Now that the project has been completed, the Creative Commons search engine has been rebranded to Openverse and now redirects to its new home at openverse.org.
Users will find the revamped interface maintains the ability to search the same collections, narrowing results by use case, license type, image type, file type, aspect ratio, and much more. The Openverse search engine is also now available in more than 10 different languages, with more translations approaching completion thanks to the WordPress community that is now working on this project. This update includes access to images from StockSnap and the new Meta Search providers EDUimages and Images of Empowerment.
“We’d like to once again express our thanks to WordPress for carrying forward the important work of providing the open community with a search engine to find works to remix, reuse, and openly enjoy,”
Creative Commons COO Anna Tumadóttir said in a post passing the torch of CC Search to Openverse.
In April 2021, Matt Mullenweg had announced that CC Search would be joining the WordPress project. Automattic then hired key members of the CC Search team in support of its continued development and sponsors their contributions to the project as part of the company’s Five for the Future commitment.
Beyond just hosting the search engine, adding Openverse searching and image downloading is on the roadmap for WordPress core improvements. When asked in the comments of his blog if the WordPress media library can be integrated with Opeverse, Mullenweg confirmed that is the plan. Users may also be able to share their own works back to the commons in the future for others to use.
In an episode of the Open Minds podcast that was published in August, Mullenweg elaborated on one of the motivations behind bringing Creative Commons Search into WordPress. In the early days of WordPress, GPL-compatible images were not easy for users to find. Mullenweg said he had even shared his personal collection of 30,000 photographs as open works that anyone could use for designs and themes, to stimulate creativity when CC0 images were more scarce than they have become.
“I also really want to make it easy for people within WordPress to license their images in a way they can be accessible to others. Now it’s exciting to know that there’s going to be open-source-compatible images across any number of sites, to any number of people building things for the web, whether that’s on WordPress or something else.”
Mullenweg is expected to speak more about Openverse at his annual State of the Word address tomorrow, which will stream live from New York City with a small studio audience due to the current COVID restrictions.
If you’re interested in being able to contribute to the maintenance and the future of the Openverse project, you can connect with the team at make.worpress.org/openverse or in the #openverse channel on WordPress’ Slack.