Saturday, December 6, 2003

The Creative Commons

I've been following the whole copyright debate in the US over the last few years, mostlythrough Professor Lessig's blog.

One of the defining moments for me was listening to the presentation given byLessig at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention in 2002. The presentation by Lessig titledFree Culturereally opened up my eyes to what's at stake. Before that I was simply an advocate ofFree Software / Open Source, but now I realise the battle is much larger. It's aboutthe survival of our cultural heritage and our collective creative work (that soundsrather dramatic, but what the hell).

The Eldred v Ashcroft case is an important milestoneand one we cant' afford to lose. Things like Project Gutenberg would not exist, people wouldn't be able to re-interpret Shakespeare'sworks as they wanted.

So rather than just passively listen to what's going on, I've decided to take somesteps. All the (half decent) software I have written is released under theGPL and I have deciedto license this website's contents under the Creative Commons license. Not that I think anyone will really want to inlcudemy rants, but it's the idea that counts. The Creative Commons license website has a number of really great explanations(as flash animations and comic stips, no less!) of why this type of license isimportant. It's a must-read.

So, please feel free to use this content under the Creative Commons license, providedthat the source is attributed and the use is non-commercial.

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