Boing Boing 

Digital rights stickers


Gavriel designed a digital-freedom-themed sticker pack for Discordia Culture; 25% of proceeds from which go to EFF. (Thanks, Gavriel!)

UN wants to give broadcasters rights over public-domain and CC-licensed shows


Under the revived WIPO Broadcast Treaty, broadcasters would have the right to stop you from using public domain and CC-licensed video footage as you choose, effectively giving them a new copyright over material simply by sending it out over the air.

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Nature makes all its papers free to view


The premiere science publisher will make shareable "read-only" links to its all papers stretching back to 1869, using technology from a startup that its parent company, Macmillan, has invested in.

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Gates Foundation mandates open access for all the research it funds

Effective January 17, all research funded in whole or in part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation must be published in journals that are immediately free-to-access, under a Creative Commons Attribution-only license.

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Free/CC book on transmedia activism


Sasha Costanza-Chock writes, "My book about transmedia organizing is now available for free, Creative Commons licensed download from the MIT Press!"

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Creative Commons and Aaronsw's sweet hack


All over the world today, people are having hackathons in memory of Aaron Swartz, and Creative Commons co-founder Lisa Rein talks about Aaron's role in hacking the law with the Creative Commons licenses.

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Accessible, CC-licensed academic site comes to the US

Michael says, "'The Conversation' has been in Australia for a couple of years: writing by academics, for a lay audience, which aims to be readable and relevant. Their slogan is 'academic rigor, journalistic flair', and they've done pretty well at that so far."

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Google releases set of beautiful, freely usable icons


They're licensed CC-BY-SA and designed for use in mobile apps and other interactive stuff -- there's 750 in all! It's part of Google's Material Design project.

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Library of Congress wants your Halloween/Dia de los Muertos/All Saints Day/All Souls Day photos


Trevor from the Library of Congress writes, "The American Folklife Center at the LOC is inviting Americans participating in holidays at the end of October and early November to photograph hayrides, haunted houses, parades, trick-or-treating and other celebratory and commemorative activities to contribute to a new collection documenting contemporary folklife."

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How to save the CBC, making it a global online participatory leader

In my latest Guardian column, What Canada's national public broadcaster could learn from the BBC, I look at the punishing cuts to the CBC, and how a shelved (but visionary) BBC plan to field a "creative archive" of shareable and remixable content could help the network lead the country into a networked, participatory future.

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Internet's Own Boy, free CC-licensed download on Internet Archive

The Creative Commons-licensed version of The Internet's Own Boy, Brian Knappenberger's documentary about Aaron Swartz, is now available on the Internet Archive, which is especially useful for people outside of the US, who aren't able to pay to see it online.

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Singularity & Co: sf bookstore as Twilight Zone

Singularity and Co is the wonderful, Brooklyn-based used science fiction bookstore launched with a 2012 Kickstarter campaign that raised funds to buy the rights to beloved, out-of-print sf novels and release them as CC-licensed ebooks. Gabe, a fan of the store, has produced this great, Twilight Zone-themed commercial for the shop.

Cognitive Bias Parade: CC-licensed collage illustrations of predictable irrationality

James Gill writes, "Cognitive Bias Parade is a site that takes a daily look at deviations in judgement and reconstructed realities. It is an illustrated review of the many ways the brain has evolved to lie to itself. It is not simply meant to scold. The spirit of the project was captured once in a quote by the magician Jerry Andrus: 'I can fool you because you're a human. You have a wonderful human mind that works no different from my human mind. Usually when we're fooled, the mind hasn't made a mistake. It's come to the wrong conclusion for the right reason.'

"I've given a Creative Commons Share-Alike status to my work on the site. I ask only that a link-back be given for my website as credit."

(Above: Observation selection bias... The effect of suddenly noticing things that were not noticed previously – and as a result wrongly assuming that the frequency has increased.)

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Makers: the Japanese fan-trans

Haruka Tsubota has undertaken a Japanese fan-translation of my novel Makers. It's available as Epub and Mobi, and licensed CC-BY-NC-SA.

Creative Commons's public domain game jam

From Creative Commons's Elliot Harman: "The idea of The Public Domain Jam is to encourage developers to create games based on public domain assets and stories, and optionally give the games themselves back to the public domain via the CC0 waiver; there's a $1000 prize for the best CC0 game."

Incoming Creative Commons CEO explains plans

Elliot from Creative Commons sends us "An inspiring piece by our incoming CEO about why Creative Commons is important to him and how he plans to change the organization: "'In today's legal environment, the commons is increasingly under threat. New works are restricted by copyright from the moment they are created until long after their creators are dead, and stricter copyright rules are almost always demanded by large rights-holders who benefited from the commons in the first place. It's like running across a rope bridge only to cut it loose once you get to the other side.'"

Funding available for makerspaces' open anti-asteroid initiatives


Alex sez, "Spacegambit is a hackerspace space program that funds cool space projects around the world. We're now working with NASA on the Asteroid Grand Challenge, with the aim of getting more makers involved in detecting asteroid threats to human populations and figuring out what to do about them. We're running our open call at the moment (closing on 20 May) and looking to fund open-source projects linked with hackerspaces/makerspaces/fablabs/etc."

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Restoring CC attribution to Flickr, because Yahoo broke it


You may know that Flickr is one of the largest repositories of freely usable public domain and Creative Commons photos in the world, hosting collections contributed by libraries, national archives, foundations, museums, galleries, and individual users (I've uploaded more than 10,000 CC-BY-SA images of my own). However, with its latest redesign, Flickr has made is very difficult to copy the images it has been entrusted with, and nearly impossible to correctly attribute them in accord with their license terms.

Today, we're fixing that. A little, anyway.

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Global Game Jam asks developers to use the public domain, in Aaron Swartz's honor

Susan writes, "Over 22K game developers from all over the world (72 countries) came together this past weekend (January 24-26) at the annual Global Game Jam (GGJ). This year's event was record breaking, having churned out over 4K games with the theme 'We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are.' The yearly event focusing on collaboration, experimentation and innovation in games challenges developers of all skill levels. The jam is about creating community as well as creating games, all jams are physical jams where you have a chance to grow your skills and your network. Add to that the event prides itself on being hardware and software agnostic -- open to digital and analog games that are open source adhering to a Creative Common's license.

"As if making a game from start to finish with your new found friends at one of the 400+ local jams isn't hard enough, the GGJ offers diversifiers help challenge developers just a bit more. This year GGJ decided to honor the memory of the late Aaron Swartz by creating a diversifier that asks the developer of the game to only use materials found in the public domain. The Global Game Jam is a volunteer based 501c3 looking to share the universal language of games around the world while generating a buzz of creativity for everyone to feed from."

Global Game Jam (Thanks, Susan!)

Help wanted: Creative Commons is hiring a new CEO

Creative Commons is hiring a new CEO [PDF], who'll run the organization which currently has a $3M budget and a staff of 20. They're looking for someone who can lead, fundraise, and grow the organization.

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Interactive version of EFF's NSA crossword

Here's a nice little Christmastime Creative Commons and free/open source software success story: yesterday, I posted the Electronic Frontier Foundation's NSA-themed crossword puzzle, which was CC licensed. Shortly after, TheDod posted an interactive version of the puzzle to Github, forking an interactive crossword program written by the Boston Globe's Jesse Weisbeck.

Interactive edition of EFF's Xmas 2013 NSA crossword puzzle (Thanks, Dave!)

New CC licenses: tighter, shorter, more readable, more global

Creative Commons has released version 4.0 of its sharing-friendly, easy-to-use copyright licenses. The new licenses represent a significant improvement over earlier versions. They work in over 60 jurisdictions out of the box, without having to choose different versions depending on which country you're in; they're more clearly worded; they eliminate confusion over jurisdiction-specific rights like the European database right and moral rights. They clarify how license users are meant to attribute the works they use; provide for anonymity in license use; and give license users a 30 day window to correct violations, making enforcement simpler. Amazingly, they're also shorter than the previous licenses, and easier to read, to boot.

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Cory coming to Melbourne next week for four events

I'm heading to Melbourne, Australia next week to do a series of events with the Center for Youth Literature of the State Library of Victoria. I'm doing four events: The science of fiction, Creative versus Commons, Digital fiction masterclass, and Future fiction with teens. I hope you'll come out to them!

Statistics Done Wrong: a guide to spotting and avoiding stats errors


Alex Reinhart's Statistics Done Wrong: The woefully complete guide is an important reference guide, right up there with classics like How to Lie With Statistics. The author has kindly published the whole text free online under a CC-BY license, with an index. It's intended for people with no stats background and is extremely readable and well-presented. The author says he's working on a new edition with new material on statistical modelling.

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CC tells the Copyright Office what's what

Timothy from Creative Commons writes in about CC's contribution to the Copyright Office's copyright reform effort: "Creative Commons has always been slightly reticent about its role in the copyright debate, even though many of its greatest supporters are vocal in the copyright reform movement. Today, we're adopting an unambiguous position: open licensing is a fantastic tool, but it's not a substitute for substantive improvements in copyright law worldwide." (Thanks, Timothy)

Open alternatives to MPAA's copyright curriculum propaganda


Jane from Creative Commons sez, "It has come to our attention that the Motion Picture Association of America, the Recording Industry Association of America, and top internet service providers are drafting curriculum to teach kids in California elementary schools that copying is wrong, or as Wired.com puts it, 'Downloading is Mean!'

"This message is way too simple. In this digital age, the most important thing we should be teaching kids is to be creative and take full advantage of all the web has to offer. Copyright, asking permission, open licensing, and all the other legal nuances, should be seen as secondary (and even complementary) to this purpose. We should be starting with the things kids can do versus what they can't do."

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Autodesk makes huge trove of docs, training materials and 3D asset files available under Creative Commons

Rama from Autodesk sez, "Autodesk, the design software company you probably know from AutoCAD also makes entertainment software used to make movies, TV shows and video games -- stuff like the Iron Man movies, Man of Steel, Game of Thrones and The Last of Us made a big announcement this morning. The group adopted the Creative Commons licensing which means 20,000 pages of documentation, 70 videos and 140 downloadable 3D asset files are now ready to be modified, remixed and shared globally. On the YouTube learning channels for their Maya and 3ds Max software, their iTunes podcasts, and their help pages, you’ll see the Creative Commons tag for easy identification. And it’s just the beginning, Autodesk said soon all Autodesk online help, learning channel movies, podcasts, support articles and downloadable materials will be placed under the Creative Commons model -- even their Autodesk University training content past and future. It's a bold move to open up their intellectual property for digital artists everywhere"

Autodesk takes great pride in offering high-quality resources that support the pursuit of lifelong learning, supplement classroom materials, and contribute to digital community development. Many of these great resources are now licensed to you under Creative Commons because we believe that learning should be free, open, and shared widely around the world! Look for the Creative Commons tags in our online help, learning channel movies, podcasts, support articles and downloadable materials. More content to come soon…

Reuse, Remix, Translate and Share. (Thanks, Rama!)

Pig and the Box goes Public Domain


MCM sez, "It's been 7 years since I released The Pig and the Box, a CC-licensed anti-DRM fable for kids. It was a fun experiment back then, and the experiment continues today: the whole book (and source files that went into making it) are now public domain. Lolipop Jones for all!"

Massive, CC-licensed 34GP panorama of Prague

Jeffrey from 360 Cities sez, "My latest 'gigantic panorama' is of my adopted home city, Prague. (previously: 1 2) This time I'm trying something new: download, share, remix this one yourself! It is Creative Commons, attribution, noncommercial sharealike licensed. Here is the torrent link. It's 3.9GB of JPEG tiles plus an HTML5 and Flash viewer. This image was shot in May 2013, and the total size of the image is 260,000 x 130,000 pixels. That would be 44 meters long if you printed it at 150DPI!"

Prague 34 Gigapixel Panorama Photo (Thanks, Jeffrey!)

Free CC-licensed ebook of Homeland is live!

After nearly two weeks on the road, I've finally resolved the niggling technical issues I was having with the free, CC-licensed electronic edition of Homeland. Many, many thanks to Nat Torkington and Ralph Amissah for their invaluable assistance. You can download and share the free ebooks from the official Homeland site. Go nuts!