Jump to content

Mike Linksvayer

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mike Linksvayer
OccupationPolicy Director at Git Hub
Known forTechnology Developer and Entrepreneur
Mike Linksvayer, by Joi Ito (2007)

Mike Linksvayer is an intellectual freedom and commons proponent, known as a technology entrepreneur, developer and activist from co-founding Bitzi and leadership of Creative Commons.[1][2] He is GitHub's Vice President of Policy.


Linksvayer holds a B.A. in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and has worked as a Chief Technical Officer, Vice President, manager, software developer and consultant.[3] He joined Creative Commons as CTO in April 2003,[3] and held that position until April 2007 when he became vice president.[4] He also co-founded p2p file sharing company Bitzi, well known for its invention of magnet links.[3]

Former executive director of Creative Commons, Glenn Otis Brown, noted that Mike Linksvayer brought much-needed stability to the organization, comparing his role to that of a drummer in a band.[5]

Linksvayer encouraged NASA to use public APIs to share its data, which is already in public domain as government works. He also suggested that scientists and other planetary societies use Creative Commons licenses to disseminate photos and other works so that the public has better access.[6]

Following his tenure as vice president, in April 2012 Linksvayer became a part-time Senior Fellow at Creative Commons.[1] Linksvayer also serves on the boards of OpenHatch[7] and Software Freedom Conservancy[8][9] and chairs the Open Definition Advisory Council.[10]

Since 2015, Linksvayer has been GitHub's Director of Policy, addressing public policy issues.[11][12]


Linksvayer speaks internationally and writes broadly. On January 30, 2015 he co-authored a whitepaper, "Towards a Design Space for a Commons Provenance System" with Tessa Askamp, Paul Keller, Catharina Maracke, and Maarten Zeinstra.[13]

In 2012, he wrote an essay in the essay collection, The Wealth of the Commons: A World Beyond Market and State, edited by David Bollier.[14] He contributed to Jono Bacon's O'Reilly book, The Art of Community: Building the New Age of Participation[15] and also wrote "Using and Sharing Data: the Black Letter, Fine Print, and Reality" for The Data Journalism Handbook.[16] In 2010 he co-authored with Aleksandar Erkalovic, Adam Hyde, Michael Mandiberg, Marta Peirano, Sissu Tarka, Astra Taylor, Alan Toner, and Mushon Zer-Aviv, Collaborative Futures using the novel Booksprint method of producing and releasing an entire book in a week.[17]

In 2009, Linksvayer contributed an essay "Free Culture in Relation to Software Freedom" to FSCONS Free Beer, edited by Stian Rødven Eide.[18]

In 2008, while at Creative Commons, Linksvayer co-authored a technical document with Ben Adida, Hal Abelson, and Nathan Yergler, "ccREL: The Creative Commons Rights Expression Language."[19]

Personal life[edit]

Mike Linksvayer is a vegan and follows a low-calorie diet. He was featured in a news story carried by a number of sources suggesting that calorie-restricted diets may extend life span.[20] He lives in Oakland, California.[21]


  1. ^ a b "Staff". Creative Commons. Archived from the original on 2013-04-28. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  2. ^ "WIPO Speaker Bio". World Intellectual Property Organization. September 17, 2007. Retrieved 2015-04-09.
  3. ^ a b c "People - Creative Commons". Creative Commons. 17 February 2006. Retrieved 2008-06-30.
  4. ^ Linksvayer, Mike (2007-11-16). "User:Mike Linksvayer - CC Wiki". Creative Commons. Retrieved 2008-06-30.
  5. ^ Brown, Glenn Otis (2005-04-05). "Mike Linksvayer - Creative Commons". Creative Commons. Retrieved 2008-06-30.
  6. ^ Olsen, Stefanie (2007-06-27). "Next NASA mission: Twitter and Facebook". CNET News.com. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  7. ^ "About OpenHatch". 2013-02-25. Archived from the original on 2014-06-25. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  8. ^ "Conservancy Formalizes its Evaluation Committee and Appoints a New Director". Software Freedom Conservancy. 2013-04-23. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  9. ^ "Happy New Year from Conservancy and Video from Mike Linksvayer". Software Conservancy. 2014-12-31. Retrieved 2015-04-09.
  10. ^ "Advisory Council". Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  11. ^ Scott Fulton III. GitHub: Changes to EU copyright law could derail open source distribution, ZDNet. June 21, 2018
  12. ^ Zulhusni, Muhammad (2023-11-17). "How are AI and open source changing the face of tech innovation?". Tech Wire Asia. Retrieved 2023-11-29.
  13. ^ "Towards a Design Space for a Commons Provenance System" (PDF). Project Octopus. January 30, 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 3, 2015. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  14. ^ Bollier, David (2012). "Creative Commons: Governing the Intellectual Commons from Below". The Wealth of the Commons: A World Beyond Market and State. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  15. ^ Bacon, Jono (2012). "Community Casebook Interview". The Art of Community: Building the New Age of Participation. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  16. ^ Gray, Jonathan (2012). "Using and Sharing Data: the Black Letter, Fine Print, and Reality". The Data Journalism Handbook. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  17. ^ Linksvayer, Mike (2010). "Collaborative Futures". FLOSSManuals. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  18. ^ Rødven Eide, Stian (2009). "Free Culture in Relation to Software Freedom". Free Beer. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  19. ^ Linksvayer, Mike (2008). "ccREL: The Creative Commons Rights Expression Language". W3C. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  20. ^ Mason, Michael (2006-10-31). "One for the Ages: A prescription that may extend life". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-04-25.
  21. ^ "Oakland Life". Gondwanaland Blog. February 17, 2015. Retrieved April 9, 2015.

External links[edit]