Friday Free Stuff: Creative Commons

24 August 2012

Over the last year I've mentioned a lot of free stuff that's "Creative Commons licensed" but what does that actually mean?

Usually when you create something, you (or sometimes your employer) automatically have copyright over it - that is, no-one else has the right to copy a significant part of it without your permission. That can be great if you want to make money, but if you just want to share something widely it puts up a big barrier. So Creative Commons provides licenses you can link to that pre-emptively give permission for certain uses of your choosing.

So you can say, for example, "People can copy and modify my work but they can't make any money off it, and they have to give me credit" - this would be a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial license. Or you can choose other options.

Some of the other useful tools on the Creative Commons website include:Deborah Fitchett
Liaison Librarian