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The Smithsonian Joins Flickr: The Commons

Cameron Parkins, June 20th, 2008

The Smithsonian has joined the Library of Congress, the Powerhouse Museum, and the Brooklyn Museum in releasing numerous (over 850 from the Smithsonian alone) photos from their archives online – free of copyright restrictions – to The Commons on Flickr. There are some absolutely stunning photographs available in high-resolution, ranging from portraits of artists, scientists, and inventors to photos of everyday people and places. Some info on The Commons below:

The key goals of The Commons are to firstly give you a taste of the hidden treasures in the world’s public photography archives, and secondly to show how your input and knowledge can help make these collections even richer. You’re invited to help describe the photographs you discover in The Commons on Flickr, either by adding tags or leaving comments

In similar news, a wonderful new group, Free Use Photos, has been created as a means for Flickr users to posts copyright-free photos. In lieu of a formal way for users to indicate public domain status for their photos, the creators of the group have decided to post information regarding CC0 in conjunction with clear language waving copyright to make clear that all photos posted to the group “are available for use by anyone” with “no need to give credit or to fear rights infringement.”

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