- Creative Commons provides free tools that let authors, scientists, artists, and educators easily mark their creative work with the freedoms they want it to carry. You can use CC to change your copyright terms from "All Rights Reserved" to "Some Rights Reserved".
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This unit is here to explore Creative Commons licensing and its implications for academic and educational use. Copyright (or copyleft) aspects apply to many activities such as original research, composition, photography, cartography, musical works and many other endeavors that need to be "protected" in some way. We shall use this resource to explore and discuss the various types and kinds of CC licenses and research and compare them with other copyright and copyleft devices. We may also explore the technical and social ramifications of the introduction of the Commons mindset to the Internet world.
Explanations of the licenses[edit | edit source]
Licenses[edit | edit source]
The following licenses have been offered and used:
- Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY)
- This is the least restrictive license. It allows unrestricted commercial, remixing, and all other permissive uses as long as licensing terms are complied. A CC BY material can be adapted into other materials that would be subject to additional copyright restrictions.
- Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
- Same purpose as CC BY. However, the license requires a licensee to use the same license or a compatible one to adapt a material into others. Moreover, it forbids a licensee from adding one's own copyright restrictions without permission for an adaptation of the licensed content.
- Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives (CC BY-ND)
- Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial (CC BY-NC)
- Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA)
- Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives (CC BY-NC-ND)
- This is the most restrictive license. It allows neither commercial use nor derivatives without the copyright holder's permission.
- Creative Commons Zero
- This license automatically waives all rights of a copyright holder and releases a work into the public domain worldwide.
Wikimedia projects accept CC BY and CC BY-SA because they are considered free licenses under the definition of Free Cultural Works. Other CC licenses are considered non-free; text content licensed under one of the "non-free" CC licenses cannot be imported into one of Wikimedia projects, so they may be suitable elsewhere. However, images licensed under one of the "non-free" CC licenses are acceptable only if they are also concurrently licensed under a free license, like CC BY. Otherwise, images licensed under only one "non-free" CC license are unacceptable.
Current Wikiversity license(s)[edit | edit source]
Wikiversity now uses the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license which is very similar to the GFDL. Both licenses allow re-use of a work as long as attribution is given to the author(s) and as long as derivative works are also licensed copyleft.
Reasons for switching from the GFDL to a CC license[edit | edit source]
The Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license is better suited for wikis; the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL) was designed for software manuals. Furthermore, you can use CC-BY-SA works as part of other works with various licenses; you cannot do the same thing with GFDL works.
In addition, Wikivoyage doesn't use GFDL but instead uses solely CC BY-SA for similar reasons.
In 2018, the Wikimedia Commons community decided to restrict usage of GFDL for non-software works. While such works licensed under GFDL before 15 October 2018 still remain, the ones licensed under only GFDL on or after that date are no longer accepted. Instead, if GFDL is to be used for non-software works, such work must be also licensed under a free license, like CC BY-SA.
Reasons for using CC BY-SA instead of CC BY[edit | edit source]
While CC BY is the least restrictive CC license, any content remixing or adapting the CC BY material would be subject to additional copyright restrictions and/or be claimed as the adapter's own exclusive work, especially if Wikipedia were to use CC BY. Moreover, as long as the adapter follows the licensing terms, a case of copyright infringement would be impossible. Furthermore, if Wikipedia would use CC BY, other editors would face difficulties on using the more-restricted material adapted from Wikipedia content. "ShareAlike" license allows reuse of free content but also requires licensees to use the same license or a more compatible one. It also is used by most Wikimedia projects, such as Wikipedia, to limit how the content can be adapted into other materials and to make content stay free and easier to reuse. A CC BY material can be adapted into a CC BY-SA material. However, CC BY is incompatible with CC BY-SA, so either the same author must switch from CC BY-SA to CC BY to re-license the same work, or a CC BY-SA material cannot be adapted into a CC BY material.
License Versions[edit | edit source]
Licenses in versions before the version 4.0 International are less clear and not as international-friendly as the latest version. Indeed, the terms and conditions of the international (Generic/Unported) licenses of the previous versions are in mind based on the law of the United States. The pre-4.0 versions contain localized ports for specific jurisdictions, like Germany. However, the latest version, 4.0 International, lacks ports; the International edition is intended for multiple jurisdictions. Some official translations for the licenses in the latest version are available.
Moral rights[edit | edit source]
Previous versions before version 3.0 do not address those rights. They are addressed in some ports of the version 3.0 and in version 4.0. Creative Commons does not license those rights, but the licenses in the version 4.0 asks a Licensor to agree to waive and/or not assert those rights "to the limited extent necessary to allow You to exercise the Licensed Rights, but not otherwise."
Plans to transition from CC BY-SA 3.0 to CC BY-SA 4.0[edit | edit source]
- File:WMF Legal Team October 2017 Quarterly Check-In.pdf (page 38)
Commentary articles[edit | edit source]
- "The Commons: The Commons as an Idea - Ideas as a Commons" -(article by David M. Berry about the commons and ideas)
- "BBC to Open Content Floodgates The BBC's Creative Archive project" -(article in Wired magazine on the BBC's use of Creative Commons licenses)
- "Creative Commons: Let’s be creative together" -(from "Framasoft")
- "Take My Music ... Please" -(a Newsweek article about Creative Commons by Brian Braiker)
- "Creative Commons Humbug" -(critical article in PC Magazine by John C. Dvorak)
- "Creative Humbug" -(critical article by Péter Benjamin Tóth)
- "Creative Humbug? Bah the humbug, let’s get creative!" -(response to Tóth's criticism by Mia Garlick)
- Berry, D. M. & Moss, G. (2005). On the “Creative Commons”: a critique of the commons without commonalty. Free Software Magazine. No. 5.
- Berry, D. M & Moss, G. (2005). Libre Commons = Libre Culture + Radical Democracy. Noema. No. 44.
- Fitzgerald, Michael (2005), Copyleft hits a Snag. Technology Review
- Hill, Benjamin Mako. (2005). Towards a Standard of Freedom: Creative Commons and the Free Software Movement.
- Nimmer, Raymond (2005). Open source license proliferation, a broader view
- Orlowski, Andrew (2005). On Creativity, Computers and Copyright. The Register
- Tóth, Péter Benjamin. (2005). Creative Humbug: Personal feelings about the Creative Commons licenses
- Richard Stallman explains his disagreement with Creative Commons
- A Debian Developer gives his summary of problems discussed on the debian-legal mailing list (note that this comments on the outdated 2.0 versions of the licenses)
- "Why the BBS Documentary is Creative Commons" by Jason Scott
- Greentown article Overview of copyright history from 1556 leading to Creative
- Möller, Erik (2006). The Case for Free Use: Reasons Not to Use a Creative Commons NC License. Open Source Jahrbuch 2006.
See also[edit | edit source]
- History of Western Copyright Law
- Open Web Publishing
- Intellectual Property
- Software Freedom
- Creative Commons cryptocurrency motivators and tipping
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References[edit | edit source]
- "Combining and adapting CC material" from Creative Commons FAQ page
- "What can I do if I offer my material under a Creative Commons license and I do not like the way someone uses it?" from Creative Commons FAQ
- "Can I include a work licensed with CC BY in a Wikipedia article even though they use a CC BY-SA license?" from Creative Commons FAQ page
- "Compatible Licenses" at Creative Commons website
- CC BY 3.0 Hong Kong, section 4(c)
- CC BY 3.0 Germany, section 4(d)