ccLearn‘s Executive Director, Ahrash Bissell, will give a talk at Open Source Lab’s fourth official workshop, a series that features various speakers promoting openness across a variety of fields. The Open Source Lab at Stanford was founded just last November, and already hosts video content from three past workshops on their site. The ccLearn workshop will be held tomorrow, April 23rd, at 3pm in the Learning Theater on campus. Ahrash will speak on:
“Open source, open content, open practices. What is “open”, why is it compelling, and where is all of this heading? I will focus on recent developments in the open education movement, including the hopes, challenges, and promising advances in this international effort. We can discuss any number of things, including: the establishment of and current work at ccLearn (including a federated search project, best-practices in (CC) licensing, etc.), the Cape Town Open Education Declaration, key barriers to the implementation of open educational resources (OER) in both higher education and K-12, international efforts and coordination, technical platforms for enabling participation (OER creation, use, and adaptation), and more.”
In homage to its content, the event is also open to the public—here are the details. But don’t worry if you can’t make it; according to co-founder Henrik Bennetsen, a video of the workshop will be available on their site later.No Comments »
Interested in learning more about what it means to be open these days? Come hear it from the experts at the next San Francisco CC Salon on May 14th from 7-9 at the Shine bar. You’ll hear from Erik Moeller, Wikimedia Foundation’s Deputy Director, about all things Wikipedia. Alexis Rossi, Internet Archive’s Manager of Collections will be presenting on the Open Library Project. Hannes Gassert and Girogio Pauletto will close the night, teaming up to present on Swiss Open Systems User Group and the State of Geneva’s vision for open standards, open source and open data. How can you go wrong with a line up like that? We look forward to seeing you there!
Update: Check out the SF Salon on our Upcoming page as well.No Comments »
A month ago, I blogged about CC’s Role in Open Access at Otago Polytechnic; specifically, on their adoption of CC BY as their default IP policy. For those who don’t already know, Otago Polytechnic made a novel decision last year to essentially reverse the standard policy of most educational institutions. While other university staff must obtain permissions to release their work under a license different from “all rights reserved” copyright, Otago Polytechnic staff must explain why they don’t want material published openly under CC BY, should they desire standard (restrictive) copyright or another license. Not only does this eliminate all the red tape before getting your work out in the open, it sets open access as an educational imperative. (And by open, they mean really open–free to copy, distribute, adapt and derive the work for both commercial or non-commercial purposes.)
Because of this inversion in standard IP policy, ccLearn was curious to learn how and why and what exactly Otago Polytechnic did and thought to arrive at this decision. While most institutions, especially educational ones, slap on the non-commercial term, Otago seemed to think differently about doing so; in fact, they never even considered it.
Read on for an interview with Leigh Blackall, from the Educational Development Center at Otago Polytechnic. Some things about Leigh: he lives in beautiful Dunedin, New Zealand, develops his own educational resources with his wife Sunshine and dog Mira, and judging from this photo, is a forward thinker who will climb most any mountain.No Comments »
Submissions due April 26. Head on over to the complete CFP.
The program chairs are Jonathan Zittrain, Oxford University, UK, Tyng-Ruey Chuang, Academia Sinica, Taiwan, and Giorgos Cheliotis, Singapore Management University, Singapore.
This is a fantastic opportunity for researchers studying the commons to share with peers in this highly interdisciplinary field.No Comments »
Matthew Davidson, self-proclaimed sound-designer/graphic artist/hobby photographer/computer fanatic, recently released an amazing 3GB sample pack, “Total Harmonic Distortion”, under a CC BY license. This pack has popped up in numerous places, including the massive OLPC sample fest we discussed earlier, but is in itself is a thing of electronic sample beauty. You can download it for free at LegalTorrents, an “an online community created to discover and distribute Creative Commons licensed digital media”.No Comments »
Open education and Creative Commons projects very often go hand-in-hand, just as the talented folks at ccLearn are demonstrating with the Universal education search, Cape Town Open Education Declaration, and ODEPO Project.
A Creative Commons jurisdiction that has really taken to pursuing the goals of open education and related learning initiatives is CC Ecuador, the forty-fifth jurisdiction worldwide to port the Creative Commons licensing suite.
CC Ecuador will celebrate its involvement in the license porting process on Tuesday at 6:00pm at the Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja (UTPL) as one of the highlights of the annual Congress for Quality Assurance and Main Challenges in Distance Learning, a 3-day conference focusing on issues in education within Latin America. Creative Commons Board Member Michael Carroll will join the event as a keynote speaker.
CC Ecuador will also be unveiling the university’s open courseware initiative, “Open UTPL,” a project that will offer entire courses, books, study guides, and multimedia content under a CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 Ecuador license.
Our warmest congratulations to the CC Ecuador team, Dr. Juan José Puertas Ortega and Carlos Correa Loyola, with team members Dra. Patricia Pacheco Montoya, Abg. Verónica Granda González, and Abg. Gabriela Armijos Maurad.
The localized Ecuadorian licenses will be the second CC licensing suite to be released at Version 3.0 in Spanish, following CC Puerto Rico’s launch this past February. Also, for the first time, we will be publishing our press release in two languages.No Comments »
Featured Commoners Jamglue are at it again with yet another amazing remix contest, this time giving users the ability to remix Dolla’s “Who the F*** Is That”. Entries are due by May 11th and the winner will receive an autographed poster, their remix on Dolla’s MySpace, and a phone call from Dolla himself.
Adding to their already deep and successful contest history, Jamglue has made a real case for CC-fueled remix contests as a positive means for artists to engage with the ingenuity of their fans while retaining commercial interests. Artists are able keep hold of their ability to negotiate licensing deals and explore commercial avenues while fans are able to engage with the music in a more interactive way, promoting a positive discourse that blurs the lines between creator and consumer.
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On Tuesday, April 29, Creative Commons, the Art Law Committee of the New York City Bar Association, the College Art Association, and ARTstor are cosponsoring “Who Owns This Image?: Art, Access, and the Public Domain after Bridgeman v. Corel”, a public panel discussion on the issues surrounding the reproduction of public domain works.
Virginia Rutledge, CC’s Vice President and General Counsel, will be moderating the panel, which aims to better understand the legal ramifications and cultural repercussions of Bridgeman Art Library Ltd. v. Corel Corp. (S.D.N.Y. 1999). Joining Virginia will be a group of seriously credentialed panelists (see list below) for what is bound to be a vibrant and illuminating discussion that touches on issues of “art, publishing, and the law.”
This will all be taking place on Tuesday, April 29, 6:30 – 8:00 pm at The Great Hall, New York City Bar Association, 42 W. 44th Street, New York City (Google Map). The program is free and open to the public and no reservation is required. With this said, seating is limited and a panel of such caliber will undoubtedly fill up quickly so be sure to arrive early! See all the details after the jump: Read More…3 Comments »
After lots of positive feedback, today we’re removing the “draft” notice from our Statement of Intent for Attribution-ShareAlike Licenses. Not much has changed since the draft announcement, so most of the explanation below is cribbed from that. Of course just because this statement is no longer a draft does not mean CC could not improve its stewardship of BY-SA licenses — feedback is always welcome. And although this statement only applies to our stewardship of BY-SA licenses, we are committed to being excellent stewards of all of our licenses, and welcome suggestions across the board.
The statement we’re releasing today is part of a series addressing a suggested Wikipedia CC BY-SA migration checklist. It attempts describe 1) what CC does as a license developer and steward, 2) why CC Attribution-ShareAlike licenses play a special role in the movement for free cultural works — clearly inspired by the free software movement, and 3) CC’s intentions as steward of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses, in the context of (1) and (2).
Note that while (1) provides a reasonable explanation of the role CC plays for all of the licenses it develops, (2) and (3) apply only to Attribution-ShareAlike licenses. Anyone who wants a thorough understanding of the contours of content in this age should take the time to understand the movement this statement addresses. However, other communities have different requirements. It is conceivable that at some point CC will need to address the requirements of other communities in relation to other particular CC licenses and tools that help those communities. One example of this — which takes a different form because all existing CC licenses are too restrictive for the community in question (but public domain and the in-development CC0 waiver are just right) — is the Science Commons Protocol for Implementing Open Access Data. Still other communities rely on more restrictive CC licenses.
This particular statement has been reviewed by many people within CC, CC’s international project teams, Wikipedians, and free software advocates. However, I take responsibility for its unwieldy verbosity and any minor or fundamental flaws it may have. Comments and criticism are strongly encouraged. Leave a comment on this post, or on the wiki (requires registration).
For reader convenience, the entire statement is copied below.
Creative Commons Statement of Intent for Attribution-ShareAlike Licenses
Creative Commons is a not-for-profit organization that has created and serves as a steward for a suite of copyright licenses that enable creators to legally grant certain freedoms to the public and to clearly signal those freedoms to humans and machines.
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licenses play a particularly important role in the Free or Libre Culture movement. This document lays out Creative Commons’ intention as steward for this class of licenses.
First, it is important to understand the activities Creative Commons undertakes as a steward of licenses:
- Create new versions of each class of licenses when warranted by community feedback and suggestions for improvements. As of this writing most license classes have versioned from 1.0 (released December, 2002) to 2.0 (released May, 2004), 2.5 (released June, 2005), and 3.0 (released March, 2007).
- Port each license to account for the nuances of copyright law in jurisdictions worldwide. As of this writing ports have been completed in 44 jurisdictions in conjunction with local legal experts in each of these jurisdictions.
- For each specific license, maintain at a stable, canonical URL such as http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ the following:
- A license deed intended to convey the properties of the license in a manner useful to non-lawyer humans, including short textual descriptions and readily recognizable icons.
- Translations of the aforementioned textual descriptions, so that the license may be useful to speakers of as many human languages as possible.
- Metadata intended to convey the properties of the license in a manner useful to computers — but for the purpose of making licensed content more discoverable and usable, not for turning computers against their owners with DRM.
- A copy of the license itself.
- Develop, maintain, and encourage software and services that make Creative Commons licenses available at the point of creation and publishing, for example our web-based license chooser, widget, web services API, and OpenOffice.org plugin.
- Develop, maintain, and encourage software and services that make Creative Commons licensed works available at the point of discovery and consumption, for example a web search interface and browser plugins.
- Participate in standards efforts that facilitate the software and services above, for example the World Wide Web Consortium.
- Maintain close contact with the communities that use Creative Commons licenses to ensure the licenses and associated tools are serving the communities well.
- Educate the public about the licenses and associated tools.
Millions of creators and users expect Creative Commons to undertake these stewardship activities, and we recognize and attempt to follow through with this great responsibility. The responsibility to communities using Attribution-ShareAlike licenses is even greater, as many in those communities rely on Creative Commons to serve as a reliable steward not just in a practical legal and technical sense, but in an ideological sense.
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licenses are informed and inspired by the principles and lessons of the Free Software movement. Although certain Creative Commons licenses allow granting of relatively narrow freedoms, in this document we use Free and Libre in the sense used by the Free Software movement. As applied to content, these principles require a license to grant the following essential freedoms to ALL users of licensed works:
- the freedom to use the work and enjoy the benefits of using it
- the freedom to study the work and to apply knowledge acquired from it
- the freedom to make and redistribute copies, in whole or in part, of the information or expression
- the freedom to make changes and improvements, and to distribute derivative works
These freedoms are taken directly from the Definition of Free Cultural Works, and more thoroughly explained there. Thus, the first commitment of Creative Commons as steward of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses:
1) All versions and ports of Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licenses MUST satisfy the definition of a Free Cultural License set out in the Definition of Free Cultural Works.
However, a license without the ShareAlike requirement could satisfy this definition. The crucial lesson learned from the Free Software movement is that Freedom is a public good, and the dominant Free license should not only grant essential freedoms, but protect those freedoms for all users. This is accomplished by copyleft, which adds a requirement that anyone distributing a copy of a Free work or an adaptation (also known as a derivative) of that work grant to other users the same freedoms they received. The GNU General Public License is the dominant copyleft software license, indeed the dominant Free Software license (Creative Commons uses and recommends the GNU GPL for software).
For its content licenses, Creative Commons calls the copyleft requirement ShareAlike. This requirement protects the freedoms of all users by requiring that adaptations of works licensed under Attribution-ShareAlike to also be distributed under an Attribution-ShareAlike license, or a license deemed by Creative Commons to grant and protect the same essential freedoms for all users in a compatible fashion. Thus, the second commitment of Creative Commons as steward of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses:
2) All versions and ports of Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licenses MUST protect the freedom of all users by requiring that when an adaptation of a work distributed under an Attribution-ShareAlike license is distributed, the adaptation must be distributed under the same license, or a license deemed by Creative Commons to grant and protect the same essential freedoms for all users in a compatible fashion (to be clear, such a compatible license must also satisfy the definition of a Free Cultural License set out in the Definition of Free Cultural Works).
As described above, the ShareAlike requirement becomes active when an adaptation of a licensed work is distributed. Creative Commons may choose to add language to future versions of its licenses specifying that particular uses constitute adaptations from the perspective of the license, where such may not be clear. For example, since version 2.0, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licenses have included language similar to the following:
For the avoidance of doubt, where the Work is a musical composition or sound recording, the synchronization of the Work in timed-relation with a moving image (“synching”) will be considered a Derivative Work for the purpose of this License.
It would abuse the trust of licensors to add a clarification that narrowed the scope of what is considered an adaptation, for this would introduce a loophole by which the freedom of all users would not be protected. As such, the third commitment of Creative Commons as steward of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses:
3) Any clarification of whether a use constitutes an adaptation for the purposes of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses may only broaden the scope of uses considered adaptations rather than collections.
When a copyleft license is widely used, it not only protects essential freedoms for all users, it fosters the spread of those freedoms. This occurs when people who may not know or care about Freedom as understood by the Free Software movement, but merely wish to use works that happen to be Free, release adaptations under a Free license in order to fulfill the requirements of the license. By the same token, if there are pools of Free content that may not be mixed because their copyleft style licenses are legally incompatible, the spread of essential freedoms is constricted. The fourth commitment of Creative Commons as steward of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses could be seen as implicit in the second commitment, but it is important to call out separately here:
4) Creative Commons will strive to enable compatibility between Attribution-ShareAlike licenses and other copyleft content licenses that grant and protect the same essential freedoms for all users (to be clear, any candidate for compatibility must also satisfy the definition of a Free Cultural License set out in the Definition of Free Cultural Works).
While every work that expands the universe of Free or Libre content is important, Free licenses play an especially crucial role for works with many collaborators. Unless each collaborator agrees to contribute under the terms of a Free license, the work rapidly becomes unusable by anyone, as past contributors must either be tracked down, or their contributions excised, before the work may be distributed or built upon (except as permitted by fair use and other limitations on copyright). But Free licenses are not enough for massively collaborative projects. In addition to social and technical affordances thankfully beyond the scope of copyright, such projects need particular licensing affordances, particularly around attribution requirements. Creative Commons took a step toward addressing these needs in version 2.5 of its licenses, but there may be more to do in this regard. Thus, the fifth commitment of Creative Commons as steward of Attribution-ShareAlike licenses.
5) Creative Commons will strive to ensure that Attribution-ShareAlike licenses meet the needs of massively collaborative works, while remaining useful for works with one or a few creators.
Our final commitment is a simple restatement of one of the stewardship activities described above, with emphasis on Free and Libre content communities and Attribution-ShareAlike:
6) Maintain close contact with Free and Libre content communities to ensure Attribution-ShareAlike licenses and associated tools are serving these communities well.
If you are a member of one of these communities, take this as an invitation to help us meet these commitments to you. Friendly suggestions for improvement and criticism if we seem to go astray are equally valuable.No Comments »
San Francisco tomorrow: Copyright in a Hyper Digital Age: Copyrights? Copyleft? What rights are left?
Many events featuring CC in California over the next and past few days.
The CC Salon Los Angeles starts in an hour.
On Sunday I spoke at Lugradio Live USA (slides), as did CC-enabled record label Magnatune’s founder, John Buckman (his slides). Given that Lugradio Live is primarily a Linux conference, we each did a take on open source and open content.
Tomorrow (Thursday) I’ll be on a panel titled Copyright in a Hyper Digital Age: Copyrights? Copyleft? What rights are left? sponsored by the American Society of Media Photographers Northern California. Full details at the link. Free for society members, $10 for the public, or $5 with email RSVP. There’s an event forum in which to post questions in advance.
Of course there’s always lots happening around the world in CC land — check Planet Creative Commons for updates and our latest newsletter highlighting international projects for evidence.No Comments »