Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Obama's Transition Web Site Licensed to Creative Commons

The Obama Change.gov web site now permits viewers "to copy, distribute, display, and perform material from the site, as well as to remix it, as long as the work is attributed to its source" as reported in CNET News for December 1, 2008 ("Obama Team Changes Change.gov Copyright Policy"). The article notes that federal government sites are in most cases free of copyright use restrictions, so Change.gov is a bit different in that it requires attribution.

Discussion Questions:
  1. Stanford Law Professor Larry Lessig is quoted in the article saying, in effect, that crediting an information source is good practice. Why do you think he made that comment? Do you agree or disagree with his statement?
  2. Did you know that material produced by the United States government can be freely used without copyright restrictions? In this age of budget deficits and economic woes, do you think it would be a good idea for the federal government to charge use fees on goverment information? Why or why not?

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