Posted on June 6, 2008 in ATJ, CC, copyright, creative commons, IP, Isummit, NTTT, Seattle Bar Camp, WSBAATJ08 by Brian RoweComments Off

Brian RoweStarting June 9th I will be working at Creative Commons as their summer legal intern. This is an amazing opportunity for me. I will be working under the new General Council Diane Peters. I will be blogging about the experience here and at the Seattle University Law PILF summer journal. I am excited about getting more hands on experience with the CC licenses and meeting more of the Copyright 2.0 community and the Free Culture community. This will be a busy and exciting summer.

Upcoming Commitments:
June 6-7th Washington State Bar Access To Justice Conference In Vancouver, WA
June 9th First day working at CC
June 14-15th Seattle Bar Camp
June 16-17th No Time to Think Conference at UW Law school and Ischool
June 18th Copyright 2.0 Tech conference at Google
July 28 – August 1st Isummit Sapporo Japan

I am sure there will be other events in SF that I will be attending. If you are aware of any I should attend feel free to email me Brian <at>

PS This is post number 200 for FFIP! Thanks You to everyone that helps make this site, this blog and this organization possible – especially those who blog, comment and contribute to the wiki.

Posted on April 1, 2008 in CC, creative commons, lessig by Brian RoweComments Off

CC has announced some major shifts in leadership today:

Lawrence Lessig is stepping down as CEO of Creative Commons. He will be replaced by entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and free culture advocate Joi Ito. Lessig will remain on the Creative Commons board.

James Boyle will become chair of the board, replacing Ito, who remains on the board.

Diane Peters joins CC as General Counsel. Peters arrives from the Mozilla Corporation, serves on the board of the Software Freedom Law Center, and was previously General Counsel for Open Source Development Labs and the Linux Foundation. She has extensive experience collaborating with and advising nonprofit organizations, development communities, and high-tech companies on a variety of matters.

Vice President and General Counsel Virginia Rutledge will take on a new role as Vice President and Special Counsel. In her new role, Rutledge will focus on development and external relations, while continuing to lead special legal projects.

These are good moves for CC’s long term sustainability. Lessig has moved his scholarship and political focus away from copyright reform and to political reform. The Change Congress campaign is the right place from him to focus. Joi Ito is well known board member of CC will easily be able to transition to ED while providing leadership from a business prospective. Diane Peters also appears to be a large gain for CC. Her commitment to open software and NPO’s should be a valuable addition to CC.

Official Press Release

Posted on March 16, 2008 in 08NTC, CC, copyright, creative commons, EFF, NTC, NTEN by Brian RoweComments Off

Check the slides out. These are the slides for my panel on copyright at the 2008 Nonprofit Technology Conference. The panel is Friday at 3:30 pm, but I am willing to talk about Fair Use, CC or Copyright at anytime during the conference.

Posted on December 16, 2007 in CC, creative commons, events, licensing by Riana PfefferkornComments Off

Last night Creative Commons celebrated its fifth birthday with an excellent party in San Francisco and several announcements. Due to the difficult acoustics situation in the venue, I was unable to hear just what Prof. Lessig was saying most of the time, and there don’t seem to be announcements on his blog or the CC website yet, so I hope I get this right – please check those sites soon for more authoritative information. (Meanwhile, here is another partygoer’s post, far more detailed than mine.)

- CC met and exceeded its goal of raising half a million dollars in individual donations by Dec. 31. It’s also just raised a massive amount of funding from other sources, as covered in the above-linked SocialMedia post. Congrats!
- CC is starting a Legal Commons (Beta), to debut on Jan. 15, with some sort of affiliation with Carl Malamud of The gist of the announcement seemed to be that all federal cases will be publicly accessible (dating back to when, I’m not sure). This is excellent news for those of us in the legal community, and, as a friend of mine commented, “It raises a big middle finger pointed directly at Eagan, Minnesota” (home of Thomson West, i.e. Westlaw). As the open access journal movement continues to gain steam, law journals that want to go open access – and their readers – will benefit from open resources such as, Altlaw, and the forthcoming Legal Commons, as they provide alternative/parallel citations to Westlaw and Lexis/Nexis. Much of the value of a law journal article is in the citations, so readers can now follow up on a citation even if they don’t have (cheap/free) access to Westlaw or Lexis.
- There are going to be new CC licensing options: CC+, which adds more rights than any CC license currently offers; and CC-0 [zero], which allows a creator to waive all rights over her work and to authenticate that waiver with a signature, in a machine-readable way. I’m not sure what the details of the CC+ license are and I hope I’m getting CC-0 right. I was not able to ask Prof. Lessig what is probably a question that has already been answered, or for which he would have a ready, detailed answer (as he usually does when asked pretty much anything, from “Hey, should privacy rights be alienable?” to questions about unladen swallows’ airspeed). My question is, What about the analog hole? This has surely come up in the context of existing CC licenses. If CC-licensed (or CC-0 rights-waived) content jumps offline, doesn’t the machine-readable license tethered to that content by a bunch of ones and zeroes become useless? Does it become, to borrow a loaded word, orphaned? I should investigate this on my own, but I address it to the Lazyweb here in the hopes that people whose minds don’t get easily distracted by DJ Spooky and chocolate cake (man that was a great party) will weigh in.
Happy birthday, CC!
UPDATE: Aha, Lessig has blogged about the party, the money, and the new licenses. Among the various clarifications of my mealy-mouthed interpretation of his announcements Saturday, Lessig says all federal case law will be free by about this time next year. Tasty.
Posted on October 30, 2007 in CC, creative commons, DRM, Magnatune by Brian RoweComments Off

Magnatune is a Creative Commons licensed music site that allows you to listen to all their music streaming online for free. If you like the music you can purchase music CD’s or download MP3′s for for a price of your choosing. Many advocates of strong All Rights Reserved(ARR) copyright claim that ARR copyright is need to help new artist make a name for themselves. Distribution models like Amie Street and Magnatune are challenging this assumption head on.

They have a portion of the site dedicated to Why They are Not Evil.

Top 5 reasons they are not evil:

  • Musicians get paid: 50% of your purchase price goes directly to the musician, not to labels and their lawyer.
  • Give to your friends: We encourage you to give 3 copies of any music you buy to your friends
  • Remix friendly: Tons of our music, acapellas and samples are available for Remixing at CC Mixter All our 128k MP3s are some-rights-reserved Creative Commons licensed
  • No major labels: we have absolutely nothing to do with major labels or the RIAA
  • No DRM: No copy protection (DRM), you can do what you like with your music, unlike iTunes and Windows-media based web sites.
  • Freedom for IP greatly respects the work done by Magnatune and encourages the development of new business models in the music industry to appropriately reflect our technologically advanced culture.

    Posted on October 24, 2007 in creative commons, IP, nonprofits, NTEN by Brian RoweComments Off

    I just finished doing NTEN’s online survey for 2008 NTC Agenda. I was surprised to not see a single topic or part of a topic that dealt with online copyright issues. When distributing information online ones IP strategy should play a central role in letting users know what they can do with your content and what happens to their contribution. SecondLife, Myspace, Wikipedia, Flickr and YouTube all have different ways of controlling and enabling distribution through IP choices.

    I would love to run a session on using Creative Commons and alternative licensing of intellectual property to reach more constituents and more people in need. Using a culture of sharing as a form of distribution can empower your IP to work for you. If you are attending NTC this year and would find a copyright session useful please let NTEN know.

    Posted on October 2, 2007 in CC, Copyleft, creative commons, Ourspace, Seattle by Brian RoweComments Off

    The talk and book signing at Third Place Books has been moved from October 27th to October 18th. The Elliot Bay event is still this Wednesday at 7:30pm, hope to see people there.

    Book Event:

    Thursday, October 18, 2007, 6:30 pm
    Talk & Book Signing
    Third Place Books
    Ravenna Third Place
    6504 20th Ave NE
    Seattle, WA 98115

    PS: The book is under an all rights reserved copyright… although one chapter is available online at the wiki. One chapter is a small step in the right direction.

    Posted on September 30, 2007 in CC, Christine Harold, Copyleft, creative commons, Culture Jamming, IP, Ourspace, Seattle by Brian RoweComments Off

    Come out to Elliott Bay Book Company Wednesday or Saturday the 27th to meet Christine Harold. We need you to help resist the corporate control of culture.

    In OurSpace, Christine Harold examines the deployment and limitations of “culture jamming” by activists. For Harold, it is a different type of opposition that offers a genuine alternative to corporate consumerism. Exploring the revolutionary Creative Commons movement, copyleft, and open source technology, Harold advocates a more inclusive approach to intellectual property that invites innovation and wider participation in the creative process.

    Christine Harold is a professor in the Department of Communications at the University of Washington. Her previous position was assistant professor of speech communication at the University of Georgia.

    Book events for OurSpace: Resisting the Corporate Control of Culture by Christine Harold

    Book Event
    Wednesday, October 3, 2007, 7:30 pm
    Talk & Book Signing
    Elliott Bay Book Company
    101 South Main Street
    Seattle, Washington 98104

    Book Event
    Saturday, October 27, 2007, 6:30 pm
    Talk & Book Signing
    Third Place Books
    17171 Bothell Way NE
    Lake Forest Park, WA 98155

    More information available at:

    PS The publisher has not returned my emails about the what copyright the book is under and why… If the publisher is holding it hostage under a full right reserved license we may need to take action.

    Posted on July 19, 2007 in ATJWeb, CC, creative commons, open access by Brian RoweComments Off

    This is a great example of how a Creative Commons License can work to enable the mission and goals of an organization.

    If you are not familiar with ATJWeb you should check it out. It is based on the Washington State Supreme Court’s order designed to increase access to the justice system by applying principles that focus technology implementors and the justice system in general on values including privacy and accessibility.

    Access to Justice (ATJ) Web seeks to help guide the development of technology to help those in need. Through the ATJ Technology Principles we can use technology to give everyone fair access to the justice system a reality in Washington State and beyond.