Case Studies/Cory Doctorow
Not only does making my books available for free increase the number of sales that I get, but I also came to understand it artistically as a Science Fiction writer that if I was making work that wasn't intended to be copied, then I was really making contemporary work. — Cory Doctorow
Cory Doctorow is a Science Fiction author with a vast amount of work under his name. Cory, as a very early adopter of Creative Commons, has been producing Creative Commons licensed works since 2003 with the publication of the first CC licensed novel Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom. Along with writing SciFi, Cory is one of the editors of Boing Boing, an award wining blog covering a wide range of topics from technological gadgets, to steampunk tricycles, to current information policy debates.
Cory Doctorow's literary works are released under Creative Commons Atrribution NonCommercial ShareAlike or Attribution NonCommercial NoDerivatives. His latest work, Little Brother, has spent 4 weeks on the NYTimes bestseller list and is released as BY-NC-SA.
As a very early adopter and promoter of Creative Commons licenses, Cory Doctorow's reasoning for using them for his works is well known in certain circles. For instance, in an interview with Greg Grossmeier, community development intern at Creative Commons, Cory gave his reasoning as it relates to the type of writing he does: “Not only does making my books available for free increase the number of sales that I get, but I also came to understand it artistically as a Science Fiction writer that if I was making work that wasn't intended to be copied, then I was really making contemporary work.”
From that same interview Cory describes how he sees the relationship between the increasing role and power of copyright and the people who use those works: “As the copyright wars deepened, I really started to understand the cost of imposing a 20th century exclusive rights style copyright on individual users of works in the 21st century would lead to a dramatic decrease in freedoms that are really important like free speech, free expression, even free of assembly and freedom of the press. All of these things would come under fire as a result of the copyright wars.”
Cory's support of the CC licenses also stems from his dislike of overly restrictive forms of protection on creative works. As expressed on his personal website's bio page, written in 2006, “I believe that we live in an era where anything that can be expressed as bits will be. I believe that bits exist to be copied. Therefore, I believe that any business-model that depends on your bits not being copied is just dumb, and that lawmakers who try to prop these up are like governments that sink fortunes into protecting people who insist on living on the sides of active volcanoes.”
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