Why Social Domain?

The social domain lies somewhere in-between proprietary rights and commons rights systems.

If copyright is an island, and the commons is an ocean, the social domain is somewhere between the high water mark and the low water mark.123

The social domain is for work with rights that exist under the Berne Convention and covered by national copyright laws, not ‘public domain’, ‘public sphere’ or ‘commons’.

In the social domain, sharing is an active gesture and commitment, not a passive accident.

Work can be actively dedicated to the social domain with permission from the creators using one of the social domain licensing schemes listed.


  1. Common law protects public and private rights on foreshore ↩︎

  2. Cartwright Island Public Access The People’s Right to the Foreshore ↩︎

  3. Access to islands and their foreshores ↩︎