Book launch of ”The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture”, Brussels, June 18th, 18:30-20:00

On Monday, June 18, MEP Amelia Andersdotter, along with her colleague MEP Ioannis Tsoukalas, is inviting you to attend the launch of the book ”The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture”, edited by Melanie Dulong de Rosnay and Juan Carlos De Martin as an output of the Communia Thematic Network.

The book is under a CC Attribution license and the PDF can be downloaded here.

”The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture”
18 June 2012
18:30 – 20:00
European Parliament, Brussels, ASP Main Hall
(Ground Floor, in front of the Newspapers Quiosque)

18:30 Welcome: MEP Amelia Andersdotter
18:35 Introduction: MEP Prof. Ioannis Tsoukalas
18:45 The Digital Public Domain – presentation by editors: Melanie Dulong & Juan Carlos De Martin
19:00 Q&A and Discussion / Cocktails
19:45 Closing remarks: MEP Amelia Andersdotter

If would like to attend the event and require access to the Parliament, please register with before June 14, indicating your full name, date of birth and ID number.

More information on the book can be found on the Communia Association’s website.

Link to the invitation on Amelia Andersdotter’s blog.

Edit on 14 July 2012: a video interview of Anne-Catherine Lorrain, Juan Carlos De Martin and Melanie Dulong de Rosnay during the book launch event is available on YouTube. Thanks to Amelia Andersdotter’s team members Julia Reda, Edvinas Pauza and Tess Lindholm.

Sharing the COMMUNIA Thematic Network’s Final Report

We are glad to announce that the COMMUNIA Thematic Network’s Final Report, as approved by the European Commission, is available online:

The Report of the eponymous Thematic Network provides a basis for action taken up by its successor, the COMMUNIA International Association. The document is depicting a wide range of issues and is proposing answers to crucial questions:

The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture

The book “The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture”, edited by Melanie Dulong de Rosnay and Juan Carlos De Martin as an output of the Communia Thematic Network which took place between 2007 and 2011 and is at the origin of Communia Association, is out in all formats (hardback, paperback, and digital editions) and can be purchased on the website of OpenBookPublishers.

book cover The book is under a CC Attribution license and the PDF can be downloaded here: The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture

Citation reference: Melanie Dulong de Rosnay, Juan Carlos De Martin, (eds.), The Digital Public Domain: Foundations for an Open Culture, Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK, 2012, 220 p.

This book brings together essays by academics, librarians, entrepreneurs, activists and policy makers, who were all part of the EU-funded Communia project. Together the authors argue that the Public Domain — that is, the informational works owned by all of us, be that literature, music, the output of scientific research, educational material or public sector information — is fundamental to a healthy society.

The essays range from more theoretical papers on the history of copyright and the Public Domain, to practical examples and case studies of recent projects that have engaged with the principles of Open Access and Creative Commons licensing. The book is essential reading for anyone interested in the current debate about copyright and the Internet. It opens up discussion and offers practical solutions to the difficult question of the regulation of culture at the digital age.

NEW: Policy recommendations postcards

At the occasion of the 1st Digital Agenda Assembly and the corresponding launch of the COMMUNIA Association, the COMMUNIA Association has published a set of 14 postcards with 14 policy recommendations. The policy recommendations have been drawn up by the members of the COMMUNIA project and they serve as guidelines for the works of the new COMMUNIA association.

The recommendations adress a range of issues that are relevant to the protection and strengthening of the (digital) public domain. While the policy recommendations have been drawn up with the European policy framework in mind many of them are more general in nature.

With the postcards we hope to bring attention to the role of the public domain in the digital environment and encourage participants of the DAA and Europeana policy makers to take concrete steps in safeguarding and strengthening the Public Domain. The postcards provide concrete recommendations many of them tied to issues that are currently on the European Digital Agenda such as access to orphan works and access to Public Sector Information.

communia postcards

The policy recommendations are aimed at European policy makers and the postcards will be distributed during the 1st Digital Agenda Assembly. The postcards combine the the policy recommendations with reproductions of 14 artworks that are in the Public Domain. A pdf file containing all 14 postcards (front-side only) is available here and PDF files of the individual postcards are available on the policy recommendations page.

The Public Domain Manifesto

Developed within the COMMUNIA network during the last two years, we are pleased to announce the official launch of The Public Domain Manifesto. The document outlines a series of general principles (opening with: the Public Domain is the rule, copyright protection is the exception), then addresses various issues relevant to today’s cultural landscape finally provides some recommendations aimed at protecting the Public Domain and ensuring that it can continue to function in a meaningful way. While these recommendations are applicable across the spectrum of copyright, they are of particular relevance to education, cultural heritage and scientific research.

The Public Domain as aspired to in the Manifesto has a broad range to include cultural material that can be used without restriction, in the absence of copyright protection; shared material released under alternative licensing options such as Creative Commons licenses; and a variety of fair use and “open access” policies. These sources need to be actively maintained in order for society to reap the full benefit of our shared knowledge and culture, even more so with the wider penetration of digital technologies. It is therefore our hope that The Public Domain Manifesto will be embraced by the civil society at large as a tool to maintain and promote this precious common goods for citizens across the world and for future generations to come.

The document is available in several languages and includes a list of initial signers (both individuals and organizations). Everyone is encouraged to sign it.