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This tutorial will address the basic issues regarding copyright and licensing while guiding you on how to share your own materials as well as using others' materials.

When making use of web resources and tools available nowadays, you might have asked yourself whether or not you are allowed to use the pictures, videos or any type of resources that you find online and under which conditions.

Are you allowed to use them and maybe change them to better suit your teaching or learning needs?
Can you further share it with other people?
Are they free or are you required to pay a fee?
Who should you contact?

At the same time you might have wanted to make your own materials available on the web but also to make sure that you receive attribution for your work.

Because the new media that is nowadays available makes it possible for anyone with access to the Internet to use, download and share material, the experts in the field came up with a legal framework that makes sharing and using more accessible and flexible called Creative Commons (CC). While Copyright is still preserved, Creative Commons gives you the right to decide, as creator of your work, how exactly you prefer to share it, while making sure that everyone interested in your work is well informed of your choices.

Access an article & quiz on copyright in Slovenian language here and here


What is Creative Commons?

Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that enables the sharing and use of creativity and knowledge through free legal tools.

The Creative Commons copyright licenses are free and easy-to-use and provide a standardized way to give the public permission to share and use creative work under specific conditions. They do not replace copyright, but enable you to modify your copyright terms to suit your needs e.g. change from the default of “all rights reserved” to “some rights reserved.”

Watch the next video to find out more about the limitations of the traditional copyright system and how Creative Commons respondeds to them.

How can I license my work with Creative Commons?

When writing your stories, either starting from one of the story pathways available or from scratch, we encourage you to take and use your own pictures, produce your own videos and insert your own materials. But before making them available online, you would like to make sure that they are used by others under your own conditions. We recommend licensing your work with a Creative Commons license. It is free and quick. Check out below how you can do this and find out which are the conditions and licenses available

If you have produced materials that you would like to share with others and give them also the right to share, use, and even build upon your work all you need to do is publish it under a Creative Commons license. This will give you the flexibility to choose e.g. if you want to allow only noncommercial uses of your work and make sure that you receive attribution fro your work. Using Creative Commons license also helps the people that use your work, as all they have to do is abide by the conditions you have specified.

Read more about the Creative Commons licences and License your Work here.

Here's a description of the Creative Commons Conditions:

The Conditions of Creative Commons licenses
The Creative Commons Licenses

Where can I find resources I can use?

When writing your stories, either starting from one of the story pathways available or from scratch, you are encouraged to insert pictures, videos and other resources already available on the web. In order to make sure that the images you want to use have licenses that allow their distribution, remix etc., a solution would be looking for resources licensed with Creative Commons. Where can you find such resources? Check out some examples in the list below.

Creative Commons is an active part of the Open Educational Resources (OER) movement, providing the legal framework for Open Educational Resources — learning materials that are freely available to use, remix, and redistribute.

By using Creative Commons licenses, teachers and learners around the world are able to use, remix and share lectures, textbooks, lesson plans, and many other educational resources. Please find below some of the best known users of Creative Commons licenses. For many more examples, explore the case studies, interviews and the Creative Commons blog.

1. Flickr

Flickr is one of the major online communities that incorporates Creative Commons licensing options, giving photographers and users around the world the ability to share photos on terms of their choosing. Currently there are over 100 million images licensed with Creative Commons on the site, making Flickr the web’s single largest source of CC-licensed content. Flickr’s services have grown to include a Creative Commons image portal and advanced Creative Commons search features, making the site one of world’s most useful resources for discovering creativity that is available for free and legal sharing, use, and remixing.

Check out the Complete Guide to Finding and Using Incredible Flickr Images

2. Google

Google has utilized CC licenses in a variety of instances throughout their digital services. Either by enabling CC-search capabilities through their main search engine, image search engine, and book search engine, or by allowing users to CC license their own content in Picasa, Google Knol, and documentation at Google Code.
YouTube, which is Google-owned, is also using CC-licenses in their audio-swap program, allowing users to swap “All Rights Reserved” music for similar-sounding CC-licensed tracks, as well as enabling CC-licensing for select institutions.

3. OpenCourseWare

MIT OpenCourseWare has been releasing its materials under a CC BY-NC-SA license since 2004. Today, MIT OCW has over 1900 courses available freely and openly online for anyone, anywhere to adapt, translate, and redistribute. The OpenCourseWare concept has now spread to dozens of universities worldwide that openly share their courses and lectures on the web.

For more on MIT and OCW, see OCW as a transition to college and Two MIT OCW Courses Reach Million Visit Milestone.


Connexions is a repository and collaborative platform of educational materials that breaks down larger collections, such as textbooks and courses, into basic building blocks known as modules. Each module has a corresponding web page, so educators can mix and match pages to create custom collections. All modules and collections are licensed CC BY (Attribution) so they can be continually edited, translated and adapted.

5. CK-12 Foundation

The CK-12 Foundation addresses the growing costs of textbooks and focuses specifically on textbooks for K-12 schools. The foundation works with states and institutions to build web-based, collaborative “flexbooks” that are free to use and adapt via CC BY-NC-SA (Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike). The CK-12 Foundation is a major contributor to the California Free Digital Textbooks Initiative, an initiative that aligns open textbooks to state standards.

6. Public Library of Science

Open Access journals are a key component to the knowledge sharing cycle in scholarly communication. There are a number of journals that are leading the way in ensuring and enabling the sharing and reuse of scholarly content, most notably the Public Library of Science (PLoS), BioMed Central, and Hindawi. PLoS, for example, publishes seven scientific journals, including the high-impact PLoS Biology and PLoS Medicine, and PLoS ONE, a web-centric rethink of the scientific journal. All PLoS content is published under a Creative Commons Attribution license – the freest license in the Creative Commons suite, and also in compliance with the definition of Open Access.

7. Wikipedia

Wikipedia recently migrated its licensing structure from the GNU Free Documentation License to a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license. The world’s largest collaborative encyclopedia made this move via a community vote. By changing to a CC BY-SA (Attribution-ShareAlike) license, Wikipedia (and the entire collection of Wikimedia sites) allows content to legally flow in and out of the site with ease.

Go to Wikimedia Commons to explore over 10 million freely usable media files.

For more examples, go to Creative Commons Education.

Source: Creative Commons