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 
 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 

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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