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Copyright gets creative, travels to India

india Updated: Jan 26, 2007 00:31 IST
Neha Dara
Neha Dara
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Creative Commons (CC), an international non-profit organisation which promotes a licence that is an alternative to full copyright, will launch its India chapter at the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai on Friday.

The Creative Commons licence allows copyright owners to make their work available to others so that it can be “shared, reused and remixed — legally”, while reserving only limited rights. The effort has been named Project Eklavya.

Joichi Ito, the organisation's chairman at present, will launch CC's India chapter. And to mark the occasion, cutting-edge projects of final year B.Tech students from IIT Mumbai will be made available on the Internet, free of cost.

According to project leader Prof Shishir K Jha, IIT students do a lot of pioneering work that normally languishes in university storerooms. Project Eklavya is aimed at changing that by making this work available to others who can use and build on it legally under the CC license.

Prof Deepak Phatak, who heads the Eklavya team, will release the first of these projects on Friday. The foremost among these is a virtual classroom project that Intel funded, which connects teachers and administrators to students, allowing them to stream video lectures, set assignments and grade students. A whole set of other software, such as web applications, P2P networks and audio/video applications, will also be made available for free.

One of the first tasks CC (India) will undertake is the creation of an India-specific CC license tailor-made to copyright laws here. Jha said that the current licence - written according to US copyright laws - does not take into account, for example, the broader definition of 'fair dealing' under Indian laws.

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