Exclusivity

A conference I’m speaking at in October has, as part of their Web 2.0 theme, decided to start a blog. After submitting my first entry last Friday, I emailed the coordinator and asked her what their licensing was on the content. If they are retaining full copyright on all materials, then I can’t post the articles here as well. However, if they are licensing the blog entries non-exclusively, then I can.

Issues of exclusivity are what have led me to commit to self publishing my work. I want to be published, even to make money off my work, but I also want to leave it open and available for people to read. I want to give it away for free. And most publishers, when you sell your book to them for publishing, require exclusive publishing rights, which means I would no longer be able to have that work on my website. Unless a site is going to leave my work open and available for public consumption, I’m not interested.

In this case, the MITC blog is available, though they’re waiting to post my first entry until they can check with their legal counsel regarding copyright. I intend to write an article on there every Thursday (linked from here if I can’t post the full text) on the subject of wikis for the next 10 weeks or so. I’m willing to deal with an exclusive contract so long as the work stays open, but otherwise it will be here, always free, and always copyleft.

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