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Copyright for Students

What is Creative Commons?


Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that gives creators a simple, standardized way to keep their copyright while allowing certain uses of their work — a “some rights reserved” approach to copyright.

Authors can choose one of six different license conditions, covering the spectrum of possibilities between full copyright (all rights reserved) and the public domain (no rights reserved).

Creative Commons can work for you in two ways:
  1. If you are looking for content that you can use freely and legally
  2. If you want to give people the right to share, use, or build upon a work you created

There are hundreds of millions of works — from songs and videos to scientific and academic material — available to the public for free and legal use under the terms of Creative Commons copyright licenses, with more being contributed every day.  Creative Commons materials can be used, not only in your academic life, but anytime you need to use a preexisting piece of information without worrying about copyright infringement.  

Creative Commons Examples:

Find CC Material on the Creative Commons site.

Flickr: Creative Commons --contains many cc licensed photos

ccMixter --contains many cc licensed music mixes

Jamendo --another platform for cc licensed music

Freesound--provides cc licensed sound samples

Youtube --how to access and/or upload cc videos on youtube


Creative Commons. (2016). About. Retrieved from

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