Obama and Creative Commons

(via Lessig Blog) comes notice that Barack Obama’s campaign posted this notice encouraging the DNC to license all Democratic presidential debates under a creative commons license:

I am writing in strong support of a letter from a bipartisan coalition of academics, bloggers and Internet activists recently addressed to you and the Democratic National Committee. The letter asks that the video from any Democratic Presidential debate be available freely after the debate, by either placing the video in the public domain, or licensing it under a Creative Commons (Attribution) license.

Since then it seems Edwards has joined in as well:

. . . I am asking each news network to make video footage from the presidential debates that they broadcast available on the internet for the public to view and use responsibly. I am also asking Chairman Dean, who is playing a valuable role in organizing many of the Democratic primary debates, to use his influence with the networks to make the debates more broadly available.

The Creative Commons license terms offer an easy way to ensure that the networks’ rights are protected. Much of the content on my own campaign web site is available under just such a license.

Commercial constraints are severe enough in their effect in diluting the substance of our campaigns. Limiting access to long-form televised debates makes matters worse.

Hopefully the debates themselves will be worth all the fuss about making them available – if it is the same old sound bytes having them under a CC license won’t be terribly helpful.