In a blog post published in late March by photo-sharing website Flickr, it was announced that new licenses would be available to users – Public Domain and Creative Commons 0 – and Elon Musk’s space-exploration company, SpaceX, was one of the first accounts to get on board.
Flickr’s default license when publishing media like photography and graphic design remains “All Rights Reserved,” meaning the owner of an image retains every legal right of ownership allotted him or her.
What is Public Domain?
By marking a piece of media as a part of the Public Domain, it essentially has no copyright, and is therefore “free of known restrictions under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights. You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.”
If you’re looking for rights-free images, there’s also Creative Commons Zero, or CC0. CC0 is like signing a waiver that moves currently copyrighted media into the Public Domain. It takes a piece of media with “All Rights Reserved” and changes it to “No Rights Reserved.”
The goal of CC0 is to place a piece of media “as completely as possible in the Public Domain, so that others may freely build upon, enhance and reuse the works for any purposes without restriction under copyright or database law.”
Now users have the option, or rather the right, to share their intellectual property for free. So what do these new Flickr licenses mean for SpaceX?
Outer Space is Public Domain, even without Public Access
By placing SpaceX media in the Public Domain, anyone will be able to see space from a private point of view for the first time in history.
NASA is known for keeping nearly all of its media in the Public Domain. Federal/federal employee work isn’t copyrightable.
So all that time spent on engineering and rocket science isn’t to make as much money from photos of beautiful galaxies and distant planets, but rather to educate and share the universe with as many people as possible.
Amazing outer space images are already available on Flickr and the potential of there soon being even more excites both scientists and kids who want to explore rocket science.
Tesla Motors & SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, is an architect of the future, a real-life Tony Stark, and Musk is following in the footsteps of our national space program, even though he runs a private spaceflight company. This makes SpaceX, a private for-profit company, somewhat unique and tech nerds worldwide are thankful SpaceX is now carrying the torch for space exploration.