Information Commons

Information Commons

Information Commons

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For the building at the University of Sheffield, please see Information Commons, Sheffield.

An Information Commons is an information system, such as a physical library or online community, that exists to produce, conserve, and preserve information for current and future generations. Wikipedia could be considered to be an information commons to the extent that it produces and preserves information (i.e. through current versions of articles and histories), but the fact that an article on Wikipedia can be edited or deleted may make it less of an information commons because it doesn't completely conserve information. Other examples of an information commons includes Creative Commons and Facebook, though the latter has come under criticism for preserving private information on users.


The concept of the "information commons" refers to our shared knowledge-base and the processes that facilitate or hinder its use. It also refers to a physical space, usually in an academic library, where any and all can participate in the processes of information research, gathering and production. The term commons refers to the land (or common grounds) that villagers shared for grazing purposes in simpler times. The issues that fall under this topic are varied and include:
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