What is the blog about?
The Open Knowledge International blog is the place to find out about what’s going on across the digital commons, and to share your news with the rest of the world.
We have a large global readership – from policy-makers in Reykjavik to hackers in Mexico City – and a distinguished community of contributors.
We feature stories about how people are helping to open up more of the world’s public information, research and culture, and stories about how the digital commons is being used to change the world for the better.
Tell us your stories!
If you have a story to share, or a suggestion for something you think we should be covering, we’d love to hear from you. We’re particularly interested in:
- Reports about new developments related to open data, open content, and the public domain
- Opinion pieces about new challenges or opportunities for the digital commons
- Interviews and features about interesting open knowledge projects
Local Groups should also use this form to send us quick updates about your work for inclusion in our monthly community round ups.
Open as in OpenDefinition.org?
Everything we publish relates to content and data which is open as per the Open Definition – i.e. free for anyone to use, reuse, and redistribute without restriction.
If you’re post does not mention anything which is open in this sense, then we probably won’t publish it. So please make sure that you explicitly highlight the open knowledge in your story – and include relevant links and licenses wherever possible.
We’ve come up with a few guidelines to help you make your post great:
- Keep it snappy. 600-800 words is plenty. Assume that your reader has limited time and limited attention. Think about what it is you want to tell people, and make sure you get it into your first or second paragraph. We can link through to a longer post if you’ve edited it down. (Occasionally we do run longer pieces – so let us know if you think you really need more words!)
- Write for the layman. Remember the main blog is directed at a general readership, including those quite new to open knowledge. Much of the nuts and bolts work we do can be difficult to articulate the significance of – imagine you’re explaining it to your mum. Or something. Keep it fairly simple, chatty, and exciting. More specialist posts can be hosted on one of our other blogs (see below).
- Tell us about what makes your story different. Part of the strength of our community lies in the fact that so many people are following closely related paths in divergent corners of the world. To keep your posts interesting, be sure to explain the particular challenges you have faced and vision that you have – the things that distinguish your experiences from those of others around the world. Anecdotes and stories are great to help with this.
- It’s not an advertisement. While we definitely want to help share the news on cool new projects, try to avoid sending us stuff which is simply self-promotion. New releases may be newsworthy, but detailed excurses on all the reasons your product is great are probably not.
- Include pictures! All of our posts tend to have pictures to accompany them, and we’re grateful for any help with sourcing striking images related to what you’re writing about. A photo, a screenshot, an illustration or a graph – whatever it is, images will help to make your words say more.
Is our main blog the right place to submit something?
The Open Knowledge International blog is mainly for succinct posts that are likely to be of interest to a broader audience. However if you want to expand your post, or write about something more niche, one of our other blogs may be suited to your article.
The following topic specific blogs are always particularly keen to hear from guest contributors:
- Open GLAM, our working group dedicated to opening up cultural heritage, through engagement with Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums.
- Open Science, where we track and promote all aspects of open science.
- Open Economics, a hub for discussion around open economic data.
- Open Spending, where you can find the latest stories about what is going on in the OpenSpending project and the global spending community.
- Labs, our development hub, the best place for more technical ideas and projects.
- School of Data, our one-stop-shop for all your data-wrangling needs, where you can publish cool stories about what you’ve done with data.
We can’t publish everything
Unfortunately we can’t publish everything we receive. If you haven’t heard back from us in 4 weeks, then it is probably safe to assume that we haven’t been able to publish your submission on this occasion. If you’d like to find out about the status of your submission, you can send an email to our editors.
All contributions are openly licensed by default
By default and unless otherwise noted, everything that we publish on our blog is openly licensed.
By submitting a post to us using the form below, you agree to let us publish your contribution under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution license.
If you submit a post to us via email, please include a statement along the following lines:
I hereby consent to you publishing my contribution under a Creative Commons Attribution license.
If you wish to contribute to the blog but do not wish to release your post under the terms of this license, then please get in touch with us.