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2009 February

Wikipedia Loves Art Launches this Weekend

Fred Benenson, February 6th, 2009

Following up the success of Wikis Take Manhattan, a new project, Wikipedia Loves Art is launching this weekend:

Wikipedia Loves Art is a scavenger hunt and free content photography contest among museums and cultural institutions worldwide, and aimed at illustrating Wikipedia articles. The event is planned to run for the whole month of February 2009. Although there are planned events at each location, you can go on your own at any time during the month.

I had the opportunity to chat with Wikipedia’s founder and CC board member, Jimmy Wales about why Wikipedia Loves Art is so important. Check out the video on blip.tv (apologies for the lack of professional lighting).

Jimmy Wales on Wikipedia Loves ArtThe project is coordinated by the Brooklyn Museum, with the participation of the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Film Society of Lincoln Center, the Honolulu Academy of Arts, the Houston Museum of Natural Science, the Hunter Museum of American Art, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, The Jewish Museum (New York), the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the New York Historical Society, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Taft Museum of Art, the Victoria and Albert Museum. In all, there are 15 different museums and cultural institutions participating.

Sign up and go have fun helping the public domain grow on Wikipedia!

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Updates from CC in the Arab World

Michelle Thorne, February 4th, 2009

More than a year ago, Free Culture advocate Anas Tawileh analyzed the state of Arabic content online. His portal Arab Commons has grown modestly but steadily since its launch in 2007, offering 11 full textbooks in Arabic, plus magazines, podcasts, poetry collections, and a number of art works — all within a few months. For a language with 200 million speakers, however, Anas and his colleagues in the Arab World were determined to match scale and build a larger pool of open Arabic content. But how?

A critical first step came when CC Jordan announced the public discussion of the first Version 3.0 draft in Arabic, a necessary move to improve the licenses’ legal certainty in court and prompt wider adoption in the Middle East.

Now, with the unparalleled release of Al Jazeera’s Gaza footage under CC BY, the Arab World is poised for more. In Saudi Arabia, King Abdullah already created the Initiative for Arabic Digital Content, which recently held a two-day workshop on “Open Arabic Content” in Riyadh. CC legal expert Rami Olwan from Jordan was in attendance, discussing the licensing system and meeting supporters. Ziad Maraqa, co-Project Lead from CC Jordan, spoke yesterday in Damascus at the iCommunity FOSS Workshop, a notable gathering for the Syrian Free Software community.

With initiatives like these, Creative Commons in the Arab World will no doubt continue to grow. After the Jordan CC licenses launch, other jurisdictions are ready to follow. There is still a lot of translation and outreach work to be done, so if you would like to get involved, you can contact Donatella Della Ratta, our Arab World Media and Development Manager, and learn more.

With that, a huge thank you to the recent event organizers for inviting CC to participate, and thank you to the many individuals already helping promote Free Culture in the Arab World!

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New TED Fellows Program

Jane Park, February 3rd, 2009

If you’re like me, you probably never even heard of the TED conference until TED Talks launched online (in April of 2007). TED stands for “Technology, Entertainment, Design” and their talks are given annually at the TED conference in Long Beach, CA. 50 speakers give “talks” or 18 minute speeches about a variety of issues, including “science, business, the arts and the global issues facing our world.” (Past speakers include Al Gore, our own Lawrence Lessig, and Jill Bolt Taylor—a brain researcher who describes the stroke she suffers in exhilarating fashion, to name a few.)

It used to be that only an exclusive few were granted the privilege both to speak and to view these talks, but ever since TED released videos of their talks online under a CC license (CC BY NC-ND), hits on TED’s site exploded (they reached their 50 millionth view in June of last year). “Indeed, the reaction was so enthusiastic that the entire TED website has been reengineered around TEDTalks, with the goal of giving everyone on-demand access to the world’s most inspiring voices.

Now, with the new TED fellows program, extraordinary people you may not have heard of yet (without the $6,000 to pay for standard admission to the conference) can give talks, too. For 2009, TED has chosen 40 fellows to talk at the conference, including:

“The creator of the first African online ad network and the African equivalent of The Huffington Post
A New Zealand physicist who discovered the hidden mathematical patterns of warfare
The founder of an international women’s inventor network
An Indian design researcher dedicated to improving the lives of children
A Korean-American actress whose one-woman show tells the story of a North Korean spy”

According to The Wired Campus, anyone between 21 and 40 years old with a “world-changing” idea can apply for fellowships. “The goal of the program, said Mr. Rielly, is to give exposure to the fellows’ research. So in addition to coming to TED events, the winners will be given training in public speaking and in getting support for their work. “We can help them dramatically amplify their message, whatever it is,” said Mr. Rielly.

18 minutes of exposure for your work—maybe something to keep in mind when filling out paperwork for 2010?

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ccNewsletter #11

Allison Domicone, February 3rd, 2009

ccNewsletter #11

We’re at a very exciting time in the life of CC. We had a great year last year, and as you’ll read in this newsletter, CC is poised for even more growth and success in 2009 — in the realms of education, science, culture, internationally, and more.

February also marks the one-year anniversary since the CC Philippines team first began designing the stunning PDF versions of the newsletter. As always, many thanks to CC Philippines for the lovely work!

Stay in touch with us: sign up to receive the newsletter via email and subscribe to our events list.

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2008 Sparky Award Winners

Jane Park, February 3rd, 2009

The winners of last year’s Sparky Awards are now officially up online (see today’s press release). The Sparky Awards is “a contest organized by SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and adopted by campuses nationwide that calls on entrants to creatively illustrate in a short video the value of sharing ideas.” The student winners were announced on January 24th in a public screening in Denver. The theme for 2008 was “MindMashup: The Value of Information Sharing”, and all four winning teams’ videos do a great job of expressing this value in the internet age via online videos, all CC licensed.

My personal favorite, and the grand prize winner, is:

To Infinity and Beyond
by Danaya Panya, Sebastian Rivera, Hemanth Sirandas, Uriel Rotstein, and Jaymeni Patel, University of Illinois at Chicago Honors College

Coincidentally, or fittingly, the winning video was the only video licensed under the attribution-only license (CC BY), the most open license encouraged for open educational resources (since you can remix it with most anything as long as you credit the original creators—what the Sparky Awards are all about!). “To Infinity and Beyond” also had the most student collaborators, demonstrating the value of teamwork and collaboration—an integral component of effective information sharing.

The first and second runners up are also very compelling (and dare I say funny). Licensed CC BY-NC-SA, they are available for you to remix with similarly licensed works:
How to Make Things Easier by Taejin Kim, Savannah College of Art and Design (CC BY-NC-SA)
Brighter by Christopher Wetzel, Ohio Northern University (CC BY NC-SA)

The fourth video, GrowUp, received the Special Merit Award and is licensed CC BY-NC-ND (ironically, you can’t mash this one up!) by Cécile Iran, Laurie Glassmann, Christophe Zidler, and Aldric de Villartay (University of Versailles-Saint Quentin, France)

Do check them all out on your lunch breaks; they are only two minutes or less! Perfect for internet age attention spans.

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CC Salon in Bogotá

Patricia Escalera, February 3rd, 2009

CC Colombia has proudly announced their first CC Salon will be held in Bogotá! The guests accompanying the program come from different backgrounds (film, music, and the web), but with a common purpose: to share content. Speaking at the event:

Diego Ramirez: Marketing for Dynamo Capital
Andrés Succar: Director of Banda Calambuco
Claudio Ruiz: President of NGO Derechos Digitales & Super 45 committee member

The CC Salon will take place today, February 3, 7:00pm local time at Matik-Matik bar. More information is available on the CC Colombia website.

flyersalon bogotá

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CC on BeyondTheBook podcast and at UGCX conference

Mike Linksvayer, February 2nd, 2009

The latest Beyond The Book podcast (mp3) features an interview with CC staff Mike Linksvayer and Melissa Reeder. The two main themes discussed are the intersection of public sharing under CC licenses and alternative private arrangements (see our post on Ozmo, a service that enables both, discussed on the podcast) and the upcoming UGCX conference.

Melissa Reeder will speak on a panel titled Sharing, Selling and Defending Photos Online at the conference, February 10 in San Jose, California.

Conference attendees intrigued by what Melissa has to say can make the trip up to San Francisco the next evening (February 11) for our CC Salon SF!

Addendum: Those in San Jose looking for even more CC info, and soon, you’re in luck. Thursday evening (February 5) Mike is presenting Open Licensing 101: How to Get the Most Out of Your Copyrights in the Information Age, hosted by California Lawyers for the Arts.

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Koblo: Online Music Collaboration

Cameron Parkins, February 2nd, 2009

logoKoblo is a new online music collaboration site that utilizes CC licensing on tracks and song stems to promote community remixing and reuse. Uniquely, Koblo exists beyond the web in the form of Koblo Studio, a free and opensource software DAW that has the ability to upload projects to Koblo’s community site with all the tracks prepped and ready for remixing. It is during this upload process that a CC license can be chosen for the project.

By offering a platform that exists not only as open source software but also allows for CC licensing of material, Koblo has set an exemplary model for their community to follow as it grows in regards to the sharing of content. Related is the Koblo Shop, an online store that will allow community members to sell their remix packs, plugins, loops, and beats in the coming months – the store is already live with preliminary content, including a CC BY-NC-SA licensed remix pack from Sweedish pop band Ace of Base.

Koblo joins an ever growing list of great online music platforms that are enabling unintended and unique collaboration through the use of new technologies and the permissive licensing allowed by CC licenses.

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Indaba Music on Colbert Report Tonight

Fred Benenson, February 2nd, 2009


Following up Lawrence Lessig’s remix-tastic appearance on the Colbert Report earlier in January, Indaba Music‘s Dan Zaccagnino will be chatting with Stephen tonight about Indaba’s remix and online collaboration community. If you’re looking to create your own Colbert remix or just listen to some more, head over to the page on Indaba Music that is hosting CC licensed audio samples from the show.

The Colbert Report airs on Comedy Central at 11:30pm / 10:30c but will be available tomorrow to watch online.

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