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Cover image for Harbour - CC License Request and Coil Tool — Grant Report #2 - Final Report
Joshua Elkes for Harbour

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Harbour - CC License Request and Coil Tool — Grant Report #2 - Final Report

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Project Update

With this being our final report, it’s a great time to reflect on the journey from idea to launch. We set out to create a way for anyone online to request permission to use content from a creator under a creative commons license. Until we created this tool, content was placed under a creative commons license almost solely by a creator’s own doing, and there was not a scalable way to request that content be placed under a creative commons license. The ability to layer in Coil payment pointer info to not only foster legitimate collaboration, but also meaningful monetization of the web made for a truly incredible opportunity. There were ups and downs, some related to COVID-19 and some of the highs being related to expanding our network of collaborators, and getting to build something truly amazing from scratch for the public to use.

The Harbour team and I are incredibly proud to have officially brought this project into the world! We’ve envisioned a way to empower everyone in the world with a fast, equitable, and innovative way of collaborating, and this Grant for the Web, CC License Request, and Coil tool is a major milestone in this journey.

One of the challenges we had to solve when launching this project was personalizing each agreement link with the licensee and licensor’s info, including passing the requested content into the link. Additionally, determining the optimal way to visualize this data and select what data to prioritize for related connections took quite a bit of trial and error. Ultimately, we determined connecting content by image recognition tags provided the best user experience.

The team and I clearly remember the day we finally got our Agreement Form and Coil data to complete a successful journey, with test data flowing from Harbour, to our Cloud Database, to the RSS Feed, and to our Data Visualization. There were a lot of moving pieces involved in stitching this all together and we had the opportunity to learn some exciting new technologies along the way. Once the data was flowing, we got to put our design caps on and dig into the user experience of this Creative Commons license Request and Coil Tool. The entire process was energizing and we’re most excited to see what the world decides to create with this new, publicly available site!

Progress on objectives

We stayed true to our initial objective of providing a tool for licensees to request content from creators (licensors) under Creative Commons licenses, with the ability to supply their Coil info while adding content to the Creative Commons community. Since this project’s objective is all about empowering people to work with creators under CC licenses and for creators to monetize their work with Coil, we were able to use Google’s exciting “.new” domain names, which need to be associated with an actionable website.

Website screenshot below - Check out the site here - Licesne,new

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Licensor email notification after completing the form on

  • The licensor is the person requesting to work with the creator. Once the Licensor receives this email, they can copy/past and send the license link to the creator. Both parties receive an email confirmation once the creator has completed the license request workflow.

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Creator - License Form

  • This is what the creator sees when completing the license request

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Each license request includes a way for creators to supply their Coil payment pointer, learn more, or create one. The forms have conditional logic built into them so that creators either submit their Coil info directly or are prompted to learn more:

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Key activities

We successfully completed all of the proposed activities from our original proposal. This includes our publicly available license request builder, license request forms, RSS feed, and data visualization. Here are a few exciting links to check out:

Create a license request here and view the RSS Feed - OR

View the content that is already available under CC license here with all of their associated metadata -

Communications and marketing

We have not done a public marketing push here yet, but invested a small portion of our grant towards preparing our marketing channels to do a more public release beyond our initial LinkedIn posts. LinkedIn and Google have appeared to be the channels with the most promise for paid and organic marketing, with the best audience of users looking for more powerful, free licensing tools. I also plan to engage with Creative Commons’ team to do any joint PR they deem appropriate, as this tool is helping to build their Commons community and furthers the public’s understanding of CC licenses.

What’s next?

With this being our final report, we are excited to see this project take on a life of its own as the public gains access to it. There are exciting possibilities to further expand the scope of this project in several ways, which I’ve listed below.
Ingests an archive of Creative Commons content into the data visualization from the CC community (e.g. Flickr, Wikipedia, etc.) for a truly robust content discovery experience
Launch a chrome extension for people to easily create license requests from anywhere on the web, not just on
Create a new Agreement Form that is for creators who want to make their content available with a COIL payment pointer to a wide audience
Publish newly licensed content from our data viz/RSS feed to other platforms in the CC community (e.g. Flickr, Wikipedia, etc.)
Evolve our data visualization to allow users to toggle between different views (e.g. gallery, grid, list, etc.)

What community support would benefit your project?

Please create license request links and start collaborating with creators! The more content that is added to Creative Commons using this tool, the more beneficial and beautiful it becomes.

Also, please send us any feedback around ways to further clarify license terms, Coil payment pointers, or anything else you notice throughout the user experience.

Additional comments

Q: Did you have fun?
A: Yes! Working on this Grant for the Web project proved to be a wonderful creative outlet for the team and myself. Notably, our collaborator Victor Em, my co-founder/CTO, Eric Doverberger, and I were able to collaborate, learn, create with the sole purpose of empowering and connecting people with creators. This was rewarding, challenging, and FUN. We’re proud to be a part of the Grant for the Web/Web Monetization community and look forward to continuing to contribute to it.

Included above but adding here as well:

Create a license request here - OR

View the content that is already available under CC license here with all of their associated metadata -

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