Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Yahoo launches a search engine for CC content

Yahoo has launched a search engine specifically for Creative Commons content. It's still in beta, but it already gives users the power to limit searches to content that permits commercial reuse and/or content that permits derivative works. Until now, CC's own search engine read the machine-readable CC licenses and used the resulting information to affect search results.

Also see the CC announcement on the CC blog and Lawrence Lessig's posting on the Yahoo Search Blog. Excerpt from Lessig: 'It is hard to beat the excitement of these local CC-launches. But the launch today does it. Creative Commons will be just a piece -- a component -- designed to remove the uncertainty around what creators mean. Yahoo! will gather this creativity into a community. Our component helps people be clear about the freedoms they intend to give, and the freedoms they can rely upon.'

(PS: All search engines can offer this service and undoubtedly more and more of them will. As copyright locks down more content more tightly, searchers will want reuse rights almost as much as relevance. Search engines that find both will have an advantage. Conversely, authors and publishers who consent to grant more reuse rights than fair-use alone already provides should make their consent machine-readable for the next generation of search engines.)