The rapid growth of digital technologies over the last decade has led to a revolution in the creation and dissemination of knowledge – a revolution that has created unprecedented challenges for copyright law. The ‘all rights reserved’ model of traditional copyright law, with its complex legal concepts and requirement for permission for even the most common and non-controversial of uses, does not fit well with an environment which both enables and requires reproduction and communication on an unprecedented scale. From a legal perspective, one of the most significant responses to these changes has been the development of new licensing systems designed to open up access to and use of protected material. These ‘open content licensing’ (OCL) models preserve the creator’s intellectual property rights whilst giving permission in advance for the content to be used more broadly than would be permitted under default copyright law. The most popular and widespread of these licensing models in relation to creative material is Creative Commons (CC).
Unlocking the Potential Through Creative Commons: An Industry Engagement and Action Agenda evaluates and responds to the outcomes of this Forum and presents a strategy for continued research into Creative Commons in Australia.