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13 December 2011, 16:52

Public discussion for Creative Commons 4.0 begins

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Creative Commons logo The Creative Commons (CC) non-profit organisation has announced the start of the public discussion process for what will be come version 4.0 of its licence suite. For the first time in its history, Creative Commons has begun the versioning processes without publishing a draft of the new licences for review. Instead, the first drafts will be created based on feedback from the community; this is expected to close in mid-February 2012. Discussions will take place on the cc licenses mailing list and a new specially dedicated set of wiki pages.

Those behind CC say that they expect "healthy debates regarding the treatment of moral rights, the definition of NonCommercial, scope of ShareAlike, treatment of sui generis database rights, and much more." One of the most discussed and debated of these is likely to be the NonCommercial (NC) licence module, which prohibits commercial use. One proposal would add this module to a clear definition of commercial, while others would narrow the definition of NonCommercial, or eliminate or re-brand the licences "so they do not use the Creative Commons name, or otherwise stand apart". Another proposal could see one or more, but not all, of the NC licences removed from the 4.0 licence pool.

Another high priority for Creative Commons is the internationalisation of the CC licence suite. Creative Commons says that it and its licences have been too "U.S.-centric", adding that, "This adversely affects our entire community, not just CC headquarters". Because of this, in addition to translating the language of the CC licences, the local legal and cultural requirements must also be taken into account.

Other items for discussion include moral rights, attribution and marking, technical protection measures and ShareAlike. For suggestions that do not fit into an existing page and category, users can submit it to the 4.0 Sandbox where suggestions for new pages will be aggregated.

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