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Panopticon (wikipedia.org)
38 points by gdubs on June 30, 2014 | hide | past | favorite | 8 comments

I am the co-founder of www.propser.com and the Panopticon was central to our early thinking about P2P lending.

The original idea was simply that if everyone could see everyone's lending activity it would yield improved loan default rates across the board thus leading to lower lending rates.

The thinking was somewhat more optimistic than an unattended prison and reflected a personal belief that, as the saying goes, sunshine is the best disinfectant. Meaning, it's harder to publicly default on people that you know than it is to default on a multi-national corporation.

The other touchstone was "It's a wonderful life" -- specifically the scenes in the movie around banking. In fact we originally wanted to name the company "Bedford Falls".


Sometimes I feel the open-plan offices were built for exactly the same reasons.

Then you really need a better job. Sure, my experience is just as anecdotal, but everywhere I've ever worked has been a (semi-)open plan office (as good or bad as that may be), and no one ever cared about what was on my screen.

The norm typically has been that you work most of the time and do HN/Facebook/Newspaper/Games a little bit here and there as well.

I got seated next to the boss and it was rather awful. I always felt an unscrupulous gaze if I had anything open other than Xcode or Sublime :x

its weird but i based my start up off of this idea, Michael Focult "power"

What does your startup do, if I may ask?

Interesting that this seems to happen in UK - exactly where this idea came from. It's almost like some politicians read about it a while back and thought "hey, that would actually be pretty nice, if we could do that to the population". And then went on and pushed for CCTV cameras, and more powers for GCHQ. Same with US and the 1984 book, I guess.

Orwell was also English.

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