2005 June

Finally – we can publicly sing the Free Culture Movement “Happy Birthday”!

Mia Garlick, June 22nd, 2005

As recently announced, Creative Commons unveiled its present to the Free Culture Movement—a recording of “Happy Birthday To You” sung by, some might say, the ‘leaders of the free world’—being some of the leaders in the free culture, free software and open source software movements.

The song is now available for download and donations are welcome to help cover the licensing fees and to assist the Free Culture Movement.

Ever wondered what The Staff of EFF, Mitch Kapor, Dan Gillmor, Brian Behlendorf, Ian Clarke, Jimmy Wales, Brewster Kahle, and Gigi Sohn sound like when singing? Download now to find out. (And don’t forget to make a donation to help the Free Culture Movement on their way!)

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Updating the FAQ – What questions would you like to see answered?

Mia Garlick, June 20th, 2005

So our FAQ is out-of-date (no surprises there) and we’d like to make it up-to-date so that it is relevant and useful to people who use our licenses and tools, and people who use works licensed under one of the Creative Commons licenses. To make sure it is useful & relevant, we’d like feedback from those most concerned and most likely to use the FAQ. We have already had some suggestions over the years of things to include in the FAQ but are interested in knowing if anyone has any additional suggestions of things they’d like to see. Obviously, we won’t be able to address every question and always need to be mindful of the fact that we cannot provide legal advice; but for those with suggestions – please send suggestions to our info email address.

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Operation: Remix!

Raul, June 16th, 2005

Hosted by ccmixter and in collaboration with on-line record company Magnatune (“we are not evil”), our new remix contest has officially begun. Dust off those samples, record that guitar track, lay down some piano hooks, mix in some Lisa DeBenedictis vocals and send your lovely new creation directly to ccmixter. Not only will you be contributing to the growing online community of remix culture but you have a chance to win an assortment of prizes, including a record contract with Magnatune.

Click here for contest details, links to music editing software and…let the remix start to move YOU!

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Debates about global issues, politics and culture set “CC-free”

Mia Garlick, June 15th, 2005

In recent newsopenDemocracy.net has announced that it is releasing the articles of around 150 of its existing authors under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives license and will also be incorporating the option of Creative Commons licensing for all future contributors.

openDemocracy is an online magazine that provides a forum in which global issues relating to politics and culture are debated, many of which do not receive sufficient or sufficiently careful attention by the mainstream media. A brief review of openDemocracy’s author pages shows that recent authors have included Kofi Annan, Timothy Garton Ash, Janis Ian, Iris Marion Young, Salman Rushdie, George Soros, Richard Stallman and Gillian Slovo.

It is great to have such a high caliber publication committed to the principles of spreading ideas around the globe and adopting a Creative Commons to fulfill that objective. You can read more about their decision to switch and why Salman Rushdie said no to a Creative Commons license in our recent Featured Commoner segment.

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CC search query breakdown

Mike Linksvayer, June 13th, 2005

In March we posted a CC search index breakdown showing what license properties publishers have chosen to use, based on content crawled for our search engine.

The following table has corresponding numbers for search engine queries. Given a format-specific query, what percentage of users limit results to works that may be used commercially, to make derivative works, or both?

Wants commercial use Wants derivative works Wants both
Audio 32 38 20
Image 39 41 27
Interactive 34 43 26
Text 37 41 30
Video 25 32 16
All 43 44 38

“All” above includes searches that do not specify a format (63% of searches). Such searchers seem to be more interested in commercial use and derivative works permissions than people searching for a specific format. People searching for video content appear least interested in both permissions. Interestingly this roughly mirrors rights granted by creators: in the aforementioned search index breakdown licensors of video content appeared to opt for less liberal licenses than licensors of other content.

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Searching For CC on the Desktop

Nathan Yergler, June 13th, 2005

As anyone who’s looked at Mac OS X lately knows, one of the major new features in 10.4 is Spotlight, which allows you to search files on your computer based on specific bits of metadata. The great thing about Spotlight is that it goes beyond the traditional filename, changed date search and allows you to search for things like Creator, Contents, Type, etc. It also provides a way for 3rd party developers to create code which adds file types and attributes to the system.

So you’re saying to yourself, “gee, I have tons of music on my computer, but what songs are CC licensed? I wish I knew.” We can help you with that. The CC Spotlight Importer is an importer which adds CC license URLs to the list of indexable metadata. While this is an early release, it includes a simple Smart Folder which does just that.

Future versions will include the ability to search on specific license attributes, and support for more file types. Got an idea for improving it? Just drop me a line (nathan@creativecommons.org). Enjoy!

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mozCC Updated

Nathan Yergler, June 13th, 2005

It was brought to my attention recently that mozCC didn’t properly display the metadata for some pages, including (embarassingly enough) those at ccMixter. So after an appropriate interval of hacking, swearing and coding, I present mozCC 1.1.

This is a bug fix release, and everyone is encouraged to upgrade. If you’re using Firefox, the update should be picked up by the Update Manager. Alternatively (or if you’re using the Mozilla Application Suite), you can find the release on the mozCC installation page. For some more details on the bugs fixed, you can check out this blog entry.

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Matt Haughey, June 10th, 2005

Inkscape is a new open source vector graphics editor, specializing in the SVG format. In the past, vector illustration applications have been limited to a few expensive choices, so it’s great to see an open source project tackle an open format. As an added bonus, Inkscape even supports our metadata and does fine opening up the svg files in our presskit. Currently it’s available for windows and linux, hopefully a os x client is soon to follow.

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The Politics of the Adoption of Open Source

Mia Garlick, June 8th, 2005

An interesting wiki has been set up by the Social Science Research Council, inviting collaboration on a real-time history and analysis of the politics of open source adoption (POSA). By ‘politics of adoption’ the SSRC seeks to step back from the task of explaining or justifying Free and/or Open Source Software (F/OSS) in order to ask how increasingly canonical explanations and justifications are mobilized in different political contexts.

Initial contributions to POSA 1.0 have already been made on topics as diverse as ‘The European Politics of F/OSS Adoption’, ‘F/OSS Adoption in Brazil’, ‘F/OSS Adoption in the Health Care Sector’ as well as ‘Legal Uncertainty in Free and Open Source Software and the Political Response.’

To sweeten the pot, two prizes of $250 will be awarded to the two best contributions to POSA 2.0

And, of course, the wiki is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License.

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Educar adopts Creative Commons

Neeru Paharia, June 8th, 2005

Educar, one of the largest Spanish-language online communities, has recently adopted a Creative Commons license. Educar hosts education-related content and communities around it.

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