Even though we’ve been positively bombarding you with news about open access to government of late, there have been some more particularly exciting developments that we just had to post about.
Last week the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy (DBCDE), Senator Conroy, released Australia’s Digital Economy: Future Directions, a roadmap for Australia’s digital future. This report looks at the hot topic of the current state of the digital economy in Australia – what’s happening, why it’s important to us, and how we can make it better. It sets out the essential elements of a digital economy, looks at case studies of Australian’s working in this space (including Creative Commons user YouDecide), and discusses the government’s role in creating a successful innovation environment.
The report comes out of a number of public consultation activities DBCDE ran last year, including public forums, a discussive blog and finally a consultation paper, which received over 110 submissions. This level of interactive consultation is ground-breaking for an Australian government policy process, and shows how much DBCDE is seeking to really engage with the government 2.0 possibilities of the internet. But they haven’t just stopped here. The report itself is under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works licence.
This gives researchers, teachers, public interest groups – anyone – the freedom to reuse and redistribute the report (for non-commercial purposes), making the vast amounts of information it contains a truly public resource. The report even mentions the Creative Commons licensing in its media release and includes a copy of the CC licence deed on its back page, to ensure people are well informed about how they can use the material.
But this isn’t the first time DBCDE has released a product under a Creative Commons licence. Earlier this year DBCDE quietly released a new eSecurity teaching resource, Budd:e, under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial licence. This resource provides a series of interactive education modules which teachers, parents and children can use to find out more about the how to limit their risk in the digital environment. And because of their licence, all the Budd:e materials, including games, videos, fact sheets and teachers resources, can be edited and remixed for the user’s purposes, allowing teachers and students alike to adapt the material for their own curriculum and classroom needs.
There are even clips of CCau’s own Elliott talking about copyright and safety in the Web 2.0 environment, right there for the (perfect legal) taking.
Congratulations to DBCDE for continuing to push the boundaries of e-government in Australia.