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Creative Commons

Creative Commons (CC) is the forefront non-profit organization promoting free culture, i.e. basically relaxation of "intellectual property" (such as copyright) in art. One of the most important contributions of the organization are the widely used Creative Commons licenses which artists may use to make their works more legally free and even put them to the public domain.



Creative commons licenses/waivers form a spectrum spanning from complete freedom (CC0, public domain, no conditions on use) to complete fascism (prohibiting basically everything except for non-commercial sharing). This means that NOT all Creative Commons licenses are free cultural licenses -- this is acknowledged by Creative Commons and has been intended. Keep in mind that as a good human you mustn't ever use licenses with NC (non-commercial use only) or ND (no derivatives allowed) clauses, these make your work non-free and therefore unusable.

Here is a comparison of the Creative Commons licenses/waivers, from most free (best) to least free (worst):

name abbreviation free culture use share remix copyleft attribution non-commercial comment
Creative Commons Zero CC0 yes :) yes :) yes :) yes :) no :) no need :) no :) public domain, copyright waiver, no restrictions, most freedom, best, sadly doesn't waive patents and trademraks
Creative Commons Attribution CC BY yes :) yes :) yes :) yes :) no :) forced :( no :) no restrictions except for requiring attribution to authors
Creative Commons Sharealike CC SA yes :) yes :) yes :) yes :) yes :/ no need :) no :) retired, secret license, no longer recommended by CC, pure copyleft/sharealike without forced attribution
Creative Commons Attribution Sharealike CC BY-SA yes :) yes :) yes :) yes :) yes :/ forced :( no :) requires attribution to authors and copyleft (sharing under same terms)
Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial CC BY-NC NO! :((( yes but yes but yes but yes :/ forced :( yes :( proprietary fascist license prohibiting commercial use, DO NOT USE
Creative Commons Attribution NoDerivs CC BY-ND NO! :((( yes but yes but NO! :( yes :/ forced :( no but proprietary fascist license prohibiting modifications, DO NOT USE
Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial NoDerivs CC BY-NC-ND NO! :((( yes but yes but NO! :( yes :/ forced :( yes :( proprietary fascist license prohibiting commercial use and even modifications, DO NOT USE
none (all rights reserved) NO! :((( NO! :( NO! :( NO! :( FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU proprietary fascist option, prohibits everything, DO NOT USE

See Also

All content available under CC0 1.0 (public domain). Send comments and corrections to drummyfish at disroot dot org.