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Commons are popping up everywhere—internet sites, professional platforms, neighborhood networks, seed banks, time banks, land trusts—everyone wants to be part of one. This essay embraces the argument that good things can come from commoning. But it questions the notion that commons are the key to redeeming all that ails us under the regime of modern capital. It studies some misleading elements of that redemptive framing before mapping out some corrective lessons offered by the history of actually existing civic and natural resource commons schemes, lessons that concern practice, method and theory.