This blogger previously wrote about Bassel Khartabil, a Syrian born open-source software developer, who had been detained by the Syrian government from 2012. During the first week of August it appears that his captors ordered for his execution.

Bassel’s death is a tragedy that has shaken the open access world. Creative Commons and the hacktivist world. Bassel was a pioneer and advocate for free speech, free culture and democracy in the Arab world.

There is evident outrage from human rights groups, followers of Bassel’s work as well as friends and family of Bassel at the decision to capture and execute Bassel Khartabil. But rather than shaking the foundation Bassel created his execution has simply and evidently fuelled the fire he fought for – open access by sharing culture and knowledge.

The Bassel Khartabil Memorial Fund page was created in order to push the above criteria. On the page the following is stated:

“At the request of Bassel’s family, Creative Commons has established the Bassel Khartabil Memorial Fund to support projects in the spirit of his work. Creative Commons is accepting donations, has seeded the fund with $10,000, and invites the public to celebrate Bassel’s legacy and support the spread of his work. Contributions to the fund will go towards projects, programs, and grants to individuals advancing collaboration, community building, and leadership development in the open communities of the Arab world. The fund will also support the digital preservation, sharing, and remix of creative works and historical artifacts. All of these projects are deeply intertwined with CC’s core mission and values, and those of other communities to which he contributed and who will benefit from the establishment of the fund.’’

In an attempt to honor all the contributions made by Bassel Creative Commons has begun a new initiative that deals with fellowship. Details on that can be found here.


Taken from Bassel Khartabil’s Wikipedia bio

Creative Commons Global Summit 2018

The Creative Commons Global Summit is one of the biggest events that graces the Creative Commons community every few years. The CC Global Summit is generally a collaborative, fun space for everyone and anyone interested in exploring the future of the Commons and sharing the users, creators and activists.

The past summits were held in Toronto, Canada (in 2017); Seoul, South Korea (in 2015); Buenos Aires, Brazil (in 2013) and Poland, Warsaw (in 2011). This blogger previously wrote on the 2015 Global Summit in Seoul and about how the summit was a successful one.

The 2017 Summit also went as promisingly as expected as there were problems that arose during the 2015 Summit that the 2017 Summit addressed. One of these problems included lack of financial funding of the African Creative Commons community and as a result they could not attend the 2015 Summit. The Creative Commons society provided financial funding for the delegates from Africa and Latin America to attend the 2017 Summit (making it one of the most attended summits thus far).

Among the delegates were new members, outside the Creative Commons and open access community, making the 2017 Summit a diverse one; this blogger feels like this in itself is a big success and step in the right direction for the community as it means that it is making an impact and having an outreach to individuals beyond the CC scope.

The summit also made moves at gender-balanced panels as opposed to the largely male based panels the past summits had.

The CC Global Summit returns again in 2018 to Toronto once more. While expecting delegates in the near thousand this will be the first meeting of the Global Network Council. The Council will help in determining decisions regarding the future of CC Global Summits as well as the CC community.

It will be interesting to see what new ideas will come up during the 2018 summit.


Will using an artist’s brand amount to copyright infringement

The Kenyan music scene has been running into hurdles as of late; Kenyan musicians have been speaking out against companies who have been taking advantage of them and their work. Enter: Wangechi Waweru, known by her stage name Wangechi, is a Kenyan rapper and songwriter.

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The thin line between copyrighted material and copyright infringement

The European Union (EU) Court of Justice’s ruling in GS Media BV v. Sanoma has caused a stir. The European Court Of Justice ruled that linking copyrighted material would not solely constitute to copyright infringement. Instead there had to be knowledge that those materials were copyrighted especially in the event that those works (with the accompanying link) was being published for profit.

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Delhi university prevails against copyright infringement allegations

In September 2016, the Delhi High Court found Rameshwari Photocopying Services, a kiosk inside the Delhi School of Economics, had not committed any copyright infringement against three international publishing giants – Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press and Taylor & Francis.

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Carrie Underwood’s and Brad Paisley’s copyright infringement allegations

In May 2013, two hit country songwriters and singers Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley were sued by one Lizza Connor (that is her professional name, her real name is Amy Bowen) over the song ‘remind me.’ The suit came as a shock, not just to Underwood and Paisley, but to their fans as well. Country artists are known to write the lyrics to their own songs. The fact that two of the biggest country artists (in the 21st century) were being accused of copyrighting another artist’s song raised some eyebrows.

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The end of torrents

It is reported that “the most visited illegal file sharing website on the internet, kickass torrents, took a major blow today when its founder, Artem Vaulin, was arrested…in Poland on charges of copyright infringement. Despite living in Ukraine, the (United States) is looking to extradite Vaulin back to the states where he’s charged with a criminal complaint by the U.S. District Court in Chicago.”

Continue reading “The end of torrents”