As part of the process of opening up the DAAO to the structures and benefits  that the internet has to offer, we are moving to Creative Commons Licensing system. From May 1 all text contributions will be licenced under Creative Common Licence.

This is a small step that has big benefits.

Its a small step because our existing Contributor and End-User Licence Agreements are already Creative Commons licences in spirit, in as much as our current licences allow others to use and share our content, so long as they attribute back to us and that our work is not used for commercial purposes. However, our licence does not say that anywhere near so clearly and many are confused by the legalese of the current licence. This is a problem if we want to collaborate with other institutions in sharing our data. We must have clear and easy to understand processes and human readable licences that embody the spirit of our project- and the spirit of our project is to enhance research and foster innovative collaborations around Australian Art and Design.   Creative Commons is “a nonprofit organization that develops, supports, and stewards legal and technical infrastructure that maximizes digital creativity, sharing, and innovation.” Creative Commons is part of of the ethos of openness and innovation in which the DAAO places itself- front and centre.

The Creative Commons equivalent of our existing contributor’s agreement is called an Attribution-Non Commercial Share- Alike 3.0 Australia Licence  (or a CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0 for short)

Click the link to see how at easy to understand the Creative Commons version of our agreement is

There is, of course, also the legal code version  (Even this is well written and user friendly legal code).

The big benefits? By moving to Creative Commons licences we move to a well-known, community supported, plain English system that is becoming the standard within e-research and the GLAM ( Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums sector). By being clear about what the rules of use of, and contribution to, our site are, we make it easier for other institutions, particularly museums and art galleries to inter-operate with us, and in so doing enable our content to reach larger cohort of researchers. It also facilitates new data sets being  exposed to each other and that opens up the door to new  research questions and new approaches to art and design research.

I’ll finish this little post with a link to a talk that Mike Edson, Director, Web and New Media Strategy  from the Smithsonian Institution, to explain and champion the value of the commons to research. (Thanks to Liz for sending me the link).

For further questions on the changeover to Creative Commons, please read our FAQ document.

Creative Commons Change Over FAQ