Non-Profits in the Commons Economy
The SAGE Handbook of Intellectual Property (Matthew David & Debora Halbert eds., SAGE, 2014)
20 Pages Posted: 24 Feb 2015 Last revised: 23 Sep 2019
Date Written: November 30, 2014
Protecting intellectual commons has been one of the most important goals of recent innovation and information policies. Awareness of this importance has increased dramatically because of the expanding intellectual property (IP) laws and the digital technologies that control the flow of information. Over the past twenty years, the creation of institutions and organizations, such as Creative Commons (CC) Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Free Software Foundation (FSF), and Public Knowledge (PK), has laid essential building blocks for intellectual commons as a social movement. Significantly, these organizations are primarily nonprofit organizations (NPOs). This chapter focuses on the NPOs that occupy an increasingly critical and visible position in the intellectual-commons environment in recent years. It highlights the importance of the nonprofit sectors in the digitally networked environment, a topic that has been neglected by mainstream IP and Internet law scholarship. By illustrating the role of NPOs in shaping the commons environment, this study provides a new lens through which we can better understand the intellectual-commons environment.
Keywords: Creative Commons (CC), Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Free Software Foundation (FSF), intellectual commons, intellectual property, nonprofit organisations (NPOs), nonprofits, Public Knowledge (PK)
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