Sinnreich et al. (2020)
|Sinnreich et al. (2020)|
|Title:||Access shrugged: The decline of the copyleft and the rise of utilitarian openness|
|Author(s):||Sinnreich, A., Aufderheide, P., Clifford, M., Shahin, S.|
|Citation:||Sinnreich, A., Aufderheide, P., Clifford, M. and Shahin, S. (2020) Access shrugged: The decline of the copyleft and the rise of utilitarian openness. New Media & Society.|
|Key Related Studies:|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||The study utilises Google Trends to measure public interest in open access and copyright over 15 years. Searches were conducted using 15 terms, constituting a collection of concepts closely related to the object of study (e.g. “open source”, “public domain”, “fair use” etc.). Thereafter, data was analysed using R to mediate exploratory factor analysis.|
|Data Type:||Primary and Secondary data|
|Secondary Data Sources:|
|Data Collection Methods:|
|Data Analysis Methods:|
|Cross Country Study?:||Yes|
|Government or policy study?:||No|
|Time Period(s) of Collection:||
“This article maps patterns of interest in key terms associated with copyright and online culture in the US context. Using exploratory factor analysis of data from Google Trends, authors examined patterns in keyword searches between 2004 and 2019. The data show three distinct periods of interest. The first period consists of utopian, cause-driven search terms; the second marks a rise and eventual decline in creatively motivated, maker-fueled searches; and the third is characterized by rising utilitarian and institutional interest in accessible copyrighted material. These data show empirically that the public curiosity about alternatives to strict copyright have changed during the study period. Earlier, more idealistic movements contrast with later, more practical approaches.”
Main Results of the Study
The study identifies three ‘waves’ of interest in copyleft and open access copyright models:
• Utopian Openness: First, at the advent of the digital era, terms such as ‘free software’ and ‘free culture’ emerge as copyright’s fitness is queried. This broadly correlates with the prominence of cause-driven activists, such as Lessig, and other social movements in the early 2000’s.
• Creative openness: In the second phase, searches query ‘remixes’ and ‘mashups’ as new expressive tools are made available in a networked context. This broadly correlates to the improved access to Facebook and YouTube in the mid 00’s.
• Utilitarian openness: In the most recent third wave, a more pragmatic, purposive approach is evidenced as searches focus on how creators can share their own materials through searches for ‘A2K’ and ‘OER’. The growth in interest of these terms may be related to rising industry support, such as from the Public Library of Science, and Creative Commons materials.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
The study does not offer any explicit policy implications.
Coverage of Study
|Level of aggregation:|
|Period of material under study:|