Thursday, January 21, 2010
"Frangible Translucency" & Creative Commons
This is the first time I've resorted to utilizing Creative Commons licensing, which is unique opportunity for artists to take advantage of and is a way to circumvent the problematic restrictions of traditional copyrights. It's a good example/theoretical best-case scenario in illustrating exactly what the underlying philosophy of this model is set up to accomplish: I needed an image of high-contrast, well-defined ice crystals, and after a perfunctory Google Image search, this turned up - and rather than just swiping the file and potentially run legal afoul of copyrights, I was able to incorporate the source material guilt-free. Well, almost; remains to be seen if bastardization of someone else's art is much appreciated...
The particular photograph of ice crystals was registered by Helen Filatova under the "Attribution-Share Alike" program, which specifically accommodates free usage to remix and adapt the original source image. Hence the details of both a fine-print credit line for the print version (including the appropriate symbol in the copyright line) + due credit with linkage on the web-version.
While I'm still not entirely sure the complex relationship between "... fair use rights, or other applicable copyright exceptions and limitations..." and how it dovetails with the legal clusterfuck between the newspaper's first-time publishing rights and my own as the feature's creator - this is still a very interesting system that merits support. In this way it promotes creative expression through the encouragement of these open licensing systems.
And let's hear it for technology: after finishing this cartoon and while posting it here, I typed up "translucency" in the title frame - going off the spelling used in the cartoon - and discovered (again) why everyone needs an editor, at least to spellcheck.