Give something from the heart to the public domain

The team at Creative Commons wants you to share a creation to the Public Domain as a show of support for openly sharing content.
62 readers like this
62 readers like this

Did you know that most of the articles published on are licensed under Creative Commons BY-SA 4.0?

One of the biggest reasons our editorial team decided on this license over 10 years ago is because we support the idea that the best content is shared content. As we strive to be open, our goal is for any many people as possible to have access to the information we're putting out there to support our mission to help others learn and grow and to explore new open source worlds.

So, what does this have to do with Valentine's Day (or Friend's Day in Finland)?

The team at Creative Commons wants you to share a creation to the Public Domain as a show of support for openly sharing content. It could be an image, song, artwork, poem, GIF, research paper... the list goes on! But "why?" I hear you asking. What's so special about the Public Domain? Well, did you hear about Nathan Evans's rendition of the sea shanty song "The Wellerman" that went viral? Here's what Creative Commons CEO Catherine Stihler had to say about it:

"It is important to note that this flourishing creative scene is only possible because sea shanties are in the public domain—not under restrictive copyright rules. Therefore, they can be played, reused, dueted, remixed, and transformed. This, combined with the internet, means a postal worker in Airdrie can reach a global audience within seconds. Thanks to emerging technologies and social platforms, the public domain can both enable creativity and benefit from it with the invention of new works that are also free of copyright restrictions. (The hope is that these new works are put back into the public domain!) This expressiveness in new works and collaborations is bringing joy and uplifting our spirits as we continue to face daunting challenges."

So, I'll add a twist on their Valentine's Day challenge: If you want to share something you've created but aren't sure about going totally Public Domain, check out the other options for licensing from CC BY to CC0. And to lower the bar even more to entice you to join in: You don't have to create something new, right now. Search through your archives for something you created last year or five years ago, and give it new life today with a new license.

  1. Find the thing you want to share
  2. If it's not already, prepare it in digital format
  3. Select the place you want to share it to, like the Internet Archive, Flickr, etc.
  4. Upload and append attribution including "Public Domain" or other Creative Commons open license

I'm a plant person, so here's mine!

If you aren't in the creating mood but want to find some great CC-licensed content, use the tool. Then, take a peek at the best way to give credit back when you use what you find.

Virtual high-fives and sweet treats from our team to you and yours!

What to read next
Jen leads a team of community managers for the Digital Communities team at Red Hat. She lives in Raleigh with her husband and daughters, June and Jewel.

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Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International License.