Open Source Media Definition

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Matt: (from the A Swarm of Angels project)

"These are three proposed states for open media, each building on the next:

Open (O-): The baseline, concerned with freely consuming and sharing the content (1-3)

Open source (O): Being able to view and remix the source files (1-5).

Open Plus (O+): The ability to participate in a transparent, documented process (1-8).

  • 1. Freely accessible

Available to stream, or download without a fee. Should be available via direct download and P2P media, so it is not behind a gateway.

  • 2. Freely available.

Permanently available without DRM, or release windows. The end user able to share the work without restriction.

  • 3. Freely viewable

Available in multiple formats, and to be converted freely (in the case of video works, for example, as dvd, xvid/divx, mp4, and HD formats).

The above qualities are essential for open content. Open source content adds to the cultural commons by making creation of new content from the work.

  • 4. Giving source files

Source media, such as rushes and raw graphics files should be archived and available for other creators to work with.

  • 5. Allowing remixing

Materials should be licensed explicitly to allow derivative work (eg. other works based on the script, or video mashups, and remix edits) for at least non-commercial/artistic purposes. Creative Commons and other licenses are available for flexible copyrighting.

Open Plus adds more opportunities for participation and involvement in the work whether as a creator, or as part of what used to be called ‘the audience’.

  • 6. Reveal the process

Allowing access to not only the final source media, but work-in-progress material and software files, adding another layer of transparency and documentation.

* 7. Open contribution

Adding ways to influence and participate in the creation of the original work through various types of community/audience involvement (opportunities such as open crewing, direct feedback or contribution mechanisms)." (

More Information

  1. Open Movie