Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Media The Internet Your Rights Online

BBC Creative Archive Based On Creative Commons 263

Posted by timothy
from the way-to-go dept.
powcom writes "The BBC appears to be delivering on its promise of releasing its material to the public - they're modelling their licensing on Creative Commons. Lawrence Lessig is very excited and so I imagine, will a lot of other people be - rightly." This brief article also mentions yesterday's release of Creative Commons' 2.0 licenses -- well worth reading about.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

BBC Creative Archive Based On Creative Commons

Comments Filter:
  • BBC viewpoint (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Space cowboy (13680) * on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @03:59PM (#9261765) Journal

    For those that don't know, and are therefore probably thinking "How the hell can they give it all away for free", the BBC is funded by everyone in the UK who has a TV paying a yearly fee (104 I think - I pay 8/month by direct-debit until it's paid). From the last figures I can find (on the admittedly licence-fee-hostile CAL site [spiderbomb.com]) the BBC has 2.8 billion pounds per year running costs ($5,000,000,000, give or take...)

    There are lots of people in the UK who object to paying for the licence fee (I'm not one of them), most of whom (in my opinion) want the same quality of service (or better ;-) without having to cough up the cash. Given the advantages (the BBC documentaries and wildlife programs to name but two would probably not get made in a more commercial environment) I'm fairly happy paying 8/month. Given that I'll happily blow 50 on a night out (pub & meal), it seems like good value to me...

    And then of course without the constant need to please the paymasters, you can get this sort of benevolence (although I'd be willing to bet when the details come out that re-broadcasting is limited :-). You also get more (IMHO) objectivity. I trust the BBC far more than I trust most news organisations, foreign or domestic - there's a tradition of honest portrayal of news that places it up amongst the best, a tradition it lives up to, at least more often than most.

    • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:3, Interesting)

      by grahamsz (150076)
      I do wonder what sort of DRM they'll use.

      I know they've been involved in trials of ogg vorbis, but it seems unlikely that anything which has commercial value will be released drm-less.

      The BBC bring in a lot of money by licensing shows to foreign broadcasters; however most of this probably comes from current shows, so their back catalogue may not be so valuable.
      • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:07PM (#9261847)
        I think it's unlikely the BBC archives will use DRM at all. How could they? What would be the point of releasing under a Creative Commons licence but then slapping Digital Restrictions Management all over it? Sort of self defeating.

        Lets also not forget that the BBC is funding development of a wavelet CODEC, which it has released as OSS via. Sourceforge. I don't think they could aim to be more open, frankly.
        • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Linus Torvalds has said they Linux should support DRM. It's useful in situations where - for example - you've a net cafe and you don't want people to be able to overwrite or read the machine.

          Creative Commons licences have rights associated with them, and so DRM could be used. Now, DRM doesn't (and maybe can never) understand when a user should be permitted by law, but consider a DRM where it allowed everything but logged a history of the file.

          DRM is mostly stupid, but it's not always.

          • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:5, Interesting)

            by Bruce Perens (3872) <bruce@perens.com> on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @05:48PM (#9262805) Homepage Journal
            It's useful in situations where - for example - you've a net cafe and you don't want people to be able to overwrite or read the machine.

            That's not what DRM is for, and DRM is not usable for this purpose. You are thinking about the privilege mechanism, which has been in Linux from the earliest days.

            consider a DRM where it allowed everything but logged a history of the file.

            It's not possible to both allow everything and enforce logging.

            Bruce

        • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:3, Informative)

          by DerekLyons (302214)

          I think it's unlikely the BBC archives will use DRM at all. How could they? What would be the point of releasing under a Creative Commons licence but then slapping Digital Restrictions Management all over it? Sort of self defeating.

          No, it's not self defeating. Creative Commons is *not* OSS, not free as in beer, nor free as in air. Creative Commons licenses frequently require attribution, and may or may not allow derivative or commercial usage. DRM is not incompatible with this.

      • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Kegster (685608) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:08PM (#9261858) Homepage
        If they are making the archive available in a lossy format then this shouldn't be too much of a problem really.

        Broadcasters who want to use BBC content are going to be wanting broadcast quality media, which effectively means mpeg2 (mpeg4 isn't quite there yet), as will anyone who wants a decent copy for home.

        Or they use a dual-licensing apporach, a la MySQL,
        one license if you want broadcast rights, or a higher quality, and a Open type license for personal use?

        Is the text of the license they are proposing available anywhere?
        • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:5, Insightful)

          by grahamsz (150076) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:19PM (#9261942) Homepage Journal
          My point is that there'll be less incentive for a US network to purchase Red Dwarf and fill it full of commercials, if it's possible to download it off the net.

          In that vein they'll probably want to restrict it to british citizens or even just british license payers, otherwise they'll be paying for bandwidth to reduce the value of their international resale rights.
          • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:5, Informative)

            by afidel (530433) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:36PM (#9262076)
            Well if the beeb is interested in reselling the work all they need to do is distribute it with a Non-Commercial Creative Commons license and no one will be able to make money off of distributing it. Sure the audience might be somewhat lessened by those people who download the episodes and refuse to watch the ad filled version but I don't think it would have a huge affect. Btw there is no Creative Commons license that would allow restriction to a particular class of recipients, in fact such a license would be very much against the spirit of creative commons.
          • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Alby (755413)
            Because of course, it's currently totally impossible to download episodes of Red Dward from the 'net.

            --
            Alby <alby@bleary-id.co.uk>

    • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Ithika (703697) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:02PM (#9261804) Homepage
      Excellent points, but to further what you said about trustworthiness... When they have been under suspicion (Andrew Gilligan, "sexed up" dossiers, etc.) they were remarkably objective about their own (mis)deeds. I think any other organisation would have a) attempted to ignore their own part in the proceedings, or b) editorialised when they should have just been reporting.
      • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:2, Interesting)

        by TopShelf (92521)
        Someone on NPR used that same argument for how democracy should more reasonably be promoted in places like Iraq - not so much that America and other democracies are perfect, but that when mistakes are made (i.e. the recent prison scandal), they are dealt with in an open and public way.
      • I think they had to be objective with their self analysis. They risk losing the renewal of their charter if they upset enough people and I think they already feel like the ice is a bit thin in places.
    • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:4, Insightful)

      by mccalli (323026) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:06PM (#9261836) Homepage
      Given the advantages (the BBC documentaries and wildlife programs to name but two would probably not get made in a more commercial environment)...

      This used to be true, but it seems to be getting more and more commercial now. the "Walking With..." set of series, for example, seemed to be geared for DVD sales right from the beginning. The programming is now plastered with adverts....for the BBC. And the children's programming in particular is just smothered with markerting tie-ins.

      No, I'm afraid I believe the BBC is becoming more commercial all the time, and I resent and object to that. I don't begrudge them the license fee, but I do begrudge them using that to push their tie-in products.

      Cheers,
      Ian

    • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      For those that don't know, and are therefore probably thinking "why didn't he put currency symbols in front of the amounts", Slashdot takes upon itself to delete several useful symbols, including the sign for UK Pounds (and Euros too). One pound is about $1.80.

      The cost is a little higher than the parent poster stated, at 121 pounds per year, which corresponds to $218 at the current exchange rate.
    • by RidiculousPie (774439) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:26PM (#9261995)
      Further information on running costs is available in this document [adobe.com] (Starting at about Table 14) and this document [adobe.com]
      According to the second document licence fee revenue is 2,659million pounds.
      License fee information on the bbc website [bbc.co.uk]

      TV Licensing Website [tv-l.co.uk]

      To summarise:
      Standard license fee is 121 pounds(colour television)
      Black and White Television is 40.50 pounds
      Registered blind people can apply for a discount of up to 50%
      People over the age of 75 do not need a license
      • by BlightThePower (663950) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:31PM (#9262036)
        I can never decide if the discount for the registered blind is:
        1. Almost comical tight-fisted meanness
        2. Scrupulous fairness
        3. Because sound is 50% of the broadcast
        (do registered deaf get 50% off though? No, IIRC).
        • What about the fact that blind people pay less for black & white TVs than colour?

          I'd guess that the registered blind with TVs can generally see well enough to watch them. You're considered blind if your vision is insufficient to be able to function in everyday life; you may be able to see well enough to watch TV even if you couldn't see well enough to cross the street safely. People whose vision is too bad to enjoy TV probably listen to the radio instead of having a TV.
          • The BBC produces a number of channels of radio programming [bbc.co.uk], the most notable of which for an international audience is the BBC World Service, which has some excellent global news coverage. All of this would be extremely useful for a blind person.

            As an Aussie, however, my favourite is the Ashes on Test Match Special [bbc.co.uk], where you can learn about all the lovely English ladies who bake the commentators delightful sponge cake for afternoon tea and, incidentally, follow the cricket.

    • Re:BBC viewpoint (Score:4, Insightful)

      by laigle (614390) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:30PM (#9262027)
      I just wish I could get the same quality programming in the US for the much higher price we pay. Ah, the joys of the free market.

      And by free market, I mean a tiny group of collusionary, racketeering, megalomaniacal jerks who bribe Congress to stifle any form of competition so they won't get their comeuppance for the miserable job they do.
    • by OECD (639690)

      Odd line from TFA:

      By applying a CC-type license to the content, the BBC will enable individuals in the UK to download released content to their computers, share it, edit it and create new content.

      "In the UK"? Will there be different restrictions for the rest of us?

  • I wonder (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tebriel (192168) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:00PM (#9261782)
    Will being a permanent member of the "external consultative panel" for the BBC change Lessig's views on anything? Will this be a paid position?
  • this has to be... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by zeruch (547271) <zeruch@@@deviantart...com> on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:01PM (#9261787) Homepage
    ...one of the better pieces of news in a while. I have generelly held the Beeb in high regard, not just for it's programming, but it's business practices. This seems to hold true.
  • by mobiux (118006) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:02PM (#9261798)
    We get it for free because they pay thier yearly tax.

    I just wish I could get the BBC america channel at home.
    • We get it for free because they pay thier yearly tax.

      How long will this last. The BBC supplying to the world with only the Brits paying for it. I would guess they would give it to the Brits at no cost but charge everyone else.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        As a licence payer, I really don't mind. Hey, we've already paid it, it's there, why not just let everyone else enjoy it as well? What benefit is there in locking it away? I don't gain anything!
        • As a licence payer, I really don't mind. Hey, we've already paid it, it's there, why not just let everyone else enjoy it as well? What benefit is there in locking it away? I don't gain anything!

          I like your thinking but I was just trying to make my comment like a businees in the business of making money would think.
      • by tjwhaynes (114792) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:26PM (#9261999)

        How long will this last. The BBC supplying to the world with only the Brits paying for it. I would guess they would give it to the Brits at no cost but charge everyone else.

        The Beeb is making a fair amount of income from other sources. Take a look at TLC in the US - all of their top-ranked shows are under license from the BBC, from Clean Sweep to Trading Places. Then there are DVD and other media sales. PBS channels purchase shows like "Life Of Mammals" and comedies. The Beeb gets advertising revenue from the channels with commericials. The BBC is far from a licensing-fee-only company.

        Cheers,
        Toby Haynes

      • How long will this last. The BBC supplying to the world with only the Brits paying for it. I would guess they would give it to the Brits at no cost but charge everyone else.

        It works both ways. I'm a Brit, living in Britain (or Britland as Dubya would say). Some years ago I wrote to NASA's public relations people asking for some information. By return of post, at no cost to me and sent by airmail, came a large envelope full of stuff.

        AFAICT, both NASA and the BBC take the view that the material has al

      • We don't get it for free. We either have to pony up for their region 1 DVDs, or pay extra to subscribe to BBC Canada/America. For me I would have to pay CAD$15/month on top of my cable bill to get digital cable, buy or rent a digital cable box, and then pay more to get the channel. I objected to paying CAD$75/month when all I was watching was TVO (also available over the air), CBC (also available over the air), BBC Canada and BBC World. Now I don't pay for any of it... it's only TV after all ;)
    • by Roland Piquepaille (780675) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:14PM (#9261905)
      We get it for free because they pay thier yearly tax.

      And we over here get to read your post on the DARPA-created Internet because you pay your taxes. Everybody in the world eventually contributes something to everybody else.

      Anyway, thanks.
      • Yes, but now the DARPA have finished developing it each country is paying their own share.

        Thankyou DARPA for the funding and early development, very essential.

        But now DARPA contribute no more to the internet than Marconi or Farnsworth do to programme broadcasting.

        Unlike the BBC which develops programmes using UK license-payers money to then market abroad.

        Sam
    • *cough* (Score:5, Interesting)

      by BlightThePower (663950) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:41PM (#9262113)
      Paul Gerhardt, Joint Director, BBC Creative Archive explains: "We want to work in partnership with other broadcasters and public sector organisations to create a public and legal domain of audio visual material for the benefit of everyone in the UK."

      Don't see you mentioned there I'm afraid. We accept cash, VISA and Mastercard though.

      But seriously, my feeling is that this isn't over by a long chalk yet. Wait until the tabloids (esp. the Daily Mail) find out about this. If as you say it ends up with programmes we pay for being made freely available around the world (heh, not that the BBC World Service doesn't already do this on the radio) there will be uproar. Now we may joke about these fuddy-duddies in the shires, but "Middle England" is very good at turning out to vote, so their views carry disproporitonate weight for this reason (hunting with hounds anyone?). Theres a section of British society that doesn't like the license fee in the first place and will be out to cause a stink the next time the charter is up for renewal anyway.

      Believe when you see it is what I'm saying.
      • Re:*cough* (Score:3, Informative)

        by isorox (205688)
        not that the BBC World Service doesn't already do this on the radio

        Funded from the foreign office, not the license fee. World TV (as well as the BBC branded foreign channels, BBC America etc.) is funded by advertisers. BBC Prime is funded by subscription.
    • Get what for free? The archive will only be available to UK ADSL/Cable subscribers, the BBC can do this because almost all of the ADSL and cable providers do private peering with the BBC (they have one hell of a network). Other than the limited world services, people outside of the UK get little.
  • The Beeb (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Cally (10873) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:02PM (#9261805) Homepage
    For all it's miriad faults (Sue McGregor springs to mind, Libby Purves, John Waite, Noel Edmonds, most of BBC1 these days,... uh, that's a longer list than I was thinking of ;) the BBC is still one of the few things that give me any feeling of pride in the institutions of this country. I won't go so far as to say "proud to be British" - patriotism just isn't sportsmanlike IMHO.
    • Patriotism (Score:3, Funny)

      by UdoKeir (239957)
      Here's a few quotations to be going on with:

      Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it.
      ~George Bernard Shaw

      PATRIOTISM, n.
      Combustible rubbish read to the torch of any one ambitious to illuminate his name.
      In Dr. Johnson's famous dictionary patriotism is defined as the last resort of a scoundrel. With all due respect to an enlightened but inferior lexicographer I beg to submit that it is the first.
      ~Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dicti
  • by k4_pacific (736911) <{moc.oohay} {ta} {cificap_4k}> on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:03PM (#9261808) Homepage Journal
    Cable news channel MSNBC announced today that they will be releasing their archives under the Windows XP EULA.

    • Which one, the original or SP1 or SP2's EULA, they seem to have changed quite a bit, but i suppose the original EULA has something along the lines of "By agreeing to this EULA, you also agree to any future modifications to this EULA, which may be performed with notifying you , at any time in the future."
      • Such an EULA is not legally binding. Contract law is based around the idea of two parties mutually agreeing on specific terms. Neither party can change those terms without the other's agreement. Clauses such as the one you mentioned are simply invalid, since they violate the idea on which contract law is based.

        You should take that with a grain of salt though, as IANAL.
        • There is a question whether a EULA relates to a sale of goods. If it does and the Uniform Commercial Code applies, then, perhaps, EULAs are considered as proposals for addition to the contract formed at the time of sale of the goods (i.e., the software) and become part of the contract unless rejected. See UCC 2-204 [cornell.edu] and UCC 2-207. [cornell.edu]
    • Cable news channel MSNBC announced today that they will be releasing their archives under the Windows XP EULA.

      great something else to click through
  • Good news (Score:4, Insightful)

    by N3koFever (777608) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:04PM (#9261814)
    It's good news if they do this. Their shows (especially comedy) are probably the best in the world and making them available to anyone who wants them is great, especially for people who live in places where they can't see them usually. One of the advantages of having a publicly funded non-commercial TV network I guess.
    • Don't get too excited...

      Just in case the announcement is unclear. This proposed CC-style license is for UK residents only.

      Historically, in the UK, if you owned a television you were legally obliged to have a Television License - the current cost is approximately 80 pounds sterling per year. Even if you didn't watch any BBC channels you were still legally obliged to purchase a license, so since the work of the BBC has technically always been owned by UK Citizens it will soon be made available to those

  • NPR Public Content (Score:2, Interesting)

    by beatleadam (102396)
    The BBC appears to be delivering on its promise of releasing its material to the public - they're modelling their licensing on Creative Commons.

    I continue to be very excited about this type of content release and especially in the case of the BBC so that all the Monty Python will be available.

    I know here in the states we have NPR's content [npr.org] available for listening and download so how are these two institutions licensing different?
    • by Gorath99 (746654) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:40PM (#9262106)

      I continue to be very excited about this type of content release and especially in the case of the BBC so that all the Monty Python will be available.

      Though I would love to see that happen, I don't think we'll ever see Monty Python released this way, as the BBC doesn't own the series. The Pythons themselves do.

      See here [bbc.co.uk] for more.

    • by interiot (50685)
      NPR's policy on copyright peeves me so much. I pledge money to them every year, so I get to freely listen to news programs over the radio. Yet if I want a permanent copy (often only available in propietary formats like Real no less), I have to pay extra [audible.com] for it. I can't put my finger on exactly why, but it really seems like NPR should have lead the OSS revolution, producing open content even before Richard Stallman did.
      • by beatleadam (102396)
        I can't put my finger on exactly why, but it really seems like NPR should have lead the OSS revolution, producing open content even before Richard Stallman did.

        That is my point exactly and I agree with you.

        Perhaps it is this: If NPR releases content (i.e. it airs on the Radio) to the public anyways where if you had any recording device you could copy it for free, why on Earth if I am to download and copy it or record it "legally" do I have to Pay for it?
  • Creative Commons! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Lorenzo de Medici (774505) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:05PM (#9261823)
    The Creative Commons license brings licensing to the masses. As an independent filmmaker, I am so overjoyed to be able to have websites such as Magnatune [magnatune.com] where I can find decent artists who want exposure for their music, something some of my films can provide. At the same time, I get good quality audio for my films. They win. I win. It's a wonderful thing.

    To anyone who has not explored the CC licences, I highly encourage them to check it out [creativecommons.org] and learn about this really cool license.

    Also, I didn't notice any really significant changes in the 2.0 licenses. Did anyone catch something blaringly obvious that I missed?

  • So, would this be the same BBC who force us to load proprietary and intrusive software (RealPlayer) in order to listen to their audio streams? The same BBC who "tried" Ogg Vorbis streaming for three weeks before quietly shelving it? The BBC who have never offered MP3 streams?
  • by List of FAILURES (769395) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:09PM (#9261861) Journal
    Precedent like this by such a well respected and very tasteful organization is sure to bolster support for the Creative Commons style of licensing. One of the best, but most downtrodden traits of humanity is the capacity for sharing. Certain, mentally ill segments of our civilization are striving to keep what last tight grips they have on anything of value. They think only of themselves and their immediate needs rather than thinking of us as a collective and the legacy that we may leave behind with a more open approach. I applaud the BBC and it's efforts to show the world that it is possible to embrace sharing as a good thing for creativity. I berate everyone else who believes that keeping something completely to themselves is good in any way. Go ahead and become Gollum, if that is what you wish. The rest of us will leave you behind.
  • Alternative Business (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bludstone (103539) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:09PM (#9261863)
    Im curious.

    Does this mean independant people can take these sources, remaster them, and release them on dvd for a fee?

    Let me take a step back for a second.

    Sometimes I picture what it would be like if the current copyright laws were re-written so that ownership only existed for, oh, 15 years. Would a new set of industries pop up that release shows on various media formats?

    For example, one company could be comitted to getting the content to you in the most inexpensive way possible. Another could be obsessed with video quality and extras (read: fanboys and their tv shows) and other such developments; they would charge a larger fee. Not to mention "fan sequals" and indy spinoffs.

    I see a great potential for a new market emerging from releasing open content like this.
    • Creative Commons != BSD License Not sure about the exact line between becoming sued and not, but it seems pretty clear to me that the original author still owns the work. But maybe you can get paid for the cd and possibly for creating it/buring too.
    • by P-Nuts (592605) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:40PM (#9262103)
      Does this mean independant people can take these sources, remaster them, and release them on dvd for a fee?

      RTFA:

      By applying a CC-type license to the content, the BBC will enable individuals in the UK to download released content to their computers, share it, edit it and create new content.
      Commercial reuse of the content will not be allowed.

      So it sounds like the for a fee bit wouldn't be permissible.

    • Sometimes I picture what it would be like if the current copyright laws were re-written so that ownership only existed for, oh, 15 years. Would a new set of industries pop up that release shows on various media formats? For example, one company could be comitted to getting the content to you in the most inexpensive way possible. Another could be obsessed with video quality and extras (read: fanboys and their tv shows) and other such developments; they would charge a larger fee. Not to mention "fan sequals"

  • Yaaaaaawn (Score:3, Funny)

    by Roland Piquepaille (780675) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:09PM (#9261866)
    yesterday's release of Creative Commons' 2.0 licenses -- well worth reading about.

    on a rainy day.

    /me goes back to blog...

  • by xlyz (695304) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:28PM (#9262011) Journal

    BBC is not the only state owned, fee financed media company

    Italian RAI [www.rai.it] is in the same situation and has an impressive archive as well

    looking forward to re-installing my video editing software :)
    • The BBC isnt actually state owned, its owned by a private Trust and given a Government Mandate to allow it to collect a license fee for TVs. The government actaully has minimal say in the running of the BBC, much to the current governments dislike.
      • by ctid (449118) on Thursday May 27, 2004 @03:24AM (#9264818) Homepage
        The government actaully has minimal say in the running of the BBC, much to the current governments dislike.

        Don't forget the dislike of the previous government. And the one before that. And the one before that as well. One of the best features of the BBC is that it contrives to be disliked by *every* government, *and* by whichever party is in opposition. They must be doing something right.
  • by SsShane (754647) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:32PM (#9262044)
    I want mah Doctor Who!
  • That I can finally rewatch "Are You Being Served?" which played on my local PBS station until the video tapes fell apart?
  • GNU FDL (Score:4, Informative)

    by Henrik S. Hansen (775975) <hsh@member.fsf.org> on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:37PM (#9262089) Homepage
    The GNU Free Documentation License [gnu.org] should also be considered for any kind of free document. Although it is modelled for documentation for programs, it could really be applied for most things.

    However, the GNU FDL has had some controversy within Debian, who have considered moving works licensed under it to the non-free section. Of course, this has undergone Much debate [google.com], with Richard Stallman under heavy fire.

    • The FDL is a PITA (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Goonie (8651) *
      I'm a contributor to the Wikipedia, which is licensed under the FDL. As such, I've seen a lot of debate about the license. In my opinion, while the intention is fine, the specifics of the text make it unsuitable for anything except software documentation. It is too long and complex, with too many over-specific provisions, many of which are designed around the assumption that it will be used for documentation.

      It is my belief that if the Wikipedia was restarted from scratch, it would probably use the Crea

  • Excellent (Score:4, Informative)

    by locarecords.com (601843) <(moc.sdroceracol) (ta) (divad)> on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:38PM (#9262094) Homepage Journal
    This is really good news and I am very pleased that a public sector company like the BBC should seek to do this. That they have used Creative Commons licenses is very interesting considering they are based on US law (and the UK ones are still under development) but still I am sure they have enough copyright lawyers should they need to sort something out.

  • by JessLeah (625838) * on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:38PM (#9262097)
    I just wanted to point out that "Creative Commons" is a singular entity, despite the fact that it ends in the letter "s". Therefore, it is "Creative Commons's" license (or whatever), not "Creative Commons'" license (or whatever),
  • by otisaardvark (587437) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:43PM (#9262125)
    This is exactly fulfilling the remit of the BBC, and demonstrates perfectly why most Brits are happy paying the TV licence fee. The Creative Commons style copylefting is a wonderful touch, and shows how "in tune" the BBC is to the mood of the public.

    Nevertheless, there are important financial considerations which we should not overlook.

    It seems to me that concerns about bandwidth and lucrative overseas syndication deals will probably mean that "direct" access is limited to UK addresses (at least initially). Despite this, licensing revenue will inevitably decline. Combined with the decrease in income from DVD sales, and the phenomenal cost of digitizing, hosting and maintaining the archive, this probably adds up to a significant licence fee increase. This is on top of the additional fee already imposed for digital viewers.

    Politically, many in the government want to punish the BBC for its relentless Iraq questioning. However, Tessa Jowell, the minister in charge, has made encouraging noises. I have a great deal of respect for the BBC, but I sincerely hope (and unfortunately doubt) they can justify their "techno-edge" spending in a potentially politically hostile climate when their Charter comes under review in 2006.

    • I'm sure that the BBC can kill two birds with one stone by colocating Akamai style media caching servers in the UK ISP's datacentres. Not only would this create great speed increases and reduce bandwidth charges, I'm sure the beeb could swing it so that they just pay low colocation fees and only a token amount for the bandwidth since it's just shuttled about within the ISP's own network.

      It would make it far less likely for widespread overseas downloading to happen and the broadband providers would not only
  • by subVorkian (138658) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:54PM (#9262195) Homepage
    The CBC should follow the lead of it's older, wiser brother.


    This was found at: http://archives.cbc.ca/info/281g_en23.shtml

    CBC staff from coast to coast to coast have online access to RADIOLA material through CBC's Intranet. This makes it much easier to incorporate old programming into new coverage -- when reporting on the history of a conflict, say, or the death of a national figure.

    It's sad that only insiders at CBC have access to electronic copies of content. The have locked down their listening formats using commercial streaming products (RealAudio, QuickTime & Windows Media). This makes it difficult to record or re-use content streaming from CBC.

    It's sad because this content is tax-payer funded. It also makes personal recording impossible or at best illegal.

    I really think CBC should follow the BBC.

  • by FirstTimeCaller (521493) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @04:54PM (#9262202)

    What about us over here in the USA? We like Monty Python as much as the next bloke! When do we get our hands on the free BBC archives?

    Don't make us come over there and liberate your asses!

    • Don't make us come over there and liberate your asses!

      *Has a mental image of a yank wandering around London randomly pulling down people's trousers*

      *shudder*
  • I just checked the website and there is absolutely nonews on the bbc's own website about the new archive.

    What an irony that the bbc doesnt carry up to date news about itself.

  • BBC archives (Score:3, Informative)

    by curator_thew (778098) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @06:25PM (#9263129)

    The BBC has 85km of shelves, which translates very roughy (digitised at 25 Mb/s) to 200 TB/km => 17 PB. This is an overestimate for us, because not all our shelves hold video, and we have spare copies and VHS 'browse' copies. But it gives a round number: 10 PB for the BBC archive, and similar sizes for other major European broadcast archives.


    (from: http://www.archive.org/iathreads/post-view.php?id= 15550)


    [can someone calculate how many "cisco-minutes" or "internet2-minutes" that is?]

  • by gylz (550104) on Wednesday May 26, 2004 @08:16PM (#9263918)
    Its interesting to note that making the archives accessible to the public is actually part of their Royal Charter Agreement [bbc.co.uk]:
    The Corporation shall make reasonable arrangements, itself or with such body or bodies as it chooses, for public access to its sound, television or film archives with or without charge as the Corporation thinks fit.

    They could have chosen to charge for access to the archive, regardless of whether you`re a license payer or not. They didn`t of course because they have always been one of the few truly altruistic corporations out there. Hats off to the Beeb and to prof. Lessig for being such forward thinkers I say!!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 27, 2004 @05:51AM (#9265212)
    It looks as if they are going to start with releasing clips (see here) [bbc.co.uk], however if I understand things correctly they may expand to full programs later on. Also interesting is this article [bbc.co.uk] which hints that the service may be available to everyone.

FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse using ad hoc techniques. -- D. Gries [What's good about it? Ed.]

Working...