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CC Needs Assessment Report on Public Domain Tools in Cultural Heritage Sector Unveils Key Insights

Today Creative Commons is proud to release our report on the Needs Assessment entitled Are the Creative Commons Public Domain Tools Fit-For-Purpose in the Cultural Heritage Sector?.

From 1 January (Public Domain Day) to 15 February 2022, we ran a multilingual online survey using Google Forms to share a 50-question questionnaire in English, French and Spanish. We received responses from 133 field practitioners — working in libraries, museums and archives and other areas of open culture — from 44 different countries on five continents. 

This report showcases one of the many ways in which we at CC strive to support our global Open Culture community in realizing a vision for better sharing of cultural heritage: we develop and steward a legal, social, and technical infrastructure that supports open sharing that is impactful, generative, equitable and resilient. The insights gained from this report are crucial in guiding our efforts to improve the accessibility and usability of our public domain tools for the cultural heritage community. At CC, we are committed to improving our response to the needs of our global community and supporting better sharing, and the maintenance of our licenses and tools, focused on the communities they serve, takes center stage. 

With this report, we gain valuable insight into the unique needs and challenges of the cultural heritage community with regard to our public domain tools: the public domain mark (PDM) and the public domain dedication tool (CC0).

Key findings include: 

The top reason to release content openly is to “increase the institution’s presence, visibility, reach and relevance online.”
While about a little less than a third share a small part of the collection with CC0 or PDM, only about 4% share their entire collection with either tool. 
The CC website is by far the number one source of information on CC public domain tools.
About one third do not know which of CC0 or PDM is better to use to release digital reproductions of items in collections.
72% see how CC public domain tools can make a difference in how the institution shares its collection.

We also define pathways to address those needs, with strategic recommendations to guide future actions in four steps:

Step 1: Get to know and understand our global community better
Step 2: Raise awareness, offer guidance and build capacity
Step 3: Explore legal and technical improvements to the tools
Step 4: Probe unmet needs 

With the recommendations outlined in this report, we are well-positioned to address the unique needs and challenges of the cultural heritage community, and to further our mission of promoting better sharing and equitable access to cultural heritage.


Do you also want to get involved? Don’t hesitate!

Become a member of the CC Open Culture Platform
Sign up to the CC Open Culture mailing list
Join the #cc-openglam Slack channel
Participate in CC Open Culture Platform calls — they are announced in the Slack channel and on the mailing list

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