Understanding the Different Creative Commons Licenses
Creative Commons offers six different licenses that allow copyright holders to apply different restrictions to how their work may be reused. When using a specific CC-licensed work, it is important to pay attention to the CC license and its restrictions. All Creative Commons licenses require attribution. The specific types of Creative Commons licenses are:
Attribution CC BY
This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon the work, even commercially, as long as they credit the creator for the original creation. This is the most flexible and accommodating of the available Creative Commons licenses. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.
Attribution-NoDerivs CC BY-ND
This license allows for redistribution, commercial and non-commercial, as long as the licensed work is passed along unchanged and in whole, with credit to the creator.
Attribution-NonCommercial CC BY-NC
This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon the work non-commercially, and although their new works must also acknowledge the creator and be non-commercial, they don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms.
Attribution-ShareAlike CC BY-SA
This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon the work even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit the creator and license all new creations under the identical terms. This license is often compared to “copyleft” free and open source software licenses. All new works based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also allow commercial use. This is the license used by Wikipedia, and is recommended for materials that would benefit from incorporating content from Wikipedia and similarly licensed projects.
Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike CC BY-NC-SA
This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit the creator and license their new creations under the identical terms.
Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs CC BY-NC-ND
This license is the most restrictive of the six main licenses, only allowing others to download your works and share them with others as long as they credit the creator, but they can’t change them in any way or use them commercially.