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Creative Commons

Page history last edited by Mike King 15 years, 4 months ago

Today’s technology makes it easy to remix and share on a grand scale. With the availability of open source shareware remix software like Audacity, MovieMaker, imovie, photostory3, ANIMINTO, and GarageBand educators can engage in the act of remixing content. These new technology tools allows an individual to remix digital content and share with millions of other educators through Web 2.0 collaboration projects like Teacher Tube, edublogs, and pbwiki. This remixing of media has created a whole new challenge to redefining district level copyright fair use policies.  Currently anything that is published on the web has immediate ownership by the creator.  


Since the invention of the printing press, there has been an ongoing debate on how copyright laws should protect individuals who produce, and wish to protect, their original work. Now, with emerging technology and the information highway, policy developers are finding it again necessary to reshape these laws to fit the copyright needs of today and, ideally, the future. In education alone, policy developers are facing challenges regarding copyright that did not exist 20 years ago, such as distance learning and software sharing remixing digital media and mashups. In these and other areas, policy developers must strike a balance between protecting the creators of original work and allowing the public to use the works in an appropriate and legal manner. Educators should be involved in the development of copyright policies. School administrators, with assistance from the school’s legal advisors, must protect the school’s right to use selected copyrighted materials for educational purposes. Additionally, school administrators must serve as advocates for copyright laws that protect the school from liability when a student or staff member is using computer resources inappropriately on school property.  


The use of technology in the school, especially the Internet, has dramatically changed the way educators gather information. This fact makes restructuring copyright regulations a necessary component for cyber security. Until the last two decades, written information mainly was distributed through textbooks and publications under the watchful eye of a publishing company. The people within these textbook companies had great influence on copyright policies; therefore, the publishers made copyright policy arrangements with the district at the time of purchase. However, today, educators and learners can often obtain educational materials directly from the creator, especially through use of the Internet. While this increases access to educational resources, it also can make people less likely to abide by copyright laws and regulations. Because of this, schools now are faced with a new copyright problem which can only be remedied by developing and enforcing a copyright policy School administrators and media specialist must outline and define how copyright issues will be applied within the school setting. 

  Creative Commons 


Creative Commons (http://creativecommons.org) is a nonprofit organization providing free legal mechanisms for learners inside and outside schools to share and remix content. A creative commons environment allows for an expanded range of creative work to be available for others to legally build upon and share. Once the Creative Commons domain has been developed it will enable content creators to grant some or all of their rights to the exclusive domain through open content licensing terms. The intention of the exclusive Creative Commons domain is to avoid the problems current copyright laws create for the sharing of information. External links with elements digital content library can then be used as live events as they are tied to a presentation to bring depth and dimension to a lesson.


See Video Creative Commons 


  Lessons on Cyber Ethics 

Luckily, the nation’s schools do not seem to be filled with cyber criminals although this does not mean that students will not be creative. To offset the negative impact of student creativity, teachers should make every effort to educate their students on the importance of cyber ethics and safety. As schools begin to utilize online learning, the development of lessons in cyber ethics and cyber security will become necessary. These lessons should emphasize the students’ role in protecting themselves, as well as their role in protecting the school’s reputation and equipment. The lessons can be designed in a cause and effect format that allows them to see these problems as relevant to their lives. To demonstrate how these lessons can be developed,  I will provided four sample mini-lessons, in the areas of cyber security and cyber ethics, that can be easily integrated into the curriculum. They were created using a simple and easy to follow format, that includes a rational, an activity description and an activity script for each mini-lessons.  


Lessons on cyber ethics can include a wide variety of topics, ranging from issues of legality to questions of courtesy. For instance, students should be exposed to lessons that emphasize consequences of copyright, plagiarism and hacking violations online. Through proper activity design and instruction, students will learn to understand that if too many unauthorized games are downloaded to the network or software changes are made without permission, the system may be overwhelmed. As a result, the network and Internet services may not be available for them to use for research the following day.  On the same note, students may be more likely to follow copyright guidelines and regulations if they too have spent time creating original work for the Internet. Through appropriately designed lessons or activities, teachers can illustrate how easily someone is able to violate another’s work. Educators agree teachers should make the online and offline worlds appear seamless if these types of lessons are to be effective. The most important factor in developing cyber ethic lessons is to teach students that the rules and laws on the Internet are the same as rules in the classroom and laws in society. 





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