CoverI. Intellectual Property1. James Boyle, “The Why of Intellectual Property”2. James Boyle, “Thomas Jefferson Writes a Letter”II. Free Software3. Richard Stallman, “What is Free Software?”4. Richard Stallman, “The GNU Project”III. Open Source5. Eric Raymond, “The Cathedral and the Bazaar”6. Eric Raymond, “Homesteading the Noosphere”IV. Open Content7. David Wiley, “About the Open Publication License”8. David Wiley, “Open Content: The First Decade”V. Defining Free9. Franklin D. Roosevelt, “The Four Freedoms Speech”10. Richard Stallman, “Four Freedoms”11. Erik Moller, “Freedom Defined”12. Bruce Perens, “Debian Free Software Guidelines”VI. Defining Open13. Bruce Perens, “The Open Source Definition”14. David Wiley, “Open Content”15. OKFN, “Open Definition”16. David Wiley, “The Access Compromise and the 5th R”17. David Wiley, “Open Definitions, Specificity, and Avoiding Bright Lines”VII. Open Source Software Licenses18. GNU General Public License19. BSD License20. MIT License21. Apache License22. Comparison of Open Source LicensesVIII. Open Content Licenses23. Creative Commons Licenses24. GNU Free Documentation License25. Open Publication LicenseIX. Open CourseWare26. Charles Vest, “Disturbing the Educational Universe: Universities in the Digital Age — Dinosaurs or Prometheans?”27. History of MIT OCW28. MIT OCW Evaluation Report (2005)29. MIT Reaches OCW Milestone30. David Wiley, “OpenCourseWars”X. Open Educational Resources31. UNESCO Forum on the Impact of Open Courseware for Higher Education in Developing32. Cape Town Open Education Declaration33. UNESCO, “2012 Paris OER Declaration”34. Wiley, Bliss, and McEwen, “Open Educational Resources: OER Literature Review”35. Boston Consulting Group, “Open Educational Resources: The OER Ecosystem”XI. Open Textbooks36. Nicole Allen, “Open Textbooks: A Cover to Cover Solution: How Open Textbooks are the Path to Affordability”37. Frydenberg and Matkin, “Open Textbooks: Why? What? How? When?”XII. Research in Open Education38. OER Research Hub39. Open Education Group40. Marshall Smith, “Ruminations on Research on OER”XIII. The Economics of Open41. Yochai Benkler, “Coases Penguin, or Linux and The Nature of the Firm”42. Yochai Benkler, “Common Wisdom: Peer Production of Educational Materials”43. Yochai Benkler, “‘Sharing Nicely’: On shareable goods and the emergence of sharing as a modality of economic production”XIV. Open Business Models44. Eric Raymond, “The Magic Cauldron”45. OSI, “Open Source Case for Business”46. Various, “A Summer 2014 Conversation on Business Models in Open Education”
An Open Education Reader

David Wiley, “Open Content: The First Decade”

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The iSummit ‘08 marked ten years since the introduction of the first open content license. In this video David Wiley, the founder of Open Content, talks about the inception of the idea of open content, reviews the successes and challenges in open content over the past decade, and shares his vision of the future direction and possibilities of open content.

Key Points

Open Content emerged gradually from the fertile soil prepared by Richard Stallman’s Free Software and Eric Raymond’s Open Source movements. Wiley, while working at Marshall University and then as a graduate student at BYU, gradually realized that the ideals and principles of open source software could be applied to the world of digital educational content and, if done properly, could potentially revolutionize education as we know it.

The first step in creating open content was to create a GPL for content. Wiley set out to do this and, in time, helped create the Open Publication License which was the intellectual forerunner to the Creative Commons licenses used worldwide today.

In the last decade millions of products – including photos, music, video, and articles – have been licensed using the Creative Commons license, UNESCO has enthusiastically promoted Open Educational Resources, and the Capetown Declaration has been signed by thousands. All of this led Wiley to exclaim, “Not bad for ten years!”

Finally, Wiley outlines some problems which still need to be figured out such as licensing compatibility and defining the term “noncommercial,” and looks ahead to some opportunities, such as CC plus,  CC zero, and the concept of the Open High School of Utah (a free and completely online high school which uses only open materials, now renamed Mountain Heights Academy).

Discussion Questions

  1. What were some of the successes of the first decade of Open Content? What were some of the challenges?
  2. Besides those mentioned by Wiley, what are some other potential challenges and successes in the future of Open Content?
  3. In what ways have you personally seen the impact of Open Educational Resources?

Additional Resources


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