We write to express our support for the BBC Creative Archive, and our concerns relating to its implemention.
As artists and students who rely on a broad and accessible public domain for our work, we welcomed Greg Dyke's August, 2003 commitment to take "a massive step forward in opening our content to all - be they young or old, rich or poor."
As students of the arts we do not possess the resources available to those in the commercial field. The ability to draw on the vast British cultural heritage contained in the BBC's archive, as well as to create entirely new works utilising the archive, would be an enormous boon. When a resource such as this is locked up by financial and technological restrictions, the artistic opportunities available to us are dramatically reduced.
With its unique funding arrangements, the BBC is in a position to contribute an enormous portion of our cultural heritage to the artistic communities in Britain.
We are concerned, however, that this opportunity may be lost by the restriction of the archive, and access to it, in the following ways:
o If the costs for access to the archive, both in terms of payment for use of content and in terms of the process of obtaining the content, are too high, groups such as ours will see their opportunities for use dramatically reduced or removed altogether.
o If the technology used requires particular hardware or software, or employs digital rights management techniques to otherwise restrict access, many of us will be unnecessarily denied access
Given these concerns, we support the call from the Friends of the Creative Domain for the BBC to include a commitment to an open Creative Archive in its Charter. We hope that you will take this unprecedented opportunity to reshape our cultural landscape, and influence its shape and direction for the good of artistic communities like our own, and for the license holding British public.
Tom Chance, Remix Reading
Clare Hooper, X-Ray Folder
(your name here)