Monday, 13 July 2009

Finding Creative Commons/public domain images


Finding rights free images

My last two posts on how big cultural institutions manage their relationship with the participative web, especially around IP rights to their digital images, brings into focus the ongoing push to socialise the efforts of the the likes of the Creative Commons community, as well as public domain rights frameworks.

Creator/Curator/User
As both creator, curator, and user know, making images available ether as public domain or under a Creative Commons licence is only half the battle. Finding rights cleared images is hard, especially if you are in a hurry - don't know where to look - or, just as likely have little notion of what the fuss is about, or the distiction betwen public domain and the CC world of limited rights under specific use conditions.

Google and Creative Commons
All of which makes very welcome the annoucement from Google that they have tweaked their advanced search option to allow people to search for rights cleared images with ease. You can choose from a menu of options, including each of the CC licence types, as well as public domain. This feature is under the advanced search option of a Google search, or go direct here.

And by the by - though this is indeed a great feature, I'm a little confused here - given that choosing a CC filter was always an option, isn't the real story Google has iterated/improved the feature, not invented it?

Idee - search by colour from 10 million CC Flickr images
But if Google are doing the right thing - so too are Idee who, some time ago, developed their own database of 10 million Flickr images marked under a CC licence.

They then built their own colour filter, and made a beautiful search interface which lets you run up to three sets of colour choices - which then produces a brilliant array of cleared images which match your colour needs.

This is fantastic resource for web design - students - digital arts - whatever - and has been on my bookmarks title bar for a while now. And given recent events - I thought it was time to share. Go look - fill your eyes with colour, here

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