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Creative Commons Launches Legal Music Sharing and Search

About CC

The Silicon Valley nonprofit announces new file-sharing-friendly music
license alongside its new Get Content search engine.

Austin, Texas, USA – March 18, 2004 – Creative Commons, a nonprofit
dedicated to expanding the range of creative works free to share and
build upon, announced its new Music Sharing License and Get Content
search engine at the South by Southwest Music Festival here today.

The license, which is available free of charge from the Creative Commons
website, allows musicians to clearly mark their songs as free to download
and share while protecting their commercial and other rights. The license
also helps musicians tag their works digitally, which allows Creative
Commons’ Get Content search engine to index them from the web site.

This is the music-sharing notice bands can use to invite their fans to
download and share their music noncommercially.

“Finally, musicians who want to share and fans who want legal downloads
can find each other easily and quickly,” said Neeru Paharia, Assistant
Director of Creative Commons. “The Net already makes widespread
distribution very easy – technically. The Music Sharing license, in
combination with the new Get Content search engine, lets musicians
harness the Net’s distributive power while protecting themselves –

Matthew King Kaufman, founder of Beserkley Records and, said:
“If there’s going to be legal p2p, then a Creative Commons Music Sharing
license is a mandatory prerequisite.”

Like all Creative Commons tools, the Music-Sharing License uses a
three-layer interface to put fans on notice of the music’s legal status.
First is the Commons Deed, a plain-language summary of the legal
language’s key terms. Next is the Legal Code, the full copyright license
in all its nitty-gritty detail (identical to the legal code for the
Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivativeWorks license). Third is Creative
Commons’ metadata, a machine-readable expression of the license, so that
users can search for and sort sharing-friendly music with the Get Content
search engine, which indexes web pages carrying Creative Commons’ license
tags and metadata. The search engine is the first that allows users to
find content based on the permissions and restrictions associated with

Creative Commons:
Music-Sharing License:
GET CONTENT! Search Engine:

About Creative Commons

A nonprofit corporation, Creative Commons promotes the creative re-use of
intellectual works – whether owned or public domain. It is sustained by
generous support of The Center for the Public Domain, the John D. and
Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the Hewlett Foundation. Creative
Commons is based at Stanford Law School, where it shares staff, space,
and inspiration with the school’s Center for Internet and Society.

For general information, visit


Neeru Paharia
Assistant Director, Creative Commons
1.650.724.3717 (tel)

Glenn Otis Brown
Executive Director, Creative Commons
1.650.723.7572 (tel)

Posted 31 March 2004