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  Why are Licenses a Good Idea for Poets ?   
                        (e.g. Creative Commons, Common Domain)

The old problem: You just discovered such a lovely poem on the web and want to share with your friends
on your favorite heathen list, forum, newsgroup or kindred. Oops, you canīt - by reposting it anywhere,
youīd violate the author's copyright. You'd have to ask her/him first for permission.

Or the other way round: Youīre the proud poet of a swell piece and want to get lots of people to read it.
You can post it on your homepage or blog (provided youīve got one) and hope someone stumbles on it;
or post it to a forumīs poetry corner. People love it, and would love to share it with their friends by posting it
somewhere else on the web. But unless they can contact you to ask your permission, they may not do that,
as it would violate your copyright. That means your poem itīs stuck where you posted it, instead of travelling freely around the globe.

Now imagine being able to let your poem travel freely round the web, from forum to forum, from list to list -
passed on by people who love what youīve writte, AND still keeping your proper copyright notice and credits,
without having to worry about losing your ownership or renown as an artist.

Thatīs what Licenses, especially Creative Commons Licenses, are there for.

You keep your usual copyright and property rights. But you entitle people to pass your work on without breaking the law -
provided they keep to some simple rules, that are stated in your License.
They have to append your copyright notice and your License (sometimes including a weblink) to your poem when they pass it on ("Attribution"), and you may additionally state that you don't want your works to be used commercially ("NonCommercial"), and/or that you don't want anyone to change or build upon your text ("NonDerivative").
Thatīs all.

You can design your own "Document License" or "Deed", you may use or modify my short alternative license which is under my poems,
or link to a ready-made professional online license, e.g. this one: Creative Commons Deed.
The two images you see above are offered by Creative Commons as a visual "shortcut" for your license.

An alternative is releasing a poem into the Public Domain.
The drawback is that Public Domain means you abandon your copyright completely,
and people may e.g. change the wording and content of the poem, and don't have to credit you as the author.

In short, a License helps:
- your poem to get around and meet people, and thatīs what you wrote it for, no ?
- to retain your proper rights and credit for your work
- and to make people happy because they can share your poem while not having to worry about breaking your copyright.

So, why not :-)?

Thanks,
Michaela

Dave Haxtonīs article about Copyright, Common Domain and Heathenry

A list of poetry on Odinīs Gift which is under a License

CC Icon 1: Licensed
CC Icon 2: Licensed