Commons News

World Bank stakes leadership position by announcing Open Access Policy and launching Open Knowledge Repository under Creative Commons

Diane Peters, April 10th, 2012

The World Bank has announced a new Open Access Policy! Effective July 1, 2012, the Open Access Policy requires that all research outputs and knowledge products published by the Bank be licensed Creative Commons Attribution license (CC BY) as a default. Today, as the first phase of this policy is unfolded, the Bank launched a new Open Knowledge Repository with more than 2,000 books, articles, reports and research papers under CC BY. President of the World Bank Group, Robert B. Zoellick, said in the press release:

“Knowledge is power. Making our knowledge widely and readily available will empower others to come up with solutions to the world’s toughest problems. Our new Open Access policy is the natural evolution for a World Bank that is opening up more and more.”

CC BY is the most permissive Creative Commons license, allowing others to reuse, remix and redistribute works, even commercially, as long as attribution is given to the copyright holder. It is recommended for those seeking maximum dissemination and re-use of their materials while preserving copyright. We applaud the World Bank for its leadership and embracing this objective by incorporating CC as the framework for its Open Access Policy.

Lawrence Lessig, Board member and co-founder of Creative Commons, says,

“The World Bank is not only leading by embracing the principles of open access. But by making its works available under a CC BY license, it is encouraging the widest spread of the knowledge it is producing. This work is incredibly valuable in assuring access to knowledge universally, and not just at elite universities.”

The Open Access Policy reinforces scholarship norms. The terms require that publishing embargoes are respected and research is made available under CC BY. The Bank “expects the amount of time it takes for externally published Bank content to be included in its institutional repository to diminish over time” and that the working paper versions of journal articles will be made available under CC BY without any embargo period. Additionally, the CC BY policy only applies to works published by the Bank. Works published by third party publishers will be made available in the repository under CC BY-NC-ND, with the option of CC BY should the publisher choose.

All of this content will be aggregated via the Open Knowledge Repository, which has been built with an eye toward maximizing interoperability, discoverability, and reusability by complying with Dublin Core metadata standards and the Open Archives Initiatives protocol for metadata harvesting:

“The repository will be fully interoperable with other major international repositories such as RePEc (Research Papers in Economics), SSRN and Economists Online. This means that the World Bank publishes just once in its own Open Knowledge Repository while its research is also “harvested” and made openly available through many other searchable online repositories, increasing the number of people able to find World Bank content.”

Currently, the repository contains books and papers from 2009-2012 in various fields and from all around the world, including the World Development Report and two World Bank journals, the World Bank Economic Review (WBER) and the World Bank Research Observer (WBRO). The Bank will continue to add new and old content, including those works published prior to 2009, and beginning in 2012, the Bank will include links to research-related datasets.

To learn how this exciting new move builds on the Bank’s other open efforts, read the press release.

For more info on the Open Access Policy, read the policy. For more info on the Open Knowledge Repository, see the feature article and FAQ.

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Nature Publishing Group releases publication data for more than 450,000 articles via CC0

Jane Park, April 5th, 2012

The Public, West Bromwich – Welcome to The Public Entrance Free
Ideal Knot final rendering / Matt Biddulph / CC BY-SA

Yesterday, Nature Publishing Group announced the launch of a new linked data platform, providing access to “20 million Resource Description Framework (RDF) statements, including primary metadata for more than 450,000 articles published by NPG since 1869. The datasets include basic citation information (title, author, publication date, etc) as well as NPG specific ontologies.” All datasets are published using the CC0 public domain dedication, which is not a license, but a legal tool that may be used by anyone wishing to permanently surrender the copyright and database rights (where they exist) they may have in a work, thereby placing it as nearly as possible into the public domain.

This is an excellent move by NPG, especially following an opinion piece they published in 2009 explicitly recommending open sharing and the use of CC0 to put data in the public domain, entitled, “Post-publication sharing of data and tools”:

“Although it is usual practice for major public databases to make data freely available to access and use, any restrictions on use should be strongly resisted and we endorse explicit encouragement of open sharing, for example under the newly available CC0 public domain waiver of Creative Commons.”

Many more organizations and institutions are using CC0 to release their data, which you can peruse at our wiki page for CC0 uses with data and databases. CC licenses are also used for data; read more about this and other issues plus an FAQ on CC and data at http://wiki.creativecommons.org/Data.

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CC News: Version 4.0 — CC License draft ready for public comment

Jane Park, April 4th, 2012

Stay up to date with CC news by subscribing to our weblog and following us on Twitter.

Version 4.0 — CC License draft ready for public comment!

We are pleased to post for public comment the first discussion draft of version 4.0. This draft is the product of an extended (and unprecedented) requirements gathering period involving input from CC affiliates, community and stakeholders. Thanks to all of you who contributed your valuable time and energy in the policy discussions and drafting sessions in support of this draft. We crafted this first draft (v4.0d1) mindful of the overarching design goals first articulated at the 2011 Global Summit:

  • Producing a 4.0 suite that addresses pressing challenges of important adopters, including those in countries where localized version of CC licenses have not existed, and never may, for any number of reasons;
  • Maximizing interoperability, reducing license proliferation and promoting standardization where possible; and
  • Longevity and ease of use.

Read more.

arthur c clarke
Still from ARTHUR C CLARKE PREDICTS THE INTERNET
provided by Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC)
CC BY-SA

Australian Broadcasting Corporation releases archival news footage under CC BY-SA

CC Australia has announced that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Australia’s largest public broadcaster and news service, has used Wikimedia Commons to release a selection of historically significant television news stories under CC BY-SA. While other news broadcasters are also making material available under CC licenses, what makes this project significant is that the news segments that have been released aren’t obscure archival material or raw footage, but rather polished stories broadcast by some of the ABC’s premier current affairs programs about major events in Australian history. It includes, for example, news reports on the Apollo 11 moon landings, the Azaria Chamberlain case, and the floating of the Australian currency. Not to mention this 1974 footage of Arthur C. Clarke predicting the internet, with uncanny accuracy. Read more.

National Libraries of Spain and Germany, and Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt Museum open up their data using CC0

CC0 has been getting lots of love in the last couple months in the realm of data, specifically GLAM data (GLAM as in Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums). The national libraries of Spain and Germany have released their bibliographic data using the CC0 public domain dedication tool. For those of you who don’t know what that means, it means that the libraries have waived all copyrights to the extent possible in their jurisdictions, placing the data effectively into the public domain. Relatedly, the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt Museum, a major design museum in New York, has released the collection data for 60% of its documented collection into the public domain, also using CC0. Read more.

In other news:

  • We are hiring for a variety of positions, including Regional Project Managers for Africa and the Asia-Pacific, community support interns, Counsel, Communications Manager, and a Senior Accountant. See all of the awesome opportunities to work with Creative Commons!
  • In more CC data news, we are pleased to announce that the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research has developed an open data portal under CC BY.
  • GoodSemester, a new learning platform geared toward academic productivity, enabled note sharing, copying and remixing under CC BY-SA.
  • Lastly, we urge you to check out our revised CC education page, and contribute to the OER policy registry we are working hard to create. This registry will be a place for policymakers and open advocates to easily share and update OER legislation, OER institutional policies, and supporting OER policy resources.

Banner photo: "The Public, West Bromwich – Welcome to The Public Entrance Free" / ell brown / CC BY / cropped

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Version 4.0 – License Draft Ready for Public Comment!

Diane Peters, April 2nd, 2012

The Public, West Bromwich – Welcome to The Public Entrance Free
“The Public, West Bromwich – Welcome to The Public Entrance Free” / ell brown / CC BY

We are pleased to post for public comment the first discussion draft of version 4.0. This draft is the product of an extended (and unprecedented) requirements gathering period involving input from CC affiliates, community and stakeholders. Thanks to all of you who contributed your valuable time and energy in the policy discussions and drafting sessions in support of this draft.

We crafted this first draft (v4.0d1) mindful of the overarching design goals first articulated at the 2011 Global Summit:

  • Producing a 4.0 suite that addresses pressing challenges of important adopters, including those in countries where localized version of CC licenses have not existed, and never may, for any number of reasons;
  • Maximizing interoperability, reducing license proliferation and promoting standardization where possible; and
  • Longevity and ease of use.

We have also been mindful of supporting those for whom version 3.0 is working well. We will continue efforts to ensure those constituents are aware of our support throughout this process and our eagerness to see those implementations thrive.

We’ve documented and discussed all of these at length, and are excited to hear back from our community on how we can still better accomplish these goals. Here are some highlights of the major policy and drafting choices reflected in the draft, as well issues on which we would especially value your input. Join the discussion!

Database rights

As anticipated, the license fully licenses database rights on the same terms and conditions as copyright and neighboring rights. We have heard no compelling reason for reversing course on this new policy, and all early feedback suggests this is a welcomed change despite questions about their utility. We have taken care to ensure that the license only applies where permission is needed and the licensor holds those rights.

Other copyright-like rights

Rights beyond copyright and neighboring rights are more complicated, however. We know from our community that other sui generis, copyright-like rights exist and more have been or will be proposed. These include press publisher rights in Germany and catalogue rights in Nordic countries. We remain concerned that these “ancillary rights” (the term coined for use in the draft) could undermine or interfere with expected uses of the licensed work, much as sui generis database rights (and their treatment in 3.0 and its ports) have vexed CC licensors and licensees in Europe for years.

We have taken the approach in this first draft of requiring waiver of those ancillary rights, but only if possible and then only to the extent necessary to allow the work to be used as intended under the license. (These ancillary rights do not include the traditional group of rights long excluded from CC licenses and reserved to licensors, such as trademark, privacy and personality rights, and similar.) We look to our community for input on this important policy choice.

Moral rights

Treatment of moral rights is the other central policy issue addressed in this draft. In 3.0 (unported) and a rough majority of the 3.0 ports, moral rights are generally reserved and unaffected by the license. Yet in other ports, those rights are reserved only where they cannot be waived, suggesting the licensor is waiving those rights where possible, and possibly without limitation. The difference is nuanced but not trivial, and merits consideration.

For purposes of this first draft, we have chosen a middle ground: where waiver is possible, a limited waiver (or non assert) is granted to allow the work to be used as otherwise permitted by the license. For all other purposes (or where a waiver or non assert is not permitted), those rights are fully reserved. This proposal draws heavily from the proposal made for 3.01, and is intended to re-start the discussion for 4.0 where that discussion left off. We look forward to hearing the views of our community on this proposal as well.

Proposals under development

A few policy decisions are still under consideration and will benefit from further public discussion before formal proposals are made. To the extent these decisions involve existing terms in 3.0, we have [bracketed] related provisions in the draft. These include technical protection measures and the definition of NonCommercial. On the former, discussion during the requirements gathering period was robust and productive, but not conclusive on any approach. We plan to use a portion of this public discussion period to curate use cases that will inform a formal proposal. Ideally, these use cases will be based on demonstrated needs (or lack thereof) by licensees for a change from the prohibition in 3.0. As for NonCommercial, more discussion is necessary if any of the current proposals or arguments for changing that definition are to be advanced. Consequently, we have left the definition unchanged in this first draft. On both of these issues, look for prompts from us on the license discussion list and this blog, and please contribute your voice to the discussion.

Other features

The draft license has several new features deserving of attention and your feedback. Attribution and marking requirements are now centralized in a single location and clarified for ease of understanding and compliance. The collecting society provision is dramatically simplified, though operating in the same spirit as in 3.0. Overall, we have strived to simplify, better organize, internationalize and enhance usability whenever possible. We welcome your ideas for making this license still better in these respects and more.

We need your input!

One of our highest priorities is to ensure to the extent possible that the 4.0 licenses work seamlessly in as many jurisdictions, and for as many constituents, as possible. Please help us identify provisions that could be improved to operate better in your locale and for the communities of CC adopters you care about.

We have updated the 4.0 wiki with a special page dedicated to this first draft, where you can find the full draft of BY-NC-SA and a detailed chart comparing this draft to version 3.0, among other resources. The primary discussion forum continues to be the license-discuss list. We look forward to hearing from you!

1 Comment »

Australian Broadcasting Corporation releases archival news footage under Creative Commons

Jessica Coates, March 27th, 2012

ABC Mobile Studio Caravan
ABC Mobile Studio Caravan provided by Australian Broadcasting Corporation / CC BY-SA

This is one for all those interested in the use of CC licences by archives, broadcasters or news organisations.

CC Australia has just announced that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Australia’s largest public broadcaster and news service, has used Wikimedia Commons to release a selection of historically significant television news stories under CC BY-SA.

Much of the material on Wikimedia has been released along with other archival material to celebrate the ABC’s 80th birthday as part of the 80 days that changed our lives website. However, this is just part of a broader Open Archives project by the ABC which has released hundreds of archival objects, encompassing audio, video and photographic material, including many more news and current affairs broadcasts, for reuse under CC licences. All of this builds on the ABC’s social media site, Pool, which has been working with the CC licences for some time and which we’ve written about before.

While other news broadcasters are also making material available under CC licences, what makes this project significant is that the news segments that have been released aren’t obscure archival material or raw footage, but rather polished stories broadcast by some of the ABC’s premier current affairs programs about major events in Australian history. It includes, for example, news reports on the Apollo 11 moon landings, the Azaria Chamberlain case, and the floating of the Australian currency. Not to mention this 1974 footage of Arthur C Clarke predicting the internet, with uncanny accuracy.

The release of the material via Wikimedia Commons will act to encourage its reuse on Wikipedia, like this report on the introduction of World Series Cricket. This in turn will expose it to a far broader audience than the ABC’s own website, and encourage its dissemination further. As Angela Clark, Director of ABC Innovation, says in the press release, “sharing content in this way not only makes more ABC content available to everyone, it also facilitates creativity and the possibility of new audiences for the footage.”

Wikimedia notes that this is “the first collection of broadcast “packaged” footage released to Wikimedia Commons under a free license,” aka CC BY-SA, the same license Wikipedia uses. We’d love to hear about any other similar uses to add to our Case Studies wiki.

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OER Policy Registry: Request for Help

Cable Green, March 26th, 2012

2071785
2071785 / jma.work / CC BY


Update June 2012:
The OER Policy Registry has moved to its permanent home at http://oerpolicies.org, please review and contribute any new policies there.

Update October 2012: We’ve removed the links to the Google Form and spreadsheet below. Please visit the OER Policy Registry’s permanent home at http://oerpolicies.org.

The open community shares a need for more information to help us with our work. We know, for example, that there are many policies supporting open education at institutions and governments throughout the world. Many of us know of some of these policies, but it would be extremely helpful if we had a single database of open education policies that the entire community could access and update.

To meet this goal, Creative Commons has received a small grant to create an “OER Policy Registry.” The Open Educational Resources (OER) Policy Registry will be a place for policymakers and open advocates to easily share and update OER legislation, OER institutional policies and supporting OER policy resources. We have begun to enter OER policies into the registry, but we need your help to make it a truly useful global resource.

The open movement is reaching a stage where we’ve had some real, concrete OER policy victories and there is the potential to achieve many more. Sharing our collective knowledge of existing OER policies, in the same way we believe in sharing educational resources, will help advocates and policymakers worldwide be more successful.

Please join the effort:

(1) Contribute any OER policies you know about via this Google form.

  • We are collecting both legislative AND institutional (non-legislative) OER policies from around the world. Your form submissions will be added to the draft list of OER policies.

(2) Review the draft list of OER policies. (Google doc)

(3) Pass on this call to your colleagues, lists, blogs, and other channels, to ensure that we get as much input as possible. As the OER movement is global, it is critical that we capture OER policies from around the world.

Anyone can add OER policies to the Google form through the next month. Beginning May 1, the OER Policy Registry will move to the Creative Commons wiki. At that point, anyone will be able to edit and update the OER Policy Registry on the wiki, and all contributions will be licensed under CC BY.

We’re starting with a Google form because (a) it’s easy and (b) wikis require you to create an account before editing, and that may be a barrier to participation.

CC is in contact with other projects that collect similar information, including UNESCO, CoL, the Florida Distance Learning Consortium, EU OCW and a project in New Zealand. We will add OER policy data they gather as it becomes available. If anyone knows of other efforts to gather OER policies, please send them to Anna Daniel (anna@creativecommons.org) and we will reach out to them too.

If you have any suggestions or feedback on the content and/or framework, please let us know.

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Another Job Opportunity: Communications Manager

Jane Park, March 26th, 2012

CC is seeking a new Communications Manager! If you have run successful web campaigns while working with diverse stakeholders and community members from around the world, this job may be for you. We want a savvy web and social media expert that is familiar with open practices and tools, and can engage the individual CC creator to the organizational adopter. The Communications Manager will work closely with the entire CC team (affiliates + staff + open community) to set a robust communications agenda and strategy for Creative Commons, including planning the 10th birthday celebration of our license suite — coming up later this year!

This is an excellent opportunity to create organizational change and broaden the appeal of CC to untapped fields. The ideal candidate will be adept at distilling complicated subject matter to lay audiences. If interested, please view the full job description at our opportunities page, and send your cover letter and CV to “jobs@creativecommons.org” with the subject heading of “Communications Manager Application.” No phone calls, please. This position is based in Mountain View, California.

We will no longer be accepting applications after 11:59 p.m. PDT, Friday, April 27, 2012.

NASA Blue Marble by NASA Goddard Photo and Video, on Flickr
CC Birthday Party Berlin / Franz Patzig / CC BY

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Creative Commons Summer Internship 2012

Jessica Coates, March 23rd, 2012

Creative Commons is once again seeking a bright, enthusiastic student to intern at its Mountain View office for ten weeks this summer. The student will have the opportunity to work with CC staff and international volunteers on various real-time projects.

This year, Creative Commons is looking for an intern to work on a number of specific projects in support of our worldwide affiliate community.

The intern will be supervised by the Affiliate Network Coordinator and work with our remotely-based Regional Project Managers to facilitate collaborative projects among our global volunteer network and to support our regional activities more generally. Assigned tasks and projects will vary depending on skills, experience and organization needs. However, it is anticipated that over the course of the ten week period the intern will undertake tasks along the following lines:

  • Assist with the production of educational toolkits and standardised materials on specific topics/domains
  • Audit existing resources and materials internationally for contribution to toolkits
  • Coordinate group translation of identified documents
  • Recruit affiliates for working groups and coordinate activities
  • General support of affiliate communications, consultation and coordination

This position would suit those with experience, qualifications or an interest in community management, communications or a similar field. Knowledge of, or involvement in, the free/open culture movement would be a plus. Other than the Affiliate Network Coordinator, the intern would primarily be interacting with internationally-based staff and volunteers, so some late night and early morning work may be required.

In addition to contributing to real-time work projects, the intern will be invited to participate in external meetings, staff meetings, inter-organization competitions and discussions, and potential evening events. Staff will encourage the intern to also self-organize visits to local organizations, and to find ways to connect with various community members.

If you are a currently enrolled student (College, Graduate level, or somewhere in between) interested in applying, please read the above description carefully and follow the instructions below. You can find more details on our Opportunities page.

Eligibility

  • Internships are open to students enrolled across the spectrum of disciplines;
  • Internships are open to students at different levels of academic study including undergraduate, graduate and PhD. programs, although preference will be given to more experienced students.
  • Internships are open to international students who are eligible to work abroad from an accredited university and/or through a third-party work-study program.

Skills

  • Ability to work independently, as part of a team, and across teams.
  • Excellent writing, editing and verbal communication skills.
  • Fluency in English required, second language competency a plus.
  • Familiarity with the open movement and issues relating to copyright, technology, and creativity on the Internet a plus.

Internship terms

  • The internship will last for ten weeks from approximately June to August 2012.
  • The internships are full-time, temporary positions (no benefits).
  • Applicants should plan on spending the summer at Mountain the View, CA office.
  • Please also be ready to assist with general office tasks in addition to focused projects.

Compensation
Creative Commons offers a stipend of US$ 4,000, if not otherwise covered by grant funding. If your school offers a stipend for work-study or internships, this factor is figured into the compensation. This stipend may not be sufficient to cover living expenses in the bay area. No other benefits are provided. Interns must make their own housing, insurance, and transportation arrangements.

How to apply
If you are a college or graduate student interested in our internship program, please send us your:

  • Cover Letter explaining your interest in Creative Commons, in the position, and any other relevant experience not covered in your résumé.
  • Résumé
  • Two References: Please include email and phone number.

Applications and questions can be sent to “jobs@creativecommons.org” with the subject heading of “Community Support Intern.” No phone calls, please.

The application deadline for Summer 2012 is 11:59 p.m. PDT, Friday, April 9, 2012. Thank you for your interest in our organization.

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Re-launch of Creative Commons Canada

Jessica Coates, March 23rd, 2012

Canada Flag
flag flap / Spatial Mongrel / CC BY

Today we’re pleased to announce that Athabasca University, BCcampus, and the Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic have joined together to re-establish a CC affiliate team in Canada. All three organizations will take part in the official relaunch at the Creative Commons Salon Ottawa: Open Data on Friday, March 30.

This is not a new affiliate so much as a re-ignition of our existing Canadian community. Since 2004, a number of volunteers, interns and affiliate leads have supported and promoted CC and the use of open licenses generally in a Canadian context. This new team, representing three organizations spread across the geographic and cultural expanse of Canada, will be a key asset to support and lead the CC activities of this community.

Through public outreach, community building, tools, research, and resources this team will work with a network of open supporters to maximize digital creativity, sharing and innovation across Canada. The work of CC Canada is aligned with the overarching vision of Creative Commons — to help provide universal access to research and education, and full participation in culture to drive a new era of development, growth and productivity.

Whether you’re an artist, teacher, scientist, librarian, policymaker or just a regular citizen, Creative Commons provides you with a free, public, and standardized set of tools and licenses that create a balance between the reality of the Internet and the reality of copyright laws. CC Canada joins over four hundred other affiliates working in seventy-two jurisdictions around the world in supporting the use of Creative Commons infrastructure. Collectively this global network is creating a vast and growing digital commons of content that can be copied, distributed, edited, remixed, and built upon, all within the boundaries of copyright law.

Be sure to check out the CC Canada roadmap on the wiki. Congratulations to the CC Canada affiliate team!

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Job opportunity: Counsel at Creative Commons

Jane Park, March 22nd, 2012

Michael Carroll, Sarah Hinchliff Pearson and Diane Peters
“Michael Carroll, Sarah Hinchliff Pearson and Diane Peters” / Joi / CC BY

We just posted a new job at our opportunities page: a chance to be Counsel at Creative Commons! The Counsel will work closely with the rest of our awesome in-house legal team, and provide legal support for all facets of CC’s work. This position involves a challenging blend of specialized international copyright work and more customary corporate legal work associated with any in-house legal position. Job duties include legal research, analysis particularly as relates to international copyright, drafting and maintaining internal legal policies, practices, and documents for the organization (including trademark, privacy, employment, grant agreements, and more), and strategy development and public outreach related to CC’s legal tools and programs. See the full job description.

To apply, email your cover letter and résumé to jobs@creativecommons.org with the subject heading of “Counsel Application.” No phone calls, please, and good luck with the rest of your job search!

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