Some Rights Reserved

Copyright at the university can be a complicated, confusing topic.  Perhaps a student wants to use a picture she found on the Internet and manipulate it for her art class, or maybe a librarian would like to share his newly created instructional video with other people.  Copyrighted images, music, or other creative works are difficult to get permission to use and complicated to share; the Creative Commons license makes this process much easier.  Up until recently, when a video, image, song, story, etc. was created, it always was protected with standard Copyright.  This meant that even if you wanted to share your material, and someone wanted to use it, that person would have to get permission from you to do so.  Now there is an alternative, a Creative Commons license.  Creative Commons protects the rights specified by the copyright holder.  Copyright holders can specify whether they will allow their creative work to be used for commercial purposes or whether the work can be modified, adapted or built upon.  Creative Commons licenses are free and anyone can register their creative work to be shared.

ccsearch4Searching for creative work with the Creative Commons license is incredibly easy thanks to the Creative Commons meta search. By visiting http://search., you can search for all types of creative works in one place. Utilizing Flickr for images, for videos, OWL for music, as well as two standard search engines and a media search engine, you can quickly identify creative content available to share, revise or remixccsearchbox

Firefox makes searching for shared creative work even easier by allowing you to search the Creative Commons search engine right from the browser search box- simply choose the CC option.

For those wishing to license their own works, sign up at


7 Responses

  1. Thanks for the excellent post, Carissa!

    While downloading, copying, reposting other types of copyrighted works might qualify as fair use, Creative Commons licenses help remove the doubt and uncertainty that often accompanies fair use.

    The only thing I’d add to your post is to recommend that anyone who uses CC-licensed works first check the terms of the specific CC license that accompanies the work, because as you say in your first paragraph, CC licenses can allow (and prohibit) different types of re-use and they can place certain conditions on the re-use (e.g., attribution, “share alike.” etc.). Usually you can just click on the CC logo that’s posted with the work to see what specific terms apply.

  2. Thanks for the post! I didn’t realize there was a CC meta search; very helpful.

  3. I just found this post showing a bunch of different places to get CC-licensed media. Very cool!

  4. […] forget about copyright!  Flickr allows you to attach a Creative Commons license to your work or to specify that all rights are […]

  5. I just ran across this collection of Creative Commons (and other permission types) media today. About 4 million media files according to this review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: