¶ 1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 Creative Commons (CC) is a project building a new and more flexible paradigm for copyright. CC develops standardised copyright licenses and other (optional) technical tools to assist authors wanting to share some of their rights with users and fellow authors in a way that is easy, flexible and legally rigorous. Creative Commons licenses may apply to all types of works (scientific or not).
¶ 2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 The CC licenses protect the people who use or redistribute an author’s work from concerns of copyright infringement as long as they abide by the conditions that are specified in the license by which the author distributes the work. Such licenses all grant the “baseline rights”, such as the right to distribute the copyrighted work worldwide for non-commercial purposes, and without modification.
¶ 3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 There are different CC licenses, some more permissive than others. Some types of licenses are particularly broad: the public domain dedication mark such as CC0 (“No Rights Reserved”) or PDM (“No Known Copyright”), the license CC-BY (“Attribution”) or the license CC-BY-SA (“Attribution/ShareAlike”).
|Attribution (BY)||Licensees may copy, distribute, display and perform the work and make derivative works and remixes based on it only if they give the author or licensor the credits (attribution) in the manner specified by these.|
|Share-alike (SA)||Licensees may distribute derivative works only under a license identical (“not more restrictive”) to the license that governs the original work. (See also copyleft.) Without share-alike, derivative works might be sublicensed with compatible but more restrictive license clauses, e.g. CC BY to CC BY-NC.)|
|Non-commercial (NC)||Licensees may copy, distribute, display, and perform the work and make derivative works and remixes based on it only for non-commercial purposes|
|No Derivative Works (ND)||Licensees may copy, distribute, display and perform only verbatim copies of the work, not derivative works and remixes based on it.|
¶ 8 Leave a comment on paragraph 8 0 “The term public domain refers to creative materials that are not protected by intellectual property laws such as copyright, trademark, or patent laws. The public owns these works, not an individual author or artist. Anyone can use a public domain work without obtaining permission, but no one can ever own it” (Stim 2010).
¶ 9 Leave a comment on paragraph 9 0 Eventually all original works enter the Public Domain at some point, namely when their copyright protection expires, but it tends to take a long time – in most jurisdictions this happens at least 70 years after the author’s death!
¶ 10 Leave a comment on paragraph 10 0 Nonetheless, copyright holders might want to dedicate their works to the public domain at any point. In order to do so, they need to explicitly state that they do not wish to reserve any of their intellectual property rights over a given work, something that can be done for instance, by making use of the CC0 tool. “In contrast to CC’s licenses that allow copyright holders to choose from a range of permissions while retaining their copyright, CC0 empowers yet another choice altogether – the choice to opt out of copyright and database protection, and the exclusive rights automatically granted to creators – the “no rights reserved” alternative to our licenses”. For instance, you may find datasets contributed by researchers to the worldwide Public Domain at Figshare. Another example is PixaBay; a repository of high quality photographs and illustrations that only contains public domain content released under CC0. While users can give credit, and even donations, to the authors of content, this is not required.
¶ 11 Leave a comment on paragraph 11 1 Rather than thinking of open and closed as binary concepts, it is more appropriate to see them as the two ends of a wide continuum that can include different levels of openness (or closedness). That is, resources can be more or less open depending on the rights reserved by their authors, being Public Domain is the most open possible option.
¶ 12 Leave a comment on paragraph 12 0 Please check your understanding on Creative Commons licences by playing the game proposed at http://www.opencontent.org/game/: instructions are provided on that website.