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Lessig at Educause 2009: CC for science and education

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Then in 2005, we launched the Science Commons project, which wanted to focus the same kind of insight in the context of science. How do we lower the transaction cost for scientists to share their work? How do we build an infrastructure to enable that voluntary sharing? So we wanted to be part of the Open Access movement in scholarship, and an extraordinary number of journals now use our licenses, a thousand journals do make their content freely available under the terms of Open Access licenses. We then have open data project, which is more complicated, because data isn't technically, in the United States, protected by copyright, so we wanted to build a legal infrastructure, to enable any of the complexities around sharing data - these unnecessary legal restrictions that creators of data believe surround their data. And that infrastructure was a protocol, we called it CC 0. Basically, it's a simple way for creators or scientists to waive any possible right or claim they might have to this underlying data. And then to complement that legal infrastructure with a technical infrastructure to enable sharing - and we've been one of the most important forces behind the RDFa standard which, when it matures and gets embedded in the infrastructure around us, will enable a much more intelligent way for these entities to share and make knowledge accessible. And then we have extended out of the virtual world into the physical world, into the open material space, to enable stuff to be more easily shared. So we have this Material Transfer Agreement, which is like a Creative Commons license, that enables anybody in the same 3-layer to facilitate the sharing of the stuff, the mice or whatever else you're producing, without the enormous cost that are typically layered on top, of lawyers insisting upon controll of everything in the future. The aim of this project here, is simply to simplify voluntary sharing here. And one of the most dramatic examples of this is this launch of the Personal Genome project. I don't know if you know, with this project we are going to get volunteers, put them through this enormously rigorous test, to make sure they understand what they are volunteering for. You literally have to get a perfect score on the online exam that they give you. If you don't get a perfect score, you can't be considered a volunteer. These volunteers volunteer to make their gene sequence information completely available for anybody to do anything with it that they want. Now, not everybody would want to opt into this, but certain important leaders in science have done this, and more than a thousand volunteers have been cleared and not yet processed here. But what will be made available is 3 bits of free stuff things. #1: complete gene sequence for these people. #2: medical information for these people. They will give interviews that will report the whole of their medical history in a way that can be used by science. And 3: stem cells; real stem cells that will be made accessible for anybody to get access to accordint to a protocol. And all 3 of these layers are now made accessible under a CC-like infratructure. So the gene sequence is CC 0, no restriction on it at all; medical information CC 0 no restriction on it at all; the stem cells are governed by a Material Transfer Agreement that facilitates the simple sharing of this information, in a way that will explode information around this gene sequence information. Open Learn Finally, in 2007, we launched CC learn, the objective of which was to coral or herd the cats (?) of the Open Education resources movement, to hepl build an infrastructure of interoperable free educational resources, so that the ideal of Open Education, which so many in this room, I know, have taken an enormous role in helping to push, can become a reality, can become a part of education around the world, as people can take valuable resources and do stuff with it. Now, I spent this long time telling you about this enterprise, Creative Commons, because you - you geeks especially - have a critical role to play here. What you need to become is a kind of radical, militant activists in spreading the infrastructure necessary for this infrastructure of freedom to succeed. This is code for sanity. Tha's what the Creative Commons envisions, and you need to participate in building that code. Because of course, the educators or scientists have more important things to do than to worry about exactly how the RDFa is being embedded inside the infrastructure that marks their content freely, so others can share it. You need to build that, so that it's simple for them to play by the rules of the different ecology that is the norms or practices that we should be aspiring to. OK, that's changing norms and practices.

Video Details

Duration: 5 minutes and 23 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: Lawrence Lessig
Director: Lawrence Lessig
Views: 95
Posted by: calmansi on Dec 20, 2009

Excerpt from Lawrence Lessig's "It Is About Time: Getting Our Values Around Copyright Right" talk at Educause 2009, in which he presents Creative Commons projects for science and education.
For full video recordings of his talk, see by Michael Paskevicius (mpaskevicius on YouTube). This excerpt begins at 0:39:05 of the video of the complete talk (1).
This excerpt - as the whole of Lawrence Lessig's talk at Educause 2009 - is under a license.

(1) There is also a comple audio podcast of Lawrence Lessig's talk:

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