May 19, 2022

New Report Re: Copyright From OpenMedia: “Our Digital Future: A Crowdsourced Agenda for Free Expression”

Results of a new global study from Canada’s OpenMedia online today.

From an OpenMedia Blog Post:

Citizens from across the globe want balanced copyright rules that are shaped democratically, respect creators, and prioritize free expression. That’s the message of Our Digital Future: A Crowdsourced Agenda for Free Expression, a new report launched today by community-based OpenMedia. The overall consultation process took place over 2 years engaging 300,000 people from Australia to Vietnam.

The report is being launched just days before a crucial round of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks take place in Australia. The findings come as a significant blow to Big Media lobbyists, who have been using the secretive TPP talks to ram through extreme proposals that would censor the Internet and criminalize many everyday online activities. The report finds that over 72% of respondents want copyright rules to be created through “a participatory multi-stakeholder process” in contrast to closed-door TPP meetings from which citizens are completely excluded.


The report is part of a wave of new initiatives that leverage the power of the Internet to crowdsource new ideas, with other examples including a Spanish political party crowdsourcing votes on transparency legislation, and Tunisian activists crowdsourcing a new constitution.

Key recommendations made by participants in the Our Digital Future process are:

Recommendation 1: Respect Creators. 67% of respondents in our crowdsourcing process wanted to see at least three-quarters of revenue from the sale of creative works to go directly to artists and creators. They also desire new ways for creators to share their work, flexible exemptions, and copyright rules that encourage a rich public domain.

Recommendation 2: Prioritize Free Expression. Nearly three-quarters of respondents selected “Prioritize Free Expression” as their first priority for developing more balanced copyright. Respondents proposed a four-pronged agenda, including: preventing censorship; protecting fair use and fair dealing, promoting access and affordability, and creating clear rules to govern the sharing of knowledge and culture online.

Recommendation 3: Embrace Democratic Process. Over 72 percent of respondents want rules created through “a participatory multi-stakeholder process…that includes Internet users, creators, and copyright law experts”. Respondents decried closed-door processes like the TPP, strongly preferring participatory, democratic, and transparent forums to shape rules that affect all of us.

Read the Complete News Release (Includes Comment From Cory Doctorow)

Report Resources


Creative Commons CEO Ryan Merkely Has Blogged About the Report: Our Digital Future: New report and agenda for copyright reform (via CC Blog)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.