Greg Dyke, BBC:

For the first time, there is an easy and affordable way of making this treasure trove of BBC content available to all.
Let me explain with an easy example. Just imagine your child comes home from school with homework to make a presentation to the class on lions, or dinosaurs, or Argentina or on the industrial revolution. He or she goes to the nearest broadband connection - in the library, the school or even at home - and logs onto the BBC library. They search for real moving pictures which would turn their project into an exciting multi-media presentation. They download them and, hey presto, they are able to use the BBC material in their presentation for free.
Now that is a dream which we will soon be able to turn into reality.
We intend to allow parts of our programmes, where we own the rights, to be available to anyone in the UK to download so long as they don’t use them for commercial purposes. Under a simple licensing system, we will allow users to adapt BBC content for their own use.
We are calling this the BBC Creative Archive.

Danny O’Brien, Senior Britain Analyst:

The BBC’s job isn’t to make money out of ingenious intellectual property arrangements, or barging its way to take a share of a DRM-restricted viewing pot. Despite how it looks sometimes, the BBC isn’t just another Fox or Warner Bros. The BBC’s job - or part of it - is to distribute knowledge. Or, in the terms of its founding father, Lord Reith, to “inform, educate and entertain”.
[…] And there’s a really strong argument that says that once a program is made and paid for by the BBC, its primary obligation is not to obtain revenue from that creation, but work as hard as possible to make sure that everyone has access to it. The license payers gave their money to the BBC to create David Attenbourough’s Life On Earth, or Michael Palin’s Train Journeys, or Monty Python, with the express intention that they shouldn’t have to pay for it ever again. Like universities, these works were created for the public good, and should be freely given to the world.
[…] Actually, that side been a bit frustrating for me. I’ve written a couple of articles on what a great idea it would be for the BBC to open source its work - only to have them turned down by commercially-run concerns because they couldn’t possibly imagine the BBC would ever do such a thing. Give away the Crown Jewels? Preposterous!
And now they’ve gone and announced it.
[…] But this is exactly the sort of adventure the BBC should be embarking upon. Instead of moping around trying to be “competitive” with commercial interests, it should charge in a completely orthogonal direction, pumping up the public domain, spilling out information in all directions, letting nation speak unto nation, and peer to peer.


posted August 25, 2003 09:51 AM (TV) #


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