Case Studies/ClearBits

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Revision as of 00:09, 20 March 2010 by Raynevandunem (talk | contribs)
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License Used
Image, Sound, Text, MovingImage, InteractiveResource, Other
Adoption date unspecified
torrent distribution


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Page Importance:
Page Quality:
LegalTorrents is “an online community created to discover and distribute Creative Commons licensed digital media”.

Our focus is on distributing content in partnership with Content Creators, and with their explicit permission. Creative Commons had already created a great structure that gives content creators the tools to specify how they want their content distributed, so it was a great fit. CC licenses also protect our users who download and share content from LegalTorrents by making sure the content they share is licensed to permit that sharing. — Jonathan Dugan


ClearBits (known until March 16, 2010 as LegalTorrents) is a community where CC-using content creators can host their works for free and engage with a vibrant community. LegalTorrents has an "Approved Content Creator Program", outlined here by Jonathan Dugan<nowikie>:</nowiki>

The criteria we use to determine who is allowed to upload is fairly simple, and driven by volunteers in the community. We want the content to be:
  • Professional quality
  • Broadly appealing, and
  • Community member requested.
There are benefits for our community members, Content Creators and for LegalTorrents by using this process. Primarily, by reviewing the content before it is uploaded we make sure, to the best of our ability, that the content is licensed for sharing. It also helps to increase the quality and appeal of the content we have listed on the site. For Content Creators, it means that their content will be listed on a website where all the other content has a similar consistency and quality.
LegalTorrents also works differently from most other Bittorrent indexes: Content Creators upload their content to the site, and we create the .torrent files automatically and host the full version, a reference copy of the content for community members to download. This makes it easier for people to just go ahead and share and think less about how it actually works, technically.

License Usage

A variety of licenses are used, including non-CC licences, depending on the content creators desire.


LegalTorrents focuses on "distributing content in partnership with Content Creators, and with their explicit permission." As such, using CC licences allowed them to utilize a pre-existing structure that gives content creators "the tools to specify how they want their content distributed."