Big Idea: create an online store that sells physical goods, such as canvas prints, music CDs, books, and even cola that foregoes copyright all the way down to its packaging.

Note: This is part of my Big Ideas series, a backlog of ideas that I would love to execute but cannot right now because of current projects. I may get to them someday, but I encourage you to beat me to the punch!

Background

The free-culture movement is a social movement that promotes the freedom to distribute and modify creative works in the form of free content or open content by using the Internet and other forms of media.

–Wikipedia (source)

Like free software, free culture objects to copyright, but applies that to art, music, and other forms of creative expression rather than just software. Nina Paley may be the biggest proponent of this.

There is currently no one-stop shop where people can buy books, music, prints, etc of free-culture creative works. This means it’s difficult for artists to make money off freely licensed works, and it’s hard for people to find and buy them. Creating a centralized online shop that sells only free-culture works can change that.

Market

Online shops that sell computer hardware running free software already exist, including:

There are some shops that sell free culture works, but they are niche, representing the work of only one artist, and aren’t clearly licensed etc.

Goals

  1. To create a one-stop shop where people can buy freely-licensed (ie “free culture approved”) creative works online.
  2. Make each publication Creator Endorsed and give some money to the author.
  3. Create packaging and publish media that had no prior physical form (eg video games).

List of free culture IP

Unique and original free culture characters, worlds, series, and works.

What to sell

This is a list of products that I think people would want. There is potential to create nearly unlimited options (like Zazzle, for instance), but I think it’s better to have less, higher quality options.

Wall art

Framed prints

  • Sita Sings the Blues stills
  • Seder-Masochism stills

Canvas prints

  • Pepper&Carrot single pane prints from comics

Books

Games & toys

Board games

Video games

Music

Movies

Apparel, mugs, etc

  • T-shirts
  • Hoodies
  • Mugs
  • Accessories