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GNU Free Documentation License 1.3 Released

In December 2007, the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation formally decided to ask the Free Software Foundation, which administers the GNU Free Documentation License under which Wikipedia is distributed, to release a new version of the license which will allow Wikimedia to switch its content to the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike license (CC-BY-SA). The underlying motivation of this change is that CC-BY-SA is an easier-to-use license granting the same essential freedoms as the GFDL. It is also more widely used by other educational projects, and switching the license would allow Wikimedia wikis to freely share content with those projects.

We’re very pleased that the Free Software Foundation has today released version 1.3 of the GNU Free Documentation License which implements this requested change. Next, the Wikimedia Foundation will organize a community wide referendum to decide whether existing GFDL wikis should be made availabe under the terms of the CC-BY-SA license.

We are deeply grateful to the Free Software Foundation for making this change. I’ve posted a more in-depth summary of what it means on the Wikimedia Foundation mailing list, and an energetic discussion on the topic has already begun. We will post more details on this topic soon.

See also:

Erik Möller
Deputy Director<

3 Responses to “GNU Free Documentation License 1.3 Released”

  1. Hashar says:

    This is great news. This is a huge step to distributing free content.

  2. Waldir says:

    Note that the link to the creative commons blog points to the mailing list, instead of to http://creativecommons.org/weblog/entry/10443

  3. Dovi says:

    Outstanding job!

    Beyond all of the legal/technical issues, the great advantage of CC-BY-SA is really in its clarity. It helps to define cultural freedom in ways that people can understand, and thus encourage them to make their creations free to all.

    This is a great way to make the goals of open content better understood and more appealing to the public.

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