Efforts mount to bring Creative Commons to Hong Kong

So you're a fan of intellectual property innovation and want to bring Creative Commons to Hong Kong. What are your pitches? Exalt the free market and smear Hollywood.

So you're a fan of intellectual property innovation and you want to bring Creative Commons to Hong Kong. What are your pitches? Exalting the free market and smearing Hollywood.

Creative Commons, founded by Stanford law professor Lawrence Lessig, develops licenses that let creators allow or disallow a variety of reuses of the work. It's catchphrase, if it has one, is "Some Rights Reserved."

Will Creative Commons make it to Hong Kong? Creative Commons / Sinobyte

Teams of lawyers have adapted these licenses to more than 40 national jurisdictions, including mainland China, but the Hong Kong efforts are still under way.

Rebecca MacKinnon--an excellent media blogger, an assistant professor at Hong Kong University, and a member of CC's Hong Kong team--writes in her blog about the progress of the Hong Kong effort. She also recounts two arguments for CC in Hong Kong:

The first is from Pindar Wong, an ICANN board member who founded Hong Kong's first ISP:

...Hong Kong is one of the freest economies in the world. So let the market decide. The Creative Commons license should be there by default. Once it's there, then we can start doing things that are very interesting...This is a starting point not an ending point.

The second from Joi Ito, chair of CC's board and a longtime media blogger:

What's really a pity is that this Hollywood regime is infecting other governments into thinking that by having a strong copyright regime they will encourage the content business. When in fact by encouraging the amateur business, they may sell more video cameras and televisions and network connections and bandwidth, and we would probably make a lot more money supporting the sharing economy in Asia than we would trying to build a Hollywood inside Hong Kong.

I am a supporter (and a user, at my other site) of CC. I'm hoping it gets up and running in Hong Kong's legal structure sooner rather than later.

About the author

    Formerly a journalist and consultant in Beijing, Graham Webster is a graduate student studying East Asia at Harvard University. At Sinobyte, he follows the effects of technology on Chinese politics, the environment, and global affairs. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network, and is not an employee of CNET. Disclosure.

     

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