Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organization headquartered in Mountain View, California, United States devoted to expanding the range of creative works available for others to build upon legally and to share. The organization has released several copyright-licenses known as Creative Commons licenses free of charge to the public. These licenses allow creators to communicate which rights they reserve, and which rights they waive for the benefit of recipients or other creators. An easy to understand one-page explanation of rights, with associated visual symbols, explains the specifics of each Creative Commons license. This simplicity distinguishes Creative Commons from an all-rights reserved copyright. Creative Commons was invented to create a more flexible copyright model, replacing “all rights reserved” with “some rights reserved”. Wikipedia is one of the notable web-based projects using one of its licenses.
The organization was founded in 2001 by Lawrence Lessig, Hal Abelson, and Eric Eldred with support of the Center for the Public Domain. The first set of copyright licenses was released in December 2002. In 2008, there were an estimated 130 million works licensed under Creative Commons. Creative Commons is governed by a board of directors and a technical advisory board. Joi Ito is currently the chair of the board and Catherine Casserly is the CEO. Creative Commons has been embraced by many as a way for content creators to take control of how they choose to share their intellectual property. There has also been criticism that it does not go far enough, or discourages regional cultural production.
Aim and influence
Creative Commons has been described as being at the forefront of the copyleft movement, which seeks to support the building of a richer public domain by providing an alternative to the automatic “all rights reserved” copyright, dubbed “some rights reserved.” David Berry and Giles Moss have credited Creative Commons with generating interest in the issue of intellectual property and contributing to the re-thinking of the role of the “commons” in the “information age”. Beyond that, Creative Commons has provided “institutional, practical and legal support for individuals and groups wishing to experiment and communicate with culture more freely.”
Creative Commons works to counter what the organization considers to be a dominant and increasingly restrictive permission culture. According to Lawrence Lessig, founder of Creative Commons, it is “a culture in which creators get to create only with the permission of the powerful, or of creators from the past”. Lessig maintains that modern culture is dominated by traditional content distributors in order to maintain and strengthen their monopolies on cultural products such as popular music and popular cinema, and that Creative Commons can provide alternatives to these restrictions.
Types of Creative Commons licenses
There are six major licenses of the Creative Commons:
Attribution Share Alike (CC-BY-SA)
Attribution No Derivatives (CC-BY-ND)
Attribution Non-Commercial (CC-BY-NC)
Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike (CC-BY-NC-SA)
Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC-BY-NC-ND)
There are four major conditions of the Creative Commons: Attribution (BY), requiring attribution to the original author; Share Alike (SA), allowing derivative works under the same or a similar license (later or jurisdiction version); Non-Commercial (NC), requiring the work is not used for commercial purposes; and No Derivative Works (ND), allowing only the original work, without derivatives.
As of the current versions, all Creative Commons licenses allow the “core right” to redistribute a work for non-commercial purposes without modification. The NC and ND options will make a work non-free.
Additional options include the CC0 option, or “No Rights Reserved.” For software, Creative Commons endorses three free licenses created by other institutions: the BSD License, the CC GNU LGPL license, and the CC GNU GPL.
Mission of Creative Commons
Creative Commons helps you share your knowledge and creativity with the world.
Creative Commons develops, supports, and stewards legal and technical
infrastructure that maximizes digital creativity, sharing, and