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Reputational Commons

The concept of reputational commons refers to the idea that reputation can be a means to solve the tragedy of the commons, the concept that humans inevitably overexploit public resources, destroying the resources. Reciprocity can facilitate cooperation. Reciprocity is either direct (I help you, and you help me later) or indirect (I help someone who has helped others—someone who has a reputation for helping). A person’s reputation is a score that members of a social group update whenever they see the person interacting or hear about the person’s social interactions. Reputation is the current standing the person has gained from previous investment or refusal of investment in helping others. A good reputation pays off by attracting help from others, even from strangers, if the recipient’s ...

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