2006 December

SF Beta Event supports CC

Melissa Reeder, December 10th, 2006

The good people of SF Beta are in the holiday spirit and because of that have changed their monthly mixer to a charity event. Donations gathered will be given to Creative Commons, the EFF, and the Josh Wolf Legal Defense Fund. CC’s portion will go towards our 2006 fundraising campaign goal of $ 300,000. Our campaign ends at the end of December, so if you’re looking to show some CC support and mingle with others interested in similar issues come check out the SF Beta party!

Details: SF Beta Event
Where: Shine Lounge
When: December 13th
Time: 7-9pm
RSVP & more info

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The commons and liberation

Mike Linksvayer, December 10th, 2006

Eben Moglen’s Plone Conference keynote address Software and Community in the Early 21st century places free software in the context of historical desire for freedom and social justice, closing with “The difference is, this time, we win.”

While Moglen’s focus is free software, everything he says applies equally to free culture. He uses the first audience question (at about 56:20, concerning user generated content) to address Creative Commons and free culture, for which he has he has an upbeat prognosis.

Video of the talk is available at YouTube and Archive.org under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license. Geof Glass has produced a transcript of the main part of the talk, under (of course) the same license.

A pity that the talk does not currently seem to be available in a free format.* About four months ago I mentioned another excellent talk by Moglen also featuring Lawrence Lessig in Q&A on the ethics and future of the free culture movement, which is available in free formats.

* Apologies, I must take the opportunity to be the one complaining about free format availability, having previously been in the position of making excuses for not providing the same.

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License compatibility wizard from CC Taiwan

Mike Linksvayer, December 8th, 2006

Creative Commons Taiwan created a cool license compatibility wizard in traditional Chinese and English based on the CC FAQ entry for I used part of a Creative Commons-licensed work, which Creative Commons license can I relicense my work under?

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Romance, sarcasm, math, and language

Mike Linksvayer, December 7th, 2006

Red Hat Magazine has a great interview with Randall Munroe, creator of xkcd, a “webcomic of romance, saracasm, math, and language” that’s published under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial license. Excerpt:

A former NASA contractor, Munroe now ekes out his living from xkcd. “I’m still sort of transitioning over to doing this full time,” he says, “A lot of my time I spend packing t-shirts, which is what I make my primary income off now. I’m always responding to email, reading forum posts, and having a regular life, being social, and getting outside and seeing interesting things.”

Munroe sees Creative Commons as the logical step in doing business today. “There’s this idea that there are the real business people who want to make money, versus the kids who want free stuff,” he says, “But no one seems to realize that Creative Commons serves both of those. It isn’t just an idealism of wanting culture to be free. It makes business sense.”

The Internet, Munroe says, has changed the rules of cartoon syndication, “Bill Waterson worked for, what, 5 or 10 years on Calvin and Hobbes, before he really made it big. Now, any kid with a notebook or a Wacom tablet writes something and makes it available for free.”

And making money?

“Once you develop a big following, there are plenty of other opportunities for business. T-shirts. Merchandise. Speaking engagements.”

Read the whole story and visit xkcd.com.

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CC Labs

Lawrence Lessig, December 7th, 2006

From our last letter:
“CC has come to be about much more than just licenses, and certainly much more than any of us dreamed.”

The story continued:

So this week we launched a fresh face to the Creative Commons website. Built within WordPress, we hope the site will make it easier for people to understand and use our tools. Most noticeable are the new CC license icons, which expressly indicate the terms of the particular CC license used.

But with this letter, we also launch a new page at the CC site — labs.creativecommons.org. At CC Labs, we begin to demo some cool new innovations that the CC team has been working on. In this letter, I’ll describe three of these innovations. The most important — by far — is an extension to the CC model that I first described in these letters last year. I suspect nothing will be as important in spreading the CC model as this critical extension.

First, however, let me describe the other two innovations.

Read More…

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Celebrate CC globally and virtually

Melissa Reeder, December 7th, 2006

Creative Commons’ 4th Birthday Party is on December 15th. If you are located in the San Francisco Bay Area come celebrate with the CC SF staff at Songbird, the company that brought you the super cool media player. They have generously offered to host our party.

The details:
What: Creative Commons Turns Four!
When: Friday, December 15, 2006, 9pm until 2am
Where: Songbird – 777 Florida Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, CA
Please RSVP to party@creativecommons.org as space is limited.
Since most of CC’s supporters are spread out around the world we thought that it would be awesome to see how many of our international affiliates would interested in hosting CC celebrations of their own!. So even though you may not be able to attend the SF party don’t fret because there are now CC Celebration parties in Warsaw, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Lisbon, Portugal (as part of their initial launch), and New York City. If you don’t see a party in you country, talk to your nearest CC affiliated jurisdiction project lead about having a party or just meeting up in an informal place like your local coffee shop, friend’s house or bar.

If you are unable to make any of those locations but can make it virtually then we can accomodate that too!

Come celebrate with Larry Lessig, Creative Commons’ CEO, Jimmy Wales and Joi Ito to take part in this virtual birthday bash. We will be streaming San Francisco’s live festivities into Second Life. Teleport directly to our land at 9-10pm PST on Kula Island to see the live stream, listen to music, and chat with a few of our favorite progressive thinkers and free culture fans.

As a way for all the global commoners to be able to celebrate together we are asking that everyone document their celebrations with videos and photographs. Upload them with the tag “ccb-day”, “city” (i.e. Berlin), and any other identifying tags, so we can pick them up and channel them through Stage6, the video and image content platform. If you would like to upload to Stage6 directly the format is DiVX. If you are unfamiliar it’s easy to use and they have help for both Macs and PC. The open source application for PC’s is Dr. DiVX and they have how-to videos for Dr. DiVX as well. also host informational videos. We are also encouraging commoners to support CC by uploading a short video or written testimonial about you support CC and use “cc” “testimonial” “city” and any other identifying tags. We want to know your stories and share them with the rest of the world.


LibriVox – New Featured Commoner

Mia Garlick, December 5th, 2006

LibriVox is a project that describes its mission to be the “acoustical liberation of books in the public domain.” It is a digital library of free public domain audio books that are read and recorded by volunteers. LibriVox’s catalogue includes an impressive range of books, short works and poems from a diverse range of writers. All recordings are released to the public under the Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication. Read more about LibriVox in our new Featured Commoner interview.

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CC Talks With: Librivox

Mia Garlick, December 5th, 2006

LibriVox is a project that describes its mission to be the “acoustical liberation of books in the public domain.” It is a digital library of free public domain audio books that are read and recorded by volunteers. It was started just a year and a half ago, in August 2005, and already has amassed over 150 recordings. Most of the recordings are in English but there are also recordings available in German, Spanish, Chinese, Russian and Japanese as well as other languages. Read More…

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O’Reilly Foundation Donates to CC

Melissa Reeder, December 4th, 2006

Creative Commons is pleased to announce that the O’Reilly Foundation has donated $10,000 towards CC’s $300,000 annual campaign goal. We are honored to be a receipient of such significant support. Tim O’Reilly is the founder of O’Reilly Media and a supporter of both open source and the free software movements, which this donation exemplifies.

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Writer Cory Doctorow Explains the Economics of Giving It Away

Mia Garlick, December 4th, 2006

In a recent article in Forbes.com, Cory Doctorow explains the impact of using Creative Commons licenses for him as a writer. Cory has used CC licenses on many of his writings — from his books (available here) to his postings on Boing Boing. We featured him back in October 2005. The Forbes article offers a great overview of some of the questions and concerns many authors who are thinking about using CC licenses have including how to convince your publisher, what will be the impact on book sales and other potential benefits from flexible licensing.

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