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Copyright for Merced College: Creative Commons

Creative Commons

The Creative Commons organization was founded in 2001 as a means of permitting creators to license their work for public use under conditions they specify. Although not an alternative to copyright and not an indication that a work is part of the public domain, Creative Commons licenses permit the holders of copyright to define more clearly, than perhaps modern copyright law interpretation allows, how their works may be used and give users of copyrighted works greater creative freedom when they know, without question, how copyrighted works can be incorporated into new creations.

Creative Commons Licenses by image




Attributions are important.  As part of the community of educators, we understand the need to make sure that we provide citations for work used.

OER is no different.

Most attributions can be made using the TASL method.

  • Title
  • Author
  • Source
  • License

An example of an attribution might be one of the following:\

  • "CC Licenses: A Primer" by Stephen Smith, which is licensed under a CC BY NC 4.0 license
  • "Creative Commons Licensing Deconstructed" by Sue Kunda, which is licensed under a CC BY 4.0 license
  • “Open Licenses Step by Step” by Amy Hofer for Open Oregon Educational Resources, which is licensed under a CC BY 4.0 license.

While there is no proscribed attribution style, you must let the reader know if you have modified a resource and you must retain a copy of the original source as well. 

Choosing a Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Search Tools

Copyright Tool for Public Domain

Creative Commons

"What are Creative Commons Licenses?" University of Guelph CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 (1:57)

Attribution Statement

George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida Creative Commons CC BY NC SA