Creative Commons Media

After you finish reading this page and have tried searching for items in Creative Commons, navigate to the fifth and final module for the Creating Websites objective.

What is Creative Commons? Watch this video to learn more.




cc.logo.large.pngCreative Commons allows creators to give permission for people to use their work without asking permission or paying fees and also enables people to find images, music, video, and other media to use in their projects without paying licensing fees or infringing the copyright of other creators. The media on this wiki is mostly licensed by Creative Commons. This wiki is licensed under a Creative Commons license itself.

Creative Commons Symbols

In order to determine whether or not you are allowed to use a work and under what conditions, you need to become familiar with the following symbols.

by.large.pngAttribution. This symbol means that you must indicate who created the work. All Creative Commons Licenses will carry this symbol. Creators will usually explain how they would like their work attributed. Some will be happy with a link back to their work. Others will want a note or caption indicating their name as creator. If you are unable to determine how the creator wishes to be attributed, it is probably a good idea to err on the side of caution and give them credit by name or by username and link back to the original.

nc.large.pngNon-commercial. This symbol means that you may not use the work for commercial purposes. The creator of the work has given permission for you to use the work, but not if you stand to profit from the work.



sa.large.pngShare Alike. This symbol means that you may use the work in your own work, but only if you license your derivative works under the same Creative Commons License. In other words, the creator agrees to share his or her work with you only if you share your work, too. Be careful if you use works licensed under a Share Alike license—the terms under which you share your work must be identical to the original creator's terms. That means if they allow commercial use, you must also.

nd.large.pngNo Derivative Works. This symbol means that you may use the work, but you may only use verbatim copies. In other words, you may not clip or change an image or video licensed under an ND (No Derivative Works) license. The work must be identical to its original in your own work.



Creative Commons Licenses

The preceding symbols all combine to form different types of Creative Commons licenses.

by.pngAttribution. This license is the most liberal Creative Commons license. It allows users to do anything with a work as long as they give the creator credit for the original work. Users may make derivative works and even commercial works. You can view the license deed and the legal code for this license.

by-sa.pngAttribution Share Alike. This license allows users to do anything with a work as long as they give the creator credit and agree to allow others to build on their resulting work, too. That means that users can create derivative works, even for commercial purposes, but they must in turn allow others to create derivative works, even for commercial purposes, from the derivative work they created. You can view the license deed and the legal code for this license.

by-nd.pngAttribution No Derivative Works. This license allows users to use a work, even for commercial purposes, as long as they give the creator credit and do not change the work. They must use verbatim copies of the work. You can view the license deed and the legal code for this license.


by-nc.pngAttribution Non-Commercial. This license allows users to create works, even derivative works, from an original work if they give credit to the creator of the original work, but not for commercial purposes. You can view the license deed and the legal code for this license.



by-nc-sa.pngAttribution Non-Commercial Share Alike. This license allows users to create works, including derivative works, from an original work, but only if they give credit to the creator of the original work, agree that others can create derivative works from their new work, and are using the work for non-commercial purposes. You can view the license deed and the legal code for this license. This wiki is licensed under an Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike license.

by-nc-nd.pngAttribution Non-Commercial No Derivative Works. This license allows users to create new works, but they must use verbatim copies of the work and may not create derivative works, nor can they use the work for commercial purposes. This license is the most restrictive of Creative Commons' main licenses. You can view the license deed and the legal code for this license.

Finding Works Licensed Under Creative Commons

If you are looking for media to use in a project, there are a variety of ways to find Creative Commons-licensed media that you can include without fear of copyright infringement as long as you examine the license and abide by its terms.

Method 1

Visit the Creative Commons website: http://creativecommons.org/.

Click on Find:

findcc.jpg

You should see a page that looks like the image below.

find2cc.jpg

Follow these steps to locate works:
  1. Indicate which type of work you would like to find.
    1. If you are searching for written content, click the tab that says Google (Web) or Yahoo (Web). Both of these tabs will locate work that is licensed under a Creative Commons license.
    2. If you are looking for images, click Google (Images), Flickr, or Wikimedia Commons.
    3. If you are looking for video, click Blip.tv, SpinXpress, or Wikimedia Commons.
    4. If you are looking for music, click jamendo or Wikimedia Commons.
  2. Type your search terms in the search box where it says "Enter search query." For example, if you are looking for an image of a flower, you can type "flower" in the box.
  3. Next, take a look at the checkboxes to the right of the search box. If you want to use a work for commercial purposes, make sure the box is checked. If not, uncheck it now because your search will return more results.
  4. If you want to modify, adapt, or build on a work—that is make a derivative work—make sure the box is checked. If you plan to use the work as is, verbatim, uncheck the box as your search will return more results.
  5. After you have typed in your search term(s) and checked the appropriate boxes, click the button that says "Go."

Method 2

If you have a Firefox browser, you can add the Creative Commons search to your browser search function. This search function is located in the upper right hand corner of the browser.

searchfunction.jpg

You can check to see if Creative Commons search is already installed by clicking on the arrow next to the search symbol.

dropdownsearchfunction.jpg

You can see Creative Commons is already among these search engines.

dropdownccsearch.jpg

If you do not see Creative Commons in your menu, you can add it easily by clicking on the link on Manage Search Engines on the bottom. You should see a menu that looks something like this:

managesearchengines.jpg

Click on the link that says "Get more search engines." You will be taken to a Mozilla Firefox Add-ons page. Type "Creative Commons" in the box that says "Search for add-ons." In the next box, click the drop-down menu and select "Search Tools." Click the green box with a white arrow.

firefoxaddonssearch.jpg
If you are unable to locate the Creative Commons search tool, you can try visiting the Mycroft Project at http://mycroft.mozdev.org/. In the search box near the top of the site, type the URL for Creative Commons and click the Search button.

mycroftprojectsearch.jpg
If you click on the links to any of the results, you will be asked if you want to add that search function to your browser. Make sure the checkbox that says "Start using it right away" is checked if you want to search now. Then click Add.

mycroftprojectsearchadd.jpg

The search engine will be installed in your search bar.

After you have verified that the search engine is installed in your search bar, select it using the drop-down arrow.

searchcc.jpg

Type the key words for your search, i.e. flower, using the example from before.

Click the spyglass or hit enter/return. You should see a page with your results.

Use the tabs at the top to navigate among different sites and types of media.

Choosing a Creative Commons License

If you decide you would like to license the content on your own website under a Creative Commons license, you need to think about what you want users of your content to be able to do.

Here is a handy license builder that you can use.

Why Use Creative Commons?

Simply put, using media or content from Creative Commons allows you to expand your work without paying huge licensing fees or waiting a long time for permission to use works. You can locate music to use as a soundtrack for your video. You can locate images to add interest to your handouts or web pages. You can find video clips to use as part of a larger video work. The possibilities are nearly endless.

If you license your work under a Creative Commons license, you are contributing to and sharing with a community of creatives. Who knows what they might build or create using your work as the inspiration?

Task

Use Creative Commons search to locate an appropriate image to use for your website. Save the image in a place where you will be able to find it later. You will need it for the next module.

Module 1 | Module 2 | Module 3 | Module 4 | Module 5