Ming the Mechanic:
Public Domain

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Public Domain2003-04-14 21:00
by Flemming Funch

I consider what I write here in my weblog to be in the public domain. I.e. anybody can copy it and reproduce it anyway they see fit. Doc Searls mentions that he wants his blog to be in the public domain. See a Public Domain Dedication from Creative Commons. The problem is that it is not as easy as one might think to put one's work into the public domain. It is not just as simple as writing a few words under one's text, or even linking to a declaration like that. CC can take you through some steps that will make it more likely that you actually succeed in putting something into the public domain.

It is pretty silly. In most parts of the world the default choice is not that creative works are shared, but that they're hidden and protected behind legal red tape. So you need to jump through some hoops just to be allowed to give your own work away. I've noticed that with my own writings. It doesn't matter how clearly I write that anybody can copy it and distribute it and use it as much as they feel like. Lots of people still think they need to write and ask for permission to use it. Publishers still send me complicated release forms, just because they want to quote something I wrote.

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20 Apr 2003 @ 19:27 by tochtli : !
man, you're my hero. there aren't many people who are willing to give unselfishly.. a pleasure to know you, flemming.  

21 Apr 2003 @ 15:17 by ming : Sharing
Thanks. Actually I don't even feel very generous or anything. I just can't at all wrap my mind around the idea that anybody should *own* words they've written. Makes no sense to me. And my reason for making all my writing, even my books, public domain is in part to minimize the amount of work I need to do to get it into people's hands. If it is public domain they can just go and download it themselves. If not, I need to answer mails giving permissions all the time, and I need to send big attachments to people, or I need to go to the copy store and copy a lot of paper. I'd much rather that it is all self-serve. That's most energy efficient.  

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