How hard is it to put a book online, legally?

Matt Haughey, April 9th, 2004

Sometimes people ask us why we created the Creative Commons, and we often say that we wanted there to be an easy way for you to share your creations and also to build a large pool of creative work that is easy to redistribute, print, (and if the license allows) collage, remix, or even sell to others.

If you’re wondering what the world without Creative Commons is like, check out this helpful primer on the question “How Can I Tell Whether a Book Can Go Online?” The answer, as you can see, is quite complicated, including the various laws around the world. The page doesn’t mention CC, but if it did, one of the top bullets would be “look for a Creative Commons mark” and the permission and legal questions that take up the rest of the page would be solved.

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Tell Tale Weekly’s audiobooks

Matt Haughey, April 9th, 2004

A New York Times article recently pointed to Tell Tale Weekly, an audio book site selling MP3s as cheap as $0.25 each. They’ve also committed to licensing the books under a Creative Commons license after 5 years or 100k downloads, whichever comes first.

It’s not easy to find good, cheap, DRM-free audiobooks and Tell Tale Weekly looks like a pretty cool new provider of such work.

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Digital Media Europe

Press Robot, April 9th, 2004

New ‘some-rights-reserved’ music licence from Creative Commons” by Leigh Phillips

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New York Times

Press Robot, April 9th, 2004

Lottery Numbers and Books With a Voice” by Pamela LiCalzi O’Connell

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BBC News

Press Robot, April 9th, 2004

I share, you rip off, they pirate” by Bill Thompson

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Times (UK)

Press Robot, April 7th, 2004

Copyright for Every Occasion” by Richard Susskind

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Everyone in Silico

Matt Haughey, April 7th, 2004

Everyone in Silico is a futurist sci-fi novel set in Vancouver, 2036. It came out a couple years ago, but this week the author decided to license it under Creative Commons and produce free downloadable ebook versions. As the author says “So if you like the book, send pals this link, e-mail it to friends, fileshare it on illegal networks — you’ll be helping me out. I know from experience that I’ll reap dividends.”

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Playing the web’s music on Webjay

Matt Haughey, April 6th, 2004

Webjay is a cool little hack. You toss in a URL, and it scans pages for mp3 files, making iTunes/winamp/realplayer playlists on the fly. As an example, Common Content’s audio page as a MP3 playlist looks something like this.

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Woody Guthrie free culture

Matt Haughey, April 5th, 2004

Joel Blain recently wrote in with an interesting observation:

“I’ve been reading a bio on Woody Guthrie. It’s pretty interesting. The book reprints one of the “Copyright Warnings” he included on his recordings in the ealry 40’s

“This song is Copyrighted in U.S., under Seal of Copyright # 154085, for a period of 28 years, and anybody caught singin it without our permission, will be mighty good friends of ourn, cause we don’t give a dern. Publish it. Write it. Sing it. Swing to it. Yodel it. We wrote it, that’s all we wanted to do.”

It just made me think of Creative Commons. I dunno if you’ve seen or heard it before, but I thought I’d pass it along.”

Nice find, thanks Joel!

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Nature Open Access Debate

Mike Linksvayer, April 2nd, 2004

Nature is hosting a debate on open access science publishing. At the center of the debate are Public Library of Science and BioMed Central, two open access journal publishers using the Creative Commons Attribution License. The PLoS evidence paper presents a good summary of what is wrong with the current scholarly publishing model, why open access is important, and an open access business model.

Even as the much needed debate on open access journals heats up, it is just one part of a bigger picture where science, creativity, law, and society collide. Perhaps with this in mind, note the recent post on this weblog concerning the launch of the Science Commons exloratory phase.

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