BBC launches the Creative Archive

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Saturday, April 16, 2005

With little ceremony, one of the most innovative and radical new media projects in decades, the Creative Archive was officially launched today by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).

In partnership with the Open University, Channel 4, British Film Institute and Creative Commons, the Creative Archive will allow UK residents access to selected items from the archives of British public service radio and television broadcasting.

The Archive has been in pre-development stages for several years, and today's official launch saw the creation of the Creative Archive website and the Creative Archive License, a special copyright license developed with Oxford University and the Creative Commons project. Under the license British citizens will be able to download and modify clips from the archive without having to pay royalties.

Over the summer, the BBC will be releasing archives of documentaries, particularly from its acclaimed Natural History collection, under the Creative Archive License, while Channel 4 has commissioned a special selection of programmes which will not be broadcast, but will be available on the internet. The BFI will be releasing silent movies from the early 20th century on the Creative Archive.

Other organisations expressing an interest in the Creative Archive include Teachers' TV, the Natural History Museum and Independent Television News.