Creative Commons Summit 2018 – A Celebration of The Big Open


The annual Creative Commons summit was held in Toronto, Canada, the 13- 15 of April. The summit was sold out, and had attendants from 48 counties. 192 speakers held 110 sessions, celebrating open access to knowledge through open content. The broad engagement, for a larger collaboration between stakeholders and community members (The Big Open), was a recurring theme in both keynotes and in different sessions.  All panel sessions had members of both gender.

The large growth in the area of open content (both in in numbers, quality, participants and users) was debated.  Katherine Maher, the Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation, underlined in her keynote the dilemmas of Wikipedia’s success. Today the commercial world benefits greatly from the work done by voluntary contributors on Wikipedia. She advocated that these values where not acknowledged, nor is these values brought back to the community. The politics regarding ethics and sustainability in the relationships between open communities and commercial companies was debated in a panel session with Katherine Maher, Mark Surman - the executive director of the Mozilla Foundation, and Ryan Merkley - CEO of Creative Commons.   

The summit had a broad spectrum of themes presented. Examples of themes discussed in sessions where; Open pedagogy, machine translation of open content, open resources for underserved languages and the need for copyright reform. The underlying sentiment was the open community’s sheared opportunity to drive the movement forward, cross-pollinate ideas and expertise, and expand the impact of open licensing.