Creative Commons licences translated into te reo Māori
Ko tōu reo, ko tōku reo,
te tuakiri tangata.
Tīhei uriuri, tīhei nakonako.
Creative Commons has published the translation of the Creative Commons 4.0 copyright licences into te reo Māori. This is the first translation of the Creative Commons licences into an indigenous language.
The Creative Commons licences are free legal tools that anyone can use to share their copyright works more openly. The licences allow rights holders to release their work into the commons under a range of freedoms and restrictions.
Karaitiana Taiuru is a digital indigenous philosopher and governance practitioner, and a leading figure in the online Māori renaissance of the internet. He says: “This is an important step for te reo Māori resources being able to utilise the power and flexibility of Creative Commons, whereas before the rights notice and licence details would have had to have been in a different language from that of the resource.”
Chris Cormack, member of the Creative Commons Aotearoa New Zealand Advisory Panel and one of the original developers of the Koha Open Source Library management systems, says: “The more languages the Creative Commons licences are in, the more accessible they are. It’s especially important in Aotearoa that it is available in te reo Māori, our first language.”
The translation was completed by Ian Cormack, Director of Taumatua Māori Language Services and a licensed Māori Translator.
According to Cormack, the translation provided several interesting challenges. ‘Sui Generis Database Rights’, for example, was translated as Motika Pātengi Raraunga Momo Takitahi — with Motika translated as ‘rights’, Pātengi Raraunga as ‘database’ and Momo Takitahi as ‘single kind/genus.’
Other terms, like ‘Copyright and Similar Rights’, were translated as Manatārua me ngā Motika Rite, with Manatārua the legal term for copyright, and Rite translated as ‘similar, like.’
“The translated licences will promote taonga and matauranga to be created, shared and published with the legal protection of the Creative Commons licences while recognising iwi, hapū and whānau, as well as whakapapa of the material,” says Taiuru.
The Creative Commons licences in Aotearoa New Zealand are increasingly being used by teachers, librarians, artists, musicians, researchers and government departments.
The six translated licences can be found at: