Introduction to P2P Licensing
P2P Licensing is a P2P Protocol where Peers and the P2P Networks in which they collaborate allow peers in the network, or sometimes outside the network as well, to use, re-use, or modify work products in ways that benefit the peers, the network, and most significantly the Commons that unifies the network.
Licensing as an agreement between peers
Anyone can write their own license that governs the use of their created works. Licensing has become more and more important as groups of peers work together to refine creative works in a network. Because they are collaborating it is important that the creative works are able to be modified and improved by peers in the network. In order to facilitate this practice a licensing scheme is created or used. Licensing facilitates collaboration within the network, and defines the rights of those who would wish to make use of the creative works outside the process of collaboration.
Licensing and a Commons Based P2P Network
A commons can be simply defined as the creative works of a peer network that are intended for use by all peers in the network. Licensing is the use P2P Protocol to define the use, reuse, modification, or general treatment of creative works. Licensing is a way of establishing a collaboration commons, a method and agreement about working together in a network. The creative works facilitated through this licensing scheme, then, comprise an aspect of the commons associated with the network.
Licensing and Peer Equity
Licensing can facilitate peer equity within a network. A license to use the creative works of a network can mean much more than the ability to make a copy of a photograph or a piece of software. In cases where the works of a network are digital and easily replicated licensing allows peers to work together within the network, and also to insure that they will still have access to their works when they no longer actively collaborate with the network.
In other cases licensing can allow peers in networks to continue to access physical works created within networks. Used in this manner, licensing also becomes a P2P Currency System. Some additional information can be found at Equity-based Licenses.