I'm sure you've all heard by now, cause the internet's abuzz, but just in case - the Wikimedia<http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Home> community has officially voted<http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Licensing_update/Result> to add a Creative Commons licence to all their wikis. The Attribution-ShareAlike<http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/> (BY-SA) licence, to be exact.
This is possibly the biggest Creative Commons development since it launched in 2002, and great boon to the free culture community. As I pointed out in my previous post<http://creativecommons.org.au/node/231> on the vote, what this means is that the Wikimedia wikis will now be dual licensed under both BY-SA and the GNU Free Documentation Licence<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_Free_Documentation_License> (GFDL - which Wikimedia currently uses), giving people moving material to and from the wikis the ability choose which licence they want to use. This means that the 6 million+ articles available on Wikipedia<http://www.wikipedia.org/> and Wikimedia's other wikis (including Wiktionary<http://wiktionary.org/>, Wikinews<http://www.wikinews.org/>, and Wikiquote<http://www.wikiquote.org/>) will be able to be more easily combined with the 160 million+ works that use Creative Commons licences. This is the result of a lot of effort by Wikimedia, the Free Software Foundation<http://www.fsf.org/> (who manage the GFDL) and Creative Commons, which involved amending licences, public consultation, and finally a vote by the Wikimedia community about whether they wanted the change. This vote<http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Licensing_update/Result> ended yesterday and came up heavily in Creative Commons' favour, with 88% of people with an opinion voting to add the BY-SA licence (10% of voters said they didn't have an opinion). The vote's decision was then approved by the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees and confirmed in a press release<http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Press_releases/Dual_license_vote_May_2009> last night, which quote CC's founder, Lawrence Lessig, as saying: [Free Software Foundation President] Richard Stallman's commitment to the cause of free culture has been an inspiration to us all. Assuring the interoperability of free culture is a critical step towards making this freedom work. The Wikipedia community is to be congratulated for its decision, and the Free Software Foundation thanked for its help. I am enormously happy about this decision. Hear hear from CCau! Jessica Coates Project Manager Creative Commons Clinic Queensland University of Technology ph: 07 3138 8301 fax: 07 3138 9395 email: j2.coa...@qut.edu.au
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