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Commons News

Open Access Week Launch of CoursePacker.org

Written by Kent on 23rd October 2013

In celebration of Open Access Week, Creative Commons Canada is pleased to announce the launch of a new tool to help bring open access scholarship and research into the classroom. Coursepacker.org allows educators to easily and automatically take care of the necessary steps to create a class coursepack. Educators can simply upload academic articles and our platform handles the table of contents, attributions, license notices, page numbering, formatting and distribution.

By enabling educators to easily put together their own coursepacks through a combination of Creative Commons works, works available through university library site licenses, and articles reproducable under fair dealing, CoursePacker.org allows students to obtain their course materials for no additional cost than what they already pay to the library in their annual student fees.

We hope this tool can play an important part in preventing students from paying twice for the same academic materials. Many university bookstores presently license coursepack materials through a per-page fee to Access Copyright; however, such course pack materials are often already available and fully paid-for under a library's digital subscriptions, under Creative Commons open access licenses, or under fair dealing copyright laws. Our entirely-digital platform brings materials directly to students without any unnecessary course-packing or photocopying fees. Students can view the materials directly on their laptops and e-readers, or, if they wish, they can print out the materials for merely the reproduction fees (in most cases doing so is permissible under educational or private-study fair dealing rights).

New Open Access Policy for NSERC, SSHRC & CIHR: Draft now Open for Comments!

Written by Kent on 17th October 2013

Earlier this week, the three major Canadian research funding agencies released a new draft for a harmonized open access policy amongst the three organizations. Once finalized, this policy will apply to all researchers who receive a grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), or the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

The proposed policy will advance important rules to help ensure that publicly-funded research in Canada is both accessible and beneficial to the public. Foremost, the rules will require researchers to make their results openly available within one year of publication.

Creative Commons Canada highly commends this step in furtherance of shared and accessible research in Canada. The draft policy is available here and we encourage all of our CC supporters to take advantage of the consultation period, providing feedback on the present draft to openaccess@nserc-crsng.gc.ca before December 13.

Introducing the Creative Commons Canada Advisory Board

Written by Kent on 7th March 2013

Creative Commons Canada would like to extend our warmest of welcomes to our newly-formed advisory board! Our call for applicants was a huge success, with our decisions between many outstanding candidates coming down to choosing representatives who cut across the diverse sectors and geographical regions which Creative Commons aims to serve.

We are pleased to welcome back several familiar faces who have excitingly accepted to serve on our board in this new capacity. Our Advisory Board includes former Creative Commons project leads Andy Kaplan-Myrth and Olivier Charbonneau, as well as former volunteer and Montreal salon-organizer Celine Celines. Joining them are Ariel Katz, Ashwin Kutty and Brian Lamb:

Ashwin Kutty is a Professor with the Faculty of Health Professions, the Faculty of Computer Science, and the Faculty of Management at Dalhousie University. His research interests are currently in the fields of Leadership, Social Interaction & 21st century Management, supervising research for the likes of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Government of Canada, Health Canada, etc.

He currently works with Capital District Health Authority, as a Program Manager for the Addictions & Mental Health Program, as well as a District Manager with the eHealth portfolio. He is also the owner of WeUsThem Inc., a consulting think tank in the fields of Marketing & Communications, Public Relations, Change Management, Strategic Management, Industrial Design, to name a few with clients such as the Government of Egypt, Government of Guyana, Halifax Regional Municipality, Xerox Canada, Wilson's Fuel Co. and the Kempinski Group. His community engagements include being on the Board of the Victorian Order of Nurses delivering much needed programs & services to the community while providing sound business advice as a Business Advisor for the Entrepreneurs Forum. [Further details]

Olivier Charbonneau is an Associate Librarian at Concordia University. He is primarily interested in copyright issues as well as questions of open access and social media (Web 2.0). He is a doctoral student at the Faculté de droit, Université de Montréal. He has over 15 years of professional involvement in library and cultural communities. He holds two masters degrees from Université de Montréal, one in information sciences and another in law, as well as an undergraduate degree in commerce from McGill University. He has kept a research blog since 2005 in French at www.culturelibre.ca and a work blog since 2011 in English at OutFind.ca. [Further details]

Andy Kaplan-Myrth is a policy advisor in the Digital Policy Branch at Industry Canada and a member of the team that developed and is implementing Canada's Anti-spam Legislation. Andy was called to the Ontario Bar in 2005 and managed the Law & Technology Program at the University of Ottawa until 2009. He enjoyed his role as a Project Lead for Creative Commons Canada so much that he wanted to stay involved on the Advisory Board. When Andy isn't fighting spam or promoting Creative Commons licences, he is busy raising his three wonderful kids in Ottawa.

Ariel Katz is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Toronto, where he holds the Innovation Chair in Electronic Commerce. Professor Katz received his LL.B. and LL.M from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and his SJD from the University of Toronto. His general area of research involves economic analysis of competition law and intellectual property law, with allied interests in electronic commerce, pharmaceutical regulation, the regulation of international trade, and particularly the intersection of these fields. Between 2009 and 2012 Professor Katz was the Director of the Centre for Innovation Law and Policy. Prior to joining the University of Toronto Professor Katz was a staff attorney at the Israeli Antitrust Authority. While there, he litigated several merger appeals and restrictive arrangements cases before the Antitrust Tribunal and negotiated regulatory settlements. Professor Katz currently teaches courses on intellectual property, cyberlaw, and the intersection of competition law and intellectual property, and shares some of his current thoughts on these issues on his blog. [Further details]

Céline Semaan Vernon (on the web known as CelineCelines) is a web-native designer, skilled in many aspects of design: human behavior, interaction design, information architecture, content strategy and visual design. She can make magic happen digitally (in all these web-related roles) and physically (as an event promoter/coordinator). She loves and supports Open culture, Open Web Standards, Creative Commons and the Open web.

Celine was born in Lebanon, grew up in Montreal, studied in Beirut and Paris, and specialized in Inter Media and Cyber Arts in Montreal. She worked in New York and has been involved in promoting Creative Commons in Lebanon and Montreal. Being part of many cultures and a mix-marriage of many languages, she is always an ambassador of story-telling every where she goes. Her artist name is celinecelines because she believes that all of us are many people living in one, and we can do many things, and have many different destinies. She loves people, and is very passionate about freedom and culture. Her goal is to facilitate and give the opportunity for people to cultivate their positive destinies and inspire social innovation and progressive change. Recently launched her fashion line mixing Open Data and Fashion under the brand slowfactory.com

Brian Lamb is the Director of Innovation Open Learning at Thomson Rivers University. He has founded some the earliest campus services for blogs and wikis. He authors the weblog abject.ca.

The Open Government Licence and What It Means for You

Written by Kent on 21st December 2012

The federal government recently released a draft version of their long-expected Open Government Licence -- Canada (OGL-C), which will soon apply all government data available through the federal data portal at ">data.gc.ca. This licence includes some welcome improvements over the existing one, including some notable steps to align it with Creative Commons licences and the Creative Commons vision of openness.

Interacting with Consumers Through Creative Commons Licensing

Written by Abhishaek on 15th November 2012

Creative commons licensing is seemingly become more prevalent in mainstream works. One of the more recent examples being video hosting powerhouses "Youtube" and "Vimeo" incorporating the licensing scheme into their video publishing. The incorporation allows users to more freely edit/remix videos. Further, Vimeo allows its users to even search videos specifically by their creative commons license. YouTube has also provided for easy licensing of uploaded videos which makes content sharing more accessible to users of the site.

Open Call for the Creative Commons Canada Advisory Board

Written by Kent on 2nd October 2012

Creative Commons Canada and its affiliate organizations, Athabasca University, BCcampus, and the Samuelson Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC), invite expressions of interest from individuals for placement on the inaugural Creative Commons Canada Advisory Board.

The purpose of the Advisory Board, which will be founded on knowledge about key sectors and stakeholder community groups from across Canada, is to provide guidance to Creative Commons Canada on its operations and future development.

Creative Commons Salon Vancouver - October 15th

Written by Kent on 2nd October 2012

A large part of the origins of the Creative Commons license was the artistic sector. Join our panel of practicing artists who will share how and why they chose to use Creative Commons licenses for their works, and discuss the changing landscape of creative practice, intellectual property and participatory culture.

This is the second in a series of salons across the country to raise awareness of the potentials of the Creative Commons and to celebrate the re-launch of the Creative Commons Canada affiliate,

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