[cc-licenses] choosing a new license at freesound, please help

Terry Hancock hancock at anansispaceworks.com
Fri Oct 27 02:38:12 EDT 2006

Bram @ Freesound wrote:
>  so, ok, I understand some of the (good) reasons to be against
>  Attribution, and even more reasons to be against
>  Attribution-NonCommercial. But, pandora's box is open, and the 822
>  people (and rising) who have submitted to freesound will want to
>  *choose* a new license for their currently Sampling+ released
>  content, and new people will need to be able to choose at least
>  between.
>  I would like to support PD, BY and BY-NC...

Quite frankly, Bram, you should use By-SA instead of By-NC.

By-SA acheives more precisely what you want, since it allows the works 
to be used in free works, but not in ones which are taken private.  Your 
objection to this, IIRC, is that commercial users might want a monopoly 
on works made with the work. But the answer to this is the same as with 
NC: they can negotiate with the author to purchase additional rights.

The difference is that non-proprietary, "free" works can use the By-SA 
content, but not the By-NC, which is basically useless (presumeably 
people aren't uploading these samples simply for self-gratification, but 
would actually like to see them used?).

You rightly observe that By-SA eliminates some of the profit-motive for 
commercial users. This is a much better way to be "non-commercial", 
because it's much more precise about what it demands, and it leaves the 
work open to use in free-licensed works (to be precise, in By-SA 
licensed works).

I concede the "derivative"/"collective" issue.  It seems like it's a 
much safer bet to assume that the samples render the work subject to the 
By-SA if the samples are so licensed (I think you should probably 
represent it this way to users of the site).

 From a business-model perspective, though, I just can't see any 
motivation for the NC licensing.  The samples you are collecting have 
very limited value as final works. Yes, I'm sure some are entertaining 
to listen to, but it's not music.  People are going to download sounds 
primarily with the intent to re-use them.  People are uploading 
primarily so their sounds will be re-used.  Hence, there's no motivation 
for a "try before you buy" strategy.

Using SA ensures that whatever the downloader makes with the works will 
need to also be By-SA, thus re-contributing to the community.  For those 
who are concerned about possible commercial uses -- well, you've already 
noted that By-SA makes "exploitation" of the works (through 
monopoly-based pricing) difficult.

And that basically accomplishes everything you're hoping that NC will do 
for you.

NC, on the other hand, won't really prevent exploitation very well, and 
it will block creative uses of the site that most users will probably 
find to be unintended consequences (e.g. the people that NC excludes are 
mainly individuals like the participants on the site, trying to create 
free content).


Terry Hancock (hancock at AnansiSpaceworks.com)
Anansi Spaceworks http://www.AnansiSpaceworks.com

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