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Multimedia Literacy: Audio

Creative Commons

Creative Commons is a non-profit organization that offers an alternative method for sharing one's work. Creative Commons allows creators to determine exactly how they want their work to be used by selecting a licenses comprised of at least one of four conditions. Whether you are looking for Creative Commons licensed content to use in a project or you want to give your work a CC license, this page covers the four licenses conditions, the different types of licenses, and how to create an attribution for Creative Commons content, so that you can provide proper credit in your own work.

Types of Licenses

Different types of creative commons licenses ranging from most open to most restrictive

Using the four different license conditions (attribution, share-alike, non-commercial, no-derivatives), you can build a Creative Commons license for your work, based on how you want others to use it.

  • Public Domain mark- “no known copyright”: used for works that are in the public domain and therefore not restricted by copyright. This includes works in the U.S. published in 1925 or earlier.
  • CC0- “no rights reserved”: given when the creator waives all rights to their work so that anyone can use it and build upon it without any restrictions under copyright or database law.
  • CC-BY: you must provide credit to the creator; this includes linking to their work or artist page within the attribution.
  • CC-BY-SA: you must provide credit and use the same license as the original on your own work.
  • CC-BY-NC: you must provide credit and you cannot make money using this work.
  • CC-BY-NC-SA: you must provide credit, you can’t make money with it, and you must use the same license on your own work.
  • CC-BY-ND: you must provide credit and you can't change the original work at all.
  • CC-BY-NC-ND: you must provide credit, you can’t make money with it, and you can’t change the original work at all.

 

Create an Attribution

Attributions for Creative Commons licensed content allow you to provide credit to the creator of the work you are using. Creators do not make any money when the license their content under Creative Commons, so providing attribution provides publicity, which can further increase awareness of their work. For information on creating attributions for images, visit our video guide.

Free Music Archive provides Creative Commons attributions for each song; it can be located on the bottom, right corner of an individual track page. While the attributions are generally reliable, It is still important to locate the title, creator, and Creative Commons license, to verify that it is correct.

If need to create the attribution yourself, use the following formula:

[Title] by [Creator] is licensed under a [license name] license.

Below is an image depicting how to create an attribution for a Free Music Archive. The attribution would read, "The Zeppelin by Blue Dot Sessions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International license." Alternatively, you can abbreviate the license name. The attribution would then read, "The Zeppelin by Blue Dot Sessions is licensed under a CC-BY-NC 4.0 license."

how to create an attribution on FreeMusicArchive.org

Click on the image to open it to full size in a new window.