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Creative Commons

Started by Xepher, July 04, 2006, 03:40:26 AM

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I recently changed the "copyright" notice on All code, content, and images are now under a Creative Commons license. You can check out the footer on any of the main pages for the new notice.

This was what I'd always intended with the original copyright notice I had, but now I've got the proper legalese to back it up. For those of you not familar with Creative Commons, you should check it out. Basically, it lets you claim a piece of work as your own, while still giving people the ability to redistribute it, copy it, modify it, etc... so long as they follow your rules about it. CC has several licenses you can choose from, depending on what you want to allow people to do with your work. The license I chose basically says you can do whatever you want with my work so long as you give me credit for it, and in turn release whatever you make with it under the same license.

I encourage everyone who creates content to put it under a CC license. Share, and share alike. That's what makes the internet a better place.


Hm, that would be good for me to do before I put some short films online :p
Pizza party! Pizza for everyone!....who has money?


Heh, I was reading through the "things to think about page there and I thought this bit was funny:
QuoteCreative Commons licenses are expressed in three different formats: the Commons Deed (human-readable code), the Legal Code (lawyer-readable code); and the metadata (machine readable code).
Apparently, lawyers aren't human.


QuoteApparently, lawyers aren't human.
What, you mean you didn't know that? :P
I don't hate everyone, I'm just very, very disappointed in them.


Heh, I knew that, but now we have proof.

Also, my site now works under a creative commons.


I found this quite interesting.... otherwise I'd be doing the "mailing the original works to yourself" trick which would make it a Legal US Document and useable in court as evidence.


Nope, the poor-man's copyright as it's called will NOT stand up as proof in court... it's simply an old wives-tale...
I'm Home!
MuneRift - DeviantArt - Etsy


Actually, you don't have to send written works through the mail, or even put a copyright date/notice on them and they're STILL protected by U.S. copyright law. However, if you want the copyright REGISTERED, you have to submit it to the library of congress. The main difference is what happens when you sue. If you didn't register it, you can only sue for actual damages... that means the amount of money actually lost because of the infringement. If you registred it however, you can also sue for punitive damages. Basically, registering it lets you sue for more money, and that's the only real difference.

See for details.


And as we all know money makes the world go round (grumble)

Hmm...  given recent events (explained in my applications thread here) maybe I should register my works, if only for the threat of punitive damages.
Observing Chaos in action since before the new millenium


I looked up Trademarks... and HOY!!! they are WAY more complicated and more expensive than a Copyright!!! I was actually thinking about doing one or two copyrights.

otherwise Creative Commons gives a database for reference and would help in legal matters.... I'd say CC is the best, free option you can do for best protection, even though its only "some" rights reserved... since even at the strictest license one can still display your work for no money as long as they credit you... i think that's right...


Ah, here it is:

Creative Commons Licenses

The following describes each of the six main licenses offered when you choose to publish your work with a Creative Commons license. We have listed them starting with the most restrictive license type you can choose and ending with the most accommodating license type you can choose. It's also helpful to know there are a set of baseline rights all six licenses offer to others and we've prepared a list of things to think about before choosing a license.

Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives (by-nc-nd)

by nc nd
Choose by-nc-nd licenseThis license is the most restrictive of our six main licenses, allowing redistribution. This license is often called the "free advertising" license because it allows others to download your works and share them with others as long as they mention you and link back to you, but they can't change them in any way or use them commercially.

Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike (by-nc-sa)

by nc nd
Choose by-nc-sa licenseThis license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms. Others can download and redistribute your work just like the by-nc-nd license, but they can also translate, make remixes, and produce new stories based on your work. All new work based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also be non-commercial in nature.

Attribution Non-commercial (by-nc)

by nc
Choose by-nc licenseThis license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, and although their new works must also acknowledge you and be non-commercial, they don't have to license their derivative works on the same terms.

Attribution No Derivatives (by-nd)

by nc
Choose by-nd licenseThis license allows for redistribution, commercial and non-commercial, as long as it is passed along unchanged and in whole, with credit to you.

Attribution Share Alike (by-sa)

by nd
Choose by-sa licenseThis license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work even for commercial reasons, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms. This license is often compared to open source software licenses. All new works based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also allow commercial use.

Attribution (by)

Choose by licenseThis license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered, in terms of what others can do with your works licensed under Attribution.
Read the Commons Deed | View Legal Code


That's the whole point of Creative Commons... to dispense with the current idea of "Copyright" and share creativity. It's from the Feudal system of the Commons, where there was public land available for use by everyone... then fences came along. Copyright does the same thing to intellectual and creative content. CC tries to bridge the gap between purely public domain idea, and those of copyright. Many people are willing to contribute their work to the common good, but would at least like attribution, or assurance that others can't just take it for profit.

The idea of the commons is very important to intellectual property, and to society. In fact, the copyright system was designed to enhance the sharing of ideas, by protecting an author or artist for a reasonable period of time so he wouldn't be afraid to show it to the public. After the original term of 10 years, you could renew for another 7. After that, it became public domain. Now copyright lasts for nearly 150 years. If that had been the case originally, all the folk songs we sing would be copyrighted. We couldn't listen to classical music without paying modern music prices. We couldn't sing the national anthem at baseball games. Most people don't know it, but it's illegal to sing the song "Happy Birthday" in public. It's still copyrighted, so if you don't license it, you can get sued. That's why most resturants have their own birthday songs... not because they think they're cooler, but because they're legal.

Trademarks are an entirely different animal. Trademarks are just that, marks used to promote trade. Usually these are company or product names, but more recently they've started to become slogans too. Since, in theory, a trademark is used exclusivly to protect commercial interests, they are a lot more expensive and lawyer-ized.

And then there's patents. Which are, in principal, easy and rather cheap to get, provided you have something really new and amazing. Problem is, no one bothered to define "amazing" well enough, and so we've got the whole system flooded with junk patents on things like "one click shopping" and "a method of sending information through a wire." There are even several patents held on time machines, several on mice, at least a few for "method for holding a discussion" and all sorts of other stupid stuff.