Comparing Creative Commons with Copyright
Copyright protects the exclusive right of the originator of a work to copy or license the work. However, not all creators want their work restricted. Creative Commons licenses provide a way for creators of copyrighted works to grant some rights to use or adapt their work to the public, while still retaining the copyright to their works. Works released under a Creative Commons license often have no cost which provides learners with a more cost-effective option to access materials.
Creative Commons (CC) licenses give creators a choice in how they allow others to use their creations, whether text, pictures, songs, or other forms.
Creative Commons and other commitments to openness are gaining momentum in many environments: open access, open data, open source, open pedagogy, etc. In this module we concentrate on how Creative Commons licensing supports open educational resources, more commonly known as OER. We explore how OER, with their ability to be reused and often remixed, can replace high-cost commercial resources in your courses when adopted. Beyond saving your learners money, these OER can boost learning in your courses and increase student retention. With careful curation, you can design and develop courses that include content tailored to your specific learners’ need, modelling your preferred pedagogical approaches and strategies.
The Wanna Work Together? (Creative Commons, 2009) video explains some of the differences between Copyright and Creative Commons.
To find out more about Creative Commons Licenses take a look at the What are Creative Commons Licenses? (University of Guelph Library, 2018) video.
Licensing under Creative Commons covers:
Attribution: You may use this work as long as you provide credit to the original creator
Commercial use: You may use this work as long as your primary purpose is not for commercial gains.
Modifications or Derivatives: You may use this work as long as you do not adapt and distribute a new version.
Sharing: If you adapt this work and share it publicly, you must release the new work under the same open license.
Creative Commons also provides a public domain dedication tool: CC0. While this is not a license, this tool can be used by creators to relinquish all copyrights to their work and allow others to use the work without conditions.
Here is some information about how to attribute Creative Commons.
Play this matching game if you want to see if you remember what the different CC licenses mean.