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open content

Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

Open content is material, such as documents, images and audio or video presentations, that may be freely and legally reproduced, edited, excerpted, expanded and republished.

The term applies to copyrightable content that is made freely available and licensed according to permission for what are known as the 5R activities:

  1. Retain: Users may freely download, copy, store and manage the content.
  2. Reuse: The content may be reused freely, for example on a website or in a class or workshop.
  3. Revise: It is lawful to make changes to the content itself, for example reformatting or translating it.
  4. Remix: The content may be combined in a mashup with other open content.
  5. Redistribute: The content may be freely shared either in its original form or after being subjected to any permitted alteration.

Wikipedia, one of the earliest and most prominent examples of open content, makes its content available under Creative Commons licensing.

In this TED talk, Daphne Koller explains the value of making educational content open and available freely online:

This was last updated in January 2016

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