Open Education License

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Peter

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Aug 10, 2007, 11:31:20 AM8/10/07
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I'd certainly like to read Erik, Wayne and Leigh's opinion on this;

http://opencontent.org/blog/archives/355

Cheers...

Erik Moeller

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Aug 10, 2007, 12:45:39 PM8/10/07
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The world doesn't need more licenses, especially not the type written
by non-experts that are vulnerable to interpretation & the standards
of different legal systems. There's a reason CC exists: to reduce
license chaos and develop standardized licenses that are
well-internationalized & adapted to different legal frameworks.

If you don't want to worry about licenses, don't use one - declare
your content to be public domain (which can be legally problematic in
its own right, but at least is universally understood in its meaning).
If you want to impose restrictions like attribution or copyleft, use
one of the standardized licenses that were created for this purpose.

Sadly, the mere notion of a "license for educators" will probably lead
to some early adoption.


--
Toward Peace, Love & Progress:
Erik

DISCLAIMER: This message does not represent an official position of
the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of Trustees.

Peter

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Aug 10, 2007, 5:48:02 PM8/10/07
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Erik,

An interesting response. Makes me wonder what you consider an expert?
I'd consider David Wiley quite well versed in Open Education, he may
not be a lawyer, but most lawyers aren't also educators. So I'd
consider it a mute point...
Given all the discussion around this over the last few months here in
WikiEducator, the fact that over the last 8 years CC hasn't created a
licensing scheme that has been embraced by educators makes me wonder.
And when you consider that the initiative of ccLearn seems to be
advocating a centralized licensing approach created by an all white
male US steering committee. Kind of makes me wonder whos interests
they will be serving. Particularly when OER is mostly about
international free and open educational materials, and (from what I
have read) they seem to be leaning towards commercial interests. It
would be nice to at least see an international and diverse steering
committee and an open dialog at the seed level. I would think having
someone being so bold to actually write an Open Educational License
would be encouraged as a starting point for an inclusive dialog; a key
to freedom in my mind. David Wiley did publish this with the request
for feedback... Instead of the ccLearn, who is behind closed doors
until September...

I certainly hope that a democratic healthy dialog regarding this is
encouraged...

Be Well...

-
Toward Peaceful, Loving and Shared Discussion
Peter

On Aug 10, 9:45 am, "Erik Moeller" <eloque...@gmail.com> wrote:
> The world doesn't need more licenses, especially not the type written
> by non-experts that are vulnerable to interpretation & the standards
> of different legal systems. There's a reason CC exists: to reduce
> license chaos and develop standardized licenses that are
> well-internationalized & adapted to different legal frameworks.
>
> If you don't want to worry about licenses, don't use one - declare
> your content to be public domain (which can be legally problematic in
> its own right, but at least is universally understood in its meaning).
> If you want to impose restrictions like attribution or copyleft, use
> one of the standardized licenses that were created for this purpose.
>
> Sadly, the mere notion of a "license for educators" will probably lead
> to some early adoption.
>

Leigh Blackall

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Aug 10, 2007, 7:17:41 PM8/10/07
to wikied...@googlegroups.com
Hi Peter, Erik.

My response as it appears in a comment on Dave's blog:

Hi Dave, I'm going to second D'Arcy here on needing more clarification on why CC BY is not usable. In education and academia it is (or should be) normal to attribute the sources or original creator. It is common practice in text, very uncommon with images and other media. I see the CC BY as complimentary to the academic effort to sustain links with the past. Public Domain or a derivative license of similar intent, makes allowances for that attribution to slacken off, and so the links with the past may fray. I struggle to see how attribution can be seen as a restriction. I have no trouble seeing how copyleft is restrictive. Attribution seems almost more a moral obligation, and certainly an academic best practice. So why not a plain old CC BY?

--
--
Leigh Blackall
+64(0)21736539
skype - leigh_blackall
http://learnonline.wordpress.com

Steve Foerster

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Aug 11, 2007, 9:58:51 AM8/11/07
to WikiEducator
Peter wrote:

<< An interesting response. Makes me wonder what you consider an
expert? I'd consider David Wiley quite well versed in Open Education,
he may not be a lawyer, but most lawyers aren't also educators. So I'd
consider it a mute point... >>

I suppose even the experts aren't always experts. I've asked
different copyright lawyers about the ramifications of public domain
dedications in other jurisdiction and gotten a variety of answers. If
there were One True Answer, I'd expect more similarity.


<< Given all the discussion around this over the last few months here
in WikiEducator, the fact that over the last 8 years CC hasn't created
a licensing scheme that has been embraced by educators makes me
wonder. >>

CC has created a number of different licenses that have been embraced
by different educators with different needs. Having "an education
license" would suggest that educators are some monolithic group with
identical needs. That would be a mistake.


<< And when you consider that the initiative of ccLearn seems to be
advocating a centralized licensing approach created by an all white
male US steering committee. Kind of makes me wonder whos interests
they will be serving. >>

I too have adopted a wait and see attitude toward ccLearn based on my
experience at the iCommons Summit. Anyway, not that there's anything
wrong with American white males, but I can say that their Executive
Director, Ahrash N. Bissell, doesn't quite match your description:

http://creativecommons.org/about/people/#82


<< Particularly when OER is mostly about international free and open
educational materials, and (from what I have read) they seem to be
leaning towards commercial interests. It would be nice to at least see
an international and diverse steering committee and an open dialog at
the seed level. I would think having someone being so bold to actually
write an Open Educational License would be encouraged as a starting
point for an inclusive dialog; a key to freedom in my mind. David
Wiley did publish this with the request for feedback... Instead of the
ccLearn, who is behind closed doors until September... >>

I understand what you're saying, but there's already been a lot of
history on the matter of an education license. There can't be one
without consensus of what educators' needs are, and there isn't likely
to be consensus.

-=Steve=-

Peter

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Aug 11, 2007, 3:15:02 PM8/11/07
to WikiEducator
Steve,

>From your reply I'd think the idea of multiple licensing schemes for
educators may be our end point as the needs are different. This
probably makes the most sense. The freedom to choose how you would
like your materials set free...

Yes, wait and see on the ccLearn. This may just become another
distribution arrow in our quill...

Ok, I'll agree with the Executive Director, Ahrash N. Bissell
background... and when you consider the whole CC staff is a very rich
mix... a very good thing, I'm still a little wary of the homogeneity
of the steering committee. I'm often concerned about the US approach
to international policy, and when you review this through history it
so often serves US interests first. Sorry to bring my political
leanings into this... It will be interesting to see what the ccLearn
ends up with...

Cheers,

Peter

Peter

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Aug 11, 2007, 3:25:17 PM8/11/07
to WikiEducator
Leigh,

I found David's argument for eliminating the attribution quite strong.
The idea that people just wouldn't consider another's work due to
cultural reasons is good. We need educational material that comes with
absolutely no strings attached. I reread Davids argument for this and
I even though that having an Sunni use a Shia's material may in time
show similarities more than differences, who knows...

I'm still understanding my depth of naivety regarding pure public
domain licensing. Maybe next time I will endeavour to put some work
into a purely (international) public domain license and see how
difficult it is...

Cheers,

Peter

On Aug 10, 4:17 pm, "Leigh Blackall" <leighblack...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Peter, Erik.
>
> My response as it appears in a comment on Dave's blog:
>
> Hi Dave, I'm going to second D'Arcy here on needing more clarification on
> why CC BY is not usable. In education and academia it is (or should be)
> normal to attribute the sources or original creator. It is common practice
> in text, very uncommon with images and other media. I see the CC BY as
> complimentary to the academic effort to sustain links with the past. Public
> Domain or a derivative license of similar intent, makes allowances for that
> attribution to slacken off, and so the links with the past may fray. I
> struggle to see how attribution can be seen as a restriction. I have no
> trouble seeing how copyleft is restrictive. Attribution seems almost more a
> moral obligation, and certainly an academic best practice. So why not a
> plain old CC BY?
>

Peter

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Aug 11, 2007, 3:42:10 PM8/11/07
to WikiEducator
To get away from what seems to becoming a positional discussion. This
is what I like about David's offering (this is what I posted on his
blog);

===========
I'm going to stray from the questioning theme of the other comments
and state that I like this description. I'm still fence sitting on the
actual license...

I like this description for it is articulates the issues around an
open educational license. I may be so bold to say it is the best I
have read. Its been hard to find a good written description of the
issues within such an OER license. And finding the right balance for
open educational content licensing does seem to be hard.

I agree with the statements about Remix vs. Reuse and as an educator I
would say a 10:1 ratio of remix over reuse is correct.

I also like the comments about attribution and how this could limit
the use of materials, particularly cross-culturally...

In the end, I like how David has put this on the table. At a time
where ccLearn is being developed it may bring more views into the fold
as ccLearn (and others) mature...
===========

Cheers, Peter

On Aug 11, 6:58 am, Steve Foerster <st...@hiresteve.com> wrote:

mackiwg

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Aug 11, 2007, 3:57:17 PM8/11/07
to WikiEducator
Peter wrote:

> I'd certainly like to read Erik, Wayne and Leigh's opinion on this;
>
> http://opencontent.org/blog/archives/355

I'm with Erik on this one - we don't need more licenses. - We have
more than enough enough challenges with the existing compatibilities
without complicating this with yet another license.

A license is merely a tool used to manage the rights and usage of a
resource. It is NOT the reason why free content is important. In my
view, its more important to focus on the values and reasons
underpinning the value proposition for free cultural works - rather
than the tools we use to achieve this.

Working on an "Educational Free Content" license as a unique use case
is counter productive. By definition it will potentially create
problems when remixing with free cultural works that were developed
outside of the educational arena.

Cheers
Wayne

Steve Foerster

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Aug 12, 2007, 12:16:41 PM8/12/07
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Peter wrote:

<< I found David's argument for eliminating the attribution quite
strong. The idea that people just wouldn't consider another's work due
to cultural reasons is good. We need educational material that comes
with absolutely no strings attached. I reread Davids argument for this
and I even though that having an Sunni use a Shia's material may in
time show similarities more than differences, who knows... >>

I hadn't heard that argument either, but agree that it's compelling.


<< I'm still understanding my depth of naivety regarding pure public
domain licensing. Maybe next time I will endeavour to put some work
into a purely (international) public domain license and see how
difficult it is... >>

The public domain is different from a license. If you license
something, you're asserting copyright, then granting permission to
everyone to do certain things with your work (which things depend on
the license). When you dedicate something to the public domain,
you're not licensing it, you're renouncing copyright altogether.

The problem comes from jurisdictions that don't recognize a creator's
right to renounce copyright over his or her work. Perhaps, then, the
safest approach to this is to both dedicate work to the public domain,
and also grant permission to everyone to do anything at all with it.

But, I'm not a lawyer, much less one specializing in international
copyright issues, and in my opinion this is something where a
definitive effort to iron out legal details would be well worth it.

-=Steve=-

Leigh Blackall

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Aug 12, 2007, 5:34:16 PM8/12/07
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Those tracking the comments on Dave Wiley's blog will have noticed the suggestion to drop Education from the license and leave it as Open License with the intention being to render the PD more effective in other regions. Also, Dave has pointed out the suggestion he made to CC.org to help solve the CC BY problem relating to attribution. He wants CC.org to add a field in the web service that assists the creation of a CC BY license that enables the creator to specify attribution. While we wait for CC.org to respond to Dave's valuable suggestion, it might be a feature that Wikieducator add if we agree to enable authors to add content under CC BY.

Steve Foerster

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Aug 13, 2007, 11:29:43 AM8/13/07
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Leigh wrote:

> Those tracking the comments on Dave Wiley's blog will have noticed the
> suggestion to drop Education from the license and leave it as Open License
> with the intention being to render the PD more effective in other regions.

That might be really useful, then. I think perhaps I was distracted
by his calling it an education license.


> Also, Dave has pointed out the suggestion he made to CC.org to help solve
> the CC BY problem relating to attribution. He wants CC.org to add a field in
> the web service that assists the creation of a CC BY license that enables
> the creator to specify attribution. While we wait for CC.org to respond to
> Dave's valuable suggestion, it might be a feature that Wikieducator add if
> we agree to enable authors to add content under CC BY.

CC used to have attribution as an option rather than a requirement,
and used to have licenses that did not have BY as an element, e.g. CC-
SA or CC-ND. They discontinued that after the 1.0 series after they
found that 98% of people were selecting attribution, and they've said
they have no interest in revisiting that.

It would be nice, however, if they'd at least consider a "no rights
reserved" license that works in concert with a public domain
dedication, so that in jurisdictions where the latter isn't recognized
the former would still apply. Since I doubt they will, perhaps what
Dave's doing makes sense. It just shouldn't have the word "education"
in the name.

-=Steve=-

Kim

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Aug 14, 2007, 1:04:43 PM8/14/07
to WikiEducator
Anonymous knowledge is important. It can be well referenced. Common
knowledge. Knowledge Commons. Attribution should be optional. One can
still use CC-SA 1.0 - maybe we should start a trend in the interest of
libre knowledge. Another approach is to attach an emblem. How about
this one:

http://communities.libre.org/licenses

?

Erik Moeller

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Aug 15, 2007, 5:04:35 AM8/15/07
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On 8/11/07, Peter <praws...@gmail.com> wrote:
> I found David's argument for eliminating the attribution quite strong.
> The idea that people just wouldn't consider another's work due to
> cultural reasons is good. We need educational material that comes with
> absolutely no strings attached.

David's argument boils down to "Please use my license, because the
public domain is too complicated". If, however, his grant of license
is equivalent to the public domain, the same legal problems apply. For
example, one of the reasons CC phased out -BY as an option is that
moral rights jurisdictions made it very difficult to give up a basic
right of attribution.

When I use the PD for something I release, I simply ignore anyone who
tells me that my PD declaration is not valid. You can make PD a
reality by simply adopting it and not worrying too much about what the
lawyers think. Of course you have to rely on people acting in good
faith here, but I've never seen any real world problem with this
approach. A new license doesn't resolve the legal problems with this
type of grant of free use; it actually exacerbates it due to the
additional complexity.

When it comes to more convenient attribution, i find the provision of
a designated "Attribution Party" in the CC licenses highly useful.
This would allow us to require that all content in WikEd be attributed
to "the WikiEducator community", for instance, instead of asking that
each individual author must be named.

Currently we're not using that provision, and full author attribution
can be somewhat cumbersome indeed. Perhaps that's something worth
considering.

Peter

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Aug 15, 2007, 7:34:41 AM8/15/07
to WikiEducator
I like this reply;

"that all content in WikEd be attributed to "the WikiEducator
community", for instance, instead of asking that each individual
author must be named."

Now all I have to think about is, "Is WikiEd aligned with my values
and views toward how I want my free content released?" WikiEd becomes
the steward of my content or at least from an attribution perspective.
Therefore it is the values, culture, background, etc. of WikiEd that
is attributed to my content, not my values, culture, background, etc.
therefore eliminating the issue of my not using content created by a
republican ;) because I am using the content created by WikiEd not any
individual. I also like the content stewardship idea for it allows the
steward to set the quality baseline and have activities to ensure the
baseline is met...

Thanks Erik...

Peter

On Aug 15, 2:04 am, "Erik Moeller" <eloque...@gmail.com> wrote:

Steve Foerster

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Aug 16, 2007, 1:06:25 PM8/16/07
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Erik wrote:

<< When I use the PD for something I release, I simply ignore anyone
who tells me that my PD declaration is not valid. You can make PD a
reality by simply adopting it and not worrying too much about what the
lawyers think. Of course you have to rely on people acting in good
faith here, but I've never seen any real world problem with this
approach. >>

I agree, and that's how I approach everything I release that's not
part of a collaboration -- my public domain dedication makes my
intentions crystal clear and if you're willing to let what some
government says keep you from using that content as I intended, well,
that's your own fault.

When it comes to collaborative efforts like WikiEducator, however, I
realize there's not the same option to be so cavalier.


<< A new license doesn't resolve the legal problems with this type of
grant of free use; it actually exacerbates it due to the additional
complexity. >>

I'm not sure that's so. If a license is constructed that complements
a public domain dedication, such that either one or the other is
recognized in any given jurisdiction, it might serve a useful purpose.


<< When it comes to more convenient attribution, i find the provision
of a designated "Attribution Party" in the CC licenses highly useful.
This would allow us to require that all content in WikEd be attributed
to "the WikiEducator community", for instance, instead of asking that
each individual author must be named. Currently we're not using that
provision, and full author attribution can be somewhat cumbersome
indeed. Perhaps that's something worth considering. >>

I think that's a great idea, although if it were possible simply to
have attribution assigned to WikiEducator (or Commonwealth of
Learning, whichever makes more sense) as part of the site's terms of
service wouldn't that be better?

(As far as whether WikiEducator shares the particular values of a
contributor, I'd think the answer already has to be yes for a
contributor to be interested.)

-=Steve=-

Leigh Blackall

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Aug 16, 2007, 5:27:54 PM8/16/07
to wikied...@googlegroups.com
Erik wrote:

<< When it comes to more convenient attribution, i find the provision
of a designated "Attribution Party" in the CC licenses highly useful.
This would allow us to require that all content in WikEd be attributed
to "the WikiEducator community", for instance, instead of asking that
each individual author must be named. Currently we're not using that
provision, and full author attribution can be somewhat cumbersome
indeed. Perhaps that's something worth considering. >>

While this may simplify things, I think that this "for instance" may over look some useful aspects of more detailed attribution, such as connection with a specific contributor/s that seem to be working on a topic in a similar way to yourself.. So at the very least, I would hope that the attribution go to the page/s in question in the same way that academic referencing goes to specific pages and paragraphs. That way, if I want to follow up the history of a creation or remix, I can click the attribution, see the pages referenced, and view the history and the specific contributions made by individuals in each. Attribution to Wikied of CoL might lose this connection if I understand the suggestion correctly.

Leigh
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