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July 21, 2008's licensing is naive and a deterrent

The hot topic today seems to be Some people are dropping Twitter in favor it. I was even inspired to join today but now I wish I didn't. I won't use it in its current form.

Currently, you must agree to license everything you share over it under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0. Evan Prodromou from did state on today's Gillmor Gang, this is something that will change in the future and that users will be able to choose their licensing but until this is done the service shouldn't be taken seriously.

Don't get me wrong. Creative Commons licensing is great and I do license some content I create using it. However,'s forced CC licensing is a huge deterrent for me and it should be for you too.

Heck, I can't even upload an avatar of myself! I don't have a photo of myself that I took and I'm willing to Creative Commons license. Surely, I shouldn't upload a photograph of myself that was taken by another photographer....I don't have the right to license their work under Creative Commons! This is something you have to think about when you upload your avatar too.

Even put photographs aside since the service doesn't seem to give you a way to upload and share files yet but it seems that this is planned based on the wording on sign up. Currently, you're going to be licensing everything you share through under Creative Commons if you intended to or not.

Ok, I get that is a new service and there are a lot of things left to complete but to force this extreme licensing now, which cannot be revoked, is ridiculous. Allow the publishers to reserve and retain all their rights until there is more granular control. Of course, if someone wants to Creative Commons their work they're still free to do so. Forcing it on people isn't really giving users the fair experience that is claiming they are.

For now, I'm sticking with Twitter. Follow me there.

Posted in Politics & Law , Twitter , Websites & Cool Links by usrbingeek at 2008-07-21 15:21 ET (GMT-5) | 1 Comments | Permalink


fair enough, though I must say that I don't like it because it's really no better than twitter, because it has all of the same flaws, it's just implemented differently.

when you licensee a work with one of these CC lisences, you're giving away rights to a specific instance, and to other people. As the holder--presumably--of all the rights to a photo, you're never restricted by the same terms that people using the CC work are. That is, unless you're a contributor to a collective work, in which case, as a contributor you can only resilience your specific contribution. Which makes sense.

And I think if you licensing your avatar under CC you're only licensing those 100x100 pixels, using anything more than that would still be infringement? I mean this is sort of an artifact of the idea that copyrights cover "things" (the text of a book, the data in an image, the reproduction of a sound recording/the lyrics/tune) not "ideas" (the story, the visual concept, the performance).

Posted by: tycho garen at July 21, 2008 04:36 PM

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