Commons News

Safe Creative enables creators to donate a portion of their sales to Creative Commons

Jane Park, March 8th, 2011

Safe Creative is a Spain-based global intellectual property registry that allows users to publicly assert and identify their rights over a work. Safe Creative supports CC licensing, so you can register* your existing CC-licensed works and license your new works that you register. Currently, Safe Creative has over half a million registered works and over 50,000 users. With their advanced search you can find CC-licensed works Safe Creative users have registered.

Recently, Safe Creative launched a new platform that allows creators to sell their works directly to users. As part of this new platform, Safe Creative has integrated the ability to donate a portion or all of your sales to two nonprofits: Creative Commons or Médecins Sans Frontières. After you register your work, you can choose to “Enable Licensing for Commons” and the percentage of the proceeds that you want to go to Creative Commons. A little info box explains CC to Safe Creative creators, and contains the following text:

Why would I want to donate a portion of my proceeds to Creative Commons?
Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that relies on the public’s support. If you have ever licensed your work under a CC license, or benefited from using the millions of free, CC-licensed works on the web, donating a portion of your proceeds will help to ensure that CC continues to develop, support, and steward the copyright licenses and tools that make sharing on the web possible.

Safe Creative has in the past supported Creative Commons by offering challenges during our annual campaign. It is cool that they have found a new innovative way to support Creative Commons as have others recently (if your company is interested in supporting our work, please get in touch) and we’re gratified to be one of two initial choices alongside Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders).

Check it out, and let us know what you think!

*Note that registration is not required to apply a CC license to your work. Publishing your work with a license notice, usually on the web, is all you need to do. In a sense, the web is the registry of CC-licensed works. However, digital copyright registries such as the one run by Safe Creative add value, especially to the extent registrations are exposed on the web, through making it easier to discover the provenance of works, and works themselves. These topics have been explored in depth at three CC technology summits, each of which Safe Creative has presented at.

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CC News: Where did our $ come from in 2010?

Jane Park, March 7th, 2011

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

Where our $ came from in 2010

In an exercise in transparency and graphic design, we illustrate the source of the hands that fed us, including yours. We’re a nonprofit organization that happily provides our tools for free, and we rely on you, our international community of users and advocates to help us continue our work. With so many worthy causes in the world vying for your support, we are so grateful to all who have kept CC afloat and going strong for the past 8 years. We’d love to see these numbers grow, just as CC license adoption and use of our tools has grown steadily since 2002. Check out the full visual break-down of 2010 funds.

Open Attribute, a ridiculously simple way to attribute CC-licensed works on the web

open-attribute-small

For evidence that CC tools are laying the groundwork for a more open web, look no further than Open Attribute, “a suite of tools that makes it ridiculously simple for anyone to copy and paste the correct attribution for any CC licensed work.” The Open Attribute team (which includes our super stellar CTO Nathan Yergler) launched browser add-ons for Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome last month. Thanks to the magic of CC REL, the add-ons pull the metadata around a CC-licensed work to produce a formatted attribution that users can copy and paste wherever they need to. Learn more about how it works.

Have your own Creative Commons project? Learn how to get it funded

We are never short on good ideas, but how many of those ideas actually turn into something tangible? Now’s your chance to get serious with “Getting your CC project funded,” a free, online course set to run in April. The course consists of a series of workshops and seminars that will take you through the steps from an initial idea to having a finished project proposal for submission, including assistance in identifying and finding funding bodies and collaborations relevant for your project. You provide the idea; the course provides the guidance to turn it into a proposal that can’t be refused. Learn more.

In other news:

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2011 Summer Legal Internship

Aurelia J. Schultz, March 2nd, 2011

Creative Commons is once again seeking a bright, enthusiastic student to work at the international headquarters office for ten weeks this summer. Students have the opportunity to work with CC staff and international volunteers on various real-time projects. Assigned tasks and projects will vary depending on the intern’s skill & experience, as well as organization needs. If you are a currently enrolled law student interested in applying, please read the descriptions carefully and follow the instructions below.

In addition to contributing to real-time work projects, the intern will be invited to participate in external meetings, staff meetings, inter-organization 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.

Eligibility

  • The internship is open to students enrolled in law school, pursuing a JD, LL.B or LL.M. Ph.D candidates in area particularly relevant to CC’s work will be considered.
  • The internship is open to international students who are eligible to work abroad from an accredited university and/or through a third-party work-study program.
  • The internship will focus on intellectual property and copyright as relates to creative works shared on the internet.

Internship terms

  • The internship will last for ten weeks from June 6 to August 12.
  • The internships are full-time, temporary positions.
  • Applicants should plan on spending the summer in Mountain View, CA.
  • Please also be ready to assist with general office tasks in addition to focused projects.

Compensation

Creative Commons offers a stipend of $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

Please see our Opportunities page for full details and information on how to apply.

Applications and questions can be sent to:

Aurelia J. Schultz (Miss)
Counsel
aurelia[at]creativecommons.org
fax: 415.278.9419

The application deadline for Summer 2010 is 11:59 p.m. PST, Friday, March 18, 2011.

Thank you for your interest in our organization. Please NO phone calls.

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Ireland License Draft Enters Public Discussion

Aurelia J. Schultz, March 2nd, 2011

The newest license draft adapted to Irish law is ready for public discussion. A previous version of this license was published and opened for discussion and we are now seeking comments on the latest revised version.

To contribute a review or question regarding the license draft adapted to Irish law, please visit the BY-NC-SA 3.0 license draft page and click on the wiki’s discussion page to share your thoughts. You are also welcome to join and write to the CC Ireland mailing list, which will run in parallel to the wiki.

The public discussion is an open forum where everyone – from lawyers to active license users, from linguists to translators — is invited to contribute and improve the license texts. Comments should be submitted as soon as possible to allow enough time for review, so we encourage you to post to the list before the end of March 2011, when the discussion is scheduled to close.

Thanks to the ongoing efforts of Project Leads Darius Whelan and Louise Crowley with the support of University College Cork. We look forward to the discussion!

While CC is winding down porting as we prepare for version 4.0, we’re excited to see this work come to fruition given CC Ireland’s extensive work on the licenses. A huge thank you to the entire CC Ireland team for all their hard work.

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Learn how to get your Creative Commons project funded

Jane Park, March 1st, 2011

If you are serious about a Creative Commons project idea, you may be interested in the free, online course, “Getting your CC project funded,” set to run in April. The course consists of a series of workshops and seminars that will take you through the steps from an initial idea to having a finished project proposal for submission, including assistance in identifying and finding funding bodies and collaborations relevant for your project. You provide the idea; the course provides the guidance to turn it into a proposal that can’t be refused.

The course will be run by Jonas Öberg from the Nordic CC network, a lecturer at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden with extensive grant writing and reviewing experience with the European Commission and several Nordic cultural foundations. “Getting your CC project funded” will run on the Peer 2 Peer University (P2PU) in April, and we especially invite CC Affiliates and friends to participate!

As with all P2PU courses, the course is free to take. Though only 15 active participants will be accepted into the course, the entire course, material, and other information, including the proposals which you write in the course, will be open for anyone to follow on the P2PU platform under the CC BY-SA license.

You can read more at http://p2pu.org/general/getting-your-cc-project-funded. You may start brainstorming at anytime, but official sign-up opens March 31.

If you already have experience writing and reviewing funding proposals… you may be interested in joining the team of expert external reviewers. More info on the current team is available on our wiki. If interested, please contact Jonas directly or janepark [at] creativecommons [dot] org. Though the course itself will be run in English, project proposals may be written and reviewed in English, Spanish, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Russian and Bulgarian. More languages may be added depending on the final team of reviewers.

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Creative Commons sponsors WikiSym 2011

Jane Park, February 24th, 2011

We are thrilled to announce our involvement in the 7th annual WikiSym, International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration. WikiSym explores the impact of wikis, open resources, and open technologies across all sectors of society, including education, law, journalism, art, science, publishing, business, and entertainment.

WikiSym 2011 will be held in Mountain View, California on October 3-5. You don’t want to miss this conference. WikiSym draws an international group of leading thinkers from industry, non-profits and academia. Last year’s WikiSym 2010 in Poland was packed with exciting people and ideas. WikiSym 2011 is gearing up to be the best gathering on open collaboration ever held.

Creative Commons is an official sponsor of the event, and we will be presenting some of our ideas on Open Educational Resources (OER) and open content in general.

Want to present your ideas at WikiSym 2011? The program will include: research papers, workshops, panel discussions, poster sessions, demos, and a doctoral symposium. See the call for participation page for details and deadlines. Be sure to follow their blog and Twitter account for updates leading up to the event.

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Sintel, 4k edition (and why it’s useful)

Chris Webber, February 19th, 2011


A frame of Sintel by the Blender Institute / CC BY

This week brings us another open movie milestone: a 4k release of Sintel! This super-high definition version (4096 x 1744 pixels) is being hosted by the fine people at xiph.org. As mentioned in the article, there will be some screenings, though you can also download the files yourself. Be aware however that the files are very large. From the article:

The original 4k version (8 bits per color, tif) now is available via the The Xiph.Org Foundation download site too, which is 160 GB of data! We are currently also uploading the 16 bits per color files, 650 GB of data, and which will be finished around 25 February.

We’ve done an interview with Ton Roosendaal, Sintel’s producer and also have mentioned previous blender institute high resolution releases. But perhaps it’s worth answering the question… why is this useful? Besides possibly doing a super-high-resolution screening, maybe marveling at some individual frames, why might this matter?

So I asked Ton Roosendaal what he thought the 4k release might be useful for. He replied with:

[Our previous film] Big Buck Bunny has become kind of a reference for video devices worldwide. Here’s a good example, an e-ink display playing video. I just got this link today, but I get these all the time.

The (film) industry is incredibly protective, so for a lot of researchers our films are very useful. Like the Xiph.Org Foundation, they support OGG and open codecs; for codec developers, having access to the uncompressed HDR (3×16 bits color) is really cool. That’s how Pixar and Disney manage to make superior DVDs or BluRay encodings.

The film industry will move to 4k as well, and having free / openness here is relevant. Most films nowadays are also shot in 4k digital cameras; 2k or HD is for home usage. In a couple of years it will be 8k even. This is going to be pushed a lot by the industry, like stereoscopic film is. So, instead of having Creative Commons as an expression of “democratic” mass media, we use it for innovation and research first. It’s a small but relevant target audience (who are also very happy users of Creative Commons).

Aside from the usefulness question, I wanted to also ask Ton about the difficulty level of this release. I asked: “<troll>Isn’t rendering in 4k just upping the resolution setting in the render panel and walking away from your renderfarm for a while, perhaps to get a lot of coffee?</troll>”

I also would like to write an article about the 4k experience [editor’s note: see also Pablo Vazquez’s post on the challenges of rendering in 4k]. For some weird reasons, moving from ‘video’ to HD seems to be easier than from HD to 4k. Computers, networks, hard drives etc work fine for HD work. We can play HD realtime, and any computer user expects such.

The other strange thing is that detail level becomes totally intimidating. You watch an HD screen as a TV still. When looking at a 4k picture you watch it more like in a theater; your eyes wander around the picture to check details. This is why ‘film’ for cinemas usually is much richer and more detailed than TV shows.

But the troll could be right; in theory you just set the button to “4k” and let it render. Our artists didn’t do it, they produced the detail levels that justify 4k screening as well. They may be not optimal, as we only had a couple of 4k screenings to view our work.

So there you have it. The Sintel 4k release shows hope for helping open video codecs, device manufacturers, and the technology industry in general. And, of course, a beautiful sight to see, all under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported. Congratulations to the Sintel team on this release!

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Creative Commons 2010 Figures

Allison Domicone, February 18th, 2011

Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization and we happily provide all of our tools for free. As a result, we rely on our international community of users and advocates to give back to this vital public resource and support our work. With so many worthy causes in the world vying for peoples’, foundations’, and companies’ support, we are grateful so many have given whatever they are able to help keep CC afloat and going strong for the past 8 years. In the spirit of transparency and openness, below are some numbers to give you an idea of where our money comes from (You can also see real-time figures as they come in). We’d like to see these numbers continue to grow, just as CC license adoption and use of our tools has grown so steadily since 2002. Please donate today and join our international ranks of supporters to make 2011 our best year yet.

Breakdown of Overall Revenue for 2010

Donations from Individuals and Family Foundations since 2005

Donations from Corporate Donors since 2005

Revenue from Online Store since 2007

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The Lebanese Creative Commons community gains momentum

Lebanese Creative Commons Community, February 14th, 2011

This post is by the Lebanese Creative Commons Community, who shares this Slideshare presentation to accompany the milestones outlined below.

In the past three years, the Lebanese CC Community has started to structurally gain momentum and actively co-create together on local, regional and multi-national levels. The community that we have is vibrant and diverse consisting of visual artists, photographers, musicians, NGOs, and publishers—each with his own story and journey with CC.

You will hear more from us this month about the success stories and profiles of selected Lebanese CC Community members sharing the various ways they use CC to create and share. We would like to start this with a visual blast, a presentation to introduce our artists and content creators.

But also, we wanted to take this opportunity to let you know what we have been up to the past year, and what we look forward to in 2011 to further enhance CC license usage and creative collaborations.

In April 2010, after participating in CC events around the region, Beirut finally had its first CC salon which showcased local work licensed under CC and the individual stories behind them. And six months later, following the CC regional meeting in Qatar, we were honored to host CC founders Joi Ito and Professor Lessig for an official launch of CC initiatives. We also felt supported and safe with having on board a “legal duo” of Lebanese lawyers, Pierre al Khoury and Mohammed Darwish, who will be helping in dispersing knowledge about CC, advocate for CC protected works and follow up on any infringement issues within the Lebanese Legal community in the future.

The near future also holds another milestone for us; this month will be the launch of the Lebanese CC Community official website as part of the CC site. What is also remarkable is that the site structure and content is a crowd-sourced effort of our community and under the creative management of our amazing Naeema Zarif, who has been our community “brand’s” representative both locally and regionally.

We’d like to thank the CC Community for hosting us this month, as we all look forward to Create, Share, Remix and Reuse with you!

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CC ePSIplatform topic report published

Timothy Vollmer, February 11th, 2011

We’ve been working on a series of blog posts for the European Public Sector Information Platform (ePSIplatform) on the role of Creative Commons in supporting the re-use of public sector information. In addition, we’ve published a topic report. The abstract is posted below.

Creative Commons and Public Sector Information: Flexible tools to support PSI creators and re-users

Public sector information is meant for wide re-use, but this information will only achieve maximum possible impact if users understand how they may use it. Creative Commons tools, which signify availability for re-use to users and require attribution to the releasing authority, are ideal tools for the sharing of public sector information. There is also increasing interest in open licenses and other tools to share publicly funded information, data, and content, including various kinds of cultural resources, educational materials, and research findings; Creative Commons tools are applicable here and recommended for these purposes too.

Again, you can download the topic report (licensed under CC BY) via the ePSIplatform site.

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