‘Tis the season…

by Eszter Hargittai on December 4, 2005

.. when you’ll be getting more solicitations than usual from organizations asking for your donations. Obviously, there are lots of worthy causes. I thought I’d put in a plug for Creative Commons. They are having a Fall fundraising drive. Given that we discuss and use CC here on CT and given that many of us benefit from the work that they do, I thought it was appropriate to mention the campaign here. If you missed John’s post about Creative Commons as a default rule this would be a good time to catch up on that reading.

One of my favorite applications of CC is its use on Flickr. I use the Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License as the default in my photostream. Occasionally I’ll change it to Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs. But so far I have come up with no reason to post anything specified as All Rights Reserved. It is really heartening to see that millions (over six million and constantly growing) of photos on Flickr are posted using a Creative Commons license. Of course, many many are posted under the traditional circled C license. I sometimes wonder if at least some of those people opted for C over CC, because they don’t know enough about the latter. If I hadn’t known about CC before starting to use Flickr, I am not sure I would have thought to or gotten around to specifying the above-mentioned licenses.

Larry Lessig comments that one of the reasons CC launched such a fundraising campaign this Fall is that the IRS requires this kind of public support for non-profits in addition to donations they may get from foundations. Please consider supporting this cause.



anon 12.04.05 at 7:28 pm


John Noir 12.04.05 at 8:20 pm

Eszter: Traditional copyright, not CC, is the default for new users at flickr. I’d bet that at least half of flickr users aren’t even aware of the CC option.

Anon (7:28pm): The article you link to doesn’t persuade me that CC is “not all that great.” Its author would rather have a single CC license, or small group of them, which impose few restrictions on the users. He points to GPL as a model for that. But on the other hand some people think that there should be more flexibility in GPL. That’s a debate, not a slam dunk. The author also would prefer a version of CC which “call[s] for a world where ‘essential rights are unreservable’ … in an era of free information. ” This sounds dubious — and more to the point, it is simply not the purpose of CC.


KCinDC 12.04.05 at 10:41 pm

Argh, WordPress is spreading the “smart”-quote illness popularized by MS Word. The thing before “Tis” in the title should of course be an apostrophe, not an opening single quote.


Martin Wisse 12.05.05 at 2:45 am

Of all the worthwhile charities int he world, why the hell would you spent money on yet another dubious geek project?

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