Open licenses: Play a game and learn how they work

I recently held a workshop at Siyavula for the Pan African Open Advocacy Programme to discuss open education, OER and the African context. We had some really interesting and insightful discussions about the barriers to access to education, specific to Africa, and the potential for open resources in our various countries. You can view the slides from the workshop here.

Brainstorming the barriers to education in Africa.
Brainstorming the barriers to education in Africa.

OER Remix Game

At the end, after introducing Creative Commons open licenses, we decided to get some hands on experience at remixing open content and figuring out all the intricacies (and frustrations!) of license compatibility.  We used David Wiley’s OER Remix game. See the original game here with some instructions on different versions. There is now also an online game that you can play! Our version of the game was quite simple as we just wanted to introduce the licenses and have some fun!

Our version:

  • We handed out 6 cards to each person.
  • Then I had a set of cards in my hand and I would put one on the table.
  • Then whoever was up next had to use the cards in their hand plus the one on the table to make a new composite work with compatible licenses and then state which license the final work would have.
  • Plus, you had to make up a story about what you were doing as you did it, which was actually really quite fun!
  • For example, someone had a CC-BY video to start with, and then explained how he was making a documentary on bicycles, based on a trip through Africa that a friend did. So he added in some sound additional clips that he found under public domain, and then he found some other photos on Flickr which were licensed CC-BY-SA to highlight some of the stops which he added in, and so the final documentary license would be CC-BY-SA. And other ‘stories’ also came out!
Some of the remixed works.
Some of the remixed works.

We found this to be quite a fun way to learn about the licenses and their compatibilities. I would also throw in some curve balls such as put a copyright card down to start with and then we made up the story of how she phoned the owner and convinced them so well of the merits of open licenses that the owner changed the license to CC-BY and so she could now use it! I hope to use this game at any future workshops that we run on open education and open licenses.

Playing the OER Remix Game (CC-BY Cyriac )
Playing the OER Remix Game (CC-BY Cyriac Gbogou)

Licensing and downloads:

Based on the original version by David Wiley, the Siyavula version of the cards are also available under a CC-BY license.

The black media type icons used on the cards are from The Noun Project, under a CC-BY license:

  • Picture by Edward Boatman
  • Speaker by Harold Kim
  • Video by Simple Icons
  • Text in the public domain

You can download the pdf files of our version of the cards, as well as the svg files (which were created using the open source programme, Inkscape) by clicking here.


4 thoughts on “Open licenses: Play a game and learn how they work

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