Open Commons Framework™

  • The Open Commons Framework™ is both a philosophical and structural approach to designing and nurturing a locality-based cyber entity that promotes both economic vitality and cyber resilience.
  • The Open Commons Framework™ is the foundation for community cyber capacity building that is championed by Cyber on Main™, as well as like-minded evangelizing community initiatives and supported by the Department of Homeland Security.

The ten tenets of the Open Commons Framework™ provide the contours for community initiatives to establish business-friendly rules for cyber market-making while aligning with a national initiative and a common brand.

Adopters wanting to align with Cyber-on-Main™ may adopt programming under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs (CC BY-ND) license. According to Creative Commons:

This license lets others reuse the work for any purpose, including commercially; however, it cannot be shared with others in adapted form, and credit must be provided to you.

The framework encourages adopters to incorporate a similar Creative Commons licensing regime for its own original works. The CC BY-ND construct has been adopted and encouraged by Cyber-on-Main™ because it facilitates adoption and use by collaborators without fee; yet, it ensures that originators are credited for their original work. Moreover, the tenets establish a working group system, controlled by the originator, to advance derivatives to spur innovation and local initiatives.

The framework also ensures that the “attribution” element of the CC BY-ND incorporates the originator’s logo or trademark. Again, this construct ensures that originators maintain control over their original work, while balancing that with sharing, collaboration and innovation. For all Cyber-on-Main™ programs, adopters must attribute it locally with the appropriate mark.

Other tenets of the Open Commons Framework™ ensure that free and open participation is ensured by rule within the local venture. Yet, the structure does not rule out the establishment of multiple Cyber-on-Main™ initiatives within a community. Each venture may establish its own specific structures and business rules, provided that the governance does not violate the Open Commons Framework™.

The end-state and vision of Cyber-on-Main™ is a national network of affiliated community cyber entities that make the cyber market in the respective communities, build capacity, and improve resilience.

The Ten Tenets of the Framework

1. Free and Open Market Forces. 

Adopters shall promote free enterprise principles and prohibit anti-competitive practices. 

Rationale:  To enable market forces for economic vitality that promotes cyber resilience.

2. Social Enterprise.

Adopters shall, in their articles of formation, specify that the entity’s business purpose shall include the social objectives of improving a community’s cyber resilience.  

Rationale:  To institute governance that promotes social enterprise within the market model.

3. Enforceable Ethos.

Adopters shall hold themselves out publicly that in the entity’s pursuit of its social objectives to its stakeholders, that it commits itself to the duties of loyalty, of fair dealing, and of care.    

Rationale:  To hold leaders accountable to the social enterprise.  

4. Innovation Protection.

Adopters shall institute governance by which original works and ideas are protected in ways that balance market forces and social enterprise principles. 

Rationale:  Social enterprise principles for collective cyber resilience should not undermine incentives that drive innovation. 

5. Trust Protection.

Adopters shall institute governance that balances collective interests with innovation principles. 

Rationale:  Innovators benefit for the trust established from a trusted partnership, and innovation incentives should not undermine trust that underpins the community.  

6. Main Street Friendly

Adopters should institute “Main Street Friendly” business rules, policies and programs to advance economic vitality and innovation in the surrounding locality.  

Rationale: Think Globally, Act Locally (in the context of building local cyber markets)

7. Nurture Small Business

Adopters should institute “Main Street Friendly” business rules, policies and programs that ensure that small businesses are not squeezed out of the local cyber market. 

              Rationale: About 50% of GDP and Employment comes from Small Business 

8. Creative Commons License – Attribution-NoDerivs (CC BY-ND)

Adopters shall, for all Cyber-on-Main™ programs and original works, comply with the license terms indicated; and also should utilize a Creative Commons License for its own Main Street Friendly initiatives and original works.   

Rationale: A sharing community that promotes Main Street Friendly ventures is simpatico with the Creative Commons construct, both philosophically and structurally 

9. Formation of Working Groups to Promote Derivatives

Adopters that desire to advance derivatives and improvements of Cyber-on-Main™ programs and original works in ways compliant with Creative Commons license restrictions (CC BY-ND) may do so through working groups formed by Cyber-on-Main™.  Similarly, adopters should pursue a similar working group model for their own Creative Commons licensed original works to advance derivatives and improvements.    

Rationale: Improvements through derivatives are possible through collective efforts that still adhere to licensing terms 

10. Trademark and Open Commons Balance 

Adopters shall use the Cyber-on-Main™ and/or program mark in connection with any licensed use.   

Rationale: Consistency with license terms for “Attribution” and protecting trust through respect for IP interests (see FOSSmarks)

See the Open Commons Framework™ in use.