In 2008, we began developing the TK Licenses concept. Inspired by Creative Commons (https://creativecommons.org/) and in conversation with Indigenous communities, our goal was to develop a new and complementary set of licenses that addressed the diversity of Indigenous needs in relation to intellectual property. This work received funding from IPinCH (https://www.sfu.ca/ipinch/) and WIPO (http://www.wipo.int/tk/en/) and was part of the original NEH grant funding to develop the Mukurtu CMS (http://mukurtu.org/) for Indigenous digital content management.
Ongoing collaboration with our partner communities showed that the immediate concern was around negotiating and managing cultural heritage material where Indigenous individuals or communities did not hold the copyright. Instead third parties like researchers and institutions were the legal rights holders. This led us to develop the Labels and Notices as an extra-legal, educative metadata strategy.
However we have returned to thinking about the TK Licenses with funding from Ngā Pae o te Maramatanga. Work to refine and extend the TK Licenses is currently being conducted in collaboration with the Te Kotahi Research Institute at the University of Waikato. These will be available in 2021 for testing. Please contact the Local Contexts team if you are interested in being part of the testing phase.