a shared culture

This video is a brilliant portrayal of the ideology of creative commons. I believe in the creative commons movement, and to that end, all of my photographs are marked under a creative commons license.

That being said, I think that people often take advantage of creative commons licenses. People don’t read them, corporations ignore the restrictions based on certain licenses (mine, for instance, is attribution, no derivatives, no commercial use) and freely use works that are clearly not meant for their use (which really bothers me because they are making money off of someone else’s work, but not giving back to the artist to make sure that more works can be developed).

Now, if someone asks me for permission to use my photographs in a mashup or to do things with it, all I ask for is a copy of their created work. I will usually give permission to other artists and to not-for-profits. I like sharing my work. It’s not what I do for a living, and I want others to enjoy it.

Is it idealistic to hope that others will ask permission? Or that a shared commerce is a better commerce? If someone makes a living off of their work, that’s one thing. I can understand full copyright restrictions and recommend that their works be registered with the Library of Congress (or their country’s equivalent) to protect their full rights. But if one isn’t a full-time artist, making a living from the sales of her works, what is the harm in sharing them freely?

Is it a scary proposition to share like that? Are we so commercially oriented that sharing makes us feel like we’re missing out on something or that we’re being taken?

Personally, I hate money. It’s a necessary evil, but I hate it. I wish we could barter for goods. I’ll edit your resume if you buy me a few meals. I’ll create your website for groceries. Each person gets what they need out of an exchange, and it’s a nice way to live.


  1. Carlos Lorenzo

    I couldn’t agree more with what you say about CC license. I am sick and tired of looters that publish, publicize, and get profit on people’s work without permission. There are some that get really tricky, telling you they are non-profit, they work for a magazine that is free, etc and ask you for permission to then make money out of it, you see them coming but you allow them cause they ask for your authorization. Most of the times we are too lenient cause as you so well say, we like to share, we are not going to get rich with this. But those others that take one of your pics to make the front page of their company site or print a leaflet to promote their business without your permission, those are worse and should be regarded as thieves. By the way, thanks for that beautiful write-up under the weekly pic. I really appreciate it.

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