Creative Commons staff, affiliates, and supporters were active participants and contributors at this year’s Mozilla Festival, which has become an annual rallying point for the Open Web and our shared values. Our sessions covered a wide range of issues, from new technology, to open education and science, to working as an open organization. Thanks to Mozilla for inviting us. We’re already looking forward to next year’s event.
CC makes tools for makers
by Matt Lee and Ryan Merkley
In CC makes tools for makers, CC’s Ryan Merkley and Matt Lee joined Mozilla dev Ali Al Dallal to talk about tools and technology solutions that could enhance the reach and value of CC-licensed works. CC shared some early screens for The List, a new mobile app that allows anyone to create and share a list of wanted images, and allows users to respond by taking pictures and sharing them in a global archive, all licensed CC BY. CC also shared CC Search, which will aggregate results from publicly-facing search APIs of openly licensed works. Ali demoed a prototype of MakeDrive, which will allow a user to search for a CC image, then grab it into their own local synced storage.
Participants broke into smaller groups to discuss challenges and opportunities, and identified solutions that were shared back with the group. Issues ranged from UX and usability needs to opportunities for monetization. Everyone was encouraged to join The List mailing list at creativecommons.org/thelist for updates, and to head to hackspace.cc to join the development process and contribute.
Portrait of a Creative Commons Artist
by Jane Park
In Portrait of a Creative Commons Artist, a group of musicians, filmmakers, museum curators, and arts education practitioners gathered to discuss the kinds of art being created in today’s digital landscape and how and why they share their artworks and the artworks of others. Surprisingly, or unsurprisingly, the artists’ motivations for sharing included no commercial goals. Motivations cited included wider distribution; to grow a community of like-minded artists; to elicit feedback or emotion; and result in new inferences and ways of thinking.
We also identified barriers to sharing in certain environments, such as child privacy in arts education and the time-consuming effort involved in cataloging artworks for museums. We addressed individual artists’ hang-ups to sharing, such as fear of plagiarism and not being quite ready or confident in the quality of one’s art to open it up for public criticism. Lastly, we brainstormed potential solutions to overcoming these barriers and help artists feel more comfortable with sharing their works online under more liberal re-use terms, such as Creative Commons licenses. Such solutions included: a tool that could display a canonical representation of your work, including all derivatives made from the original; a better attribution prompt enabling artists to specify exactly how they want to be attributed; and a registry of artworks in the commons. Additional needs included improved interaction design with artworks online, consulting or advisement on how to share such networked art, and simplified best practices around sharing and attributing open artworks. Full agenda and notes from the session are available, in addition to Kevin’s coverage of the session in The Open Standard, “The Plight of the Open-Source Artist” — which is aptly licensed under CC BY-SA.
This session affirmed and informed our intentions with several CC projects in development, such as a registry of CC-licensed works, a smart phone application that would make it easier for photo contributions to the commons (The List), and the Free Culture Trust, a coalition of organizations that would offer comprehensive services to artists wanting to donate their art to the commons.
Mapping #SchoolofOpen and #TeachtheWeb to places
by Jane Park
In Mapping #SchoolofOpen and #TeachtheWeb to places, community members from Creative Commons, School of Open, and Mozilla Webmaker came together to physically map their open web education programs, such as Maker Party and the recent School of Open Africa launch. We “hacked” a map of the world by creating our own version of it, and most interestingly, Africa was front and center with the U.S. largely as an afterthought. After mapping, we self-organized into two streams: those leading open web education for adults and those leading open web education for kids and teens. After much discussion, we are now planning to better bridge our communities to increase our impact in several regions, including Africa, India, and the U.S. We will be creating a digital version of our Hack the Map activity, allowing others to add themselves virtually over time, and also planning a joint School of Open and Mozilla Webmaker event with our communities for 2015.
OpenMe – Kids can Open
by Jane Park
In OpenMe – Kids can Open, a few of us from the CC, School of Open and National Writing Project communities gathered to discuss current efforts around CC and open web education for kids and strategies for replicating those efforts in other jurisdictions. Kelsey Wiens, CC South Africa public lead and School of Open program lead for CC4Kids, shared her experience with piloting CC4Kids in schools. Generally, starting with private schools resulted in more favorable results, in addition to partnering with existing organizations with strong ties to schools, such as Innovate South Africa’s Code4ct. We are now in conversation to pilot the CC4Kids model in the U.S. with the National Writing Project’s Educator/Innovator network. To start, we will be hosting a webinar as well as sharing a call to the network for after school pilot participants.
Walking the talk – How to work open
by Jane Park
In Walking the talk – How to work open, CC facilitated the strand on Partnerships and collaboration, or how to better work together as open organizations with overlapping missions and projects. How do we not reinvent the wheel and collectively have greater impact? Part of the solution lies in better communications and transparent organizational practices, but how do we translate these needs into an action item? We brainstormed several “best case scenarios” and in the end came up with a strong list of concrete solutions, with an Annual Capacity Building Conference for open organizations at the top of the list. Such a conference would focus specifically on knowledge sharing for the purpose of building capacity within and outside of our organizations to achieve our missions and realizing our vision for universal access to research and education and full participation in culture. Other ideas included:
- A Natural Language Processing tool that links cross-organizational communications in different languages in one hub
- Culture training for organizations that encourages failure and knowledge sharing, versus an environment where keeping information secret results in a competitive edge
- Working groups of ambassadors in each city to represent all open organizations in that city (and that would work to bring in new organizations seeking representation)
- A Task Rabbit-like platform for open organizations that would match organizations needing capacity in a certain area with an organization that could provide it
Complete notes from the session are available, in addition to results from the Community Building track of which this session was a part. The wranglers for the track are now working on a community building toolkit and will be rallying all organizational representatives in the next few months to make one of the above ideas into a reality. We vote for the Annual Capacity Building Conference of open orgs!
Skills Mapping for Open Science
by Billy Meinke
In the Skills and Curriculum Mapping for Open Science session, facilitators and participants on Mozilla Science Lab’s “Science on the Web” track came together to build a map linking together the many nouns and verbs that describe interactions between people and scientific research, all of which are connected the Commons. An underlying focus of the session was to identify the ways scientists and citizens interact with outputs of research including content, data and code.
Taking a simplified approach to mapping these nodes will lend to the ability of others to expand on the map, and to translate the nodes into learning objectives that can be included in education and training programs around open and reproducible science. Over the two days of the festival, we facilitated the mapping of outputs and interaction types, aiming to capture key statements that describe the way scientific artifacts are created, reused/remixed, and shared. We welcomed scientists and non-scientists alike to stop by and critique the map as it was constructed, and to add nodes or connections where they felt something was missing. Did you ever once produce a dataset for your research blog? Then you’ve created data! Have you ever downloaded an Open Access research paper? If you have, then you’ve reused content! Have you ever uploaded a script to Github? Then you’ve shared code! It’s easy to drop most interactions people have with science into these buckets once we take a step back, and simplify the statements around what we do with scientific content and code in the Commons.
To allow others to build on the skills mapping done at Mozfest this year, a digital version of the map has been uploaded to Github , and is open for anyone to revise, tweak, and add to as they wish. Plans to expand this work include a full build out of high-level learning objectives, and alignment to existing Open Educational Resources in science training programs. A number of universities have expressed interest in piloting an undergraduate or graduate-level course on open and reproducible science, and the idea is that this map will be useful when developing such a course, revealing how and where skills learned in such a course apply to the way we work with content and code in the Commons.Comments Off
The newly founded K-12 OER Collaborative has released an RFP for the creation of open educational resources (OER) in mathematics and English language arts and literacy. As all content developed under this RFP will be openly licensed under CC BY 4.0, U.S. states, territories and school districts (and anyone else in the world) may freely reuse, revise, remix, redistribute and retain these educational resources.
Forty-three US States + Washington DC + Guam + American Samoan Islands + US Virgin Islands + Northern Mariana Islands (map) have adopted the Common Core State Standards (CCSS)… and they all need current, high quality, affordable, CCSS-aligned educational resources for their students, teachers, parents and districts.
Will these US States and territories have the public funds necessary to update educational resources (including textbooks) for these two subjects?
According to the Association of American Publishers school districts across the U.S. spend over $8 billion on instructional materials every year. Textbooks quickly fall into disrepair, students are not allowed to write in or keep their books as they graduate each grade, and teachers are not legally and technically empowered to update outdated educational resources. In addition, much of this spending is on costly, yearly subscription fees for digital content which school districts merely lease (not own).
This aggregate demand represented by the nationwide need for new CCSS-aligned educational materials creates a unique opportunity for states to acquire higher quality, more effective content in a smarter, far less expensive, and far more flexible manner, and make these resources available to teachers, parents and districts. Specifically, states and districts can transition from expensive and rigidly controlled materials to OER.
The RFP specifically seeks complete courses for the following grades and subjects:
- K–2 English Language Arts/Literacy
- 3–5 English Language Arts/Literacy
- 6–8 English Language Arts/Literacy
- 9–12 English Language Arts/Literacy
- K–5 Mathematics
- 6–8 Mathematics
- 9–12 Mathematics — Integrated/International Pathway (Secondary Mathematics I, II, III)
- 9–12 Mathematics — Traditional Pathway (Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2)
Courses will be designed to meet Common Core State Standards, accessibility standards, technical specifications, and an open licensing requirement of CC BY 4.0 on all new content produced. For details on the development process, see the complete RFP.
An informational webinar will take place next week on December 3, 2014 at 10:00 AM PST for those interested. RSVP at http://k12oercollaborative.org/rfp/webinar/.
The deadline for an initial Letter of Intent is January 9, 2015 by 5:00 PM PST.
About the K-12 OER Collaborative
The K-12 OER Collaborative is a coalition of eleven U.S. states and eight organizations, including Creative Commons. Together we are working to make quality K-12 educational resources aligned to state standards and accessible under the most open Creative Commons license, CC BY, so that we can drive down the cost of K-12 education for everyone. Learn more about the collaborative at http://k12oercollaborative.org.Comments Off
Philanthropic foundations fund the creation of scholarly research, education and training materials, and rich data with the public good in mind. Creative Commons has long advocated for foundations to add open license requirements to their grants. Releasing grant-funded content under permissive open licenses means that materials may be more easily shared and re-used by the public, and combined with other resources that are also published under open licenses.
Yesterday the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced it is adopting an open access policy for grant-funded research. The policy “enables the unrestricted access and reuse of all peer-reviewed published research funded, in whole or in part, by the foundation, including any underlying data sets.” Grant funded research and data must be published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (CC BY). The policy applies to all foundation program areas and takes effect January 1, 2015.
Here are more details from the Foundation’s Open Access Policy:
- Publications Are Discoverable and Accessible Online. Publications will be deposited in a specified repository(s) with proper tagging of metadata.
- Publication Will Be On “Open Access” Terms. All publications shall be published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Generic License (CC BY 4.0) or an equivalent license. This will permit all users of the publication to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format and transform and build upon the material, including for any purpose (including commercial) without further permission or fees being required.
- Foundation Will Pay Necessary Fees. The foundation would pay reasonable fees required by a publisher to effect publication on these terms.
- Publications Will Be Accessible and Open Immediately. All publications shall be available immediately upon their publication, without any embargo period. An embargo period is the period during which the publisher will require a subscription or the payment of a fee to gain access to the publication. We are, however, providing a transition period of up to two years from the effective date of the policy (or until January 1, 2017). During the transition period, the foundation will allow publications in journals that provide up to a 12-month embargo period.
- Data Underlying Published Research Results Will Be Accessible and Open Immediately. The foundation will require that data underlying the published research results be immediately accessible and open. This too is subject to the transition period and a 12-month embargo may be applied.
Trevor Mundel, President of Global Health at the foundation, said that Gates “put[s] a high priority not only on the research necessary to deliver the next important drug or vaccine, but also on the collection and sharing of data so other scientists and health experts can benefit from this knowledge.”
Congratulations to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on adopting a default open licensing policy for its grant-funded research. This terrific announcement follows a similar move by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, who recently extended their CC BY licensing policy from the Open Educational Resources grants to now apply foundation-wide for all project-based grant funds.
Regarding deposit and sharing of data, the Gates Foundation might consider permitting grantees to utilize the CC0 Public Domain Dedication, which allows authors to dedicate data to the public domain by waiving all rights to the data worldwide under copyright law. CC0 is widely used to provide barrier-free re-use to data.
We’ve updated the information we’ve been tracking on foundation intellectual property policies to reflect the new agreement from Gates, and continue to urge other philanthropic foundations to adopt open policies for grant-funded research and projects.3 Comments »
Earlier this month, CODATA and World Data System, both interdisciplinary committees of the International Council for Science, jointly organized SciDataCon, an international conference on data sharing for global sustainability. The conference was held Nov 2-5, 2014, on the campus of Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. Creative Commons Science had a busy schedule at the conference attended by 170+ delegates from all over the world, many from the global south.
We started early with a full day workshop on text and data mining (TDM) in cooperation with Content Mine. The workshop was attended by a mix of PhD students and researchers from the fields of immunology and plant genomics research. It was really rewarding to see the participants get a handle on the software and go through the exercises. Finally, the conversation about legal uncertainty around TDM appraised them about the challenges, but bottom-up support for TDM can be a strong ally in ensuring that this practice remains out of the reach of legal restrictions.
During the main conference we joined panel discussions on data citation with Bonnie Carroll (Iia), Brian Hole (Ubiquity Press), Paul Uhlir (NAS) and Jan Brase (DataCite) and international data sharing with Chaitanya Baru (NSF), Rama Hampapuram (NASA) and Ross Wilkinson (ANDS). We also participated in a daily roundup of the state of data sharing as presented at the conference organized by Elizabeth Griffin (CNRC).
SciDataCon, which used to be called CODATA, is held every two years, and is an important showcase of open science around the world. It is an important gathering for it brings together many scientists from the global south. A lot remains to be done to make real-time, pervasive data sharing and reuse a reality in much of the world, but there are heartening signs. At a national level, India’s data portal holds promise, but making data licensing information more explicit and data easily searchable by license would make it more useful. Citizen science projects in the Netherlands, India and Taiwan demonstrated how crowds can be involved in experiments while ensuring the user-generated content is made available for reuse, and SNEHA’s work on understanding perspectives on data sharing for public health research was particularly insightful of the value of listening to the feedback from participants.
We look forward to continue working with CODATA and WDS promoting and supporting open science and data initiatives around the world, and particularly in the global south, and hope for more success stories in the next SciDataCon.1 Comment »
We are thrilled to announce our first official translation of 4.0, into Finnish. Congratulations to the CC Finland team, who have done an outstanding job. The translation team consisted of Maria Rehbinder of Aalto University, legal counsel and license translation coordinator of CC Finland; Martin von Willebrand, Attorney-at-Law and Partner, HH Partners, Attorneys-at-law Ltd: for translation supervision; Tarmo Toikkanen, Aalto University, general coordinator of CC Finland; Henri Tanskanen, Associate, HH Partners, Attorneys-at-law Ltd: main translator, and Liisa Laakso-Tammisto, translator. Particular thanks go to Aalto University, HH Partners, and the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture for their support.
Internationalization was one of the 5 main goals of the 4.0 licenses, so this is an important milestone for the CC community. Our translation policy was written to reinforce that goal: if the licenses work everywhere, everyone should be able to use them in their own language without needing to worry about what the original English version says. The official translations are accessible to anyone, anywhere wishing to have access to the official legal text of the 4.0 licenses in Finnish.
Particular kudos go out to this team for their detailed work: producing linguistic translations is difficult! Many words don’t have exact equivalents between languages, especially where you’re bringing in specialized language from countries with different legal systems. Teams working on translations go through a detailed review of their work with CC to ensure that the meaning of the documents lines up. This often involves many detailed questions about exact meanings of words and the legal concepts they refer to, especially when no one on the CC legal team speaks the language. (If you’re particularly curious, you can look at some of the notes in the translators’ guide.) The Finnish team anticipated most of the questions we might have asked, providing a detailed explanation that will be useful as an example to others, and their thorough work has paid off.
Keep your eyes out: several more translations are in the final stages of review and will be published in the coming months! In the meantime, we join CC Finland in celebrating the launch of the first official 4.0 translation.
1 Comment »
The Voyager Spacecrafts are carrying with them sounds of the earth, of our civilization, recorded on a 12″ gold plated copper disc, a golden record, along with instructions for how to play them.
Lily Bui, a graduate student in the MIT Comparative Media Studies program built a lovely web site that allows everyone to enjoy the sounds and music from the golden record via an attractive, easy to use web interface. In a serial burst of inspiration, Lily has also dedicated her web site to the public domain via a CC0 Public Domain Dedication.
In her words, “To be perfectly frank — I mostly designed this mostly for myself so that I wouldn’t have to access the archival audio through the Library of Congress portal.” Well, turns out a lot of people share Lily’s point-of-view. Ever the academic, she was taking a course at MIT that “examined the ‘migration of cultural materials’ into the digital space, combining traditional humanities with computational methods.” She is convinced her work is grounded in theory. Perhaps, for we love the sounds and music so much that we have yet to read Humanities Approaches to Graphical Display by Johanna Drucker.
Join Lily and all of us at Creative Commons and give the Voyager Golden Record a listen.Comments Off
Representatives from CC affiliates in Asia and the Pacific were once again hosted by CC Korea for the CC Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting this year. Asia-Pacific CC affiliates have a regular face-to-face meeting every two years to share their experience and know-how, to discuss common issues, and to seek opportunities for collaboration. Last September, 13 representatives from CC affiliate teams in China Mainland, Indonesia, Japan, Philippines, Malaysia, Taiwan, Mongolia, and South Korea came all the way to Seoul for this rare opportunity to get inspired by each other and meet Ryan Merkley, new CEO of Creative Commons, whom many of them met in person for the first time.
This year’s regional meeting was held in conjunction with the 3rd CC Korea Conference, “Share Everything, Connect Everything.” Ryan Merkley, CEO of Creative Commons, opened the event with an inspiring keynote speech on sharing and the commons attended by more than 200 people from various fields including government, business and academia. Around the three main themes of Creativity, Sharing City, and Civic Hacking, insightful presentations were given by various local and international speakers including Todd Porter, Co-founder of FabCafe and Hal Seki from Code for Japan. As the closing session, Won-soon Park, Mayor of Seoul City, and Jay Yoon, Project Lead of CC Korea, discussed how we could shape our future with sharing and cooperation.
Following the successful conference on the first day, the CC affiliate representatives sat down together for a full-day meeting dedicated to the discussion of internal issues, from individual activities to regional and global cooperation. After a round of warm greetings to each other, each presented not only their success stories but also exchanged experiences in projects that did not turn out as they had expected, focusing on what they could improve and how they could do better in the future. Challenges faced by teams varied from fundraising to support and sustain their activities to restructuring their volunteer community. Discussion revolved around how to address these by facilitating regional collaboration both among individual affiliates and with CC headquarters in California.
After a lunchtime walk along the Cheonggye stream, Ryan Merkley joined the group to share CC’s new vision and strategies and solicit feedback from the participants. Generally participants were glad for his willingness to share and to engage more closely with affiliates, welcoming opportunities to contribute and work more closely on various fronts. A theme of the day was ways that CC could collaborate and engage more actively with global affiliates on specific projects such as conducting research, developing tools to improve usability of CC licenses and reuse of CC-licensed content, etc. Some representatives also pointed out that more practical support from CC such as toolkits and resource repositories would be useful, especially for teams who are new or restructuring. Regional activities, such as the creation of a regional website and combining efforts in popular areas such as education, were also important part of the day’s agendas.
The meeting was followed by a CC Salon, held as a wrap-up event of the whole program at a cozy book cafe down an alleyway, away from the noise and bustle of the Hongdae area. Conference speakers, CC Asia-Pacific representatives, and members and friends of CC Korea were all invited to meet old and new friends, try different traditional beverages brought by the participating CC representatives, and get inspired by interesting ignite talks ranging from a fantastic dance performance by Muid Latif from CC Malaysia to Ryan’s “20 things I love from the commons” and a 3rd-grader girl’s talk about her coding projects.
CC Korea would like to once again thank all representatives who participated and hopes that this could lead to more cooperation in the region and beyond.
For more details, see post-conference resources, including videos, all available under CC licenses. You can also read about the previous regional meeting in Jakarta, Indonesia, in 2012.
bssmile / CC BY 3.0
The thoughts below are from Muid Latif, Project Lead of CC Malaysia:
Visiting Seoul is life-changing experience. As a creative person, each turn you take around the city gives a perfect visual story-telling of its culture and economic progress. Since I was very familiar to the design community in Korea through Behance Network and Creative City project curated by Jackson Tan (Singapore) this year in conjunction of Kaohsiung Design Festival, I was introduced to amazing designers like Yoon Hyup and the talented Na Kim who I had the privilege to meet in September this year in Penang, Malaysia.
I was blown away by the amount of art galleries located in each district. I could easily be overwhelmed by so much talent. It shows how organised and cultured Koreans are in accepting creativity as a part of their daily routine.
While I was in Seoul, attending the CC Korea International Conference provided me with such an insightful experience to know how enthusiastic creators are in ensuring citizen could access better, organised public information and allowing transparency of the government, through projects like CodeNamu. And Randomwalks, for example, amplified various media and data and turned it into phenomenal info-graphics, as shown in Sey Min’s presentation and demonstration. An aspiring young girl named Hannah enlightened us about the best creative way to have fun by creating DIY ear-folding rabbit and a fun wrist-band. I also had the chance to do a contemporary dance performance during the CC Salon featuring music of DD.85’s ‘Adaptation’.
It’s more extraordinary to learn that Koreans take seriously into sharing culture thus seeing Creative Commons as a medium to empower their creations. From sharing innovation of technology through open source, mobile apps and web-based programmes are easily accessible to all. It facilitates greater alternative in cost-saving, and yet at the same time, some generous users would donate through PayPal as part of their appreciation. This is what CC is catered for its content users, the power to appreciate and attribute. The support does not only stop there, a local renowned KPOP artist expresses interest in offering to become an ambassador of CC Korea to increase more awareness. This is indeed admirable and I see that other CC affiliates could adapt and follow the same strategy to advance CC movement into the next level. If people would ask me, what’s the next big thing for CC? Well, this is it.Comments Off