Nice survey of the sampling scene

Matt Haughey, January 24th, 2004

Victor Stone, previously mentioned here for his great remixes on our last CD, recently signed onto Magnatune with a plethora of remixed tracks from Magnatune itself.

He also recently launched a site dedicated to sharing tips and reviews of the software he uses when creating music. A post definitely worth sharing here is the one about sampling, aimed at other turntablists: “Where the Samples Are.” He covers the legal way to acquire rights to use commercial samples, how and where to find Creative Commons licensed samples and what benefits they provide, and lastly how to simply pilfer commerical samples and what the consequences might be.

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Discovering Dickens

Glenn Otis Brown, January 24th, 2004

Stanford is bringing back its popular Discovering Dickens community reading project — another example of what’s possible with a healthy public domain. (In other words, don’t try this with anything much more modern.)

In December 2002, Stanford’s Discovering Dickens project began with the serial release of Charles Dickens’ novel Great Expectations. By the time the project concluded in April, 2003, it had enjoyed success far beyond what we had anticipated. Interest in the project, which has attracted participants from around the country and around the world, has remained keen, and we are happy to announce our next project: Discovering Dickens 2004.

Between January 9 and April 16, 2004, Discovering Dickens will rerelease the facsimile of Dickens’ famous novel of the French Revolution, A Tale of Two Cities. In April, 1859, the first serialized part of A Tale of Two Cities provided the lead piece for Dickens’ new periodical All the Year Round. On the strength of this weekly serial, contemporary Victorian readership had swollen to 100,000 before the novel concluded in November, 1859.

Dickens himself played an interesting role in international copyright’s development, back in the day when the U.S. was a pirate nation. (1, 2, 3.)

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Spontaneous Remix Culture — Yeagh!

Mike Linksvayer, January 23rd, 2004

Take an entertaining and compelling soundbite, easy to use digital audio tools, and cheap bandwidth, what do you get? Spontaneous remix culture.

DeanGoesNuts.com has in a few days collected dozens of remixes of Howard Dean’s 2004 Iowa Caucus concession speech culminating in the infamous “yeagh!” utterance.

While the curator (a Dean supporter) has licensed the site using the Creative Commons Attribution license, permissions associated with the remixes themselves are uncertain. The site’s upcoming submissions policy should include a licensing requirement to clear this up.

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Pump Audio

Matt Haughey, January 22nd, 2004

Independent musicians looking for a way to get paid for their work might want to check out Pump Audio. They serve as a marketplace of independent music for film, tv, and radio, representing thousands of independent artists. The thing that really makes them stand out is that they don’t assert control of an artist’s copyright, instead signing non-exclusive licenses that last for a year or two. [via Scott Andrew]

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Nomads’ Land: travel photography

Matt Haughey, January 22nd, 2004

This week’s featured content is Nomads’ Land, a site for photographs taken by Jean-François Maïon during travels around the globe. A great place to start exploring the site is the map on the main page. All 1000+ photos are licensed under a Creative Commons license and we can wait to see where Jean-François travels to next.


Versioning — Coming Up

Glenn Otis Brown, January 21st, 2004

We’ll be posting drafts of the new versions of our licenses later this week. About a month of review time will follow, and then we’ll revise as needed and turn the new licenses on. Throughout the next couple of weeks we will explain how the process of versioning will happen.

Meantime, here’s a preview of the highlights:

  • Warranties will now be a matter of choice for the licensor. The new licenses will disclaim warranties, but licensors will of course be free to negotiate warranties with licensees who demand them. (We’ll also work on a protocol to help people add warranties if they want to — but that will come later on.) Special thanks to Karl-Friedrich Lenz and Dan Bricklin and many more for persuading us on this point. More explanation in a separate post soon.
  • The attribution clause will include a link-back requirement simliar to the one previously discussed here. Licensees will only be required to link back to licensors if (1) it’s reasonably practical to do so; (2) the licensor actually specifies a URI; (3) that URI actually points to license information about the work.
  • The Share Alike provision will be more flexible. The provision will allow licensees to license resulting derivative works under Creative Commons licenses that feature the same license restrictions/permissions, including future and iCommons versions of the same license.
  • The Share Alike provision will also be clearer about what happens when different kinds of Share Alike content is mixed together (e.g., How to license a collage made from an SA photograph combined with an NC-SA photograph).
  • We’re still looking into the issue of compatibility between our SA licenses and the GNU FDL. Compared to the above improvements, this potential tweak came on our radar pretty recently. We’ll do our best to address it. Thanks to the many of you who’ve written in on this point.
  • Other minor tweaks.

More soon.

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Contests Abound

Glenn Otis Brown, January 20th, 2004

Participatory creativity is hot, hot. The Lollapoola Mash-Up Contest. Our Own GET CREATIVE! Moving Images Contest (winners to be announced next month). MoveOn.org’s Bush in 30 Seconds advertisement contest. And now even the New Yorker has announced the winner of its own analog-version of an open-source creativity contest, which was more interactive than contests past. (Devoted New Yorker fans will want to watch the great slide show explaining the judging process.)

I don’t remember the New Yorker’s ever explaining the copyright policy for this. Who gets to keep the rights to the final cartoon? Can we re-use those little screwdriver or dog cut-outs for other purposes? And given that it’s cut-outs we’re talking about, how does first sale doctrine tie in to all this?

Clearly the average New Yorker reader — or editor — isn’t as persnickety about their IP as some of us. Maybe next year they’ll go CC.

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How to Tell People You’re CC-ing It

Glenn Otis Brown, January 20th, 2004

Among the many cool features of our re-design this fall, we may not have given one page the attention it deserved.

If you’re marking your work or web page with our little Some Rights Reserved button, you should take a look at our suggestions for making a precise statement about what’s being licensed, complete with examples and screenshots. We’ll make the page more prominent soon.

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Advance in Cancer Research?

Glenn Otis Brown, January 18th, 2004

NPR’s Science Friday last week spoke with Howard Chang, of Stanford Medical School’s Biochemistry Department. Chang discussed his recent article, co-authored with several colleagues and published in the Public Library of Science Biology open-access journal, which explores how scientists can learn about cancer from studying the way common wounds heal.

Like all PLoS publications, Chang and company’s article, “Gene Expression Signature of Fibroblast Serum Response Predicts Human Cancer Progression Similarities between Tumors and Wounds,” is free under a Creative Commons attribution license.

Recall that one of Creative Commons’ resolutions is to explore a Science Commons. More unencumbered scientific knowledge to come . . .

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iCommons UK launched

Matt Haughey, January 14th, 2004

The International Commons project expanded this week to include the launch of UK license discussions. Those interested in participating can check out the draft license and mailing list for details.

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