Creative Commons Class Notes

Copyright Explained

  • copy + right = controlling the rights of individuals to copy (and use) intellectual/creative works
  • Usually kick in as soon as a work is put in “fixed form”
  • “On the Internet, even the most basic activities involve the making of copies” (CC Web site)
“To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.” (U.S. Constitution)
Original length of (U.S.) copyright: 14 years after creation of work (with possibility of 14 year extension)
Current length of (U.S.) copyright:  70 years after death of author/creator

Public Domain Explained

The group of works that are not restricted by copyright.

  • copyright has expired
  • copyright has been given up by the owner
  • work doesn’t meet requirements for copyright protection (Works created by the U.S. govt., for example)

“Fair Use” Explained

NOT a law; rather a principle/doctrine

  • suggests that public should be able to use parts of copyrighted materials for commentary, satire, criticism, education
  • if copyright holder disagrees with your Fair Use claim, she can sue
  • ultimately, decisions are based on subjective opinion of judges
Validity of claim based on:
  • purpose and character
    • has work been “transformed”
    • ex: The Harry Potter encyclopedia
  • nature of the work: factual vs. fictional works
  • portion of work used (10% rule)
  • commercial impact on the creator (are they losing money b/c of what you’re doing?)
“Some people mistakenly believe it’s permissible to use a work (or portion of it) if an acknowledgment is provided. For example, they believe it’s okay to use a photograph in a magazine as long as the name of the photographer is included. This is not true. Acknowledgment of the source material (such as citing the photographer) may be a consideration in a fair use determination, but it will not protect against a claim of infringement.”

Creative Commons Explained:

Creative Commons develops, supports, and stewards legal and technical infrastructure that maximizes digital creativity, sharing, and innovation.

Marking works with creative freedoms — “Some Rights Reserved”

[When we remix/reuse/rip] we are breaking the law because the law was written for a totally different context — Lessig

“A Shared Culture”

Divorcing Remix/Reuse/Sharing/Cultural Intervention and Piracy

Further Exploration

We’re going to experiment with our own remix. I’m going to ask one of you to choose a Creative Commons image on Flickr and make some change to it. Then that person will ‘pass’ it along to the next person on the list who will also make a change. We’ll work this through the entire group, blogging and sharing each step along the way. You can use whatever you want to edit the image, Paint, Photoshop, iPhoto, even PowerPoint. Just make sure that when you save the image you save it as a .jpg or .png file (so we all can continue to work on it). We’ll pick the order for the project in class tonight. Everyone will get one day to complete their step, with the goal of having it done by next Thursday.

The Internet Archive — Class Notes

Why Do We Need the Internet Archive

About the IA:

The Internet Archive is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that was founded to build an Internet library. Its purposes include offering permanent access for researchers, historians, scholars, people with disabilities, and the general public to historical collections that exist in digital format.

Working to prevent a Digital Dark Age

What are the Challenges?

  • Getting the actual digital data
  • Reading the data, no matter what format
  • “Preserving” the data — in what format?
  • Associating meta-data with the data.
  • Building a solution to house ALL THAT DATA
  • Building an interface so that we can find/use ALL THAT DATA
  • Copyright, licensing, etc.


By placing a simple robots.txt file on your Web server, you can exclude your site from being crawled

Buckets of Stuff:

Strong emphasis on collecting work that is in the public domain or available under a Creative Commons license.

More Exploration:

  • Do the Wayback Time Machine Assignment from the ds106 assignment respository. Share your work on your blog.
  • Search the moving images, audio, text, or software repository for one source that relates to a class you’re taking right now, a topic you’re interested in, or a project/class you’ve worked on in the past. Try and find something you couldn’t find anywhere else (in other words, don’t just set out to find something you’ve already encountered or explored). Share what you found on your blog: what did you set out to look for? What did you find? Was it hard/easy? Were you surprised by what you found?

The Technology of Search

How Do Search Engines Work?

Search Engines for Everyone

Major Search Engines (Last Ones Standing):

But wait, there’s more:

Are you a Smart Searcher?

  • “” (search for exact word/words in the quotes)
  • site: (search within a specific domain)
  • – (exclude a term)
  • * (search with wildcards)
  • ~ (synonym search)
  • OR (boolean search to find one thing OR another)

What Can you NOT Find with a Search Engine?

But wait, does [insert your favorite search engine] index EVERYTHING? Or rather, has everything been indexed and made searchable by SOME search engine?

Meet The Invisible Web.

  • dynamic content
  • unlinked content
  • private/paywall content
  • contextual content
  • limited-access content (Robots Exclusion Standard)
  • non HTML/text content (how do you “index” the content of images and videos?)

RSS & Twitter (Class Notes)


A short video about RSS:

What Is RSS?

  • Rich Site Summary (RSS 0.9x)
  • Really Simple Syndication (RSS 2.x)
  • RDF Site Summary (RSS 0.9 and 1.0)
  • family of XML based web-content distribution and republication (Web syndication) protocols
  • originally imagined for syndication of news content and blogs
  • machine-readable Meta-Data (although actual content can be contained in the RSS feed)

All based on XML: highly structured markup language.
Strict adherence to structure=easy consumption

Components of an RSS Feed

  • Channel (title, link, description, image)
  • Item (title, link, description, category, comments, enclosure)

One Feed=One Channel=Multiple Items

Example of a Feed

Software/Services that can “read” an RSS feed (and deliver it to user in some meaningful way)

  • Browser/s (extensions)
  • Web services (Google Reader)
  • Standalone programs (NetNewsWire)
  • WordPress
  • Yahoo! Pipes (can be used to remix/change/add to feeds)


A short video:

  • Launched in March of 2006
  • 300 million users as of 2011

In April 2010, the Library of Congress acquired the entire Twitter archive.

Famous Tweets:

Kinds of Messages:

  • “Standard” tweets
  • @messages
  • Direct Messages

Following vs Being Followed

People can follow you and you can follow people. They are not necessarily the same.

Protected vs Unprotected Tweets

It is possible to “lock-down” your tweets, meaning that you must approve anyone who wants to follow you. When you choose this option, your tweets won’t show up in any kind of public feeds.


  • Organize activities on Twitter (#educon)
  • Have a distributed conversation around a topic/idea (#SOTU)
  • Comment upon something ironic/funny/interesting in the tweet (#Fail)

Twitter Syntax

  • @
  • #
  • //
  • [+]
  • RT/MT

Most importantly: 140 Characters

Domains, Hosts, and FOSS (Class Notes)

The World Wide Web, in Plain English (Short Video)

domain names

CC: Some rights reserved by ivanpw on Flickr

Domain Names


  • First registered commerical domain name was (1985)
  • By 1992 fewer than 15,000 com domains had been registered.
  • In December 2009 there were 192 million domain names.

Domain Name Registrars are given permission (by ICANN) to register and charge for the use of domain names.

Some domain names are restricted, for example .gov and .edu.

Protect Act of 2003 includes the Truth in Domains Act and prohibits using misleading domain names for the purpose of deceiving a minor.

web servers

CC: Some Rights Reserved by orangebrompton on Flickr

Web Hosts

types: shared, dedicated, virtual, managed, file, image, email, etc.

Operating System, Web Server Application, Database Application, Programming Environment

LAMP: Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP/Perl/Python

cPanel: A control panel for your Web space.

Components of your web space that you should know about:

  • File system (kind of like the files on your computer). Some files are public, some are not. You can browse these in your browser from cPanel
  • Databases. These live “underneath” the software you install and contain the data that the software uses.
  • Software (and script installer). You can install web applications on your server. WordPress is one of these.
  • Your domain management. In addition to your main domain, you can designate subdomains.
  • Other stuff:
    • email
    • security
    • ftp (this is a way to transfer files from your personal computer to your web space)
    • logging and stats
open source communism

CC: Some Rights Reserved by jagelado on Flickr

FOSS (Free, Open-Source Software)

Old days: Published static “pages” to the web in HTML. Uploaded lots of pages to build a site. Hand coded these pages to link to one another.

Eventually, desktop software emerges that makes it easier to manage the creation of pages.

Eventually, programming languages for the Web emerge that make it possible to create software that lives on Web servers (and, often, interacts with databases).


  • Free
  • Not necessarily developed by a company or one person
  • Often developed by hundreds/thousands of world-wide developers
  • Can be “forked”
  • Code is not only “open” (you can read it) but your allowed to edit/modify it.

 Installing and Using Your Blog