Moving Image Contest


We are happy to announce eight contest finalists. View finalists and pick your favorite entry

contest banner

This contest is based on the Creative Commons GET CREATIVE! Moving Images Contest


A contest to create a 2-minute moving image that explains to the public some of the tensions between art and intellectual property law, and the intellectual property issues artists face, focusing particularly on either music or documentary film. For background on these issues, look at our April 2nd conference, Framed!! How Law Constructs and Constrains Culture and the webcasts and text gathered there. You may also wish to view the short clips below, which encapsulate some of the core themes from the conference.

  • What do we mean by the tensions between art and intellectual property law?
    • In the case of documentary film, filmmakers often need to use pre-existing copyrighted material to tell a story, or accidentally capture legally protected material in their documentary footage. Our culture is full of such protected objects – songs, films, photographs, artwork, even signs or logos. But in order to distribute their documentaries, filmmakers must often clear the rights to every protected fragment of film or song – whether it is a focal point of the scene or merely an incidental or fleeting detail. What are the intellectual property hurdles faced by documentary filmmakers? Do they feel a conflict between their need to access protected material, and their desire to protect their own works and maintain the integrity of those works after production? These are some of the questions your moving image could address.
    • In the case of music, from classical and folk, to jazz and blues, to rock and roll, hip hop and mash-ups - musicians have a long tradition of borrowing, recombining, and building upon existing musical elements. As technology has evolved, artists from both mainstream and alternative genres have increasingly begun to use samples as raw materials for new and different musical works. But sampling has enjoyed lesser legal protections than those afforded other art forms, and the only clearly legal sample is an authorized sample. How have creative practices of borrowing across different musical genres been treated by the law? What lines do artists see between creative borrowing, and simple "theft," of musical elements? These are some of the issues that your submission might explore.
    • These are only some of the many issues your moving image might address. For more background, please see the webcasts and text at Framed!.
A view from artists Some legal perspectives*
To Clear or not to Clear
(MPEG version)
Documentary Filmmaking
(MPEG version)
boyle and sloss
Disappearing History?
(MPEG version)
Music Sampling
(MPEG version)
Great Composers Steal
(MPEG version)
*please note that these are only excerpts from a panel discussion at a conference and not legal advice.
Download the free RealPlayer or Linux RealPlayer


Create, or mash-up, a moving image using your favorite moving image authoring tool, such as Flash, iMovie, or Final Cut Pro. Entries can contain video, animated images, text, and audio. You may incorporate other people's work, but only if you have permission or the work is Creative Commons-licensed or public domain. The entry should be 2 minutes or less. All entries must be licensed under a Creative Commons license of your choosing by time of entry. Read the full rules for the contest.


DEADLINE FOR ENTRIES: November 1, 2004


The winner will be judged by a panel of independent and qualified judges. Entries will be scored based on the following categories:

  1. Excellence in communicating the relationships between documentary film and intellectual property law, or music and intellectual property law
  2. Artistic Quality
  3. Technical Merit


Finalists will be announced on December 15, 2004, and winners will be announced on January 15, 2005. The three best entries qualify to receive a prize:

Alienware Roswell Digital Video System Apple Power Mac G5

One First Prize: First Prize Winner may choose either: an Apple® Power Mac® G5 Computer (Dual 2GHz PowerPC G5) (Approximate retail value ("ARV"): US$3000), or an Alienware Roswell 4100 Performance Digital Video Editing System Single Processor - AMD Opteron 242 64-Bit 1GB DDR PC-3200 (ARV: US$3000)

Sony Camcorder

One Second Prize: Sony® Handycam® Camcorder (Model DCR-PC120BT) (ARV: $1200)

Apple iPod

One Third Prize: Apple® iPod™ 20GB Digital Music Player (ARV: US$400)


All entries must be submitted usind the online entry form in which you need to submit your basic contact information and a URL where we can download your entry. It is possible that we will link to, and profile, certain entries as they come in.


By entering the contest you agree to license your moving image under a Creative Commons license of your choosing and to comply with the rest of the rules for the contest.


Here are a few places you can get materials to work with that are either in the public domain, or licensed under Creative Commons licenses:

  Prelinger Archives public domain digital video
  Opsound an archive of hundreds of sounds and songs, all offered under a Creative Commons attribution, share-alike license a registry of various Creative Commons licensed works

Please email if you have questions or need more information.

Thanks to Creative Commons for the contest design.