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A book that argues that lessons in creativity innovation salesmanship and entrepreneurship can come from surprising places pirates bootleggers counterfeiters hustlers and others living and working on the margins of business and societyWho are the greatest innovators in the world? You’re probably thinking Steve Jobs Thomas Edison Henry Ford The usual suspectsThis book isn’t about them It’s about people you’ve never heard of It’s about people who are just as innovative entrepreneurial and visionary as the Jobses Edisons and Fords of the world except they’re not in Silicon Valley They’re in the street markets of Sao Paulo and Guangzhou the rubbish dumps of Lagos the flooded coastal towns of Thailand They are pirates slum dwellers computer hackers dissidents and inner city gang membersAcross the globe diverse innovators operating in the black grey and informal economies are developing solutions to a myriad of challenges Far from being “deviant entrepreneurs” that pose threats to our social and economic stability these innovators display remarkable ingenuity pioneering original methods and practices that we can learn from and apply to move formal marketsThis book investigates the stories of underground innovation that make up the Misfit Economy It examines the teeming genius of the underground It asks Who are these unknown visionaries? How do they work? How do they organize themselves? How do they catalyze innovation? And ultimately how can you take these lessons into your own world?

10 thoughts on “The Misfit Economy

  1. says:

    Bit of a management consultant view of the subject interesting and fun anecdotes but very little substance Nice beach read and the stories about pirates are neat

  2. says:

    I really wanted to like this but for the most part it was a collection of warmed over Gladwellian entrepreneurship and innovation clichés about slightly unorthodox ways to in the end make a boatload of money So much of this is the modern state of neoliberalism in a nutshell from the guy whose nonprofit employer fired him for trying to make money off of indigenous rainforest dwelling tribes' products to the woman whose career was left in tatters after she was helping recently released convicts acclimatize to society and ended up in relationships with several of themThat being said the chapter on intellectual property Copy was better than most if not only because it offered some actual transgressions in the form of subverting IP law which truly is a deterrent to much actual innovationAt least this was fairly short

  3. says:

    Let me start by saying the book might not deserve a 1 star rating it's just my personal opinionI was expecting a thoughtful investigation chronology and analysis of historical and contemporary examples of the groups mentioned in the title I expected there to be some overall conclusion about these groups their similarities their motivations their impact and then a small takeaway chapter or section on how society could utilize the beneficial of those conceptsInstead of history or anthropology or anything like that the genre this book belongs to is probably self help How disappointing It mentioned many examples of individuals and groups that were indeed hackers pirates gangsters and informal entrepreneurs as the title advertises but only provided surface level summaries that irritated me than educated Useless positive 'you can do it too' conclusions about how everyone should strive to be a misfit and express creativity seemed out of place until I realized I was reading a self help book There's nothing wrong with self help books I just didn't want this to be oneIf the lack of thoughtful analysis and chronology I was expecting wasn't bad enough then the randomly inserted terrible phrasing every few pages would've ruined the book for me anyway view spoiler view spoilerExplain to me how a hacker prolific builder and warrior for the cause of open and free information could be called a soldier in the open sourcecodeWeb movement Soldiers take orders by definition they're not usually liberally minded and they fight in wars not 'movements' Who gave this hacker the orders and what war was he fighting? I suppose if we let 'warrior' fly then 'soldier' should be no different but it still bugs me And who would put slashes like that in a published nonfiction book? Really? 'open sourcecodeWeb' What does that even mean? Pick a damn word hide spoiler

  4. says:

    This book is full of interesting stories and people who did bold and fascinating things but the message never coalesced into a convincing whole the way I was hoping

  5. says:

    I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway I absolutely loved this book and found it to be very inspirational I was so excited while reading this book that I texted friends and talked to family about reading it In fact this might be my Christmas gift of choice this yearThis is a book about the misfits of business not limited to criminals but also including people who go against the grain in order to improve the world in some way Or people who think outside of the box There are five traits that Clay and Phillips say all misfit entrepreneurs have that make them successful1 Hustle Making something from nothing and not being afraid to get your hands dirty Hardworking resourceful and resilient while also having a flexible mind You improve and are responsive to whatever comes your way 2 Copy Building upon what has already been built Improving ideas and concepts that are in practice3 Hack Identifying a system's weakness and see how it can be improved Supporting a free flow of ideas This is about taking on the establishment to change it for the better You need to develop an intimate understanding of the system you want to improve so you can rebuild it 4 Provoke Step out of reality and imagine something different Don't be afraid to open your eyes and start a conversation that could bring about change Poke and prod business as usual to get others to wake up to other possibilities 5 Pivot To personally enact a dramatic change in the course of your life to pursue greater fulfillment and inspiration These five traits are just the surface of the book I would really recommend this book to anyone with morals and a soul it's not just about business This is for everyone who feel like they have a calling and who want to think about things differently Life can be happy as a sheep but it can be so much better if you allow yourself to be authentic because we're all misfits in our own way We're all different and the difference should be embraced and encouraged There are better ways of doing things than we're doing now There are also a lot of innovative organizations mentioned in the book uite a few I wrote down and plan on looking into Favorite uote from the book to leave you withYou need to give yourself the permission to cast aside the roles and guises You have to find the courage to dig beneath all those layers that society thrusts upon us and try to re discover those true callings You need to become okay with no longer blindly aligning with the pack And walking that path of the black sheep over the course of a lifetime can be challenging Harold O'Neal

  6. says:

    Small real life references makes this book very interesting Can implement few logics in your own practical life

  7. says:

    Entrepreneurship means to make your hands dirty I knew that before but I didn't know so many other details about itThis book illustrates the hustle of mostly unknown or unpopular entrepreneurs and how their ideas and actions let them to succeed or notIt gives an interesting perspective on the informal sector and how nonconformity is often the engine for innovationDefinitely an inspiration to start taking every opportunity in life and stand for your dreams rather than waiting for the perfect moment In order to achieve your entrepreneurial dreams you have to work hard And it will pay off if you just stick to it and see it as the potential for growthThe five principles for unleashing your inner misfit Hustle Copy Hack Provoke and Pivot are drivers of innovation and should not only be regarded as badI recommend this book to everyone who thinks about being an entrepreneur and looks for success stories outside of the mainstream as well as inspiration for creating something bigger than themselves

  8. says:

    Absolute mandatory read for this and next generationThis book brings completely different perspective about the way we common people look at certain things like pirates underworld prison system hackersextracting a lessons out of these would be great challenge but authors have delicately balanced and with panache brought the feelings on surfacebeautifully written kudosplease keep up

  9. says:

    First the Caveat This was a Goodreads Giveaway Free ReadIll start of by saying don't be misled by the title Are their lessons to be learned from the Misfit Economy? Yes Are they presented here? No What we have here is cliche filled case studies of specific individuals that in most cases were not that successful I also do not appreciate celebrating individuals for outright theft counterfeiting criminal activity which many here have Each case study in itself has some form of merit and are a bit interesting to read at times but it seems that just about every study ended up in disaster or at best as a mediocre effort at best Each study is also done at a very high level with very little detail so if you are looking for specifics or an in depth examination look elsewhere for your inspiration

  10. says:

    I want I'm hoping there is or will be a second Alexa and Kyra This book is inspiring truthful it is a call to action and shows our changing lifestyles and economy As we move away from corporation and constraint to freedom of creativity and misfits It offers comfort and encouragement to the population of misfits It offers an educational experience exposing misfits I've never heard of This book was truly amazing and it's perfect for any adult or even a young adult who feels they don't fit in Thank you Alexa and Kyra for a book that was well written extensively checked over and error free inspiring factual and speaking of a world of the future