Commons News

Stanford’s Spectrum Policy Conference

Matt Haughey, January 29th, 2003

Stanford University will host a Spectrum Policy Conference March 1st and 2nd. The topic: the importance of the airwaves, and the ever-increasing number of wireless devices relying on them, to a healthy communications policy. The central question: Spectrum, property or commons? With FCC Chairman Powell and many other noteworthies in attendance, it promises to be an enlightening weekend. Registration is now open.

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Movable Type to support CC licenses

Matt Haughey, January 28th, 2003

We are delighted to see that the popular weblog application, Movable Type, is adding support for choosing Creative Commons licenses in its upcoming version.

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New layout

Matt Haughey, January 28th, 2003

We’ve tweaked the layout of the index page of our site. Feel free to drop a note if you have display problems.

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O’Reilly network blogs under a CC license

Matt Haughey, January 25th, 2003

It’s great to see the O’Reilly network of weblogs are now released under a Creative Commons license. There’s a lot of great content there that anyone can reproduce under their license conditions.

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Politics and Happiness?

Neeru Paharia, January 24th, 2003

Two new interesting works with political themes have been released under Creative Commons licenses.

Gritty, A Critique of the Global Good Life, by Michael Wadleigh and Cleo Huggins, is an overview of global economics and politics presented in an easily digestible format. The work offers a thoughtful commentary on politics, the media, and other social issues. Gritty complements its critiques with a wide variety of statistics and graphics that tell a story beyond words.

Your Guide to Modern Living, by Raymond Pirouz, makes the case for a new type of economic system based on abundance rather than scarcity. It asserts that economic progress — more specifically automation — might free people to find richness in life through family, creativity, and spirituality.

Both works are licensed under Creative Commons attribution, noncommercial, no derivative works licenses, so pass them around to friends, put them on your site, and print them out — that’s what this is all about.

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More from Cory

Matt Haughey, January 23rd, 2003

Cory Doctorow, our current featured commoner, is interviewed in the San Francisco Chronicle‘s SFGate.

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Momentum

Glenn Otis Brown, January 23rd, 2003

On XML.com, Kendall Clark gives a clear and accessible review of the semantic web transition, then criticizes our own RDF metadata strategy, specifically. It’s useful and insightful feedback, so we’ve taken the time to respond at length here.

(If you’re not familiar with RDF or the semantic web, or why they’re important to our mission, read more. )

We want to get RDF out there. We want people to use it on their sites even if they don’t fully understand it. (Why should they need to?) RDF needs momentum more than perfection to become useful; we’re working to provide some of this momentum. We fully recognize Kendall’s argument that our recommendation is not the purest from a technical standpoint. It is, however, a practical approach to getting users to integrate RDF.

On our site, we use content negotiation to send RDF/XML to programs that request it and HTML to normal browsers.

But for our users, we recommend the quickest and easiest way to have RDF somewhere. We think it’s better to have RDF in HTML comments than no RDF at all.

Kendall is correct to point out that we haven’t provided enough guidance on more advanced ways to connect HTML pages to their RDF descriptions. We’ll work on that, with the help of the community (including folks like Kendall). Hopefully, we’ll be able to put together a document with the best practices for including our RDF in all formats, include various versions of HTML and RSS.

Our goal is to get RDF out there. We’re trying to maximize RDF presence by adapting to our different types of users.

Ben Adida

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Now That’s Parody

Glenn Otis Brown, January 22nd, 2003

If we were Margaret Mitchell’s estate, we might sue. Instead, we’ve gotten a good belly laugh at our own expense. Check out Imaginative Pastures for a very clever recasting of a familiar website.

Thanks to Denise Howell for pointing it out.

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State of the Union

Glenn Otis Brown, January 22nd, 2003

Public Campaign, a campaign-finance reform advocacy group, made its “State of the Union” poster available under a Creative Commons license on its website today.

The image features the president of the United States making a State of the Union address — not to the houses of Congress, but to the trading floors of a stock exchange. It’s a great example of the ever-growing importance of our rip-mix-burn culture to politics and art.

The president will give this year’s address next week.

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Getting started creating your own CC content: part 1

Matt Haughey, January 21st, 2003

Creative Commons licenses are designed so that creators can share their works with others easily. You might ask “What can I create if I am not an artist, writer, or musican?” but there many options when it comes to personal publishing online.

The first such example is a weblog. Many weblog authors have applied licenses to their daily writings, and you can too. If you’re new to weblogs and want to know how to get started, O’Reilly offers a good introduction to weblogs and walks the reader through using Radio Userland for the first time. Blogroots offers a brief introduction that steers readers to using Blogger.com‘s site to create and manage their weblog.

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