Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Free Open Access To Public Domain And Publicly Financed Artworks Is Every Citizen's Right: Let's Download Them! Italy's Creative Commons Shows The Way

If we pay our state to create public works like art, music, architecture, research, is it right that these creations are then exploited for commercial uses by a restricted few?
If through the taxes that I and you pay, the government decides to commission an art piece, major event or concert, should this event be made accessible only to restricted few while allowing private interests to profit through it (via management of sponsorships, logistics or support)?

Photo credit: Tatyana Postovyk
Should public domain artworks like music, sculpture and paintings, which are part of our cultural heritage to be made accessible only via access to difficult to reach and not-always-open museums in which we need to often pay also an entrance ticket?
Could we not have access to all of the above, for free and via the Internet, simply because "public works" and "public domain" should be in accessible by everyone?
It would seem that not only this is going to be a sacred right of any citizen, but it would be a very beneficial evolution of how we consume and give access to art and culture.

Or not?



If you like the idea that we should consume more of our original culture and less of the prepackaged one that Michael Jackson would prefer us drink, then what better opportunity do we have, than leveraging the pervasive distribution potential of the Internet, its very low costs of maintenance and setup (compared at least to the infrastructures like museums and archives) that
host today most of our valuable art?
If we could provide unlimited access to the marvelous paintings of Michelangelo and Raphael, if we could facilitate easier access and playful interaction with the great musical heritage of Verdi, Puccini, Rossini, Vivaldi and Respighi, if we could make it easy to download pictures of all the great cathedrals, fountains and palaces that our Italian centuries-old cities are filled with, wouldn't we create a much greater opportunity for our young generation to appreciate and learn from all such beauty?
If taxpayers money could allow for maximum access and fruition of all this art, knowledge wouldn't society benefit at large?
If taxpayers money supported the financing of movie, radio programs and podcasts, events and whatever else facilitates greater accessibility to this wealth, rather than wasting hundreds of millions of euros for pathetic TV shows and films that are not only uneducational but which are often restricted to only adult audiences, could we gain something as a society?

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posted by Robin Good on Wednesday, March 16 2005, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.




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