Photo Free-for-All: Instagram Users Adopt a Creative Commons License

By Devon Glenn 

Independently of Instagram, Philip Neustrom, co-founder of the open-source knowledge repositories LocalWiki and DavisWiki is encouraging members of the photo-sharing community to release their pictures into the public domain.

Writes Neustrom:

Flickr has something like 200,000,000+ images licensed under Creative Commons, making them the biggest repository of Creative Commons work in the world. CC work from flickr is regularly used by Wikipedia, magazines, books, bloggers, everyone! It’s downright fantastic!

Instagram gets something like 5+ million new photos a day. If we could get just a small fraction of people to agree to CC license their photos we could make a huge impact on the free culture movement.

Right now I just provide a simple way to agree to license your existing photos + photos you’ll take for the next 3 months under a CC license. I kept the timeframe 3 months because I don’t want people to forget that they signed up for this — I want this to be a really legitimate repository of free images. I’m capturing all of the Instagram API details and the API exposes most of them. Geo API support coming soon (like next week, when I have time)

A small number of people have signed up already (nearly 300 people and 1,500 photos at the time of this post). What’s interesting is that the willing participants don’t seem to care about attribution.  Take a look at this observation posted on Neustrom’s Twitter account:

If the movement takes off, those sweet, light-filtered photos will be ours, all ours.

Image by schinmm via Instagram.