[cc-licenses] Defining Non Commercial/ Commercial Rights Reserved for clarity
gmaxwell at gmail.com
Fri Apr 13 19:05:07 EDT 2012
On Fri, Apr 13, 2012 at 4:24 PM, Andrew Rens <andrewrens at gmail.com> wrote:
> Proposed Definition: commercial use is the transactional use of the work;
> that is selling, bartering, or letting the copyright work or including the
> work in a paid for advertisement (and the like).
I'm not particularly a fan of NC/CRR—but given that it exists, it
ought to actually do something. For many works, a definition which
excludes distribution for the purpose of selling ads running alongside
the work would effectively moot the license, since advertising is by
far the most significant way that creative works are monetized online.
A "non-commercial" license which doesn't meaningfully prohibit
monetizing the work in all the ways someone might choose to monetize
it even absent a license really doesn't do much except impose costs
and incompatibility with the more freely licensed world.
(And, in particular—ignoring charity, advertising income is often the
only mechanism available for small-scale authors to directly gain
compensation for their work. Anyone who wants to use more restrictive
licensing under the rationale "if anyone is getting paid for it, it
ought to be me" would be a fool to not capture advertising income)
A permissive approach towards this kind of monetization may be popular
among people practicing that business, but I don't think that a
license legislated preference for the
"we-sell-your-eyeballs-not-the-book" business model is in the best
interest of the public or the authors of the works in question.
I certainly don't think that precluding, for example, small-run print
publication—like a CC-licensed book-of-the-month club—while permitting
Ebaumsworld or whatever to net hundreds of thousands in advertising
income from the work is an outcome which is desired by someone
choosing an NC license. But I believe that is exactly the sort of
effect that the 'selling, bartering, or letting' restriction has.
If you want to do something useful about commercial selling,
bartering, or letting — well, that is the kind of uses that copyleft
licenses regulate. (By forcing them to pay for their use by preserving
the freeness of the work).
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