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Creative Commons: Enabling the next level of innovation

November 12, 2009

McKinsey’s “What Matters” has a an excellent discussion about openness vs. copyright and the effect on  innovation. Here’s a sample and the link to the thoughtful article and McKinsey’  great site.

Creative Commons: Enabling the next level of innovation

By Joi Ito30 October 2009

The explosion of innovation unleashed by the Internet has been driven by an ecosystem of people who work in an open network defined by open standards. That openness has brought us technological marvels like Google, Amazon, and Wikipedia. Now, however, this era of innovation is bumping up against a new barrier. Technology allows us to connect in an increasingly seamless way, but the complicated copyright system originally designed to protect innovation has become a source of friction. Just as we needed open network protocols to create a frictionless online network, we now need open legal standards to resolve the friction that results from outdated copyright restrictions.

Creative Commons, the nonprofit organization of which I am the chief executive officer, aims to solve these problems with a series of licenses, technical specifications, and tools that allow creators to mark their works with the permissions that they wish to grant, free of charge. People using Creative Commons licenses decide whether to allow commercial reuse or restrict reuse to only noncommercial purposes. They decide whether to allow the derivative use and modification of their creations. And they decide whether these modified works must be shared with the rest of the world using the same free license. Creative Commons also provides tools for users to dedicate their works to the public domain. For some scientific data or educational resources, the public domain provides the maximum flexibility and value.

Read full article…

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