Genero Initiative

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Jeremy Malcolm:

"The Genero project is an effort to establish an ecosystem for production, reproduction and distribution of creative works with free licenses. It is a network of service providers connected to a federated registry where all free culture in the world can be registered in a standardized way. Anyone can become a Genero Service Provider, and provide access to this "internet of content".

They either register content with the registry, or search through the registry and copies what they want to publish. This in itself makes free culture more visible and findable by providing a common ground for all content (based on free licenses) from all over the world. That is the part of making free culture more available.

The other aspect of Genero is to enable business models for free culture. The Genero license is a commercial addition to a Creative Commons license using the CC+ framework. Instead of providing specific commercial terms, the Genero license is a basic framework that enables any kind of business model. Typical business terms are unit cost and revenue share; for example "If you sell my song, I want $2 per copy no matter what you charge"; or "you get 20% from whatever revenue, I get 80%". These business terms are standardized and machine readable. Also, the license permits mashups and re-use without prior permission, as long as parent works gets a "fair share" of any revenues. Genero provides guidelines for what constitues a fair share.

This pre-agreed standardized way of handling money makes it easier to be an artist. The artist just creates and publishes, while the Genero "internet of content" handles distribution. When the song sells, the artist gets paid. The legal hassle and friction of the permission system is gone, replaced by standard agreements much like Amazon's Click-to-accept. We also prepare for other aspects of the commercial ecosystem, such as financial and legal services."