Edtech Business

​Accessing the Metropolitan Museum’s New Stockpile of Over 375,000 Open License Artworks

By Jenny Abamu     Feb 14, 2017

​Accessing the Metropolitan Museum’s New Stockpile of Over 375,000 Open License Artworks

Ever feel the need to visually jazz up your lessons with The Night Watch? Now you can use Rembrandt’s paintings—and many others—for free.

Last week New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) announced a new policy allowing over 375,000 public-domain artworks to be available for free and unrestricted use under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) License. Both scholars and commercial entities can access, share and reuse MET public-domain artwork as they please.

“Self-Portrait with a Straw Hat (obverse: The Potato Peeler)” by Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, Zundert 1853–1890 Auvers-sur-Oise) via The Metropolitan Museum of Art

“In our digital age, the Museum’s audience is not only the 6.7 million people who visited The Met’s three locations in New York City this past year but also the three-billion-plus internet-connected individuals around the world,” explained Loic Tallon, The Met’s Chief Digital Officer, in a press release. “Adopting the CC0 designation for our images and data is one of the most effective ways the Museum can help audiences gain access to the collection.”

The collaboration to make the artwork free and accessible was extensive—requiring a variety of partners specializing in everything from licensing to digital image collections. The MET worked with Creative Commons, Artstor, DPLA, Pinterest and the Wikipedia community, with funds from Bloomberg Philanthropies to build the project. The digital artwork is distributed through its partners at ITHAKA-Artstor, Shared Shelf Commons, the Digital Public Library of America, Google Cultural Institute, Pinterest and the Wikimedia communities.

"Faces of the Ancient World" digital collection via The Metropolitan Museum of Art

People specifically searching for the Met CC0 collections should go to this link, where they can simply type in a keyword. Each image comes with detailed descriptions of the artwork, covering everything from the time created to the medium used to produce the work.

Users visiting the collections on the MET website should search for the “CC0” label (circled in red in the image below) to make sure the image they want to use has a CC0 license.

Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Can’t find the image you want on the CC website? Some images believed to be part of the public domain are not available under the CC0 license. The MET cites: “unclear copyright status; still under copyright restrictions; privacy or publicity issues; ownership from entities other than the MET; artist, donor, or lender restrictions; or lack of quality imagery” as some of the most common reasons for not changing the image use restrictions.

For more information, visit the MET website

Edtech Business

​Accessing the Metropolitan Museum’s New Stockpile of Over 375,000 Open License Artworks

By Jenny Abamu     Feb 14, 2017

​Accessing the Metropolitan Museum’s New Stockpile of Over 375,000 Open License Artworks

Ever feel the need to visually jazz up your lessons with The Night Watch? Now you can use Rembrandt’s paintings—and many others—for free.

Last week New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) announced a new policy allowing over 375,000 public-domain artworks to be available for free and unrestricted use under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) License. Both scholars and commercial entities can access, share and reuse MET public-domain artwork as they please.

“Self-Portrait with a Straw Hat (obverse: The Potato Peeler)” by Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, Zundert 1853–1890 Auvers-sur-Oise) via The Metropolitan Museum of Art

“In our digital age, the Museum’s audience is not only the 6.7 million people who visited The Met’s three locations in New York City this past year but also the three-billion-plus internet-connected individuals around the world,” explained Loic Tallon, The Met’s Chief Digital Officer, in a press release. “Adopting the CC0 designation for our images and data is one of the most effective ways the Museum can help audiences gain access to the collection.”

The collaboration to make the artwork free and accessible was extensive—requiring a variety of partners specializing in everything from licensing to digital image collections. The MET worked with Creative Commons, Artstor, DPLA, Pinterest and the Wikipedia community, with funds from Bloomberg Philanthropies to build the project. The digital artwork is distributed through its partners at ITHAKA-Artstor, Shared Shelf Commons, the Digital Public Library of America, Google Cultural Institute, Pinterest and the Wikimedia communities.

"Faces of the Ancient World" digital collection via The Metropolitan Museum of Art

People specifically searching for the Met CC0 collections should go to this link, where they can simply type in a keyword. Each image comes with detailed descriptions of the artwork, covering everything from the time created to the medium used to produce the work.

Users visiting the collections on the MET website should search for the “CC0” label (circled in red in the image below) to make sure the image they want to use has a CC0 license.

Source: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Can’t find the image you want on the CC website? Some images believed to be part of the public domain are not available under the CC0 license. The MET cites: “unclear copyright status; still under copyright restrictions; privacy or publicity issues; ownership from entities other than the MET; artist, donor, or lender restrictions; or lack of quality imagery” as some of the most common reasons for not changing the image use restrictions.

For more information, visit the MET website

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