Archive for January 21st, 2009

Comparing the Fine Print at the White House and PMO Websites

Yesterday's inauguration of President Barack Obama also brought with it a complete overhaul of the whitehouse.gov site.  While there has been some media coverage of the change (including the appointment of a Director of New Media for the White House), it is worth looking at the fine print by contrasting the copyright notices found on the White House site and the Prime Minister of Canada's site.  The Whitehouse.gov site adopts the following:

Pursuant to federal law, government-produced materials appearing on this site are not copyright protected. The United States Government may receive and hold copyrights transferred to it by assignment, bequest, or otherwise.

Except where otherwise noted, third-party content on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Visitors to this website agree to grant a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free license to the rest of the world for their submissions to Whitehouse.gov under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

In other words, no copyright in the government-produced materials and a Creative Commons license that permits both commercial and non-commercial usage (with attribution) for third-party materials.  That is as permissive as it gets – no real restrictions or requirements to obtain permission, which means that the public has both access and the right to use the materials on the Whitehouse.gov site as they see fit.

Now consider the Prime Minister of Canada's copyright notice:

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January 21, 2009 7 comments News

Saunders on Tech in Canada

Alec Saunders has a trio of informative postings (1, 2, 3) that dig down into the problems faced by the Canadian tech start-up community.

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January 21, 2009 1 comment Must Reads

Masnick on the Music Industry Mindset

Mike Masnick of TechDirt reports on the music industry's mindset based on comments at the MidemNet conference in France.

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January 21, 2009 Comments are Disabled Must Reads