All the content available on the internet is copyrighted: all the pictures you see, all the videos you watch, all the audios you listen to and all the articles you read; all of them are protected by the copyright law and if you copy and use them without the permission of the author, you’re breaking the law. But there is a way of using someone else’s creative work legally and this is what I would like to focus on in this article. Let’s have a closer look at what Creative Commons means and what you should know about the types of copyright licenses it offers.
All rights reserved
Copyrighted content means that you are not allowed to use, modify, redistribute, remix, transform, build upon the material and resell any of someone else’s work until you get the permission from the author and / or pay for his work.
When you create a picture, a video or a text on your website, it is automatically copyrighted without any need to register the work or write ‘all rights reserved’ on it. Very often you may find the ‘© All rights reserved’ disclaimer on the pictures or somewhere on the website regarding its content. Even, if you don’t find the disclaimer, the content is still under the copyright law protection.
You are the author of your work and you can use it for your own purposes or you can sell it to others so they can use it for their own purposes. But what if you want others to use your work for free? What if you want to share your content to a bigger audience without having to give the permission to use your work? And, finally, what if you want to use someone else’s material on your blog without breaking the law? The answer is simple: Creative Commons.
Some rights reserved – Creative Commons
There are so many people being interested in free and open content to share and even more people interested in using that free content in a commercial and/or non-commercial way.
There are six types of the CC licenses, each of them giving different copyrights to the shared content. Every time you use the licensed material, you need to credit the author, provide the link to the license and indicate the changes you made (if the license allows making any changes) to the original material.
- Attribution CC BY – you are allowed to share and adapt the material for any purpose (commercial and non-commercial) but you must give the appropriate credit to the author. /read more/
- Attribution-ShareAlike CC BY-SA – you are allowed to adapt the material for your work and commercial purposes, but you must credit the author and license the new creation under the same license as the original material. /read more/
- Attribution-NoDerivatives CC BY-ND – you are allowed to redistribute the material for commercial and non-commercial purposes, but the material cannot be changed and you need to credit the author. If you modify the material in any way, you may not distribute it. /read more/
- Attribution-NonCommercial CC BY-NC – you are allowed to share and adapt the material only for non-commercial purposes and you must credit the author. /read more/
- Attribution—NonCommercial-ShareAlike CC BY-NC-SA – you are allowed to adapt the material for non- commercial purposes, and you must credit the author and license the new creation under the same license as the original material. /read more/
- Attribution-NoDerivatives CC BY-NC-ND – you are allowed to share the material for non-commercial purposes, but the material cannot be changed and you need to credit the author. /read more/
No rights reserved – CC0
There is an alternative to the six ‘some rights reserved’ types of licenses I’ve described above. The alternative is called CC0 and the material licensed under the Public Domain CC0 is free of copyright restrictions around the world. In other words: no rights are reserved for that particular material.
Related post: Free stock photos for wine blogs – find out from where you can download free photos to use on your wine blog.
What does it mean to you?
If you find any creative work, let’s say a picture or a photo, which has been licensed under the CC0, you are allowed to share, reuse and adapt the material with no need to credit the author. Moreover, you don’t need to provide any links to the license or indicate changes of the material. You can use for free the content that is licensed under Public Domain CC0.
I hope these short descriptions will help you to understand the differences between the Creative Commons licenses. I also hope that from now on you will be more aware of the copyrights of the content you find on the internet or you upload to the internet.
I wonder: how often do you check the type of copyrights for the materials you use on your own blog or website? Do you have any content licensed under the CC? I will be happy to read your comments!
Credits and links:
Creative Commons – read more here
A quick disclaimer:
The content on this website is intended to be educational and is not specific legal advice for your situation. None of the tips I give should be considered business, legal or financial advice. I’m just sharing my knowledge and what has worked best for me. Remember that you should always carefully consider all the possible options and consult with your legal, business or financial advisor before making any decisions regarding your situation. The information is not updated, unless there is a special note about the update in the article.