[ox-en] Decision chart for content creators
- From: Andrius Kulikauskas <ms ms.lt>
- Date: Sat, 15 May 2004 02:10:31 +0300
I share your letter below with our lab's group
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/minciu_sodas_EN/ and also with the Oekonux
group. This will be great. I appreciate your help, and I invite all of
us to consider, What questions might help us make good decisions about
choosing a license for our work, or placing it in the Public Domain.
I'm starting by considering some questions that I think are helpful for
making decisions. I want to focus on goals, and not make presumptions
about how. There may be several ways to achieve the same goal. And a
particular goal (like the wish to be attributed, or wishes regarding
commercial use) may have deeper issues behind them that should be
brought out, I think.
I think a basic question for an author is, Do I want to be able to turn
to the legal system to protect my rights? If the answer is No, then I
think that copyright has nothing to offer. Copyright is a legal
protection. Likewise, copyleft and the Creative Commons licenses are
all grounded in copyright.
Copyright is not the only legal protection for authors. I think there
are other laws that also provide some protection against
misrepresentation, slander, etc.
So a basic question is, Would I really go to court to protect my rights?
Or would I really threaten to go to court in order to do so? Or do I
want people to fear that I might? If the answer is Yes, then copyright
makes sense. If the answer is No, then Public Domain is definitely
something to consider.
Another way to think about this is, Do I want to impose requirements?
(With legal consequences) Or do I want to state wishes? (With moral
consequences) Or some combination of both?
Other questions relate to, What do I want? What are my wishes? Or what
do I don't want?
For example, Would I like to make money from my work?
That's a very different question then Do I want to keep others from
making money from my work?
Or even, Do I want to make money from my work if other people do?
Each of these is a different choice on the decision chart.
Would I like to make money from my work?
There are various questions to ask further.
Do I want to make money from the sale of my rights to the particular work?
Or would I be happy if the creative work might help me get other jobs or
Or am I willing to adapt my work to the wishes of a client?
Public Domain and Copyright may both offer different solutions for
Likewise, for attributions.
Do I want to require that people attribute?
Do I allow them to use their best judgement?
Why do I want attribution?
Am I more interested that they bring traffic to my site?
Am I more interested that they show me in a good light?
Do I want to be held responsible for my ideas?
Do I want people to contact me regarding them?
Many questions! and it would be good to add more.
[PHONE NUMBER REMOVED]
Georg Pleger wrote:
Hello Andrius, Hello everybody!
Yes I'm interested in joining your efforts for preparing an alternative
"decision chart" for content creators.
It will be an interesting exercise trying to observe myself in two
1) As an organizational project lead for Creative Commons Austria it is
clear, what needs to be done:
(Organizing the) Porting of a predefined set of "copyright building
blocks" from the original to a version compatible with Austrian Law.
2) An other thing will be my role as a content creator in different
contexts. In this role I have to decide whether to choose one of the
specific Creative Commons Licenses or public domain.
And maybe it's helpful to introduce the third, forth ... role as one
responsible for advising e.g. an educational institution which license
to choose by default. etc.
In the first role I will be happy if more people even start thinking
about copyright questions. And so they need a smooth and easy way.
In the second role it will be an interesting question how radical an
approach is viable for me e.g. within an academic context of 2004 (as
opposed to one of 2006, 2008 ...)
example scenario: Writing your PhD dissertation already in the writing
process available online and as public domain.
Will be a helpful discussion!
Greetings from Austria
- For my workshop at Oekonux, I want to make a "decision chart" for
helping people make good decisions about when to place content in the
Public Domain, when to use copyright, and when to use special forms of
copyright such as Creative Commons or copyleft. I ask George Pleger for
help, he will be presenting http://www.CreativeCommons.org at Oekonux.
Creative Commons does have a "decision chart" but I think:
A) it's oriented around legal action (with regard to "rights" and
"requirements") rather than moral action (with regard to "preferences"
B) it's oriented around restricting use (like "no commercial use")
rather than achieving goals (like "help me make money").
C) it's oriented around how people are supposed to behave, rather than
how they actually do behave.
For social networking, it's very important for most of the content (in
Wikis and elsewhere) to be definitely in the Public Domain. Any kind of
copyright (which includes Creative Commons and copyleft) requires that:
A) the license be noted and kept track of
B) the boundaries of the material be marked
and this represents a burden when working with micro-content. It is a
tax on the free flow of content needed for the sake of building
relationships, accumulating repositories of knowledge, and allowing
others to take over as stewards.
All forms of copyright (including Creative Commons and copyleft)
restrict the "freedom to fork". What I mean is that it is very prudent
to realize that a project like Minciu Sodas or OneVillage or ThinkCycle
or Wikipedia will come to an end, perhaps sooner rather than later.
It's important to prepare for the day when we hope that some or all of
our content may be used by somebody else. They should be free to
continue with their own license. I think it's not helpful for us to
impose a license on them. It's presumptious to assume that we know
what's best for them. The "freedom to fork" is less important for
software because "software likes to clump". But "content likes to
disintegrate" and so the freedom to fork is much more important.
Perhaps 1% of our project will have lasting value. It's not right for
it to be captive to any particular license.
So I want to have a realistic "decision chart" that helps explain that,
if we don't want to rely on the power of the courts, then copyright of
any kind is not relevant or helpful. But I do want it to help explain,
in real life terms, when to use copyright, and what flavor of copyright.
Anyways, I appreciate discussion on what's important to us in making
our copyright decisions.
Organization: projekt oekonux.de