there… as much as anything used as slogans to market.
Now I think corporations can, with enlightened leadership, say, the role of a corporation is to provide goods and services that are important to people’s lives, but in ways and with values that are not exploitive and not extractive of people. And I think the big problem, the deep problem, is that for most companies that are private, the expectations of an amoral capital markets exchange is what drives their performance. One of the things that I think is a really good example and I… it’s perhaps naïve of me, is to look at the evolution of Facebook in today’s world.
How interesting would it have been, if instead of going private on to the capital markets through an IPO, if Facebook had decided to create itself as some sort of not-for-profit collective, still of the same size providing a platform that a billion people can use, but without trying to enrich its founders and its shareholders in the same way. Now that would have been something really innovative for our society. It would have been a platform for some kind of evolution of humans on the planet, I think, as opposed to a private company that increasingly will be driven fiscal quarter after fiscal quarter by the expectations of the market.