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Hong Kong Promotes Education, Creativity with Creative Commons’ 50th Launch Event

United States
Michelle Thorne, October 23rd, 2008

Hong Kong and Berlin, Germany — The localized Hong Kong licenses, launching October 25, will enable Hong Kong creators to clearly and legally indicate the freedoms they wish their creative works to carry. The launch marks the fiftieth Creative Commons jurisdiction to celebrate the license porting.

When Creative Commons was founded in 2001, the core Creative Commons licenses were drafted according to United States Copyright Law. Following this initiative, global interest in the “some rights reserved” approach to copyright led to the development of national versions of the Creative Commons licenses. To achieve this aim, Creative Commons International (CCi) works in collaboration with a network of legal experts and professionals to build a free, multilingual licensing system that is legally enforceable in jurisdictions around the world. Through a standard license porting process, CCi and CC Project Leads have since ported the licensing suite to fifty jurisdictions. As of July 2008, there are an estimated 130 million CC-licensed works worldwide, and global license usage continues to grow.

On October 25, the Hong Kong launch will be held during an event co-sponsored by the University of Hong Kong’s Journalism and Media Studies Centre and the Lee Shau Kee School of Creativity. Creative Commons founder Prof. Lawrence Lessig and CC CEO Joichi Ito will open the ceremony. Their keynotes will be followed by an open courseware presentation and a panel discussion about how Hong Kong can improve education and promote creativity through Creative Commons. The launch ceremony will be preceded by a performance by the Hong Kong band Snoblind, who have issued a number of their works under a Creative Commons license. After the launch, parallel sessions will showcase workshops and performances from different creative sectors, including the reading of a play, a bloggers’ workshop, a music workshop and two documentary workshops. For more information about the launch please visit hk.creativecommons.org.

Legal Leads of CCHK, Dr. Yahong Li and Ms. Alice Lee of the University of Hong Kong’s Faculty of Law, conducted the porting process and public discussion of the licenses with local and international legal experts and in collaboration with CCi. The CCHK project is hosted by the Journalism and Media Studies Centre at the University of Hong Kong, with Rebecca MacKinnon serving as Public Lead. The work of CCHK is also supported by a Preparatory Executive Committee chaired by Internet entrepreneur Mr. Pindar Wong and comprised of members from different sectors in Hong Kong such as the IT sector, education, media, the arts, and politics. The CCHK launch would not be possible without the work of many enthusiastic community volunteers.

“At a time when Hong Kong is working to improve education and strengthen our creative industries, I see CCHK helping to provide a firm foundation on which to build Hong Kong’s creative capital,” says Pindar Wong, Chairman of CCHK’s Preparatory Executive Committee. “For example, in education, where e-books can be developed and shared over the net using our licenses.”

About the Journalism and Media Studies Centre

Founded in 1999, the Journalism and Media Studies Centre (JMSC) is a teaching and research unit at The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong’s oldest university. The JMSC offers an undergraduate and graduate degree, and professional programs for working journalists and executives. The JMSC is committed to the pursuit of excellence in journalism and supporting Asian voices in the international media. JMSC’s activities, such as the Media Law Project and the China Media Project, strive to promote civil society and an informed citizenry through a vibrant and professional news media. The JMSC works in partnership with Hong Kong University faculties and departments and a vast network of professional groups in Hong Kong, China and beyond.

The JMSC assumed the role of host organization for Creative Commons Hong Kong in August 2007. The project’s Public Lead is Rebecca MacKinnon, Assistant Professor at the JMSC, while the role of Legal Lead is shared by Dr. Yahong Li and Alice Lee of The University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law. Further updates about CC Hong Kong’s activities can be found at Creative Commons Hong Kong website: hk.creativecommons.org. For more information about JMSC, visit jmsc.hku.hk/.

About Creative Commons

Creative Commons is a not-for-profit organization, founded in 2001, that promotes the creative re-use of intellectual and artistic works, whether owned or in the public domain. Through its free copyright licenses, Creative Commons offers authors, artists, scientists, and educators the choice of a flexible range of protections and freedoms that build upon the “all rights reserved” concept of traditional copyright to enable a voluntary “some rights reserved” approach. Creative Commons was built with and is sustained by the generous support of organizations including the Center for the Public Domain, the Omidyar Network, The Rockefeller Foundation, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, as well as members of the public.
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