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In “The New Sharing Economy” CC is the norm

Jane Park, October 7th, 2010

At the beginning of summer, many of you told us how much you share in a survey for Shareable Magazine. The results of that survey have been translated into a study of “The New Sharing Economy” by Shareable and Latitude Research. Visually, the study features nifty diagrams depicting what we share the most and how sharing has evolved over time. Substantively, “The New Sharing Economy” reveals some encouraging trends, such as that sharing in the virtual world makes people more comfortable with the idea of sharing in the physical world (in fact everyone in the study who shared online also shared offline), and that most of these people believe they will partake in even greater corporeal sharing in the next five years.

But the most encouraging trend the study revealed was that Creative Commons is playing a huge infrastructural role in this new sharing economy—that CC is, in fact, daily saving the world from failed sharing:

“Of those who share information and media online, approximately 2 in 3
participants use other people‚Äôs creations licensed under Creative Commons.”

The benefits of Creative Commons are often difficult to see, as a functioning system is only ever noticed when it fails. But as sharing only increases over time, both on- and offline, you can be sure that CC superheroes are at work behind the scenes slashing through the red tape, identifying and fixing the bugs, opening closed systems, implementing better policies, educating the public, and generally making sure things are running smoothly so that the web can continue to grow. Because the majority of study participants also connected sharing with being “better for the environment,” “saving money,” and being “good for society”—all stuff which, it turns out, CC is quietly helping us to do.

The study is available under CC BY-NC-ND. To learn more, check out Shareable’s post, and please consider joining us in the fight for openness and innovation.

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