Curator's Code

Introducing The Curator’s Code: A Standard for Honoring Attribution of Discovery Across the Web

The great Maria Popova, who curates Brain Pickings, has devised a much-needed best practice for attribution on sites that curate content from around the web (like this one).

The Curator’s Code seeks to balance the magic of the rabbit-hole of web discovery with fair and honest attribution to the sources and creators.

While we have systems in place for literary citation, image attribution, and scientific reference, we don’t yet have a system that codifies the attribution of discovery in curation as a currency of the information economy, a system that treats discovery as the creative labor that it is. 

This is what The Curator’s Code is – a system for honoring the creative and intellectual labor of information discovery by making attribution consistent and codified, the celebrated norm. 

It’s an effort to make the rabbit hole open, fair, and ever-alluring.

It consists of two unicode characters, one () to replace “via”, and the other () to replace “HT” or “hat-tip”. Are you just re-linking and not adding much context? Use the first. Using material as inspiration for something more? Use the second. 

There’s even a bookmarklet to make it super-easy across many platforms, and a how-to video. It’s a few seconds of work that can alter the culture of attribution and sharing on the social web.

I’m on board. It’s this easy …

Curator’s Code


Women’s restroom signs just became super awesome thanks to Tania Katan, artist, author, performer, and Curator of Code at Phoenix, AZ-based company Axosoft. Katan looked at the age-old silhouette and realized that it clearly depicts a caped superhero, not a lady in a dress:

“This idea came out of belonging. Out of women who belong in technology—and every other space—but are often overlooked, uninvited, or just plain dismissed. Not cool! I started thinking about symbols that represent women, and that are easily identifiable for mass culture. I thought of the bathroom lady. We’ve all seen her. She’s been in that stiff, triangle dress, looking uncomfortable for a long time. And if she’s a symbol that represents women, then no wonder we’re feeling trapped, rigid and uncomfortable!”

So Katan and Axosoft started the It Was Never A Dress campaign, which they launched last month at the Girls in Tech Conference in Phoenix.

“This lady, well, we’ve been looking at her the wrong way,” Tania Katan, the Curator of Code for Axosoft, said in a recent video. “We’re launching a campaign that shows you what’s really on the other side. It was never a dress.”

Katan hopes the campaign will “shift perceptions and assumptions about women and the audacious, sensitive, and powerful gestures they make every single day.” It’s about empowering women in all walks of life and creating a dialogue in the professional fields, like the tech and science sectors, where women are still underrepresented.

“When we see women differently… we see the world differently!”

Tania Katan, the Geyser of Awesome salutes you! We love what you’ve started and we’ll never look at ladies’ room signs the same way ever again.

Head over to the It Was Never A Dress website to learn more about this awesome campaign.

[via Bored Panda and The Huffington Post]

I’ve been running a hybrid articles-and-links blog here (↬DF) for a while, I wrote the function that added “via” links to billions of reblogged posts on Tumblr, and I didn’t even know the difference between “via” and “hat tip” until today.
—  Instapaper founder (and Tumblr co-founder) Marco Arment • Offering his take, in a post titled “Not a Curator,” on the “Curator’s Code” idea that’s been floating around for the past day or two. His feeling? We’re fighting over something that’s not a big deal, and the solution is going to be ignored by the organizations that it’s meant to target. “The proper place for ethics and codes is in ensuring that a reasonable number of people go to the source instead of just reading your rehash,” he argues. Personally, that’s always been our goal — but that said, unlike Marco, we’d call ourselves curators.


  1. Make You Feel My Love - Adele
  2. One Day Like This - Elbow
  3. Something I Need - One Republic
  4. I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) - Sleeping at Last
  5. Thinking Out Loud - Ed Sheeran
  6. Secret Smile - Semisonic
  7. Uncover - Zara Larsson
  8. The Luckiest - Ben Folds
  9. Just the Way You Are - Bruno Mars
  10. I Really Like You - Carly Rae Jepsen

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Arts Tech Meetup Speaker 10. Maria Popova and the Curator's Code

#ArtsTech Meetup Demo Day - July 16th

10. Maria Popova - Curator’s Code

What is the Curator’s Code?

“A suggested system for honoring the creative and intellectual labor of information discovery by making attribution consistent and codified, celebrating authors and creators, and also respecting those who discover and amplify their work." 

Maria Popova’s Blog Brain Pickings  

Amazon, Apple and Microsoft will give gift cards to every Hour of Code organizer

This December’s Hour of Code is already on track to be bigger than ever, proving that anyone — no matter who you are or where you come from — can start learning to code and take part in creating the technology that’ll shape our future.

We’re excited to announce: every participating Hour of Code organizer will for the first time receive a gift card to, iTunes or the Windows Store, thanks to the generous support of our partners, Apple and Microsoft, who along with 200+ partners, have made the Hour of Code the largest learning event in history.

All three companies continue to inspire with the technology they build and have been integral to the Hour of Code from the start.

Amazon has featured it on its homepage and allows any shopper to donate a portion of their purchases to Apple has hosted Hour of Code events in every single Apple Retail Store in the world, and curated learn-to-code apps to challenge new learners of all ages. And we’ve seen Microsoft mobilize employees in every global region to introduce young people around the world to their first Hour of Code (including 7.1 million of them in Russia alone) — just to scratch the surface!

They join forces for the Hour of Code 2015 to give back directly to educators and volunteers taking a chance to introduce students to skills most schools don’t even teach.

And there’s a new record to break.

At its heart, this is a grassroots movement. Anyone can host an Hour of Code event. There are already 50,000 events signed up. But we’re only halfway to our goal of 100,000 Hour of Code events during December 7-13.

If you think every students should have access to computer science: ask your school to participate, host your own Hour of Code event, or take an hour of learn yourself. Here’s how.

One Hour of Code is enough to inspire students to keep going.

Join us

After a Year of GamerGate ...

After a Year of GamerGate …

… the Society of Professional Journalists has finally weighed in (to the extent that they are likely to weigh in on any particular issue facing journalists).  Who are the SPJ?  Well, they’re the authors and curators of an Ethics Code which tends to serve as the “gold standard” for much of mainstream news media.  Insofar as journalism has a moral authority of any kind, they’re probably it. So what…

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