SSRC awards grant for CC license research

Melissa Reeder, November 5th, 2008

We’re thrilled to announce that the Social Science Research Center (SSRC) has awarded CC with a grant for the project Assessing the Commons: Social Metrics for the New Media Landscape.

Thanks to the SSRC, George Cheliotis of CC Singapore and the National University of Singapore and CC will be researching the “global patterns of CC license use, as well as developing metrics showing penetration and impact of open licensing, per jurisdiction and globally.” Developing a solid metrics system for CC license use is vital to sustaining CC and to the growth of the Commons. By knowing how and where our licenses are used, Creative Commons can develop more effective tools, which is important to all parts of the open movement.

Comments Off on SSRC awards grant for CC license research

Etsy Podcast: Henry Jenkins

Cameron Parkins, November 5th, 2008

Henry Jenkins
Photo by Joi Ito

Etsy, the ever-wonderful “online marketplace for buying & selling all things handmade”, just posted a great podcast featuring new media theorist Henry Jenkins on their channel and their wonderful blog The Storque. Jenkins discusses fan art, a topic that is not only dear to his heart but also essential to a organization like Etsy which thrives off the ingenuity of their community. All of Etsy’s podcasts are released under a CC BY-NC-SA license, making them easily shareable and reusable.

Comments Off on Etsy Podcast: Henry Jenkins

CC Live on ISGOODMUSIC, dublab Today (12PM/2PM)

Cameron Parkins, November 5th, 2008

Today Eric Steuer, CC’s Creative Director, and I will be appearing on two web-radio shows to talk about CC, our current fundraising efforts, and play some music. We will be appearing on ISGOODMUSIC.COM at 12PM PST and on dublab between 2PM-4PM PST. Be sure to tune in (IGM / dublab) and listen. More info on dublab available here, and a bit of background on ISGOODMUSIC below:

ISGOODMUSIC.COM started with an internet radio show called “…IS GOOD” w/ Jon Hershfield, which aired on non-profit 2005-2008. The show has featured interviews and live performances with over 200 hand-selected SoCal bands. These bands are highlighted and promoted in an online independent music network where artists and audiophiles can utilize free profiles, message centers, gig calendars, and other resources connected to the scene. regularly sponsors live events throughout the LA area. The website also features its own internet radio stream,, which broadcasts “…IS GOOD” as well as other DIY programming relevant to the indie community.

UPDATE: If you missed it the first time, you can now listen to the ISGOODMUSIC stream here.

1 Comment »

CC Technology Summit Program and Registration available

Nathan Yergler, November 4th, 2008

Two months ago we announced the second CC Technology Summit, taking place December 12, 2008 in Cambridge, MA at MIT. The response to the call for presentations was good, and the initial program is now available. I’m excited about the mix of topics we have on the program. The day will include reports from our community, including a presentation on copyright registry interoperability by Safe Creative and Registered Commons and a report from the Queensland Treasury on their use of licensing and metadata. We’ll also have presentations from within CC — a report on open source knowledge management from Science Commons and an update on what’s next for RDFa.

Registration is also now open for the event. While the first Technology Summit was free thanks to Google’s generous support, we do have costs associated with the December Technology Summit. To offset those costs, there is a registration fee: $50 for CC Network members or $75 for non-members. If you’d like to sign up for CC Network membership at the same time as you register, we’ve enabled that as well (no discount, though; $100 total).

It’s been a busy year at CC and I’m looking forward to the Technology Summit as an opportunity to review what we’ve done and look ahead to 2009.

Comments Off on CC Technology Summit Program and Registration available

EVENT: “Takeovers & Makeovers: Artistic Appropriation, Fair Use, and Copyright in the Digital Age”, Berkeley 11/7-8

Cameron Parkins, November 3rd, 2008

Those in the Bay Area take note – on Nov 7 and 8 (this Fri/Sat) a great event is happening at UC Berkeley titled Takeovers & Makeovers: Artistic Appropriation, Fair Use, and Copyright in the Digital Age. Focusing on “appropriation rights in the digital era”, the event will feature “artists, lawyers, art historians, and representatives from the information technology community to discuss the changing field of appropriation art in the wake of the emergence of new digital media technologies that have radically altered access to and manipulation of information.” Our own Virginia Rutledge will be speaking, along with a slew of preeminent thinkers in the world of copyright including Fred von Lohmann, Rick Prelinger, and Jason Schultz.


Where: Berkeley Art Museum Theater
When: 11/7 (10AM – 4:30PM), 11/8 (10AM – 4PM)
Price: FREE and Open to The Public (No Registration Required)

Comments Off on EVENT: “Takeovers & Makeovers: Artistic Appropriation, Fair Use, and Copyright in the Digital Age”, Berkeley 11/7-8

Wikipedia/CC news: FSF releases FDL 1.3

Mike Linksvayer, November 3rd, 2008

The Free Software Foundation has just released version 1.3 of its Free Documentation License containing language which allows FDL-licensed wikis to republish FDL content under the CC Attribution-ShareAlike license until August 1, 2009. Excepted from this are FDL documents originating elsewhere unless they have been incorporated into the wiki prior to November 1, 2008.

This is a crucial step toward de-fracturing the free (culture) as in (software) freedom world, which should have the impact of greatly accelerating the growth of that world. Last December the Wikimedia Foundation requested that the FSF make this step.

Thanks and congratulations to the WMF and FSF (if you haven’t wished the latter a hearty 25th anniversary yet, please do so) and to the free world.

The next step is for the Wikipedia/Wikimedia community (and other FDL-licensed wikis) to decide to offer wiki content under CC BY-SA 3.0.

We hope that these communities find CC the best steward for free culture licenses to be relied upon for massively collaborative works. See our Statement of Intent for Attribution-ShareAlike Licenses and Approved for Free Cultural Works branding rolled out in February and April of this year respectively for some background on this.

In the longer term (i.e., in a future version of the CC BY-SA license, which as the FSF does their licenses, we version very carefully and deliberately) we will address other issues of particular interest to communities creating massively collaborative works, in particular attribution for such situations (our version 2.5 licenses begin to do this) and how strongly copyleft (ShareAlike in CC parlance) attaches to the context in which CC BY-SA licensed images are used (as we did for video synced to music in version 2.0).

Thanks again to the FSF and WMF, which as CC does, build critical infrastructure for a free world. All of these organizations are nonprofits deserving of your support. CC is running its annual fundraising campaign right now. :)

Also see Lawrence Lessig’s post on Enormously important news from the Free Software Foundation.

1 Comment »

Commoner Letter #2 – Renata Avila, CC Guatemala

Melissa Reeder, November 3rd, 2008

We are honored and proud to present the second letter in this year’s Commoner Letter series, written by CC Guatemala Project Lead, Renata Avila. In addition to her passionate work heading off the successful launch last month of Creative Commons licenses in Guatemala, Renata is also a human rights lawyer and a frequent author for Global Voices Online, an international citizen journalism project. As you will see in this letter, some of CC’s most inspiring stories come from our international community; they help remind us why CC and the Commons are vital and how they have the power to effect positive change in ways that may never have seemed possible.

There are only three more commoner letters left in this year’s series. If you would like to receive them via email, please sign up here. To help keep Creative Commons running, which includes Creative Commons International, please donate today!


Dear Commoner,

The Creative Commons enables us to connect with people from other cultures, share ideas, and solve problems together. It is a tool that gives voice to creativity, and allows us to share symbolic space within society, charting alternative routes to inclusion across the continents, in all languages.

My country, Guatemala, is an amazing place where indigenous communities and Spanish speakers share a diverse cultural space. The diversity extends from the culture to the landscapes, right down to the way we communicate. There are 22 indigenous languages in active use by Guatemalan communities across mountains, two oceans, and 33 volcanoes. Sadly, our country was affected profoundly by more than 30 years of civil strife until the mid-90s, and is only now emerging from a long period of violence and racism, exclusion and social disparity.

Poverty in Guatemala is high and deep, and the country has remarkably unequal distributions of income, resources and opportunities. In my work as a human rights lawyer, I have experienced in a very personal way that the potential of our cultural commons and national heritage is disconnected and unrealized.

Each of our indigenous communities treasures a legacy of scientific and technical knowledge, artistic and aesthetic values of their own, but they need the tools to open their culture to others and share both
ways. We need to find ways to overcome linguistic, technical and social barriers, and build connections with Spanish-speakers completely disconnected from their reality. To create a common culture is a challenge and a necessity to improve living conditions and assure peace. As in many other developing countries, basic necessities such as food, potable water and medical care certainly have priority. But how can we communicate to the world that we are in fact a rich country, in the sense of how we create and preserve culture? How do we connect different visions of the world within the same country?

I decided to spearhead the launch of Creative Commons Licenses in Guatemala as a tool to help connect our cultural commons. Now the Guatemalan Ministry of Education is using cc for a Schools of the Future project with books and materials with Creative Commons licenses to help breach the digital divide. One of the most prestigious universities in the country, Franscisco MarroquĂ­n University, have released their online educational resources to the Commons too.

Internationalization and localization of the Creative Commons licenses is more than just a technical, legal process. It enables creative, verbal and nonverbal forms of expression as a vehicle to share and
learn from one another. Through human connections we can discover treasures that reshape our understanding of concepts like “development”, “wealth” and “others”. We can begin to cross the mental
and geographic borders that divide us.

As an author for Global Voices Online, one of the most successful examples of global cultural exchange using Creative Commons licenses; and as a lawyer dealing with the complexities of multilingual, developing countries in transition to peace, I believe that open tools such as the Creative Commons are essential for creating better societies. We have a lot to learn from each other. With this letter I challenge you to allow yourself to be embraced by another world.

Please support the creation of our Global Commons.

Comments Off on Commoner Letter #2 – Renata Avila, CC Guatemala

We met the Safe Creative challenge!

Melissa Reeder, October 31st, 2008

I’m thrilled to announce that we’ve met Safe Creative’s matching challenge 4 days before the deadline! Thanks to everyone who took advantage of Safe Creative’s generous offer to match all donations up to $4000. Instead of raising $4000 we raised $8000 — which will help us continue providing the world with the tools you so readily rely upon.

If you have yet to donate to CC by joining the CC Network, please consider doing so now. There are only two months left in the campaign and we still need to raise $438,958. Here’s a brief list of ways you can help; for more options check out our Other Ways to Give page:

  • Join the CC Network
  • Increase the value of your donation by participating in your company’s matching gifts program
  • Buy swag from the CC store
  • Send us a gift of stock
  • Encourage the company you work for to consider becoming a corporate sponsor
  • Promote the campaign on your blog and encourage your readers to give via the CC widget

CC exists for you — help keep us running so you can continue to use our tools to help build and sustain a shared culture. Special thanks to Safe Creative and to the hundreds of CC community members who are participating in the campaign — your support is greatly appreciated.

Comments Off on We met the Safe Creative challenge!

CC Salons: Denver/Boulder and Starting Your Own

Cameron Parkins, October 31st, 2008

We recently caught wind of some inspiring news – unbeknown to us, a very active CC Salon has been happening in the Boulder/Denver CO area through Slice of Lime, a design and development firm. They are on their 8th installment, an impressive feat we haven’t even matched ourselves in certain locations. If you live in the area, be sure to check them out next month on 11/19 for discussions of CC over “beer, chips, and cupcakes.”

It seems a good time then to feature our recently revamped Salon wiki page. Borrowing heavily from our good friends at dorkbot, we are hoping to make the process for starting CC Salons in your area (if one doesn’t already exist) simple and straight forward. Simiarly, we hope that we can explain realistically what making a successful Salon entails.

More than anything, a successful Salon boils down to the interests of your specific geographical community – each city and area has its own identity and it is important to approach the Salon format from that perspective. What issues are important to you and the people in your area, and how does CC relate?The Salons are meant to address the belief that, while CC exists primarily as a digital tool, it is nothing without the actual people who use it.

The Salons are a great way to meet people who are using CC and open tools, and remains one of our best methods to help people understand exactly what CC does and how they can use it in their own lives. Check out Salon page for details on cities that have featured Salons, both currently and in the past – we currently curate Salons in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York City but there are a slew of other cities that have shown active interest in the past.

Comments Off on CC Salons: Denver/Boulder and Starting Your Own

Gwen Stefani and baby Zuma pic online under a CC license

Eric Steuer, October 31st, 2008

Gwen Stefani and baby Zuma pic under CC BY-NC-ND

Photo: Dennis Stefani, (c) Mrs. Me, Inc., 2008, made available under a CC BY-NC-ND license

Pop star Gwen Stefani and her husband, rocker Gavin Rossdale recently welcomed a baby, Zuma Nesta Rock Rossdale, into the world. Many celebrities contract with a magazine to arrange an exclusive photo session that debuts mother with newborn. But Stefani and Rossdale took a different approach and hired their own photographer and put the photo online for the public under a Creative Commons BY-NC-ND license, along with some additional terms that allow all print magazines, newspapers, and blogs to use the photo – even commercially, with some restrictions. You can download a high-res version of the photo (and check out the additional terms the photo is available under) at Stefani’s site.


previous pagenext page