Thursday, June 15, 2006


My response to David Wiley on CC-NC:

This article seems to still take the point of view of republishers or educators.

The greatest beneficiaries of open access will be students and learners - people who want to read or use the materials in order to learn, not people who want to republish them for their own personal gain.

It is true that most corporate - and even some non-profit - entities won’t use material stamped with a ‘NC’ clause. Big deal. Who cares?

No student working on their own, blogging content, creating mash-ups, or sharing files would ever confuse themselves with a commercial entity, and no such student would be deterred by the ‘NC’ clause.

We don’t need to know exactly where the fine line is. The important thing is to get out of this producer-consumer mentality. CC-NC is about sharing in a non-commercial community, a network of learners, not content producers.

This, in my view, is the big danger of relying on publishers and industry in general for any aspect of open access and open learning - the danger of becoming bogged down in conditions and arguments that revolve around their needs and interests, the danger of turning what should be free into something that is (in perhaps everything but name) a commercial enterprise.

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